As Drik as Possible

I’ve written on a number of occasions here and elsewhere about Shaidul Alam and Drik, most recently on the agency’s 25th anniversary. The idea of people in the majority world telling their own stories is one which has always seemed important to me, and I have a healthy distrust of some of the efforts of celebrity western journalists and photographers who¬† sometimes work with little real idea of the society and background to the events they are covering. It’s great to read a truly inspirational success story about Bangladesh, and how they have overcome so many problems. Optimism, a strong belief in what they are doing, the willingness to take serious risks and continuing hard work have been rewarded.

It goes a little deeper than that. Even when I look at how life in my own country and city gets represented though the media I’m often aware of a concentration on the froth and the failure to really understand or show the realities of life for the majority of our citizens. Of course there are some notable exceptions, but we really need a grass-roots photography movement too, as well as publishing on-line and in print that supports it.

The story of Drik, told in Alam’s blog post As Drik as Possible, is an introduction to the 2016 Drik Calendar, and tells a little of the storyand there is a little more about it on Flickr. You can also see a larger album of over 600 of Alam’s pictures of Bangladesh.

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