Author(s): Steve McCurry
Steve McCurry has covered many areas of international and civil conflict, including the Iran-Iraq war, Beirut, Cambodia, the Philippines and the Gulf war, but his continuing coverage of Afghanistan is perhaps his greatest achievement. It was with his first images of Afghanistan that McCurry established his reputation as a photojournalist. In 1979, disguised in native dress, McCurry crossed the Pakistan border into rebel-controlled Afghanistan, shortly before Soviet troops invaded in support of the failing Marxist government. When he emerged, he had rolls of film sewn into his clothes, images which would be published around the world as among the first to show the conflict there. His coverage won him the Robert Capa Gold Medal for Best Photographic Reporting from Abroad, an award dedicated to photographers exhibiting exceptional courage and enterprise. Throughout his career McCurry has returned to Afghanistan time and time again - under different regimes and at times of civil unrest - to document the people, the landscape and the heritage of this troubled, yet captivating, country. Each image is accompanied by a brief text providing geographical and historical background.