To Change the World

Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use
to change the world.

– Nelson Mandela


AFGHN-13707 (2)Afghanistan

The mind is not a vessel to be filled, but a fire to be kindled.
– Plutarch

BURMA-10168 (1)Burma

There is divine beauty in learning …
– Elie Wiesel

Kegalla, Sri Lanka, 1995Sri Lanka

DSC_0749_kd (1)Omo Valley, Ethiopia

All I have learned, I learned from books.
– Abraham Lincoln


Learning is not attained by chance;
it must be sought for with
ardor and attended to with diligence.
– Abigail Adams


We think of the effective teachers we have had over the years
with a sense of recognition, but those who have touched our humanity
we remember with a deep sense of gratitude.


 The secret in education lies in respecting the student.
– Ralph Waldo Emerson 

MALI-10028NF Mali


TIBET-10573NF2Kandze, Tibet

Only the educated are free.
– Epictetus


Teaching might even be the greatest of the arts since the
medium is the human mind and spirit.
– John Steinbeck

SRILANKA-10065Sri Lanka


UNITED_ARAB_EMIRATES-10005Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates

My real education, the superstructure, the details, the true architecture,
I got out of the library. For an impoverished child whose family could
not afford to buy books, the library was the open door to wonder and
achievement, and I can never be sufficiently grateful that I had the wit to
charge through that door and make the most of it
– Isaac Asimov

AFGHN-13831 (1)Bamiyan, Afghanistan

PAKISTAN-10075Baluchistan, Pakistan

I believe in libraries because most students don’t have any money.
When I graduated from high school, it was during the Depression and we had no money.
I couldn’t go to college, so I went to the library three days a week for 10 years.
– Ray Bradbury

INDIA-12155 (2)India

The love of learning, the sequestered nooks,
And all the sweet serenity of books.
– Henry Wadsworth Longfellow


INDIA-10840Ladakh, India



Interview with the Wall Street Journal

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114 Responses to “To Change the World”

  1. Anonymous Says:

    Yes, we can change the world.

  2. […] To Change the World: Steve McCurry’s Photos […]

  3. Reblogged this on and commented:
    Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime.

  4. […] Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world. – Nelson Mandela Ethiopia Afghanistan The mind is not a vessel to be filled, but a fire to be kindled. – Plutarch Burma …  […]

  5. Esstelle Says:

    As a retired teacher, I am so grateful for these heartwarming pictures of students all over the world, Thank you.

  6. Inspired to learn more. Inspired to teach

  7. Reblogged this on screenwritingkabulee and commented:
    For anyone for whom learning makes them whole & brings them alive, #Steve #McCurry reminds you why…#astonishing

  8. What a beautiful collection

  9. Excellent captures

  10. onurpinar Says:

    Amazing compilation of Mr. McCurry’s!

  11. […] Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world. – Nelson Mandela Ethiopia Afghanistan The mind is not a vessel to be filled, but a fire to be kindled. – Plutarch Burma There is divine beauty in …  […]

  12. […] are like a gallery of his work, contains a lot of pictures, grouped by poetic themes : Two of Us, To change the world are good […]

  13. Sunita Pathak Says:

    It’s is very amazing ,that Steve M . virtually portraits & conveys ,at the same time,
    what he thinks by his photos (or better say characters) so naturally…..

  14. To change the world…
    The most things for change the world , it could be from every small changing of everyone…together.!

    Very beautiful and so sensitive photos.!

  15. Excellent, many thanks for this

  16. great series. a real challenge to capture those moments. really like the Sri Lankan girls in white hats – intense.

  17. bring tears to my eyes…
    limitations not stopping them to fulfill their curiousity:)

  18. So powerful and overwhelming. Not many have the ability to do this through a photograph but you are one of the few that can do this in such a powerful way.

  19. Simply beautiful-I love the untold stories behind his images. A true inspiration

  20. Wonderful.. I can’t say more, it’s just “wonderful”..:)

  21. Mr. Chandan D. N. Gaonkar Says:

    Hi Steve,
    Greetings fromGoa-India. you are one of my most favorite photographer. each and every click of yours touches to the soul. you are Maestro. Thanks lot for sharing.
    Yours truly:
    Mr. Chandan D. N. Gaonkar
    Happy Clicking:-)

  22. Anonymous Says:

    Let us all arise and agree to change the world through education. It is the best means. Thanks so much for those very stunning photos.

