Over the last three years, British photographer Jimmy Nelson traveled around the world—from Namibia to Papua New Guinea to Mongolia—documenting 31 remote cultures that may soon disappear, for a new book called Before They Pass Away.
It wasn’t easy; it sometimes took him weeks to reach a community, and there usually wasn’t any way to verbally communicate, since no matter how many translators he used, they didn’t speak the right dialect. Instead, he ended up connecting in other ways.
You know what really gets to me, and I’m sure many know this, is the blatant abuse and betrayal that white photogs display in POC countries. Every time a photo has gotten famous like this photo did in history, the actual focus of the photo is left behind in the dust while the white photog is hailed as a hero for displaying the ills of that country. He didn’t even fucking ask her name. He didn’t ask for 17 years. The world knew nothing about her life and her story. He captured one moment that made him famous and she got nothing.