Archived entries for africa

Mia Couto: “En África no es que se viva un realismo mágico, es realismo real”

Ahí sí que hubo un clic que me hizo despertar. Fue cuando trabajaba de periodista, cuando comencé a apreciar la fuerza de la oralidad del país, la manera en que se transmite el pensamiento… Y eso era para mí sorprendente. Yo no estaba preparado, escribía noticias de modo más funcional y comunicativo… fue el hecho de empezar a contar lo que veía, o más bien esa lógica entre la realidad y la ficción que estaba detrás, lo que me hizo escritor.

via Mia Couto: “En África no es que se viva un realismo mágico, es realismo real” | El País Semanal | EL PAÍS.

Kevin Carter: Vulture and Sudanese Boy

In March 1993, while on a trip to Sudan, [Kevin] Carter was preparing to photograph a starving toddler trying to reach a feeding center when a hooded vulture landed nearby. Carter reported taking the picture, because it was his “job title”, and leaving.

Sold to the New York Times, the photograph first appeared on 26 March 1993 and was carried in many other newspapers around the world. Hundreds of people contacted the Times to ask the fate of the boy. The paper reported that it was unknown whether he had managed to reach the feeding center. In 1994, the photograph won the Pulitzer Prize for Feature Photography.[5]

Alternative account of the photograph

João Silva, a Portuguese photojournalist based in South Africa who accompanied Carter to Sudan, gave a different version of events in an interview with Japanese journalist and writer Akio Fujiwara that was published in Fujiwara’s book The Boy who Became a Postcard.

According to Silva, Carter and Silva travelled to Sudan with the United Nations aboard Operation Lifeline Sudan and landed in Southern Sudan on 11 March 1993. The UN told them that they would take off again in 30 minutes (the time necessary to distribute food), so they ran around looking to take shots. The UN started to distribute corn and the women of the village came out of their wooden huts to meet the plane. Silva went looking for guerrilla fighters, while Carter strayed no more than a few dozen feet from the plane.

Again according to Silva, Carter was quite shocked as it was the first time that he had seen a famine situation and so he took many shots of the children suffering from famine. Silva also started to take photos of children on the ground as if crying, which were not published. The parents of the children were busy taking food from the plane, so they had left their children only briefly while they collected the food. This was the situation for the boy in the photo taken by Carter. A vulture landed behind the boy. To get the two in focus, Carter approached the scene very slowly so as not to scare the vulture away and took a photo from approximately 10 metres. He took a few more photos before chasing the bird away.

Two Spanish photographers who were in the same area at that time, José María Luis Arenzana and Luis Davilla, without knowing the photograph of Kevin Carter, took a picture in a similar situation. As recounted on several occasions, it was a feeding center, and the vultures came from a manure pit waste:

“We took him and Pepe Arenzana to Ayod, where most of the time were in a feeding center where locals go. At one end of the enclosure, was a dump where waste and was pulling people to defecate. As these children are so weak and malnourished they are going ahead giving the impression that they are dead. As part of the fauna there are vultures that go for these remains. So if you grab a telephoto crush the child’s perspective in the foreground and background and it seems that the vultures will eat it, but that’s an absolute hoax, perhaps the animal is 20 meters.”

via Kevin Carter – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.



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