ZEKE Magazine: Fall 2022

For eight years, ZEKE magazine has been publishing stories about the global human condition, but rarely has that involved the United States. Clearly the U.S. is part of the global community and we need to look at ourselves as much as we critically look at other parts of the world. The Fall 2022 issue of ZEKE focuses on “America” and takes inspiration from Robert Frank's seminar work, The Americans, published first in 1958 in France and the following year in the U.S. Highlights include: What Has Been Will Be Again by Jared Ragland COVID-19 in Black America by Raymond W Holman Jr. This is What Democracy Looks Like by Jean Ross Arming Teachers in America by Kate Way White Nationalism by Anthony Karen First Nations: Portraits of Dancers and Wisdom Keepers by Jeanny Tsai Also included: Essay by Stephen Mayes on Who We Are: Photography and the American Experience Interview with photographer Donna Ferrato by Michelle Bogre Book Reviews

For eight years, ZEKE magazine has been publishing stories about the global human condition, but rarely has that involved the United States. Clearly the U.S. is part of the global community and we need to look at ourselves as much as we critically look at other parts of the world. The Fall 2022 issue of ZEKE focuses on “America” and takes inspiration from Robert Frank's seminar work, The Americans, published first in 1958 in France and the following year in the U.S.

Highlights include:
What Has Been Will Be Again by Jared Ragland
COVID-19 in Black America by Raymond W Holman Jr.
This is What Democracy Looks Like by Jean Ross
Arming Teachers in America by Kate Way
White Nationalism by Anthony Karen
First Nations: Portraits of Dancers and Wisdom Keepers by Jeanny Tsai

Also included:
Essay by Stephen Mayes on Who We Are: Photography and the American Experience
Interview with photographer Donna Ferrato by Michelle Bogre
Book Reviews


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<strong>ZEKE</strong>FALL <strong>2022</strong> VOL.8/NO.2 $15 US<br />


The America Issue<br />

Published by Social Documentary Network<br />

<strong>ZEKE</strong> FALL <strong>2022</strong>/ 1

Published by Social Documentary Network<br />

FALL <strong>2022</strong> VOL.8/ NO.2<br />

$15 US<br />

The America Issue<br />

Photo by Jared Ragland from What Has Been<br />

Will Be Again<br />

Photo by Cheryl L. Guerrero from Low ‘n Slow:<br />

Cruising the Mission<br />

Photo by Raymond W Holman Jr from<br />

COVID-19 in Black America<br />

Photo by Lizzy Unger from Abortion Rights:<br />

We’re Not Backing Down<br />

Photo by Eric Chang from Has Godot Arrived?<br />


4 | What Has Been Will Be Again | Jared Ragland<br />

8 | US of A Color | Ghada Khunji<br />

10 | Low ‘n Slow: Cruising the Mission | Cheryl L. Guerrero<br />

12 | COVID-19 in Black America | Raymond W Holman Jr<br />

16 | We Are the People |Kevin McKeon<br />

18 | Abortion Rights: We’re Not Backing Down | Lizzy Unger<br />

20 | This is What Democracy Looks Like | Jean Ross<br />

22 | Lost: A Portrait of Addiction | Virginia Allyn<br />

24 | Arming Teachers in America | Kate Way<br />

26 | White Nationalism | Anthony Karen<br />

28 | Has Godot Arrived? | Eric Chang<br />

30 | Sex Trafficking: An American Story | Matilde Simas<br />

34 | Working Ohio | Steve Cagan<br />

36 | Working the Harvest in California | David Bacon<br />

38 | An American Dance | Brian Branch-Price<br />

42 | American Punk | Daniel Hoffman<br />

44 | First Nations: Portraits of Dancers and<br />

Wisdom Keepers | Jeanny Tsai<br />

46 | Good Earth | Esha Chiocchio<br />

48 | WHO WE ARE<br />

Photography and the American Experience<br />

by Stephen Mayes<br />

54 | Interview with Donna Ferrato<br />

by Michelle Bogre<br />

58 | Book Reviews<br />

Edited by Michelle Bogre<br />

62 | Contributors<br />

<strong>ZEKE</strong>SPRING <strong>2022</strong> VOL.8/NO.2 $15 US<br />


The America Issue<br />

On the Cover<br />

Photo by Amber Bracken<br />

from Standing Rock. The<br />

Mohawk Warrior flag<br />

came to prominence during<br />

the 1990 Canadian<br />

Oka Crisis, when the<br />

military confronted Indigenous<br />

people in a major<br />

armed conflict for the first<br />

time in modern history.

<strong>ZEKE</strong><br />

THE<br />



Published by Social Documentary Network<br />

Dear <strong>ZEKE</strong> Readers:<br />

Each time I write this letter, I am completely exasperated by the current state of world<br />

affairs, and this time is no different. Since <strong>ZEKE</strong> is the magazine of global documentary,<br />

the greater global community is our community and the canvas on which we base<br />

most issues of the magazine. But unlike other issues of <strong>ZEKE</strong>, this is the first time that<br />

we have chosen to focus solely on the United States. And, coincidentally, it is also the<br />

first issue that is printed outside the U.S. Because of costs and supply chain issues, this<br />

issue of <strong>ZEKE</strong> was printed in Lithuania by KOPA, a printer that supplies many photo<br />

magazines for continental Europe.<br />

Barbara Ayotte<br />

While we call this The America Issue, we want to acknowledge our American neighbors<br />

to our north and south who are not included in this issue. We chose to use “America” to<br />

refer to only the United States because there is great currency in this term—especially in<br />

the photography community with the seminal body of work, The Americans, published<br />

by Robert Frank in 1959, that in many ways is the model for this issue of <strong>ZEKE</strong>.<br />

Unlike other issues of <strong>ZEKE</strong>, the photos presented here span a greater time period than<br />

is often the case. This is because America is not time-bound or a specific event. It is a<br />

process that has been unfolding since 1492.<br />

I am greatly indebted to the 18 photographers whom we feature in this issue, and<br />

to Stephen Mayes for his essay on Who We Are: Photography and the American<br />

Experience. I am also indebted to the dozens of other photographers who submitted<br />

outstanding work to this project but who we did not have the space to feature. And I<br />

want to thank Lisa DuBois and Barbara Ayotte for their invaluable insights while editing<br />

this issue.<br />

The power of <strong>ZEKE</strong> and SDN have always been to present the voice and knowledge<br />

of visual artists who provide an alternate means of understanding issues in our world—<br />

distinct from our own personal experience or by written or spoken language. I hope<br />

these photographs provide this nuanced perspective of both the challenges facing us<br />

today, and our strength to overcome them.<br />

America has always been a grand idea, if we can only keep our eyes on the prize of<br />

universal human value and dignity and the unbridled potential that can be achieved<br />

when we allow all humans to participate. No doubt our history is fraught with our<br />

exclusions of women, Black, Brown, Indigenous and other communities that do not<br />

conform to the mold of our “founding fathers”, but we do hope, and we will struggle,<br />

to get there one day.<br />

Please join me in taking in and appreciating the photographs on the following pages<br />

and the photographers who have made them.<br />

Glenn Ruga<br />

Executive Editor<br />

<strong>ZEKE</strong> FALL <strong>2022</strong>/ 1

The<br />


that in our industry and farms and schools<br />

and popular culture and the fine arts we<br />

have created. These achievements must<br />

be embraced while this nation also faces<br />

poverty, addiction, ignorance, and violence<br />

on a scale unknown in most of the<br />

developed world.<br />

As a nation, we are trying to find our<br />

center and regroup, rebuild, redefine<br />

our way finally into a new century that<br />

America. We endure because the was born on 9/11—an event that set<br />

land of the free and home of the brave us back a century, not because of what<br />

was an idea of its time, imperfect in its happened to us but because of how we<br />

exclusions, but a beacon for the modern<br />

world to embrace—a notion that The photographs on the next 46<br />

responded with hubris and arrogance.<br />

all people are endowed with inalienable pages give us a glimpse of who and<br />

rights. Inspiring as this concept may be, what we are today, what we must overcome,<br />

what we can achieve. Our current<br />

there has always been a heavy burden<br />

of detractors who never believed in the president is fond of saying that America<br />

ideal and only cherished their own privilege<br />

in this new land of opportunity. its mind to it. More important though in<br />

can achieve anything it wants if it puts<br />

Divided like this only once before, we reaching our potential is if we can agree<br />

are now walking a delicate path.<br />

on some basic principles and right now<br />

This is the America we seek to this nation is having a hard time doing<br />

describe in this issue of <strong>ZEKE</strong>.<br />

just that.<br />

While the term Black Lives Matter It is in this light that we are so proud<br />

was coined just nine years ago, there to present this body of work by 18 photographers<br />

