film December 20, 2015 By Sophie Mollart

fbf 2 Frame by Frame Bombach spent several months following the lives of photojournalists seeking to carve out an identity for themselves after years of political turmoil. The film puts the cultural narrative back in the hands of Afghan photographers Wakil Kohsar, Najibullah Masafar, Pulitzer-prize winning Massoud Hossaini and his wife, Farzana Wahidy.

Farzana emerges as a passionate advocate for womens rights, her reflections providing a moving perspective into the realities faced by women under Taliban rule. “Eventually she went to school in secret and ended up actually teaching classes. She hid her books under a burkha to go to school; that’s the story of a lot of women. Banning photography is one thing, but not being able to go outside as a woman, the genocide that happened, and the famine, the lack of international support – photography is small in some respect but it’s also a huge metaphor for what was happening, for this loss of identity, not giving people a voice and letting them have their own history.”

Bombach is concerned with the Western notions of Afghan culture, with how we relate, and empathize, with those living in seemingly disparate realities to our own: “I wanted to challenge the perceptions built by the Western media and allow Afghans to tell their own story. I come from New Mexico and a lot of people when the think of New Mexico just think of desert, but the entire state is very diverse and Afghanistan reminds me a lot of that –there’s so much fruit, the mountains are huge, the snow is beautiful.

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