Have We Forgotten?
The Face of War, Diaspora and Current Conditions in Afghanistan
Connie Frisbee Houde is a photojournalist who first traveled to Afghanistan in February of 2003 to witness a country working to recover from over 25 years of war. Currently Afghanistan is the “forgotten war” as the mainstream media has flocked to cover Iraq and the “war on terror.” Learn from Connie’s experience walking among the Afghan people in both rural and urban areas that this is a tragedy of untold proportions.
Following the work of NOOR, the eye care program of one of the oldest humanitarian aid organization’s and the only program offering this care in Afghanistan has enabled Connie to experience the daily workings of a country lacking basic amenities — roads, methods of communication, electricity — to name only a few. Hear how a one-day trip to a small village took three days and even then required a half-day trek to reach the original destination due to road conditions and the lack of roads. She has also been able to observe Afghanistan as it prepared for both the presidential and parliamentary elections, working to be come a democracy.
To add to the depth of her knowledge Connie Frisbee Houde is interviewing and photographing some of the over 3000 individuals who represent a portion of the Afghan Diaspora as they have resettled in the Capital District area of Albany, New York. Recording these poignant harrowing and untold stories of escape and resettlement in the US, she has seen the healing effects that telling their stories has as these Afghans reclaim their lives so affected by the horror of war. Many of these families are still connected to relatives in Afghanistan often sending support to assist them and thereby maintaining an intimate knowledge of the political and economic conditions of their beloved country of origin.
Connie Frisbee Houde’s Diaspora photographs and interviews combined with her on-the-ground experience there, give Connie a unique perspective of the present day conditions in Afghanistan. “While in Afghanistan I quickly fell in love with the people I met – the noble faces of the men, the strength of the women and the poignant beauty of the children whose eyes were windows to their souls. I am not simply looking at the Afghans through my lens, I am capturing them looking back at us.” It is this view that is crucial to the understanding of the current conditions in this once again forgotten and yet very vital part of the world.
Connie has also traveled in other third world countries and areas of the world affected by war. These experiences and journeys of conscience add a depth of understanding to her experiences in Afghanistan.
Global Village Photographer
c/o Connie Frisbee Houde
22 Elm Street, Albany, NY 12202
Contact for resume.
Connie Frisbee Houde’s presentations are flexible and can incorporate a number of different forms including a multimedia presentation based on sights, sounds and interviews from her experience, question and answer period, panel discussion and/or photo exhibit. A program will vary based on the current conditions in Afghanistan and the type of presentation. Possible multimedia presentations include but are not limited to:
Are We There Yet? based on the difficulties of travel in Afghanistan — July August 2005
A Day in Afghanistan: based on traveling with a surgical eye team to rural Afghanistan — 2004
Listen to the Voices: based on statements of Afghan women February 2003 and repeated in the present
From A Distance: a poetic and poignant view of the world and Afghanistan
Expenses for this work require a request for a modest stipend and travel expenses. All proceeds go toward ongoing work in Afghanistan.
Related and Alternative Essays and/or Presentation Topics:
Is This the Face of the Enemy? Based on experiences in Vietnam; Bosnia; Peru; Chiapas, Mexico; Cambodia; Egypt; and Jordan.
Imagine: Photographs of the global village
Wheel of Time: The creation of a Tibetan Sand Mandala
Sites and Sounds of China: from a November 2004 trip in Yunnan Province
Heart Island – Peru: Based on years of travel in Peru and study of its culture and spirit
Slide essays can be developed specifically for an individual conference or event.