on the theme of America.<br />

was always a deep sentiment of support<br />

for what it means. Yet the fact remained<br />

that Black lives did not matter to the vast<br />

majority of people who just went on in<br />

their (our) ways.<br />

There has always been a darker and<br />

visible underside to this nation as evidenced<br />

in the KKK, the American Nazi<br />

Party, anti-immigrant groups of all kinds,<br />

as well as a softer manifestation of racism<br />

and exclusion in local city councils, state<br />

legislatures, in our places of worship, and<br />

in the Supreme Court of the land.<br />

A nation founded in the idea of human<br />

potential was able to deliver and we see<br />

2 / <strong>ZEKE</strong> FALL <strong>2022</strong><br />

ISSUE<br />

Robin Fader<br />

Amber Bracken<br />

Cheryl L. Guerrero

Susan Ressler<br />

Kevin McKeon<br />

Anthony Karen<br />

Nick Gervin<br />

<strong>ZEKE</strong> FALL <strong>2022</strong>/ 3

Childersburg, Talladega County, Ala.<br />

Sunshine turns soil in the Commons<br />

Community Workshop garden. 2020.<br />

As a response to national division and<br />

the COVID-19 pandemic, Sunshine<br />

and her husband created the Fearless<br />

Communities Initiative where they<br />

maintain a community garden, host<br />

trade days, and celebrate “solidarity<br />

and strength” while regularly vocalizing<br />

opposition to vaccines and promoting<br />

far-right conspiracy theories.<br />

What Has Been<br />

Will Be Again<br />

Jared Ragland<br />

From Indigenous genocide to<br />

slavery and secession, and<br />

from the fight for civil rights to<br />

the championing of MAGA ideology,<br />

the state of Alabama has<br />

stood at the nexus of American<br />

identity. Begun in fall 2020, the<br />

ongoing project, “What Has<br />

Been Will Be Again,” has led<br />

photographer Jared Ragland<br />

across historic colonial routes<br />

including the Old Federal Road<br />

and Hernando de Soto’s 1540<br />

expedition to bear witness to<br />

and connect with individuals<br />

and communities plagued by<br />

generational poverty, environmental<br />

exploitation, and social<br />

injustices.<br />

4 / <strong>ZEKE</strong> FALL <strong>2022</strong>

<strong>ZEKE</strong> FALL <strong>2022</strong>/ 5

6 / <strong>ZEKE</strong> FALL <strong>2022</strong>

What Has Been Will Be Again<br />

Jared Ragland<br />

Walker County, Ala. Toby. 2021.<br />

Cottonton, Russell County, Ala. <strong>2022</strong>.<br />

Evergreen, Conecuh County, Ala. Antoine. 2021.<br />

Carrollton, Pickens County, Ala.<br />

Civil War Monument. 2020.<br />

<strong>ZEKE</strong> FALL <strong>2022</strong>/ 7

8 / <strong>ZEKE</strong> FALL <strong>2022</strong>

In my “America” series,<br />

an ongoing project, I<br />

attempt to portray a<br />

cross-section of a country<br />

filled with overwhelming<br />

pride yet tinged with<br />

sadness and confusion.<br />

To me, the people I photograph<br />

are almost lost<br />

in their own fairy tale. I<br />

try to capture my subjects’<br />

beauty and spirit,<br />

as well as the simplicity<br />

of their surroundings.<br />

After all, I have deep<br />

respect for them, for it is<br />

my fairy tale too, one that<br />

I strived to be a part of<br />

growing up in the Middle<br />

East. It reflects the<br />

movies I watched and<br />

yearned to be a part of …<br />

it is MY America.<br />

US of A Color<br />

Ghada Khunji<br />

<strong>ZEKE</strong> FALL <strong>2022</strong>/ 9

Low ‘n Slow:<br />

Cruising the Mission<br />

Cheryl L. Guerrero<br />

10 / <strong>ZEKE</strong> FALL <strong>2022</strong>

Above: San Francisco Mission District, 2019.<br />

Top right: A woman carries a Selena Quintanilla<br />

boombox during the Selena Tribute Cruise 2021.<br />

Bottom right: Like lowrider cars, lowrider bicycles<br />

are customized and highly individualized.<br />

Since 2017, I have been documenting lowrider<br />

cruises in the Mission District of San Francisco,<br />

considered to be the center of the city’s Latino<br />

community. Throughout the Bay Area, lowrider<br />

cruises are an expression of pride, aesthetics,<br />

and Chicano culture. In many ways, cruises are<br />

not just about the car, but also about creativity,<br />

style, friendship, and family. Most importantly,<br />

they are about culture and community. Although<br />

not all lowriders are Chicano, the vibrant style<br />

and cultural expression are strongly linked to<br />

the Latino—and particularly the Chicano—community.<br />

This is especially relevant in the Mission<br />

District, where gentrification has contributed<br />

to the erosion of the historically Latino neighborhood<br />

and the displacement of its members.<br />

Audrey, who grew up in the Mission, explains<br />

that cruises are “our chance to take it back and<br />

to … show that we’re still here. Even if we can’t<br />

afford to live in the city that we were born and<br />

raised in, we’re still here.”<br />

<strong>ZEKE</strong> FALL <strong>2022</strong>/ 11

In March 2020, I started working<br />

on a new personal project “COVID-<br />

19 in Black America.” From March<br />

until August 2020, I documented a<br />

group of Black doctors and nurses<br />

providing free COVID-19 tests in the<br />

Black communities of Philadelphia<br />

and surrounding areas. I am now<br />

creating environmental portraits of<br />

Black and brown-skinned people<br />

who have had first-hand experience<br />

with having COVID-19 and recovered,<br />

have lost family members who have<br />

died from the disease, have been<br />

mentally challenged by the year of<br />

being socially isolated, and finally<br />

Black and brown-skinned people who<br />

have figured out how to adjust to the<br />

challenge and made a new pathway.<br />

COVID-19 in Black America<br />

Raymond W Holman Jr<br />

12 / <strong>ZEKE</strong> FALL <strong>2022</strong>

Both of her parents spent time in the hospital after<br />

developing COVID-19, and her mother died from<br />

it. The entire family was in shock when she died,<br />

since she rarely experienced illness. The day we<br />

created this image, the intention was to also create<br />

images of her father, but because he was home still<br />

not feeling well, on oxygen and mourning the loss<br />

of his wife, I decided not to create those images.<br />

<strong>ZEKE</strong> FALL <strong>2022</strong>/ 13

COVID-19 in Black America<br />

Raymond W Holman Jr<br />

14 / <strong>ZEKE</strong> FALL <strong>2022</strong>

He attends Princeton<br />

University. Due to COVID-19,<br />

all of his classes for the past<br />

year were online. That, along<br />

with the isolation he experienced,<br />

made for a very challenging<br />

year. On the positive<br />

side, the challenge gave him<br />

the opportunity to get to know<br />

himself better and become a<br />

stronger human being.<br />

He is a college professor at Spellman College<br />

in Atlanta, GA. Teaching online this past year<br />

was a big challenge. Knowing how important<br />

face-to-face communication is, as the college<br />

year was moving forward, he experienced<br />

some of his students zoning out during classroom<br />

Zoom sessions.<br />

On April 20, I was dying from<br />

Covid. I screamed out to God for<br />

relief. My kids need me, just give<br />

me a date that this room is gonna<br />

stop spinning. The next day, my<br />

sister called and said, “Hang in<br />

there, champion. Relief is coming<br />

on Tuesday.” On Tuesday, I was<br />

relieved, I got up out of my sick<br />

bed and celebrated down by the<br />

river. GOD MY FATHER IS REAL!<br />

May 5, 2021<br />

<strong>ZEKE</strong> FALL <strong>2022</strong>/ 15

We Are the People<br />

Kevin McKeon<br />

16 / <strong>ZEKE</strong> FALL <strong>2022</strong>

Seeming to tower over her surroundings,<br />

activist and organizer Kimberly Bernard<br />

commands a march through the West<br />

Village in New York.<br />

The broad stroke view documenting<br />

large crowds at Black Lives<br />

Matter protest marches is only<br />

a small representation of what<br />

occurred and, as such, a misrepresentation.<br />

We Are the People is<br />

not merely a “documentation” of<br />

the events, but seeks to tap into<br />

the deeply personal, very human<br />

side of what has transpired since<br />

the killing of George Floyd. Every<br />

movement is made up of thousands<br />

of individuals and individual<br />

moments. Marching with fellow<br />

protesters, I witnessed anger and<br />

frustration, but also moments of<br />

joy, love, community, heroism,<br />

and beauty. Black Lives Matter is<br />

the movement, but these are the<br />

people.<br />

Top: A burst of sheer righteous<br />

joy while marching up<br />

Sixth Avenue in Manhattan.<br />

Under the banner of Black<br />

Lives Matter, there are a<br />

number of diverse groups with<br />

sometimes varying goals. This<br />

organization, Refuse Fascism,<br />

was calling for the removal of<br />

“the fascist regime” of Donald<br />

Trump and Mike Pence.<br />

Bottom: On this day, an outraged<br />

organizer must shout<br />

through her own tears to get<br />

her message across at a rally<br />

in Union Square in Manhattan.<br />

<strong>ZEKE</strong> FALL <strong>2022</strong>/ 17

Abortion Rights: We’re Not<br />

Backing Down<br />

Lizzy Unger<br />

18 / <strong>ZEKE</strong> FALL <strong>2022</strong>

Savannah Staubs in front of the<br />

Supreme Court. Banning abortion<br />

has been shown to increase the<br />

risk of pregnancy-related deaths.<br />

On June 24, <strong>2022</strong>, the Supreme Court<br />

overturned Roe v. Wade, ending 50<br />

years of constitutional protection of<br />

the right to an abortion. Thousands<br />

of people gathered outside of the<br />

Supreme Court to protest the decision<br />

and the devastating consequences it<br />

will have. The anger and frustration<br />

were palpable. As an American<br />

woman, it felt meaningful to join the<br />

protests and capture the defiant<br />

energy of the crowd. The Bans Off<br />

Our Bodies protest was organized<br />

by a mix of local and national<br />

organizations.<br />

Top: Protester Peachy<br />

pauses for a moment<br />

between leading chants.<br />

She led a series of chants<br />

in the middle of the pulsing<br />

crowd that turned into a<br />

communal scream of rage.<br />

Bottom: Thousands of<br />

protesters gathered in<br />

front of the Supreme Court<br />

on the day of the decision.<br />

<strong>ZEKE</strong> FALL <strong>2022</strong>/ 19

This is What Democracy<br />

Looks Like<br />

Jean Ross<br />

20 / <strong>ZEKE</strong> FALL <strong>2022</strong>

Pro-impeachment rally at the Office of<br />

Congresswoman Nicole Malliotakis, Bay<br />

Ridge, Brooklyn, NY (January 2021).<br />

The 2020 presidential election felt<br />

consequential to a degree unmatched<br />

by any other in my lifetime. As the<br />

election grew near, I set out to<br />

document the determination of my<br />

Brooklyn neighbors to exercise their<br />

right to vote. These images begin<br />

on the first day of early voting at<br />

the Brooklyn Museum, continue at<br />

Brooklyn’s Grand Army Plaza on the<br />

day the election was finally called for<br />

Joe Biden and Kamala Harris and at<br />

a January demonstration outside the<br />

Bay Ridge office of Congresswoman<br />

Nicole Malliotakis, who voted to overturn<br />

election results in Arizona and<br />

Pennsylvania.<br />

Top: First day of early voting,<br />

Brooklyn Museum, Brooklyn, NY<br />

(October 2020).<br />

Bottom: First day of early voting,<br />

Brooklyn Museum, Brooklyn, NY<br />

(October 2020).<br />

<strong>ZEKE</strong> FALL <strong>2022</strong>/ 21

Lost: A Portrait of<br />

Addiction<br />

Virginia Allyn<br />

22 / <strong>ZEKE</strong> FALL <strong>2022</strong>

Addiction could be called a plague. It<br />

blights the land. It ravages lives. Flyers for<br />

the missing ask, “Have You Seen Me?” The<br />

toll it takes is devastating. lt is visible night<br />

and day. In Philadelphia, the poorest of our<br />

nation’s largest cities, the plague has worsened.<br />

It is more out of control now. Ten<br />

years ago, one man on Kensington Avenue<br />

remarked, “I would call this the suffering,<br />

the suffering. The only hope I see is that<br />

people get to Heaven when they die.”<br />

Top: She is transgender. “My aunt’s<br />

favorite movie was Pretty Woman. It<br />

portrayed such an amazing lifestyle.<br />

She gets picked up in the street and<br />

ends up with a handsome man and<br />

money and love. But it’s not true in<br />

real life ... I come to the realization<br />

sometimes that I’m never gonna<br />

make it out of here. That’s what<br />

frightens me ... I regret doing heroin,<br />

but I keep coming back to it ... I<br />

want to stay [here]. I can help so<br />

many people that are stuck like how<br />

I’m stuck.”<br />

Bottom: “I’m a registered nurse. I<br />

got radiation poisoning at work and<br />

lost my job ... Everybody’s here for a<br />

different reason.” She has been out<br />

here for two years. “The street got<br />

worse. It’s a horrible place. It’s ugly.<br />

It’s your worst nightmare. People are<br />

just killing people now for nothing.<br />

People forget that this is a neighborhood<br />

and people worked hard to<br />

live in it ... I sleep on the pavement.<br />

Wherever I pass out. I’ve been trying<br />

to get into a shelter, but they closed<br />

two shelters down here. I prostitute.<br />

I hate it. I’m scared all the time ...<br />

I’m either going to go to rehab or I’m<br />

going to die.”<br />

<strong>ZEKE</strong> FALL <strong>2022</strong>/ 23

Arming<br />

Teachers<br />

in America<br />

Kate Way<br />

24 / <strong>ZEKE</strong> FALL <strong>2022</strong>

“I think it’s good to educate our kids in the<br />

same way....We’ve talked about it in our<br />

home, you know we have plans…I mean<br />

some people do fire drills. What happens<br />

if the smoke alarm goes off, where do you<br />

go? [My husband] and I have said what<br />

happens if an intruder comes in? [In one<br />

room of our house] we put in a steel door<br />

with a peephole. So we kind of have a safe<br />

room where we can go.”<br />

