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Wakhan, Badakhshan, Afghanistan

Instagram photos and videos at Wakhan, Badakhshan, Afghanistan

Energy Security.  This basket covered the needs of our camp for a week, without consequent vehicles, the harvest is brought by foot, sometimes for a few kilometers. Irksome work, Shrub harvesting belongs to herders. #afghanistan #work #resist #energy #centralasia #fields #documentary #life #sky #pamir
Close Borders.  Evening walk next to a post of the Afghan army. Tajik mountains ahead hide Marx Peak, Pakistan lies a dozen kilometers behind. The remote stands just across the river or on the other side of the mountains. #border #afghanistan #tajikistan #centralasia #everyday #remoteness #fields
Reciprocity and Commensality.⠀ ⠀ Every morning, men eat together the bread and tea of their own households before leaving to the pastures. They come to the Pamir from the same village in the lowland Wakhan to breed their flocks. Commensality grounds good relations as sharing bread and tea translates one's willingness to lend his own workforce on the pastures. ⠀ #magnumphotoawards #magnum #lensculture #documentary #centralasia #afghanistan #pamir #centralasia #remoteness #connectivity #life #sharing #hospitality #collaboration #commensality #work #tea #bread
Opium Addiction.⠀ ⠀ Most of the herders smoke opium. It helps them purportedly to stay strong against colds, fatigue and boredom. Food and shelter are provided for the time they spend upland as well as a sheep for each month work. Old relations tie families together and the same boys move each year to the camps from the lowland Wakhan. ⠀ #magnumphotoawards#magnum #lensculture #documentary #reportage #moments #centralasia #afghanistan #pamir #life #opium #smoking #addiction #work
Talisman Against Indeterminacy.⠀ ⠀ "Children are a rare gift" as the saying goes among Afghan Kyrgyz. In the Pamir, the back of children are pinned with talismans to ensure their health for the times when good care becomes useless. During winter, the harsh climate is marked with lows reaching easily -40° C and summers are made of only two months over 0° C. ⠀ #magnumphotoawards#magnum #lensculture #documentary #reportage #journey #moments #photojournalism #centralasia #afghanistan #wakhan #pamir #centralasia #remoteness #connectivity #human #life #children #talisman
Exhausting Trade.⠀ ⠀ A trader rests after three weeks spent in the Pamirs. He is used to move upland since the nineties and knows most of the herders. His activities are now threatened by new traders from further places and with more resources. He doubts if his well known trading companions will continue to lend him preference against the greater profit they can make with other more wealthy but unknown traders. ⠀ #magnumphotoawards#magnum #lensculture #documentary #reportage #journey #moments #photojournalism #centralasia #afghanistan #wakhan #pamir #centralasia #remoteness #connectivity #human #life #portrait #portraitphotography #yurt #trade
Motorcycle Rides.⠀ ⠀ Motorcycles were recently brought to the Pamirs on yaks. Made in Iran, China or Pakistan, the engines provide valuable support to herding activities on the large valleys. Music is often plaid loud on their speakers to the agreement of everybody's ears. ⠀ #magnumphotoawards#magnum #lensculture #documentary #reportage #journey #moments #photojournalism #centralasia #afghanistan #wakhan #pamir #centralasia #remoteness #connectivity #human #life #motorcycle #pathways #portrait #portraitphotography
The Soldier and his Companion.⠀ ⠀ Early travelogues used to depict either aggressive or shy nomadic people living in the Pamir, always unruly. These stereotypes continue to bolster the imagination about a supposedly isolated and archaic society. In fact, development or aid workers, scientists, traders, politicians, tourists and soldiers come to the Pamir with very different aims and perspectives that open to a variety of exchanges. ⠀ #magnumphotoawards#magnum #lensculture #documentary #reportage #journey #centralasia #afghanistan #wakhan #pamir #centralasia #remoteness #connectivity #portrait #portraitphotography #life
The Trader and the Khan.⠀ ⠀ Er Ali Bai and Mahmutali Khan quibble over their hats. Both old friends as well as respected and wealthy leaders, they stopped their negociations to joke over the stereotypes that run about their own Kyrgyz and Hunza communities. Mahmutali Khan connects Afghan Kyrgyz to the port city of Karachi and the important trade city of Kashgar in China by the intermediary of his shops and guesthouses. ⠀ #magnumphotoawards#magnum #lensculture #documentary #reportage #journey #centralasia #afghanistan #wakhan #pamir #centralasia #remoteness #connectivity #portrait #portraitphotography #life #trade #human #travel #routes #mobility
Walking With as a Way of Working.⠀ ⠀ High mountain passes separate the lowland Wakhan from the upland Pamir. Our group needed four days walk to reach the road to the district center. Given the pace of movements in summer, I choose to follow people on their way and track the latest changes that affect the life of people living there and who are at the center of its fragile connections.⠀ #magnumphotoawards#magnum #lensculture #documentary #reportage #journey #centralasia #afghanistan #wakhan #pamir #centralasia #mountains #horse #caravan #pathways #travel #mobility #connectivity #remoteness
Looking at the "Roof of the World" from within. ⠀ ⠀ On first sight, impressive mountain ranges and international borders seem to enclose people in the region. However, local connections and movements to far reaching places are much more common than usual representations of an isolated society living on "the roof of the world" might convey. ⠀ #magnumphotoawards#magnum #lensculture #documentary #reportage #journey #centralasia #afghanistan #wakhan #pamir #centralasia #mountains #landscape #travel #mobility #borders
Inventing the Silk Roads.⠀ ⠀ Reloading silk road imaginaries, Bactrian camels tread the pathways that Marco Polo walked on. Nowadays, the tightened control of international borders add a serious constraint to trade across the surrounding high mountains. The Afghan Pamir is often considered more a cul-de-sac than a corridor despite the various and intermittent exchanges that connect the place to different centers. Traders, development workers, members of religious movements, tourists and state officials contribute to change the Afghan Pamir's landscape.⠀ #magnumphotoawards#magnum #lensculture #documentary #reportage #journey #centralasia #afghanistan #wakhan #pamir #centralasia #silkroad #camel #life #travel #pathway⠀
Addictions. As an alternative to opium, cigarettes are sold cheap and assumedly compensate the addiction. Samat was a soldier and used to live in Kabul and Faisabad and regrets the time when Soviet soldiers brought lots of provisions to Afghanistan. Back to the Pamirs after the withdrawal of Soviet troops and the outbreak of the civil war, he began to smoke opium when prices were low and stocks flowed. He eventually underwent a cure but continues to smoke cigarettes as many of his companions do. #afghanistan #centralasia #smoking #opium #magnumphotoawards #magnum #lensculture #photojournalism #moments #human #life #pamir #journey #portrait #reportage #myfeatureshoot #magnumphotos #portraitphotography
Coping with a Harsh Environment. Two months above 0°C mark the summers in the Afghan Pamirs. Strong winds sweep the arid valleys and often leave a small snow cover behind. Only small bushes grow over the pastures, a precious energy resource combined with animal dung. Perhaps, as a geographer suggested, the absence of trees also results from the pastoral exploitation of the environment. The arid climate would thus be the product of both altitude, the rugged terrain and the anthropic activities. #afghanistan #everydaycentralasia #centralasia #yurt #summer #silkroad #pamir #littlepamir #wakhan #journey #landscape #mountains #pasture #clouds #rugged #remoteness #connectivity #travel

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