  23. These are wonderful photos and wonderful words to accompany them. Thank you so much.

  24. Very impressive photos. I’ll be glad to have your opinion about my blog.

  25. touching photos!!!

  26. Your photos touch the heart. So beautiful, I am a retired teacher. Thank you

  27. […] and 3. Bosnia, by Steve McCurry (seen on his blog) […]

  28. Greatly appreciate the display of the power of education provided through your remarkable photos and captions!

  29. Anonymous Says:

    Grazie di esistere,Steve McCurry!

  30. Reblogged this on New World Blog and commented:
    Amazing theme… Along with very nice quotes…….

  31. Reblogged this on The World Through My Camera Lens and commented:
    Steve McCurry:)

  32. Your pictures are just simply stunning!!!!

  33. […] Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world. – Nelson Mandela Ethiopia Afghanistan The mind is not a vessel to be filled, but a fire to be kindled. – Plutarch Burma …  […]

  34. Reblogged this on E'n'M.

  35. […] αφήσουμε τις φωτογραφίες που βρήκαμε στο προσωπικό μπλογκ του Steve McCurry, μαζί με τα λόγια ή τα αποφθέγματα που διάλεξε ο ίδιος, […]

  36. Only if everyone would think like that. Only education can bring peace and stability to the world.
    Great photos.

  37. Thought-provoking and evocative.

  38. Wirklich beeindruckend und emotional festgehalten!!!

  39. […] inspired by one of my favorite photographers Steve McCurry. The latest post on his blog is titled “To Change the World”  and is a beautiful collection of images showing people of all ages in a variety of conditions […]

  40. Reblogged this on emmanuel pothen and commented:
    Let us bring this weapon to the most vulnerable.

  41. wonderful!!

  42. Hi Steve. I saw your exposition in Milano two years ago and seeing your photos i fell in love with light and color. Thanks for share your work. Regards from Spain.

  43. Du génie dans les yeux. Merci Monsieur pour cette belle leçon d’humanité!

  44. Yes, I say, true genius of vision and pairing of words. The excellence I have come to expect from you.

  45. As always, the weekly treat of incredible evocative photographs and thought-provoking quotations. Thank you so much.

  46. A touching post. I also started at a tiny school in Sri Lanka. So I know from experience that education makes all the difference. Thanks for inspiring quotes and beautiful pictures!

  47. Republicou isso em Etceterandoe comentado:
    Amazing work!
    “Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.”
    – Nelson Mandela

  48. Amazing pictures! I am a teacher here, in Brazil, and I know how important education is. Kids should have the right of education respect for all nations.

  49. Reblogged this on Lotta Wanner and commented:
    This blog post moved me beyond worlds and words. Please watch and I hope you take it to your heart as I did!

  50. I am absolutely overwhelmed by this post, your photos! The worlds they contain makes me almost speechless. The texts go very well with them, but the images are truly amazing! Thank you so much for sharing!

  51. Mehrnaz Hadji Says:

    wonderful as always!

  52. coldpumbuah Says:

    made my day )

  53. Reblogged this on i Ord och Bild and commented:
    Wonderful photos! As usual!

  54. Reblogged this on Caixa Negra and commented:
    Mais uma série de imagens extraordinárias do maior fotógrafo da actualidade. Vejam e revejam o trabalho deste homem: Steve McCurry.

  55. This its my favorite so far because the theme is basically my mantra. This is beautiful beautiful beautiful!

  56. Silvia Mangue Says:

    Thank you so much for such a wonderful work. I got very emotional. Thank you, thank you

  57. Thank you for this beautiful Blog. I am one of a few volunteers involved with a small NGO based on the California Central Coast that raises money to build schools and libraries in Nepal. We are fewer than a dozen people but we have worked with two villages in the Ganesh Himals to help them build schools. And we have gone back to one of the villages as well as a third one to build and stock a library, all to foster education and literacy. People often ask us why we spend money building schools and buying books for such a poor country; your photos and accompanying quotes say it all.

    With gratitude, Leigh Livick HANDS in Nepal

  58. Great pictures! I especially liked the students’ wonderful facial expressions.

  59. Reblogged this on Random Musings and commented:
    Absolutely profound.

  60. Hi Steve
    You have been a great teacher yourself – unbeknown to you i learned a great deal watching you shooting in Varanasi in 2013. I had planned 8 months ahead to coincide my arrival with yours and i just got plan lucky. I have pictures of you from that afternoon. Couldn’t believe my eyes when i spotted you having conversation with another photographer i deeply admire – Christian Garcia Rodero. What a privilege to have you both in the same picture.