— Christin Forbes, suburban elementary<br />

school teacher and mother, attending day<br />

one of the FASTER training.<br />

This photo accompanies an essay<br />

that explores the highly controversial<br />

trend of K-12 schools arming<br />

teachers and other school staff<br />

in the United States. Since the<br />

Sandy Hook Elementary School<br />

massacre in 2012—and the<br />

more recent school shootings in<br />

Parkland, FL and Uvalde, TX—well<br />

over a dozen states have begun<br />

arming teachers. Shockingly, no<br />

one official federal or state body<br />

has been keeping count of how<br />

many schools across the nation<br />

have armed staff, and in many<br />

communities, even the parents<br />

and the general public remained<br />

uninformed. Often without public<br />

knowledge, there are teachers,<br />

administrators, custodians,<br />

nurses, and bus drivers carrying<br />

guns in America’s schools. This<br />

photograph was taken at an Ohio<br />

gun-training program designed<br />

for school staff in a community<br />

divided over arming its teachers.<br />

<strong>ZEKE</strong> FALL <strong>2022</strong>/ 25

White Nationalism<br />

Anthony Karen<br />

26 / <strong>ZEKE</strong> FALL <strong>2022</strong>

Top: Charles (36), a Lieutenant<br />

in the NSM (National Socialist<br />

Movement), addresses the crowd<br />

shortly before a swastika lighting<br />

ceremony at the Hated and Proud<br />

concert, which was held on a<br />

small farm in America’s heartland,<br />

Iowa.<br />

While documenting an ongoing project on<br />

the Ku Klux Klan, I came in contact with<br />

several organizations within the White<br />

nationalist movement. I’ve had the unique<br />

opportunity to photograph many of these<br />

groups without restriction over the past<br />

thirteen years and I will continue to do so<br />

for the long-term. The following images are<br />

a look into their private and social lives.<br />

Middle: A Ku Klux Klan cross<br />

lighting ceremony and swastika<br />

lighting — according to Klan ideology,<br />

the fiery cross signifies the<br />

light of Christ and is also meant to<br />

bring spiritual truth to a world that<br />

is blinded by misinformation and<br />

darkness.<br />

Bottom: A female skinhead,<br />

known as a Skinbyrd.<br />

<strong>ZEKE</strong> FALL <strong>2022</strong>/ 27

Has Godot Arrived?<br />

Eric Chang<br />

28 / <strong>ZEKE</strong> FALL <strong>2022</strong>

“I’ve loved Trump for a long time. I<br />

thought he was cool. He was a playboy<br />

and everything he touched turned to<br />

fucking gold.”<br />

In Samuel Beckett’s play, Waiting<br />

for Godot, the main characters<br />

wait endlessly by the side of a<br />

road for Godot to arrive. Perhaps<br />

they are waiting because his<br />

presence will give meaning to<br />

their lives? Has Godot arrived<br />

in the form of Trump for many<br />

of his followers? This personal<br />

project was undertaken in an<br />

attempt to answer this question<br />

by creating a relationship with<br />

one of Trump’s passionate<br />

followers, Tommy Smith from<br />

Edinburg, Virginia, and thereby<br />

understanding more broadly<br />

what motivates his followers to<br />

believe Trump’s lies.<br />

Top: “I’ve created my own little<br />

world out here. Otherwise, I would<br />

go fucking insane.”<br />

Bottom: Upstairs bedroom in the<br />

main house.<br />

<strong>ZEKE</strong> FALL <strong>2022</strong>/ 29

Sex Trafficking:<br />

An American Story<br />

Matilde Simas<br />

30 / <strong>ZEKE</strong> FALL <strong>2022</strong>

When people hear that someone<br />

was trafficked, it’s often<br />

assumed they were kidnapped<br />

and forced into labor against<br />

their will. Trafficking can be<br />

much more insidious. People<br />

are often exploited by someone<br />

they already know.<br />

In this photo documentary,<br />

we listen to the story of Cary<br />

Stuart, an American survivor<br />

of forced commercial sexual<br />

exploitation, who was lured<br />

into the world of trafficking by<br />

a romantic partner or “Romeo<br />

Pimp.” In the series, she<br />

reflects on her experience, the<br />

way it has impacted her mental<br />

state, and the ongoing challenges<br />

of working through drug<br />

addiction. Addiction to drugs<br />

can be both a vulnerability to<br />

trafficking, and a common tactic<br />

used by traffickers to make<br />

victims more compliant.<br />

While the prevalence of sex<br />

trafficking in the U.S. is still<br />

unknown, we do know that<br />

women, children, and men are<br />

being sold for sex against their<br />

will in all 50 states. In 2014,<br />

the Urban Institute studied the<br />

underground commercial sex<br />

economy in eight U.S. cities<br />

and estimated that this illicit<br />

activity generated between<br />

$39.9 million and $290 million in<br />

revenue depending on the city.<br />

<strong>ZEKE</strong> FALL <strong>2022</strong>/ 31

Sex Trafficking:<br />

An American Story<br />

Matilde Simas<br />

32 / <strong>ZEKE</strong> FALL <strong>2022</strong>

Top: Cary says, “I go to trauma<br />

therapy, women’s group and drug<br />

counseling [weekly]. It’s a lot of work<br />

but I make the time because I need<br />

to be healthy for my kids. I struggle<br />

with mental illness, night terrors,<br />

post-traumatic stress disorder and<br />

dissociative personality disorder. In<br />

the life, I was torn apart and stripped<br />

of everything.”<br />

Previous Page: Cary at home<br />

trying to dress herself while under<br />

the influence of illegal substance,<br />

Biddeford, Maine. “I ended up<br />

getting really heavy into drugs when<br />

I was being exploited by my pimps.<br />

They would either dose or withhold<br />

to keep me coming back.”<br />

Above: Cary with her 14-month-old son, Jay,<br />

saying goodbye to his father before going to<br />

daycare, Biddeford, Maine.Trafficked into ‘the life’<br />

at age 23, Cary emerged seven years later from<br />

the horrors of trafficking strong and determined to<br />

rewrite her story. Her goal is to model confidence<br />

and self-worth, teaching her two sons to respect<br />

and defend girls and women.<br />

Bottom: Cary stands in the doorway<br />

of her childhood home in Kennedy<br />

Park in Portland, Maine. After an<br />

18-month prison sentence, Cary<br />

participated in an 8-month recovery<br />

program at Hope Rising in Maine,<br />

where it becomes clear what has<br />

happened to her is human trafficking.<br />

“It was during this time I could finally<br />

see myself,ˮshe says.<br />

<strong>ZEKE</strong> FALL <strong>2022</strong>/ 33

Working Ohio<br />

Steve Cagan<br />

34 / <strong>ZEKE</strong> FALL <strong>2022</strong>

Clockwise starting above.<br />

Electrical maintenance worker<br />

Living in Cleveland, I’ve<br />

witnessed the dramatic<br />

decline of what was a<br />

major industrial center,<br />

where thousands of people<br />

worked in good-paying,<br />

secure jobs, creating,<br />

building, and producing<br />

through physical and mental<br />

strength. That is largely—<br />

but not entirely—gone.<br />

Today, the media talks<br />

about trying to recover jobs<br />

lost during the pandemic.<br />

Jobs lost between the 1970s<br />

and early 21st century aren’t<br />

even discussed any more.<br />

And those people who<br />

still work in Cleveland in<br />

union jobs—in what remains<br />

of our industry—are unseen<br />

and unappreciated by the<br />

media and the art world.<br />

We documentarians<br />

must present people not<br />

only as victims of social<br />

problems, but also as<br />

strong, creative, resistant—<br />

which in fact they are.<br />

Chicken plant workers<br />

Hotel housekeeper<br />

Ironworkers<br />

<strong>ZEKE</strong> FALL <strong>2022</strong>/ 35

Working the Harvest in<br />

California<br />

David Bacon<br />

36 / <strong>ZEKE</strong> FALL <strong>2022</strong>

Above: Cien Palmas, CA. Meregildo Ortiz (L)<br />

is the president of the Purepecha community<br />

in the Coachella Valley. Purepechas are the<br />

main Indigenous group in the Mexican state of<br />

Michoacan, and many live in the trailer camps<br />

in the desert near the Salton Sea. They work as<br />

farm workers in the fields of the Coachella Valley.<br />

Next to him are Max Ortiz and Julian Benito.<br />

A multi-level portrait of a<br />

working-class community,<br />

Yakima, in central Washington<br />

state, revealing its human face<br />

of work and poverty. Images<br />

explore the geography of its<br />

barrios and workplaces, both<br />

the closed factory of Yakima’s<br />

past and the agricultural fields<br />

of its present.<br />

Originally intending to photograph<br />

farm workers, I wanted<br />

to show other dimensions of<br />

the Latino community, including<br />

houses and trailers, a closed plywood<br />

mill, a homeless encampment,<br />

and guest worker camps.<br />

One older man who came<br />

to the U.S. as a bracero and<br />

worked as a farm worker for<br />

many years was collecting cans<br />

for recycling to have enough<br />

money to eat. Photographing his<br />

hands is a tribute to all the work<br />

reflected there, and to the working<br />

people of Yakima.<br />

Top: Juan Infante thins fruit on red delicious<br />

apple trees, so that the remaining<br />

apples will grow to a large size.<br />

Bottom: Manuel Ortiz came to the<br />

U.S. from Mexico as a bracero in the<br />

late 1950s and early 1960s and spent<br />

decades working as a farm worker in<br />

California and Washington. He is 85<br />

years old and can no longer work in the<br />

fields. His hands show a life of work.<br />

<strong>ZEKE</strong> FALL <strong>2022</strong>/ 37

Dancing in the Black experience<br />

transcends across the<br />

world from Duke Ellington’s<br />

swing to break dancing in the<br />

upcoming 2024 Olympics.<br />

The images displayed are<br />

an ongoing project from my<br />

“Blacana” project. The opening<br />

set is from a stoop in<br />

Harlem, followed by New<br />

Jersey House Music, followed<br />

by a Juneteenth Celebration<br />

at American Dream and Hartz<br />

Plaza in Detroit. I invite all my<br />

photo friends to explore our<br />

dance culture. If you’re nearby<br />

one of the places, stop and<br />

make a story of it.<br />

An American Dance<br />

Brian Branch-Price<br />

New York, NY: Dancers from the<br />

SoapBox Presents “Stoop Sessions”<br />

dance during a live performance at<br />

120 St. and Malcolm X Blvd (or Lenox<br />

Ave) before a live 10-piece band and<br />

two vocalists during one of Harlem’s<br />

Juneteenth celebrations in New York on<br />

Saturday, June 18, <strong>2022</strong>.<br />

38 / <strong>ZEKE</strong> FALL <strong>2022</strong>

<strong>ZEKE</strong> FALL <strong>2022</strong>/ 39

An American Dance<br />

Brian Branch-Price<br />

Two steppers and line dancers dance Ebony<br />

at Hartz Plaza in Detroit, MI.<br />

40 / <strong>ZEKE</strong> FALL <strong>2022</strong>

New York, NY: Dancers celebrated a<br />

swing dance during “Stoop Sessions”<br />

The Funk of July at 120 St. and Malcolm<br />

X Blvd. on Sunday, July 3, <strong>2022</strong>. The<br />

Soapbox Presents “Stoop Sessions” is a<br />

series of outdoor musical concerts that<br />

started during the pandemic with professional<br />

performing artists.<br />

Jersey City, NJ: Dancers at the Jersey<br />

City House Music Festival at Lincoln<br />

Park, in Jersey City, NJ. On Saturday,<br />

July 24, 2021.<br />

<strong>ZEKE</strong> FALL <strong>2022</strong>/ 41

American Punk<br />

Daniel Hoffman<br />

42 / <strong>ZEKE</strong> FALL <strong>2022</strong>

The idea of “America” has<br />

evolved and changed since<br />

1959 when Robert Frank<br />

published his seminal work.<br />

While America is less homogeneous<br />

now than ever<br />

before, it is no less fraught<br />

with social challenges to<br />

understand what it means<br />

to be “American.” However,<br />

sitting on the margins of<br />

our society is a group of<br />

Americans who form a community<br />

that celebrates ideals<br />

central to being “American,”<br />

the American Punks.<br />

In their music and dance,<br />

punks celebrate life, mutual<br />

trust and support, and<br />

freedom to express themselves<br />

about social injustice<br />

and the government.<br />

Indeed, American Punks<br />

form a dynamic example<br />

of the “American Mosaic.”<br />

American Punks come from<br />

all sectors of society and<br />

often include immigrants, all<br />

are welcome provided you<br />

are free of bias and judgement.<br />

E Pluribus Unum.<br />

This project explores the<br />

idea of American Punks<br />

as a social movement that<br />

embodies what it means to<br />

be American.<br />

Clockwise from left:<br />

Punk singer in underground show in<br />

New Jersey.<br />

Punk band and fans, Brooklyn, NY.<br />

Mosh band in backyard underground<br />

show, Brooklyn, NY.<br />

<strong>ZEKE</strong> FALL <strong>2022</strong>/ 43

44 / <strong>ZEKE</strong> FALL <strong>2022</strong>

First<br />

Nations<br />

Portraits of Dancers<br />

and Wisdom<br />

Keepers<br />

Jeanny Tsai<br />

Clockwise from left:<br />

Historically, Indigenous Americans have<br />

largely been portrayed in unfavorable stereotypes<br />

in the media and their presence<br />

has been mostly invisible in education,<br />

pop culture, and politics in the U.S.<br />

Currently, there are 574 federally<br />

recognized Indigenous American Nations.<br />

I estimate I have photographed individuals<br />

from over 60 Nations from the U.S. and<br />

Canada so far. I have traveled to numerous<br />

intertribal gatherings around the U.S.<br />

to meet and photograph First Nations<br />

dancers and wisdom keepers. Through<br />

this photo series, I seek to illuminate these<br />

contemporary Indigenous Americans<br />

who are simultaneously preserving and<br />

evolving their traditions.<br />

I was inspired to start this portrait<br />

series during the Standing Rock<br />

Reservation protests against the Dakota<br />

Access Pipeline in 2016 because I wanted<br />

to know more about the Indigenous traditions<br />

