An Inside View of Arab Photography

By James Estrin

Samer Mohdad was a 10-year-old boy living in the mountain village of his Druse ancestors when Lebanon’s civil war broke out in 1975. His life changed overnight: His childhood playmates were now his sworn enemies. The traumatic experience of the war, which lasted until 1990, stayed with him and, Mr. Mohdad believes, eventually led him to photography.

“I used photography to express my fears and worries,” he said. “It was a sort of therapy.”

Fittingly, rather than immerse himself in the thick of the conflict’s action, he worked on long-term projects exploring “the hopes of normal people living in a civil war.” His images were different, nuanced and complex. [Read more...]

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