  61. lucia moura Says:

    Eu fiquei muito impressionada com as imagens e a importancia do tema.Parabens!

  62. Absolutely amazing and inspiring. Thank you for this great work! I’m reblogging!

  63. Thank you for such a wonderful collection and quotes. Truly inspiring xoxo

  64. This is truly such a magnificent series of images.
    Thank you so much for sharing them here.

  65. Wonderful captured and so inspiring!!!

  66. Stunning photography! I have a question. I have recently sent money through the UN to purchase desks in Malawi and other countries so children don’t have to sit on cement or hard dirt floors. I couldn’t help but notice many desks piled up in corners and not being used. Is there a reason for this? Just curious, but I do love your work!

  67. Awesome clicks as always.. I like the way you portray a particular topic aur theme. Love your work. And keen to work with you sometime in future.. :)

  68. Alison O'Brien Says:

    As Jack Nicholson says in the comedy film “As Good as it gets ” you make me want to be a better person and….a better photographer. Maybe the two go hand in hand. Love, Alison x

  69. Great images , as always !!!!

  70. Une superbe série de photos sur un thème essentiel
    Merci beaucoup pour cette diffusion

    A superb series of photos on a key theme
    Thank you very much for the diffusion

  71. Steve…Iconic as usual and changing this world …Teaching us one photo at a time!

  72. very nice series.
    you are a very good photographer!:-)

  73. Kathleen O Rourke Says:

    Wonderful words to match those wonderful pictures.Can one purchase those photos?Kay O Rourke Ireland

  74. […] Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world. – Nelson Mandela Ethiopia Afghanistan The mind is not a vessel to be filled, but a fire to be kindled. – Plutarch Burma …  […]

  75. Very stunning photos .. they say so much. Touching and humbling. Do we appreciate education enough?!

  76. as always, wonderful photos and quotes. hope it inspires some to teach, and teachers too. they don’t get the appreciation they deserve.

  77. Thank you Steve, your work is so inspiring..

  78. These are magnificent photographs. I’m going to share them with my children.

  79. Reblogged this on Senthil Kumaran and commented:
    Beautiful pictures with beautiful words

  80. Laura Hilger Says:

    Reblogged this on Strucknwords and commented:
    A wonderful series on education from McCurry!

  81. Mr. McCurry,

    I had your sister Bonnie as a teacher. I always liked her but I don’t think she was ever my favourite at the time. Today, however (more than twenty years later) I am still feeling the positive effects of her teaching in ways I never would have imagined. She changed my life and before it is all said and done I may genuinely be able to say she saved it.

    Education is so important. You have really captured that in these photographs. Thank you for posting this and doing what you do.

    -Soul Walker

  82. Osni Laia Says:

    Excellent captures.

  83. lisalday111711 Says:

    As a teacher these are truly beautiful to me….especially the women and female students in the countries that do not believe women should be educated….just beautiful.

  84. Silvia De Michelis Says:

    Education on and for peace is the true challenge. It demolishes borders, separations, and reunites human beings in what they truly are: a marvellous and wide family of equals. An absolute fantastic work! Thank you.

  85. Anonymous Says:

    inspiring work n thank you for the sharing to the world , best of luck

  86. It is truly amazing to see the gratitude that these children and people have to have the opportunity to have a school or just basic education in the first place. If only the first world countries could learn to appreciate the things handed out to us that are taken for granted, that others have to fight for, maybe this world would eventually become one in peace.

  87. Great post and some fantastic quotes 😀

  88. Reblogged this on Womanseyeview's Blog and commented:
    The world is such a fascinating, challenging place and as always Steve McCurry’s photos are a spectacular, humane window into our global neighbours.

  89. Really some great collection from you Steve !

  90. Who needs words when your photos say so much…humbling!

  91. Petra Makalousova Says:

    Amazing work !!!

  92. Amazing captures you’ve. I was looking for a photo of my country(Bangladesh) but didn’t find any. Still many people here don’t get the opportunity(have to fight for food from childhood) to learn. Great post.

  93. A celebration and a challenge…..wonderful, as always.

  94. Wonderful photos and quotations. A true genius.

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