in the U.S. As a young person attending<br />

public school, I feel I received a limited<br />

education about the history of Indigenous<br />

Americans. As I worked on this series, I<br />

heard many personal stories told to me<br />

by the people I photographed. In turn, I<br />

captured their stories that are not spoken<br />

but are told through the radiance of their<br />

eyes and spirit.<br />

Ira, Laokta, Mandan, Hidatsa, and Arikara Nations<br />

Young Red-Tailed Hummingbird Woman, Tlingit Nation<br />

Lakeisha, Plain Cree Nation<br />

<strong>ZEKE</strong> FALL <strong>2022</strong>/ 45

Good Earth<br />

Esha Chiocchio<br />

Good Earth celebrates New<br />

Mexican agrarians who are<br />

revitalizing land through<br />

regenerative practices—building<br />

soil, sequestering carbon,<br />

reducing toxins, and improving<br />

the health of people,<br />

plants and animals.<br />

To better understand the<br />

range of regenerative techniques<br />

being employed,<br />

podcast host Mary-Charlotte<br />

Domandi and photographer<br />

Esha Chiocchio used interviews<br />

and photography to<br />

document the techniques of<br />

Native American land managers,<br />

farmers, composters,<br />

ranchers, goat herders,<br />

orchardists, and soil scientists<br />

to improve the foundation<br />

of society: soil. This series<br />

provides a window into regenerative<br />

land stewardship and<br />

demonstrates how we can all<br />

play a role in rehabilitating the<br />

good earth.<br />

46 / <strong>ZEKE</strong> FALL <strong>2022</strong>

Above: Tommy Casados inspects the<br />

grass as he flood-irrigates one of his<br />

pastures at C4 Farms in Tierra Amarilla,<br />

New Mexico. Tommy grazes fewer<br />

cattle than his land could technically<br />

accommodate with the goal of growing<br />

an abundance of healthy, deeply<br />

rooted pasture. Such practices encourage<br />

the soil to absorb more carbon,<br />

thereby reducing greenhouse gases and<br />

increasing resilience to both flooding and<br />

drought.<br />

Above: Gordon Tooley hand cuts<br />

grasses to harvest the seeds and<br />

spread them to new areas of his<br />

orchard, Tooley’s Trees. Keeping<br />

the ground covered with diverse<br />

vegetation is an important aspect<br />

of creating a regenerative orchard<br />

that absorbs carbon and builds rich,<br />

biologically active soil.<br />

Left: Josh Bowman with his sons,<br />

Ephraim and Emerson, at their pecan<br />

farm in Las Cruces, New Mexico. Most<br />

pecan farmers in the region clear the<br />

floor beneath their trees of any vegetation.<br />

Consulting with soil scientist Dr.<br />

David C. Johnson, Josh has grown<br />

cover crops, used compost teas, and<br />

incorporated a flock of sheep into his soil<br />

management strategies to build organic<br />

matter and encourage a healthy microbiome.<br />

Josh and his sons have an evening<br />

practice of digging for earthworms,<br />

which have steadily increased as the soil<br />

has improved.<br />

<strong>ZEKE</strong> FALL <strong>2022</strong>/ 47

Who<br />

“<br />

WEARE<br />

Photography<br />

and the<br />

American<br />

Experience<br />

by Stephen Mayes<br />

The American Dream” has<br />

always been an aspirational<br />

phrase, founded on the<br />

promise of economic opportunity<br />

(think white picket-fenced<br />

homes) and an idea that all people<br />

who live here are free and equal. For<br />

over a hundred years, photography<br />

has tried to document this ideal: showing<br />

who we are, demonstrating our<br />

achievements, marking our failures and<br />

inspiring our hopes, making<br />

visible for all to see<br />

across divisions of geography,<br />

class and political<br />

persuasion. But, today in<br />

the 21st century, the meaning<br />

of the American Dream<br />

has been obfuscated,<br />

reduced to hollow political<br />

messaging from both sides<br />

of the aisle, making it even harder to<br />

have a clear picture of what America<br />

really is and what it looks like.<br />

In the 20th century, America was a<br />

story told with the simplicity of single<br />

images in an age when the nation’s<br />

eyes could be focused collectively and<br />

simultaneously on one front page,<br />

a national story that was led by the<br />

unified drum beat of mass media that<br />

drove the news agenda.<br />

One story followed another in a<br />

more or less choreographed progression<br />

as the media gathered itself<br />

around each new issue and gave it<br />

shape in the public eye. This was the<br />

age of the iconic image, when a single<br />

photograph would find itself exposed<br />

to everyone at the same moment, and<br />

in feeling the moment, the viewers<br />

would imbue meaning in the image<br />

beyond the simple facts represented.<br />

This was America.<br />

Now, as we look back, some of<br />

these images have withstood time and<br />

still stand as symbols of the national<br />

will for progress, the celebration of<br />

achievement as well as moments of<br />

unified national despair. A migrant<br />

mother, the raising of the flag at Iwo<br />

Jima, a Saigon street execution, a<br />

video grab of a Black motorist being<br />

assaulted by a group of LA police<br />

officers and a flag raising at Ground<br />

Zero. Each of these widely known<br />

images evokes not just an American<br />

story but also conjures a host of references<br />

and associated emotions representing<br />

the spirit of the times. While<br />

speaking truths there is also a danger<br />

that such icons compress the narrative<br />

too much, simplifying complex stories<br />

and reducing the rich weave of history<br />

to clichés, assumptions and stereotypes.<br />

For a nation that’s still less than<br />

250 years old, one could think of 20th<br />

century America as still an adolescent<br />

culture, disguising its insecurities in<br />

consistent dress codes: the U.S. flag<br />

was (and still is) everywhere, marking<br />

everything and everybody as members<br />

of a new and strong nation. In this<br />

context the iconic images were appropriately<br />

powerful and told a simplified<br />

Right: Migrant Mother by Dorothea Lange.<br />

Florence Thompson, 32, a pea picker and<br />

mother of seven children. Nipomo, CA.<br />

1936. Farm Security Administration—<br />

Office of War Information Photograph<br />

Collection, Library of Congress.<br />

Susan Ressler<br />

48 / <strong>ZEKE</strong> SPRING <strong>2022</strong>

<strong>ZEKE</strong> FALL <strong>2022</strong>/ 49

50 / <strong>ZEKE</strong> FALL <strong>2022</strong>

Carla Fiorina<br />

story, as would be appropriate for an<br />

adolescent sensibility. This broad-stroke<br />

overview of America’s cultural bones<br />

is of course itself greatly simplified and<br />

takes no account of the many amazing<br />

internecine interventions by the likes<br />

of Diane Arbus, Gary Winogrand,<br />

Gordon Parks and Susan Meiselas to<br />

name just a few of the hundreds of<br />

extraordinary 20th century photographers,<br />

each of whom contributed eraidentifying<br />

imagery to our history.<br />

★ ★ ★<br />

But the American experience was<br />

never a homogenous unity and while<br />

the 20th century icons told a truth, it<br />

was only a partial truth and the shortcomings<br />

became clearer. Although the<br />

number of photographs made and published<br />

expanded enormously towards<br />

the end of the century, the emergence of<br />

popular tropes and approved narratives<br />

that were often defined by the proclivities<br />

of mass media and their advertisers<br />

continued to simplify the story. Broadly<br />

speaking, society was represented<br />

visually into two categories: winners<br />

and losers, shown visually as symbols<br />

Left: Photograph by Lori Grinker. Firefighters<br />

raise the flag at Ground Zero. New York<br />

City, September 11, 2001.<br />

of achievement or broken hopes, the<br />

doers and the done-to, the haves and<br />

have-nots. This narrowed field of visual<br />

references appeared to present a complete<br />

landscape of American life but<br />

actually served to limit expectations of<br />

what American life might be. We now<br />

understand the visual representation of<br />

the American Dream to be grievously<br />

lacking in the expression of the experiences<br />

of women, LGBTQ+, Indigenous<br />

peoples and that of people of color,<br />

all historically excluded groups in the<br />

national visual culture.<br />

It’s important here to distinguish<br />

between the representation of, and the<br />

representation by “we, the people” in<br />

the American story. There are many<br />

images of women through the 20th<br />

century as there are of people of color,<br />

but if we’re honest, the dominant visual<br />

story is of exploitation, deprivation<br />

and pain, falling far short of the rich,<br />

full reality of life. Some pictures have<br />

acquired deeper truth simply with the<br />

passage of time. For example many<br />

images of Jim Crow lynchings were<br />

produced as postcards celebrating<br />

the acts of violence (one extreme of<br />

the American gestalt) but they have<br />

recently reemerged as the first signs of<br />

a remorseful acknowledgement of past<br />

wrongs, demonstrating the possibility<br />

that photographs (even the same<br />

photographs) can embrace the contradictions<br />

and complexities of American<br />

life. But there is much further to go.<br />

★ ★ ★<br />

In reflecting on the alarming schism<br />

that currently separates red and blue<br />

America, I share the bafflement and<br />

dismay of the many Americans who<br />

wonder how such deep divisions<br />

can be healed. But the situation also<br />

reminds us that this fractured reality is<br />

not a new situation and for many it’s<br />

merely the continuation of the norm.<br />

BIPOC citizens have long experienced<br />

the brutal heel of democracy’s indifference<br />

to the reality of their lives.<br />

Black photographers have rarely<br />

shared an equal voice and still offer<br />

a relative novel perspective in the<br />

photographic oligarchy, yet they have<br />

a uniquely clear perspective of the US<br />

zeitgeist. They have been living the<br />

complexities of the American reality<br />

for a long time and as such they have<br />

a breadth of vision that encompasses<br />

highs and lows that are beyond the<br />

direct experience of many in the White<br />

population. Black, Latinx, Native,<br />

LGBTQ+ photographers have dreamed<br />

the American dream, they hear the call<br />

for individual achievement and community<br />

advancement, yet they have also<br />

experienced systemic exclusion from<br />

its fulfillment, not as individual failure<br />

but from the systemic injustice of White<br />

supremacy. If the American character<br />

is defined by ambition, it is all too<br />

often marked instead as frustration in<br />

so-called “minority” communities. This<br />

has been evident in the writings of<br />

many Black authors such as Frederick<br />

Douglass, James Baldwin, Cornell<br />

West, Toni Morrison and others but it is<br />

only recently that wider culture is seeing<br />

the equivalent imagery.<br />

Photographers like Alexandra Bell,<br />

LaToya Ruby Frazier, Ruddy Roye,<br />

Sheila Pree Bright and others are<br />

stretching the bounds of documentary<br />

to bring us thoughtful and inclusive<br />

studies of American identity that<br />

actively embrace the complexities<br />

and contradictions, rather than trying<br />

to simplify and rationalize, as has<br />

been the editorial tradition. Andrea<br />

Ellen Reed, for example, looked<br />

inward to reveal exterior reality in her<br />

heartbreaking project Unseen which<br />

simply presented a video self- portrait<br />

<strong>ZEKE</strong> FALL <strong>2022</strong>/ 51

52 / <strong>ZEKE</strong> FALL <strong>2022</strong>

as she reacted to the documentary<br />

reporting of pundits, politicians and<br />

others describing the world we live in.<br />

Bayeté Ross Smith in his history series<br />

co-produced with the New York Times<br />

blends archival documentary images<br />

of historic moments with contemporary<br />

imagery of the same locations combined<br />

in augmented reality formats that<br />

demonstrate social developments and<br />

inertia.<br />

This tension is evident almost everywhere<br />

we look. In the mid- 20th century,<br />

Robert Frank, in his seminal work<br />

The Americans, began to examine<br />

this dichotomy with his brutally honest<br />

images of racism in the U.S. accompanied<br />

by images of beauty in the every<br />

day. As Jack Kerouac said in the opening<br />

essay, “Frank sucked a sad poem<br />

right out of America onto film.” In this<br />

issue of <strong>ZEKE</strong>, inspired by Frank’s epic<br />

journey across America, despair is<br />

represented in Virginia Allyn’s Lost: A<br />

Portrait of Addiction although in typical<br />

American style it is despair tinged with<br />

the hope of recovery. But this bleak<br />

outlook is most strongly evident in<br />

the essays depicting the rise today of<br />

social movements of White nationalism<br />

told by Anthony Karen and the<br />

implicit violence of a prevalent gun<br />

culture, such that teachers are now<br />

taking up arms, as shown by Kate<br />

Way. Brian Branch-Price brings joy to<br />

the story with his essay An American<br />

Dance. Enthusiastic crowds gather to<br />

watch performers dance in the streets<br />

celebrating the legacy of Black performance<br />

from Duke Ellington’s swing<br />

to contemporary break dancing and<br />

we see beginners and masters giving<br />

inspiration to new generations. That<br />

these two realities still exist in America<br />

Left: Photograph by Ruddy Roye. Keisha,<br />

at the Roger Williams Housing Projects,<br />

Mobile, Alabama, 2006.<br />

Mariette Pathy Allen<br />

is what makes it so difficult to represent<br />

our visual identity.<br />

★ ★ ★<br />

Some practitioners whose work is<br />

rooted in documentary photography<br />

have, by embracing the opportunity of<br />

digital representation, utterly released<br />

