Archive for Tsunami

Portraits of Resilience

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on January 16, 2014 by stevemccurry

is the ability to overcome adversity,

cope with setbacks, and persevere in the face of  
trauma and deprivation.


AFGHN-10118NFKandahar, Afghanistan

The greatest glory in living
lies not in never falling,
but in rising every time we fall. 
– Nelson Mandela

AFGHN-10037Herat, Afghanistan

SRILANKA-10024NF5Sri Lanka

MALI-10010NF, Sahel Desert, Mali, 1986final print_milanMali

INDIA-10727NFMumbai, India

When you get into a tight place and everything goes against you
till it seems as though you could not hold on a minute longer, never give up then,
for that is just the place and time that the tide will turn.
– Harriet Beecher Stowe


Nothing in the world can take the place of persistence.
Talent will not… nothing is more common than unsuccessful people will talent.
Genius will not… unrewarded genius is almost legendary.
Education will not…. the world is full of educated derelicts.
Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent. 
– Calvin Coolidge


Serbian Orthodox clergy, like these monks living along Serbia’s Crna River,
have proved a resilient lot. During World War II and its aftermath some
700 were killed, and nearly a quarter of their 4,400 churches and monasteries were destroyed.
With little outside help, the church has made a stubborn comeback.


The bamboo that bends is stronger than the oak that resists.
– Japanese proverb

00529_04, Angkor Wat, 06/1999, CAMBODIA-10359Cambodia

CAMBODIA-10490Dith Pran, survivor of the Cambodian genocide at
Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum, Phnom Penh, Cambodia

The world breaks everyone, and afterward,
some are strong at the broken places

– Ernest Hemmingway


Be like the bird that, passing on her flight awhile on boughs too slight,
feels them give way beneath her, and yet sings, knowing that she hath wings.
– Victor Hugo


If you voluntarily quit in the face of adversity,
you’ll wonder about it for the rest of your life.
– President Bill Clinton

BURMA-10698 (1)Burma
Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, winner of Nobel Peace Prize

AFGHN-10154Kabul, Afghanistan

AFGHN-10103Peshawar, Pakistan

00468_ 018Sri Lanka
A man prays for the victims of the tsunami in 2004 which killed more than 250,000 people

…more than education, experience, or training,
an individual’s level of resilience will determine who succeeds & who fails.
– Harvard Business Review, 2002

The Power of Nature

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 1, 2011 by stevemccurry

 Please scroll to the bottom for the Unpublished Portrait of the Week



The word tsunami comes from two Japanese words: tsu, which means harbor, and nami, which means wave.

 JAPAN-10105 Japan


 In March  2011, Japan suffered from one of most violent earthquakes in history. 


 Its coastline shifted by as much thirteen feet to the east.


 The tsunami spawned by the earthquake destroyed virtually everything in its wake.


INDONESIA-10001NF6Duckweed carpets the water in a girl’s front yard at Bojonegoro, Java, Indonesia

Covering the monsoons  entailed day after day wallowing in filthy
water up to my
chest, or standing in the street in a torrential downpour, my shoulder aching from the umbrella
propped in my armpit, and an impatient assistant wishing he were somewhere else.

INDIA-10405NFPorbandar, Gujarat, India

I spent four days, in the flooded city of Gujarat, India, wading around the streets in waist-deep water that was filled with
bloated animal carcasses and other waste material.

INDIA-10436Porbandar, Gujarat, India

The fetid water enveloped me leaving a greasy film over my
clothes and body.  Every night I returned to my flooded hotel,
empty except for a nightwatchman, and bathed my shriveled feet in disinfectant.

INDIA-10220Chandni Chowk, Old Delhi, India

INDIA-10307NGoa, India

 Hurricane Katrina which hit New Orleans in August  2005,  was one of the deadliest hurricanes in the history of the United States.
Almost two thousand people died in the hurricane and the flood which followed.

USA-10136New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina

USA-10139NFNew Orleans, United States

USA-10129New Orleans, Louisiana, United States

USA-10130New Orleans, Louisiana, United States

On December 26, 2004, the Indian Ocean tsunami killed over 230,000 people in fourteen countries.

 SRILANKA-10048Four days after the tsunami hit Sri Lanka’s coastline
A man prays for the victims 


USA-10387 Texas, United States 

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Between Darkness and Light

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 17, 2011 by stevemccurry

UGANDA-10002 Kampala, Uganda

 Shadows:  The places between darkness and light

Young Cambodian boys play in the ruins of Preah Khan near Angkor Wat, Cambodia.  Preah Khan, surrounded by jungle, is named for a sacred sword Jayavarman II left to his successor, is still guarded by his descendants.  Preah Khan, Angkor, Cambodia, 1999.Cambodia

“Look round and round upon this bare bleak plain, and see even here, upon a winter’s day, how beautiful the shadows are.
  Alas!  It is the nature of their kind to be so.
The lovliest things in life are but shadows, and they come and go, and change and fade away…”

– Charles Dickens 

AFGHN-10156Kabul, Afghanistan

War's toll on the psyche is etched on faces at Marastun, a shelter for the mentally ill in Kabul.  Afghans tell of relatives gone made from years of dodging bombs or being forced to fight alongside Soviets against the mujahidin.Kabul, Afghanistan

00230_ 008, Mazar i Sharif, Afghanistan, 2002, AFGHN-10133Afghanistan

Burma, 2010Burma/Myanmar


INDIA-10298nsBodh Gaya, India

00246_01 An Indian girl peers out of a train window, 1983.Girl peeks out a train window, India

Mud mosque, Djenne, Mali, 1986. MALI-10012NF7 Unguarded Moment_BookMud Mosque, Mali

DSC_4269; japan; 05/2011; may; 2011, JAPAN-10101NF2After the earthquake and tsunami, Japan, 2011 

PHILIPPINES-10048; Philippines, 03/1986Philippines



YUGOSLAVIA-10032, Yugoslavia, 1989Croatia

USA-10294Grand Central Terminal, New York

Train Station, Old Delhi, India 

 “The Sun never knew how wonderful it was until it fell on the wall of a building.”

Louis Kahn, Architect
quoted in the forward of  the book,
In Praise of Shadows,  Junichiro Tanizaki


FRANCE-10028, France, 1989  Marseilles, France

AFGHN-10225Jalalabad, Afghanistan 


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