themselves from the constraints of<br />

conventional photography. It’s been<br />

40 years since David Hockney broke<br />

the photographic mold with his “joiners”<br />

(intricate photo collages creating<br />

abstract representations of the scenes<br />

he photographed) and now we can<br />

look to Clement Valla, Josh Begley,<br />

Trevor Paglen, Mickalene Thomas<br />

and many others. Their work emerges<br />

from documentary. We think we know<br />

how to receive it. Yet, it transcends the<br />

factual and temporal limitations of photography<br />

without deceit and without<br />

even requiring the re-education of the<br />

viewer. They set a different frame and<br />

the willing viewer intuitively inhabits<br />

their world, stepping through disbelief<br />

into a universe of photographic truth<br />

beyond photography.<br />

Photography has always done<br />

more than merely record the evidence<br />

and memories of history. Driven by<br />

imagination as much as by facts, the<br />

photograph leads the viewer to places<br />

we have never actually visited. This<br />

includes the future. Photography, as a<br />

technology-based communication tool,<br />

is still at the center of the process. Geo<br />

tagging is now a banality, as is facial<br />

recognition and to some extent we also<br />

recognize (and fear) deep fakes as a<br />

new reality in visual communication, but<br />

strange new processes with unfamiliar<br />

names such as GAN imagery and<br />

volumetric image-making are starting<br />

to emerge. The issues thrown up by<br />

these new processes will confound us<br />

and force us to new understanding of<br />

the image in an increasingly complex<br />

world.<br />

As early as 1846, Frederick<br />

Douglass recognized this in his<br />

speech Pictures & Progress in which<br />

he described pictures as essential<br />

to progress because of the possibilities<br />

they conjure in our imagination.<br />

Words might be necessary to describe<br />

the factual content of an image (the<br />

Who, What, Where and When) but<br />

the photograph can also harness the<br />

imagination to substitute for words in<br />

exploring the intangible aspects of<br />

human experience. This is where we<br />

turn to imagery to reveal the American<br />

Dream in all its complexities. And then,<br />

perhaps, we will truly see a nation of<br />

the free and the home of the brave.<br />

Stephen Mayes is Executive Director<br />

of the Tim Hetherington Trust with 30<br />

years experience managing photography<br />

in the areas of fashion, art, commerce,<br />

and journalism.<br />

Barbara Ayotte made editorial contributions<br />

to this article.<br />

<strong>ZEKE</strong> FALL <strong>2022</strong>/ 53

Elyse Blennerhassett<br />

Interview<br />


Donna Ferrato, an internationally acclaimed and<br />

award-winning photojournalist, is known for her<br />

groundbreaking documentation of the hidden<br />

world of domestic violence, an issue she spent<br />

years photographing. These images were published<br />

in her seminal book Living With the Enemy<br />

(Aperture, 1991) which, alongside worldwide<br />

exhibitions and lectures, sparked an international<br />

discussion on sexual violence and women’s rights.<br />

A longtime activist, in 2014 Ferrato launched the<br />

I Am Unbeatable campaign to expose, document,<br />

and prevent domestic violence against women<br />

and children through real stories of real people. In<br />

her new award-winning book, Holy, published in<br />

2020 by powerHouse Books, Ferrato repurposes<br />

her images, that combined with handwritten text,<br />

proclaim the sacredness of women’s rights and<br />

their power to be masters of their own destiny. For<br />

more information, see www.donnaferrato.com<br />

By Michelle Bogre<br />

Michelle Bogre interviewed Donna Ferrato<br />

at her Tribeca loft on July 29, <strong>2022</strong>.<br />

Michelle Bogre: When did you realize<br />

you were an activist photographer, not<br />

just a photojournalist?<br />

Donna Ferrato: In 1993. I was in<br />

Bruce, Mississippi covering the funeral of<br />

seven children who were burned alive in<br />

a house fire because there were bars on<br />

the windows that locked from outside the<br />

house. The family—children and grandmother—<br />

were trapped inside, as if in a<br />

prison. No magazines were interested so<br />

I went on my own. As soon as I arrived,<br />

I saw people gathered around someone<br />

who had collapsed. Women in white<br />

dresses surrounded her. I figured it was<br />

the mother who was incarcerated but<br />

received a day pass to attend the funerals<br />

of her mother and her seven children. I got<br />

down on my knees and crawled between<br />

women’s legs to get the picture of a mother<br />

with a broken heart. Nobody tried to stop<br />

me. Sometimes I feel invisible. Perhaps<br />

people didn’t stop me because they could<br />

see at that moment I was upset, having<br />

trouble focusing through my tears. People<br />

saw I was not dispassionate.<br />

My activism evolved trying to make<br />

sense of that story. I saw what I had to<br />

do—investigate as well as photograph<br />

and find ways to publish stories about<br />

the crimes against women, domestic<br />

violence, and criminalized survivors of<br />

domestic violence.<br />

MB: Crawling between someone’s legs<br />

to get a picture seems a bit aggressive.<br />

DF: I don’t think people realize how<br />

invasive I am. To get a photograph, I will<br />

go to hell and back. It was hard to get<br />

access to battered women’s shelters when<br />

they were completely off-limits to the<br />

press. I had to get inside to convince the<br />

shelter directors, the residents, the police,<br />

the prison superintendents, hospital<br />

administrators, even the violent abusers<br />

being arrested. I lived it with people,<br />

whatever they were going through, even<br />

in prison or in their homes.<br />

MB: Was the story published?<br />

DF: Yes. I took a set of photographs<br />

to People magazine. The editors were<br />

interested and sent me back with a<br />

great writer, Bill Shaw. We met with the<br />

landlord, Mr. Chandler. While Bill was<br />

interviewing him, I had a chance to get<br />

the proof that Chandler was responsible<br />

for their deaths. He could have saved the<br />

family because he had the keys to the<br />

bars on the window. I saw the photo: he<br />

was lying on a couch under a window<br />

where the ring full of keys was hanging.<br />

Click. One Sunday at church, I spoke<br />

to the congregation. I told them I didn’t<br />

believe that God called the children to<br />

Heaven; it was human negligence. I<br />

suggested they form a committee, attend<br />

monthly town meetings, and see what the<br />

fire codes were. I wanted them to understand<br />

that they had rights and the more<br />

they knew, the better chance they had<br />

to change the law—maybe outlaw those<br />

dangerous metal bars that killed people.<br />

The committee was led by one armed<br />

woman, Minnie, the deceased children’s<br />

aunt. They eventually changed the law in<br />

Jackson, Mississippi and when I saw how<br />

successful they were, I decided I would<br />

never be a quiet photographer. From that<br />

point, I’ve always spoken my truth to the<br />

people I photographed.<br />

MB: How can you be so invasive, to use<br />

your word, and still get intimate photographs?<br />

DF: People may see some madness in<br />

how I do what I do so they don’t stop me.<br />

I don’t care how strange I look. I’ll crawl<br />

on my belly. It’s about being there. My<br />

size works in my favor. I am small, agile,<br />

and fast. Most of the time, I prefer being<br />

lower than the people I’m photographing.<br />

I don’t ever want people to feel like I am<br />

towering over them.<br />

MB: That’s visible in your pictures. You<br />

bring the viewer into what feels like an<br />

intimate moment.<br />

DF: When I teach, I try to help photographers<br />

see that they don’t have to stand<br />

in a corner to be unobtrusive. Often<br />

the view is right in front of our eyes.<br />

Wherever the photographer stands it’s<br />

important to be in the moment, to absorb<br />

everything, sorrow, pain, anger, love. Let<br />

emotion enter the images through us.<br />

MB: You use a 35 mm or wider lens?<br />

Leica rangefinder?<br />

DF: I use a Leica M10. Leica has been<br />

my weapon of choice since 1976 when<br />

I had a Leica M4. Most often I work<br />

with a 35 mm lens. It’s one camera, one<br />

lens, one woman. I am never without my<br />

camera.<br />

MB: Never?<br />

DF: Why in the world would I go<br />

anywhere without my beloved camera?<br />

The camera is me. Photography is a<br />

calling. Often, we have no choice. As a<br />

young woman, I realized that I had an<br />

instinct to frame and extract what matters<br />

from that moment, the good, the bad, the<br />

ugly. I would lose my mind if I couldn’t<br />

photograph.<br />

MB: You do have an extraordinary<br />

instinct for the perfect moment. One of<br />

the images in your book, Holy, titled<br />

Diamond, Minneapolis, is almost perfect.<br />

54 / <strong>ZEKE</strong> FALL <strong>2022</strong>

The eight-year-old boy called 9-1-1 to report his father. When the police arrived to arrest his father, Diamond<br />

said, “I hate you for hitting my mother. Don’t come back to this house.” This photograph was awarded one of the<br />

most influential 50 photographs. © 1987 Donna Ferrato/ LIFE <strong>Magazine</strong><br />

You captured the moment when the boy is<br />

shaking his finger at his father, and there<br />

are three cops, and the battered women’s<br />

face is framed in a “V” between two of the<br />

cops, the television is on, but the perfection<br />

is the White cop’s hand in the Black<br />

man’s pocket.<br />

DF: White and Black…mmm, yes, well,<br />

when I entered the house tagging behind<br />

the cops that morning, it was early, and<br />

the curtains were drawn. Everything<br />

happened fast, hard core drama. I had a<br />

flash, and was fumbling trying to get it on<br />

the camera, to bounce it off the ceiling.<br />

As the cops brought the father into the<br />

living room, I was ready but every time<br />

the flash popped I couldn’t see what was<br />

happening. I heard what the boy was<br />

saying because I was next to him. The<br />

police were going through the father’s<br />

pockets, to make sure there were no<br />

weapons. The boy was angry with his<br />

dad, he was angry with everyone. Later,<br />

when the film was developed I saw it was<br />

the picture as I imagined it would be. But<br />

honestly, it’s all instinct. It’s Jedi Warrior<br />

photography. But I didn’t have a signed<br />

release. I went back a month later to meet<br />

the parents and they signed a release,<br />

which was necessary to be published in<br />

LIFE <strong>Magazine</strong>.<br />

DF: There is no detachment. Injustice is<br />

always gut-wrenching. A photographer<br />

sees right through everything. We have<br />

to get the best photograph whatever happens,<br />

but it’s complicated. I can’t say that<br />

I don’t absorb their feelings, but clearly,<br />

I don’t suffer the consequences like the<br />

people in the photographs. Some of the<br />

people were thankful that I was there.<br />

Not everybody. Many people would<br />

like to forget these things happened.<br />

Photographs make it hard to forget. I<br />

too become trapped in the frame of that<br />

moment. We all suffer from collective<br />

trauma. Every time I relive these incidents,<br />

I relive them and become anxious,<br />

depressed, especially now as things are<br />

worse than ever. Domestic violence is<br />

more difficult to predict, to contain, to<br />

prevent. My purpose now as a human<br />

being is to keep these photographs in the<br />

forefront of human consciousness, as an<br />

activist and a witness<br />

MB: What is your new project, Wall of<br />

Silence?<br />

DF: The Wall of Silence was my response<br />

to an open call from the NYC Mayor’s<br />

Office to end gender-based violence, a<br />

chance to create art that would inspire<br />

activism about the criminalization of survivors<br />

of gender-based violence. My idea<br />

was to build a prison wall with a stainless<br />

steel mirror, to create a portal by which<br />

people would see themselves and hopefully<br />

relate to the horror of being unjustly<br />

incarcerated. I chose the Collect Pond<br />

Park in lower Manhattan as the location<br />

because of its proximity to the criminal<br />

and family courthouses, where too often<br />

survivors —especially Black,Brown, and<br />

LGBTQIA+ people—lose their rights<br />

because they defended themselves and<br />

their children. On the day we unveiled it<br />

in the park, a survivor, Tracy McCarter,<br />

currently facing incarceration, appeared<br />

almost as if she was transported through<br />

the Wall of Silence. The project brought<br />

Tracy into my life and now I am working<br />

on telling her story as it unfolds in one<br />

of the courthouses facing the sculpture.<br />

Through this project, I hope to not only<br />

educate society, but to be a witness and<br />

put pressure on the court system to feel<br />

compassion for survivors of gender-based<br />

violence. I am using the installation to<br />

disrupt the silence by engaging the public<br />

and the media to support Tracy’s case. Her<br />

story is another example of how society<br />

and the courts are stripping women of<br />

their rights: their reproductive rights, their<br />

rights to bodily autonomy, to the basic<br />

human right of self-defense, and their right<br />

to the pursuit of happiness to live as free<br />

and equal human beings.<br />

MB: In the profession we talk about<br />

secondary trauma. You’ve seen a conflict,<br />

violence and injustice. How do you<br />

absorb the violence or does the camera<br />

provide detachment?<br />

Mississippi Fire, 1993. Ether Ree Hall Gaston, mother of six of the dead children, collapses in the gymnasium<br />

where the funeral is being held. Doing time for drug trafficking, she was let out of prison for the day.<br />

©1993 Donna Ferrato<br />

<strong>ZEKE</strong> FALL <strong>2022</strong>/ 55

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56 / <strong>ZEKE</strong> FALL <strong>2022</strong><br />

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<strong>ZEKE</strong>SPRING <strong>2022</strong> VOL.8/NO.2 $15 US<br />


Published by Social Documentary Network<br />

Photo by Cheryl L. Guerrero from Low ‘n Slow: Cruising the Mission.<br />

Social Documentary Network<br />

The America Issue<br />

SDN Website: A web portal for<br />

documentary photographers to<br />

create online galleries and make<br />

them available to anyone with an<br />

internet connection. Since 2008,<br />

we have presented more than<br />

4,000 documentary stories from<br />

all parts of the world.<br />

www.socialdocumentary.net<br />

<strong>ZEKE</strong> <strong>Magazine</strong>: This bi-annual<br />

publication allows us to present<br />

visual stories in print form with indepth<br />

writing about the themes<br />

of the photography projects.<br />

www.zekemagazine.com<br />

SDN Salon: An informal gathering<br />

of SDN photographers to<br />

share and discuss work online.<br />

Documentary Matters:<br />

A place for photographers to<br />

meet with others involved with<br />

or interested in documentary<br />

photography and discuss ongoing<br />

or completed projects.<br />

SDN Education: Leading<br />

documentary photographers and<br />

educators provide online learning<br />

opportunities for photographers<br />

interested in advancing their<br />

knowledge and skills in the field<br />

of documentary photography.<br />

<strong>ZEKE</strong> Award for Documentary<br />

Photography: A award<br />

program juried by a distinguished<br />

panel of international media<br />

professionals. Award winners are<br />

exhibited at Photoville in Brooklyn<br />

and featured in <strong>ZEKE</strong>.<br />

SDN Reviews: Started in April<br />

2021, this annual program brings<br />

together industry leaders from<br />

media, publishing, and the fine<br />

art community to review work of<br />

documentary photographers.<br />

Join us!<br />

www.socialdocumentary.net<br />

<strong>ZEKE</strong> FALL <strong>2022</strong>/ 57

BOOK<br />



THE VERDICT: The Christina<br />

Boyer Case<br />

by Jan Banning<br />

Schilt Publishing, <strong>2022</strong> | 200 pages<br />

$50.00<br />

In 1992, Christina Boyer’s toddler<br />

daughter Amber died from blunt head<br />

trauma that occurred while Amber was<br />

with Boyer’s boyfriend. Even though the<br />

evidence against her was mostly circumstantial,<br />

Boyer was charged and faced<br />

the death penalty. Her lawyer convinced<br />

her to take an Alford plea to spare her<br />

life. (An Alford plea allows the defendant<br />

to maintain her innocence while agreeing<br />

that the prosecution has enough<br />

evidence to find her guilty at trial.) She<br />

was the victim of a grossly inadequate<br />

defense, shoddy police work, and a<br />

zealous District Attorney in an election<br />

year. She remains in jail 30 years later<br />

and still maintains her innocence.<br />

Jan Banning’s book, The Verdict:<br />

The Christina Boyer Case, tells<br />

the story of a mother, Christina<br />

Boyer, accused of, and incarcerated for,<br />

her daughter Amber’s murder. What<br />

started as a single interaction between<br />

photographer and subject, became a<br />

years-long investigation. The result is a<br />

carefully crafted book that paints a vivid<br />

picture of Christina’s case, elucidates<br />

the faults of the U.S. justice system,<br />

and meditates on the impartiality of<br />

photography. It is also a simulacrum for<br />

Christina’s parole application.<br />

The book is reminiscent of a dusty<br />

Bishopville, SC, 2019. Photo by Jan Banning<br />

family album found in an attic. The cover<br />

image – a dark wooded scene punctuated<br />

by a child’s discarded red tricycle<br />

– could illustrate a Grimm’s fairy tale. This<br />

darkness is contrasted by the pink spine,<br />

Amber’s favorite color. Amber, now fossilized<br />

in dance, graces the back cover. The<br />

covers create an atmosphere based on<br />

these associations, and the reader enters<br />

with an expectation of what is to come.<br />

Neither words nor images make up<br />

a truth, and Banning works with this<br />

awareness to structure the book. It’s<br />

separated into disparate chapters, each<br />

addressing an element of a singular<br />

story. The book begins in Banning’s own<br />

words, as he presents the case history.<br />

He lingers on Christina’s background<br />

and her character, as he follows the<br />

timeline from her childhood to present,<br />

incarcerated day. He gives the reader<br />

insight into what may have occurred the<br />

day Amber died, as well as an overview<br />

of the legal processes that ultimately<br />

led to Christina’s life sentence. The<br />

proceeding sections include Christina’s<br />

diary entries and photographs taken<br />

by Banning in the South, paired with<br />

Christina’s interpretations of Banning’s<br />

photographs. Words, photographs, and<br />

interpretations, slowly build up a vibrant<br />

idea of the truth.<br />

Reading through The Verdict, a comparison<br />

materializes between judicial and<br />

photographic representation. Both in court<br />

and in a photographic frame, people may<br />

be represented – and often misrepresented<br />

– in a variety of ways, outside of their<br />

control. Leading up to her plea agreement,<br />

Christina is told that the autopsy photographs<br />

of Amber’s body will undoubtedly<br />

lead the jury to convict and sentence her<br />

to death. The feeling that these photographs<br />

would evoke becomes the main<br />

reason Boyer took a plea.<br />

The emotional entanglement inherent<br />

in photography is particularly poignant<br />

in the section dedicated to Christina’s<br />

diary. A journal is splayed out over a<br />

two-page spread. It lays on a royal blue<br />

background that bleeds to the edge of the<br />

pages. The reader’s eyes have nowhere<br />

to run. Page by page, entry after entry,<br />

I read Christina’s thoughts in the years<br />

following Amber’s death. The writing feels<br />

both legible and incomprehensible, as I<br />

struggle to let her words in, to experience<br />

her pain. My eye follows the curve of the<br />

letter, and I feel her hand writing these<br />

words. It’s overwhelming. I skip ahead to<br />

the last page. Her diary appears again,<br />

this time typed up in a sort of transliteration.<br />

Christina’s words disconnect from<br />

her script, which allows the reader to<br />

disconnect from her body, her pain. The<br />

text is a colder, more sober entry into<br />

Christina’s mind, while the images are far<br />

more entangled with emotion.<br />

By presenting both versions of her<br />

diary, Banning offers a multifaceted<br />

representation of Christina. As expressed<br />

in the book, America’s public defender<br />

system is teeming with problems, such<br />

as underpay and overexertion, and<br />

58 / <strong>ZEKE</strong> FALL <strong>2022</strong>

Christina is only one individual who<br />

has lost decades of her life partially<br />

due to a lack of adequate representation.<br />

Banning’s collection of images is<br />

an attempt at rectification. Every year<br />

Christina applies for parole. Her supporters<br />

send a packet boasting of her<br />

work and achievements, in the hopes of<br />

her release. Every year she is denied.<br />

While this book is an important read for<br />

the public, it is also, to a certain extent,<br />

Christina’s appeal for parole.<br />

This humanity is also what separates<br />

The Verdict from the influx of true crime<br />

published in the last years. The book is delicately<br />

crafted, with both an awareness of<br />

the medium’s shortcomings and a complex<br />

representation of the subject. Banning’s<br />

empathetic hand differentiates The Verdict<br />

as a work of art and a piece of activism,<br />

or — as Banning would put it — artivism.<br />

—Dana Melaver<br />


by Tamara Reynolds<br />

Dewi Lewis, <strong>2022</strong> | 80 pages | £30.00<br />

Dear Tamara.<br />

Your book, The Drake, recently arrived<br />

by post, and finally I sat down on a<br />

sweltering Sunday afternoon to read it<br />

for a book review for <strong>ZEKE</strong> <strong>Magazine</strong>,<br />

published by the Social Documentary<br />

Network. Looking twice at the 25 plus<br />

images and reading the three page essay<br />

didn’t really take much time.<br />

I almost put your book down and<br />

emailed the <strong>ZEKE</strong> book review editor to<br />

inquire why we would consider a book<br />

so devoid of context because at SDN we<br />

believe that context matters in documentary.<br />

Who are these people? No names,<br />

no captions, no testimony. Was it you or<br />

your editor who insisted on no captions?<br />

I like to think that in the age of postcolonial<br />

photography, we want to dignify<br />

our subjects by at least identifying who<br />

they are. But I still liked the photos and<br />

the sentiment of the book.<br />

The interview with you by Deborah<br />

Artman was engaging and very personal,<br />

obliquely mentioning how you<br />

also suffered from addiction, but unlike<br />

the subjects in The Drake, you were able<br />

to overcome it because of a supportive<br />

family structure and upbringing. (At<br />

another time, it might have been said<br />

that you were from a good family.) But<br />

you only dropped crumbs of references<br />

to your subjects. So when you refer to<br />

Strawberry, am I to surmise that she is<br />

the attractive subject with red hair, hence<br />

the name? You mention Amanda “in full<br />

scrubs,” who was just released from the<br />

hospital with a swollen eye socket. She<br />

must be the one wearing hospital booties.<br />

With SDN, we always say that one<br />

difference between documentary and fine<br />

art is that with documentary, the work<br />

needs to be more about the subject than<br />

the photographer. Maybe the point of this<br />

work is really about your own journey,<br />

not Strawberry’s or Amanda’s or Tim’s or<br />

KayKay’s. You even say it in your essay,<br />

“I am processing my own grief in the act<br />

of photographing it…I am there to learn<br />

about life.” What about their grief? What<br />

about learning about the lives of your<br />

subjects?<br />

But I keep coming back to the photos.<br />

Without page numbers of captions, I can<br />

only describe them. I really like the image<br />

of a hand pouring what appears to be<br />

red wine from a gallon plastic water jug<br />

wrapped in a thin plastic bag. A Black<br />

hand with long painted finger nails and<br />

bracelets is holding a plastic cup receiving<br />

the wine while another Black hand is<br />

raised and stylishly holding a cigarette.<br />

The table is red, the liquid is red, the<br />

plastic bag has red writing on it, there<br />

are some red flowers, and the hand with<br />

Photo by Tamara Reynolds<br />

the cigarette is wearing a sweater with<br />

red cuffs. A lot is going on here about an<br />

otherwise questionable situation. Bravo.<br />

Eight spreads later there is the photo of<br />

maybe Strawberry, but hard to know. This<br />

is a stunning portrait: her legs are crossed<br />

and one arm rests casually on one leg and<br />

her whole body comfortably twists towards<br />

you. She would be beautiful with her red<br />

hair, blue eyes, mirthful expression, were<br />

it not for the signs of addiction—sores on<br />

her body and her disheveled hair. Her<br />

overt sexuality combined with the theme<br />

of the book, can only suggest she has<br />

chosen prostitution as a way to fund her<br />

addiction. The lingering question remains:<br />

what if she had the opportunities you<br />

had, perhaps she would not have been a<br />

subject in The Drake, but perhaps instead<br />

a successful photographer, or doctor, or<br />

actress? We don’t know because we don’t<br />

hear from Strawberry.<br />

The marginalized need our attention<br />

and they need to be seen by us as<br />

humans who have taken wrong turns or<br />

have been pushed by poverty, racism,<br />

neglect or other societal forces into addiction<br />

and prostitution, through no fault of<br />

their own. You help us see them. Thank<br />

you. But next time, let’s have captions that<br />

include a name and a bit of information<br />

about these subjects.<br />

<strong>ZEKE</strong> FALL <strong>2022</strong>/ 59


NOTED<br />





A Love Letter to<br />

Photography<br />

By Ed Kashi<br />

Kehrer Verlag, 2021 | 136 pages | $58<br />

METRO:<br />

New York/London/Paris<br />

By Herb Robinson<br />

Schiffer Publishing, <strong>2022</strong><br />

224 pages | $60<br />


By Jessica Hines<br />

Dewi Lewis Publishing, 2021<br />

184 pages | $49<br />

Abandoned Moments is Ed Kashi’s<br />

version of combing through 30 plus<br />

years of archives and outtakes to select<br />

and lay out 68 “imperfect” photographs—those<br />

side glances that caught<br />

his attention but didn’t make the magazine<br />

or client edit. What’s imperfect for<br />

Kashi, an award-winning photojournalist<br />

and filmmaker, is still close to perfect.<br />

His layout, combined with a small<br />

amount of personal text, reframes each<br />

captionless photograph (captions are in<br />

the back of the book) as a poetic interlude.<br />

The book continually asks us to<br />

reconsider the photograph as something<br />

more than fact or information. Kashi’s<br />

choice to separate captions from photographs<br />

unroots the image from time<br />

and space and allows it to float untethered.<br />

But even more than reconsider<br />

the photograph, we reconsider this icon<br />

of documentary photography, this man<br />

who has spent most of his life on the<br />

road photographing. We see his humor,<br />

his passion, his eccentricity, his intelligence,<br />

and his love of life and people<br />

in these interstices where he found the<br />

serendipity of geometry, mood, emotion,<br />

and possibility uniting. This book is a<br />

celebration of photography and humanity’s<br />

potential. —MB<br />

In METRO, renowned photographer<br />

Herb Robinson gives us a modern<br />

view of the human ecosystem of underground<br />

public transportation—subway,<br />

metro, underground—in three global<br />

cities. Subways fascinate photographers<br />

because human drama and visual<br />

performances materialize when social<br />

barriers dissipate and people are bound<br />

together with nowhere to go. Robinson’s<br />

keen observation shows us the duality<br />

of the daily metro ride –people are<br />

both interconnected and alienated even<br />

when packed shoulder to shoulder.<br />

Robinson, one of the founders of the<br />

legendary African American collective,<br />

the Kamoinge Workshop, literally shoots<br />

from the hip. The color images— close,<br />

tight, odd or low angles—feel claustrophobic;<br />

we are as squeezed in as the<br />

subway riders, and as viscerally tired as<br />

the weary travelers. His saturated color<br />

images also pulsate with the energy of<br />

a city because he is a master of reflections,<br />

blur and improvisation, and he<br />

has a cinematic understanding of edge<br />

tension. Eve Sandler’s design has a jazz<br />

aesthetic that fits the photographs. The<br />

book is rounded out with a selection of<br />

eclectic quotes that provide historical<br />

and cultural context, and essays from<br />

curators Sarah L. Eckhardt and LeRonn<br />

P. Brooks. —MB<br />

My Brother’s War is a personal<br />

aftermath book of memory and<br />

remembrance, lost time and lost lives,<br />

unspoken trauma, and the undeniable<br />

psychological destruction of war. Trying<br />

to reconcile why her Vietnam vet brother<br />

Gary—diagnosed with a version of<br />

PTSD—killed himself ten years post<br />

discharge from the Army, photographer<br />

Jessica Hines embarks on a forensic<br />

photographic exploration of old books,<br />

notebooks, and ephemera found in a<br />

small box, combined with visits to his<br />

war buddies and two trips to Vietnam.<br />

Trying to create images that suggest<br />

what we can’t see, she combines his<br />

personal documents with her original<br />

photographs, some documentary, some<br />

constructed in camera using techniques<br />

such as shadows, magnification, and<br />

reflections to reveal past and present<br />

as layers of memory. Among the more<br />

poignant are the images in which she<br />

combines a child’s toy soldiers (that he<br />

might have played with) with images of<br />

Gary or superimposed over documents.<br />

In the final chapter, “The Transmutation<br />

of Memory,” Hines photographs cherry<br />

blossoms as a metaphor for the cycle of<br />

her brother’s short life in remembrance<br />

of veterans of all wars and innocent<br />

civilians who suffer war’s consequences.<br />

—MB<br />

60 / <strong>ZEKE</strong> FALL <strong>2022</strong>



By Andrew Feiler<br />

University of Georgia Press, <strong>2022</strong><br />

144 pages | $35<br />


By Jason Francisco<br />

Daylight Books, 2021<br />

144 pages | $40<br />


By Daniel Jack Lyons<br />

Loose Joints, <strong>2022</strong><br />

112 pages | $44<br />

In 1912, Julius Rosenwald and Booker<br />

T. Washington launched an ambitious<br />

program to build public schools<br />

for African American children across<br />

the segregated South, creating some of<br />

the first African American educational<br />

opportunities that fortified the generation<br />

who became the leaders and foot<br />

soldiers of the civil rights movement.<br />

Andrew Feiler’s, A Better Life for Their<br />

Children, documents these landmark<br />

schools and some of the people whose<br />

lives they’ve touched.<br />

The book features eighty-five of Feiler’s<br />

exquisitely detailed duotone images of<br />

school interiors and exteriors, locations<br />

where some schools were, and portraits<br />

of people who have unique, compelling<br />

connection to each school. Feiler also<br />

wrote brief narratives for the photographs<br />

that tell us the inspiring stories about<br />

these schools, and how they connect to<br />

important African American historical<br />

events.<br />

The book also includes an introduction<br />

from Congressman John Lewis,<br />

who attended a Rosenwald school in<br />

Alabama; and essays from preservationist<br />

Jeanne Cyriaque and Brent Leggs,<br />

director of African American Cultural<br />

Heritage at the National Trust for Historic<br />

Preservation, who writes a poignant plea<br />

to preserve these historic landmarks for<br />

future generations.<br />

For 25 years, photographer Jason<br />

Francisco has wrestled with the<br />

afterlife of the Holocaust, creating<br />

a large number of photo works and<br />

essays, including extensive work with<br />

the Galicia Jewish Museum in Kraków,<br />

Poland. His book, Alive and Destroyed,<br />

documentary in spirit and conceptualist<br />

in method, captures the haunting<br />

timelessness of the locations where the<br />

events we collectively call the Holocaust<br />

occurred.<br />

His photographs don’t reduce the<br />

Holocaust to only the notorious places<br />

such as concentration camps or ghettos.<br />

He also shows us small and forgotten<br />

localities where the genocide occurred,<br />

such as slave labor camps, transit and<br />

subcamps, prisons and escape routes. He<br />

chose the combination of a large format<br />

camera and antique lenses because<br />

that allowed him to produce fragile and<br />

unresolved photographs that play with<br />

the zone of focus. The resulting images<br />

have a differentially blurred visual field,<br />

punctuated by some sharpness usually<br />

in the center, to replicate the differences<br />

between memory and remembrance.<br />

Collectively the images attempt to release<br />

the volatile mixture of incomprehension,<br />

argument, reclamation, and loss that<br />

constitute the Holocaust as an inheritance<br />

for the living.<br />

D<br />

aniel Jack Lyons’ debut monograph,<br />

Like a River, continues the<br />

American artist and anthropologist’s<br />

long-term commitment to visually document<br />

the social and political rights of<br />

under-represented communities and to<br />

use images as a tool for social change.<br />

Lyons, whose background is in social<br />

and medical anthropology, began working<br />

in the Amazon in an artist residency<br />

at Casa do Rio, a community-based<br />

organization that celebrates and supports<br />

the cultural lives of teenagers and<br />

young people who live in the heart of<br />

the Amazon rainforest.<br />

His lush, deeply saturated and poetic<br />

color photographs, shot over three years,<br />

include candid portraits and well-seen<br />

small details that reveal the complexity of<br />

trying to reconcile Indigenous traditions<br />

and modern identity politics. The images,<br />

remarkably devoid of all clichés, visualize<br />

and empower the trans and queer communities<br />

of the region, elucidating their<br />

generational struggle to come of age and<br />

affirm their individuality amid the lush<br />

canopies and vegetation of the rainforest.<br />

The book also asks us to imagine what<br />

world these teenagers will inhabit if we<br />

don’t stop the toxic mix of environmental<br />

degradation, violence, and discrimination<br />

that permeates their communities.<br />

<strong>ZEKE</strong> FALL <strong>2022</strong>/ 61

Contributors<br />

Virginia Allyn spent most of her life in the<br />

San Francisco Bay Area where she started in<br />

the mid 1990’s telling stories with her camera.<br />

She worked in San Francisco’s Tenderloin<br />

and later moved to New York City where she<br />

continues doing street photography, looking for<br />

stories she wishes to tell.<br />

Barbara Ayotte is the editor of <strong>ZEKE</strong> magazine<br />

and the Communications Director of the<br />

Social Documentary Network. She has served<br />

as a senior strategic communications strategist,<br />

writer and activist for leading global health,<br />

human rights and media nonprofit organizations,<br />

including the Nobel Peace Prize- winning<br />

Physicians for Human Rights and International<br />

Campaign to Ban Landmines.<br />

David Bacon has been photographing the<br />

social movements of workers and migrants for<br />

three decades. His most recent book, about the<br />

U.S./Mexico border, is More Than a Wall/Mas<br />

que un muro.<br />

Michelle Bogre currently holds the title of<br />

Professor Emerita from Parsons School of Design<br />

in New York after a 25-year career teaching<br />

almost every type of photography class. She<br />

is also a copyright lawyer, documentary<br />

photographer and author of four books, with<br />

work published in various other books. She is<br />

currently trying to finish a long-term documentary<br />

project on family farms – @thefarmstories on<br />

Instagram – among other projects.<br />

Brian Branch-Price began his career as<br />

a freelancer for The Washington Post, then<br />

staffing with The News Journal in Wilmington,<br />

DE and The Associated Press in Trenton, NJ.<br />

He focuses on portraiture, reportage, and fine<br />

art photography. Brian has worked with Ebony<br />

magazine, GM, and others, and had several<br />

art exhibits at the Plainfield Public Library on<br />

his legendary Black gospel artists and veterans,<br />

including over 20,000 visitors. He holds<br />

degrees in Environmental Geology and Fine<br />

Arts from Howard University.<br />

Steve Cagan has been practicing activist<br />

photography since the mid-1970s. He is<br />

most concerned with exploring strength and<br />

dignity in everyday struggles of grassroots<br />

people resisting their pressures and problems.<br />

Major projects include “Working Ohio,”<br />

an extended portrait of working people; as<br />

well as Indochina; Nicaragua; El Salvador;<br />

and Cuba. His current major project is “El<br />

Chocó, Colombia: Struggle for Cultural and<br />

Environmental Survival.” He has exhibited and<br />

published on four continents, has won numerous<br />

awards, and co-authored two books.<br />

Proudly from New York City, where he grew<br />

up in the 1970s, Eric Chang currently lives in<br />

Washington, DC. His interest in photography<br />

started as a student at The High School of<br />

Art and Design and exploded years later on<br />

a trip to Nepal. Planning on taking photos<br />

of Mount Everest, he discovered he enjoyed<br />

photographing the Nepalese people and their<br />

culture more. His photography is motivated by<br />

curiosity about the world we live in and having<br />

compassion for others.<br />

Esha Chiocchio is a photographer and<br />

filmmaker using her combined knowledge of<br />

visual storytelling and sustainable communities<br />

to inspire social change. An optimistic<br />

realist, she focuses on solutions to social<br />

and environmental challenges. Her current<br />

project, “Good Earth,” highlights agrarians<br />

from diverse sectors who are revitalizing land<br />

and drawing carbon into the soil through<br />

regenerative practices. She has photographed<br />

around the world for publications, non-profits,<br />

and commercial clients, including National<br />

Geographic, High Country News, Jardins du<br />

Monde, and Bonefish Grill.<br />

Daniela Cohen is a freelance journalist and<br />

non-fiction writer of South African origin currently<br />

based in Vancouver, Canada. Her work has been<br />

published in New Canadian Media, Canadian<br />

Immigrant, The Source Newspaper, and is<br />

upcoming in Living Hyphen. Daniela’s work<br />

focuses on themes of displacement and belonging,<br />

justice, equity, diversity and inclusion. She<br />

is also the co-founder of Identity Pages, a youth<br />

writing mentorship program.<br />

Robin Fader has won numerous Emmy<br />

awards for her television and photography<br />

work. Her most rewarding work was<br />

documenting life on the streets of Washington,<br />

DC in 2020, including issues of racial and<br />

social injustice, rising fascism and the assault on<br />

reproductive rights. That work became part of<br />

a co-authored documentary photography book,<br />

2020 UNMASKED. Her wish is that beyond<br />

her life, her photographs will help us remember,<br />

recover from, and ultimately repair, the wrongs<br />

of these troubled times.<br />

Nick Gervin is a documentary and fine art<br />

photographer from Portland, Maine and is the<br />

Executive Director of the Bakery Photographic<br />

Collective. Nick has had two traumatic brain<br />

injuries and now suffers from Post-Concussion<br />

Syndrome. As a disabled artist, all of his work is<br />

a direct result from his injuries. Nick’s work has<br />

been published in many local and international<br />

magazines, as well as in several photo books.<br />

He is currently working with Martin Amis and<br />

Tom Booth Woodger of Photo Editions on his<br />

forthcoming monograph, Portlanders.<br />

Lori Grinker is an award-winning documentary<br />

photographer and author. Her work has garnered<br />

many awards including an Ernst Haas Award,<br />

a Hasselblad Foundation Grant, and an Open<br />

Society Community Engagement Grant. She has<br />

published three books: The Invisible Thread: A<br />

Portrait of Jewish American Women, Afterwar:<br />

Veterans from a World in Conflict, and Mike<br />

Tyson. She is an Assistant Professor of Journalism &<br />

Design at The New School, and teaches part time<br />

at New York University’s Arthur L Carter Graduate<br />

School of Journalism. Grinker is a senior member<br />

of Contact Press Images and is represented by<br />

ClampArt Gallery in New York City.<br />

Cheryl L. Guerrero is a San Francisco-based<br />

photographer. Locally, she contributes to online<br />

media publications, chronicling life in the San<br />

Francisco Bay Area. Photography is a way for<br />

her to create and explore, while documenting<br />

life and relaying important stories. Her work<br />

revolves around people and the underlying<br />

themes of community, culture, and tradition.<br />

Daniel Hoffman is a professor and<br />

photographer. Over the past 30 years, he has<br />

completed a number of photo documentaries<br />

in numerous countries including the U.S.,<br />

Japan, Kenya, Brazil, and Bulgaria on topics<br />

ranging from the lives of Roma as refugees,<br />

underground music clubs, religion and worship<br />

in marginal communities, and the changing face<br />

of Times Square.<br />

Raymond W Holman Jr is a corporate and<br />

documentary photographer with over twenty<br />

years’ experience located in Philadelphia, PA.<br />

His client list includes The Washington Post,<br />

Philadelphia Inquirer, New York Times, Politico,<br />

Philadelphia Health Department. Since March<br />

2020, he has been working on a personal<br />

project titled “COVID-19 in Black America,”<br />

which focuses on how the pandemic has affected<br />

Black and Brown communities in Philadelphia, its<br />

surrounding area and Atlanta, GA.<br />

Anthony Karen is a documentary<br />

photographer based in New York. His passion for<br />

photography began in Haiti, where he continues<br />

to document Vodou rituals and pilgrimages. Longterm<br />

projects include extensive documentation<br />

of White separatists, leading to two books,<br />

exhibitions in Bulgaria, Italy, the annual<br />

Noorderlicht Festival and two screenings at Visa<br />

Pour I’Image international photojournalism festival<br />

in France. He associate produced Ku Klux Klan en<br />

pasaporte Pampliega for Cuerdos de Atar TV in<br />

Madrid and has collaborated on other similarlythemed<br />

documentaries.<br />

Born in the Kingdom of Bahrain, Ghada<br />

Khunji is a graduate of the Parsons School<br />

of Design and the International Center of<br />

Photography’s Documentary Program in New<br />

York. Khunji’s photographs are known for<br />

documenting both landscapes and people from<br />

all over the world and the inherent dignity of<br />

the human element. The recipient of several<br />

awards, including the Lucie Discovery of the<br />

Year, she has exhibited widely in the U.S.,<br />

Europe, and the Middle East.<br />

Stephen Mayes is Executive Director of<br />

the Tim Hetherington Trust with 30 years’<br />

experience managing photography in the areas<br />

of fashion, art, commerce, and journalism.<br />

As creative director and as CEO, he has<br />

written successful business plans and reshaped<br />

operations for American, Asian, and European<br />

imaging companies. Stephen acted as secretary<br />

to the World Press Photo competition 2004–<br />

2012. Often described as a “futurist,” Stephen<br />

has broadcast, taught and written extensively<br />

about the ethics and practice of photography.<br />

62 / <strong>ZEKE</strong> FALL <strong>2022</strong>

After three decades as an award-winning<br />

advertising creative director and writer in<br />

New York, Kevin McKeon turned his deep<br />

curiosity and love for compelling stories to<br />

documentary photography full-time in 2018.<br />

Kevin seeks projects that can open minds<br />

and have a positive impact. Projects include<br />

exploring unexpected interactions between<br />

strangers sharing benches along Coney Island’s<br />

boardwalk, marching with and documenting<br />

the Black Lives Matter marches throughout NYC<br />

and Washington DC, and capturing the working<br />

lives and strong community of Black rodeo<br />

cowboys in Southeast Texas.<br />

Dana Melaver is a writer and artist. Her work<br />

is rooted in the belief that everything is interesting,<br />

and often acts as a bridge among art,<br />

thought, and the sciences. Dana’s most recent<br />

projects include an experimental documentary<br />

about sustainable aquaculture, and an ode to the<br />

mischievous qualities of light.<br />

Jared Ragland is a fine art and documentary<br />

photographer and former White House photo<br />

editor. His collaborative, socially-conscious<br />

work critically confronts issues of identity,<br />

marginalization, and the history of place.<br />

He currently serves as Assistant Professor of<br />

Photography at Utah State University in Logan, UT.<br />

Susan Ressler is an artist, author, and<br />

educator who has been making social<br />

documentary photographs for nearly fifty years.<br />

Her work is in the Smithsonian American Art<br />

Museum, the Library and Archives Canada, the<br />

Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA),<br />

and many other collections. Her first monograph,<br />

Executive Order: Images of 1970s Corporate<br />

America, was published by Daylight Books in<br />

2018. Dreaming California: High End, Low End,<br />

No End in Sight, will be released by Daylight in<br />

2023. Ressler lives in Taos, New Mexico.<br />

Jean Ross is a California-born photographer<br />

currently based in Brooklyn. She photographs<br />

places and the people who live in them. Jean<br />

has studied at the International Center of<br />

Photography and her work has been featured in<br />

solo shows at Viewpoint Gallery in Sacramento,<br />

California and Gallery 1855 in Davis, California<br />

and in group shows at the International Center<br />

of Photography and other galleries in Oaxaca,<br />

New York, and Los Angeles.<br />

A native of Jamaica, Radcliffe “Ruddy”<br />

Roye has crisscrossed the country engaging<br />

on a personal level with the African-American<br />

experience, combining deep research, writing,<br />

and self-reflection to contextualize what he sees<br />

for his viewers. As one of the premier innovators<br />

and artist-activists on the Instagram platform,<br />

he has amassed 300,000 followers and was<br />

Time’s 2016 Instagram Photographer of the<br />

year. Widely exhibited and published, he has<br />

received assignments and been featured in such<br />

publications as The New York Times <strong>Magazine</strong>,<br />

National Geographic and Time.<br />

Boston-based Matilde Simas is a visual<br />

journalist who has a BS in Psychology and<br />

Women’s Studies and attended Rhode Island<br />

School of Design to study photography. Her<br />

images have been published in the Trafficking in<br />

Persons Report, an annual U.S. State Department<br />

report, and in Kenyan research publications<br />

to advance anti-trafficking efforts. With<br />

photography exhibited by various United Nations<br />

agencies, Matilde founded Capture Humanity, an<br />

organization supporting grassroots community<br />

initiatives with storytelling media.<br />

Jeanny Tsai is a photographer, storyteller,<br />

and lover of life specializing in documentary,<br />

ethnographic, and portrait photography. Jeanny<br />

has a passion for photographing people and<br />

cultures that express their devotion to the divine<br />

through rituals and celebrations and for those<br />

facing environmental or social challenges<br />

threatening established culturally rich ways of life,<br />

including in Brazil, India, Indonesia, Nepal, and<br />

the U.S. She desires that her photos convey a<br />

positive, uplifting testimony of people and places<br />

despite the existing external circumstances.<br />

Lizzy Unger is a photographer, storyteller<br />

and communications consultant based in the DC<br />

area. She uses photography to document and<br />

elevate the work of local activists and everyday<br />

people working for change.<br />

Kate Way is a critical educator, photographer,<br />

and documentary filmmaker based in<br />

western Massachusetts. Her interests lie in the<br />

intersection of media literacy, public education<br />

and policy, and social and economic justice.<br />

With a doctorate in Language, Literacy, and<br />

Culture, Kate is a Lecturer in the College of<br />

Education at the University of Massachusetts<br />

Amherst, and director of the Visual Literacy<br />

Project, a secondary school documentary<br />

photography program. Her photography has<br />

been published on numerous platforms.<br />

<strong>ZEKE</strong> FALL <strong>2022</strong>/ 63

<strong>ZEKE</strong><br />

FALL<br />


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<strong>ZEKE</strong> is published twice a year by<br />

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Copyright © <strong>2022</strong><br />

Social Documentary Network<br />

ISSN 2381-1390<br />

64 / <strong>ZEKE</strong> FALL <strong>2022</strong>


Amber Bracken<br />

Showcasing Indigenous Resistance<br />

and Resilience in North America<br />

By Daniela Cohen<br />

Amber Bracken decided to become a<br />

photographer at age 15 after rejecting<br />

the office jobs proposed by an<br />

aptitude test as too boring. Born and<br />

raised in Alberta, Canada, Bracken enjoyed<br />

sketching and painting but struggled to<br />

complete pieces, so photography was<br />

appealing as an art form she could finish<br />

faster. Her simultaneous choice to pursue<br />

photojournalism stemmed from the<br />

intersection of her passion for creativity and<br />

doing good in the world.<br />

Bracken has since adjusted her aspirations<br />

to the reality of working for change in<br />

this context. “If you’re talking about social<br />

change, it’s slow, it’s difficult, and it requires<br />

investment,” she says. “It very rarely is do this<br />

and you’ll get that – like if you share your<br />

migration story, we’ll open all the borders.”<br />

A substantial focus of her work has been<br />

on Indigenous communities. This grew out<br />

of a long-term project with Indigenous<br />

youth who are living with intergenerational<br />

trauma. The experience led her on a learning<br />

journey.<br />

“I see so clearly now that it’s not an issue<br />

only in Indigenous communities. It’s an<br />

issue of contemporary society, those unaddressed<br />

colonial impacts,” says Bracken. “We<br />

are really looking at a shared history.”<br />

In 2015, Bracken first visited the<br />

Unist’ot’en Camp of the Wet’suwet’en people<br />

in northern British Columbia, Canada,<br />

resisting the development of their land by a<br />

pipeline company, where she saw the same<br />

historical pattern of Indigenous people<br />

being criminalized for such resistance.<br />

News coverage in the Canadian media<br />

also highlighted the ongoing issue of<br />

Indigenous consultation versus consent.<br />

“I’m always thinking about how<br />

authorities say one thing, like, we’re going<br />

to consult with you, but ultimately we are<br />

going to build it no matter what you say,”<br />

says Bracken.<br />

In Canada, she witnessed “a lonely fight”<br />

with small groups and sparse resources, so<br />

seeing 4,000 people standing in solidarity<br />

against the Dakota Access Pipeline at<br />

the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation in<br />

September 2016 was monumental.<br />

Bracken captured the cover photo of<br />

this issue of <strong>ZEKE</strong> during a blizzard when<br />

war veterans came to the camp to show<br />

their support. Seeing the Kanien’kehà:ka<br />

(Mohawk) flag, which has come to be a<br />

significant symbol of Indigenous resistance,<br />

was profoundly symbolic.<br />

“The Canadian American border is<br />

not particularly meaningful in terms of the<br />

experience of Indigenous people in North<br />

America,” said Bracken. “The people are<br />

Amber Bracken at Lac Ste Anne, Alberta, Canada.<br />

Photo by Joey Podlubney<br />

much more closely related to one another<br />

than the boundaries that we put between<br />

them …. The foundational impacts of colonization<br />

really do echo across the border.”<br />

Although Bracken’s work includes<br />

documenting the militarized force that<br />

continues to be used against Indigenous<br />

land defenders, she hopes people will take<br />

time to discover the “reconnection to the<br />

land, community and culture” that occurred<br />

at Standing Rock, and learn about “the<br />

rich cultures around us as well as our shared<br />

colonial history.”<br />

As a descendant of Danish settlers to<br />

Canada, Bracken is clear that documentation<br />

cannot be the end goal. “I’m wrestling<br />

with how to look at this colonial history<br />

from a new perspective, that truly acknowledges<br />

the impacts for both colonizer and<br />

colonized. And asks, what are some of the<br />

paths to repairing some of the harms in<br />

both directions?”<br />

<strong>ZEKE</strong><br />



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