Time: September 10, 2010 to December 31, 2011
Location: Madan Puraskar Pustakalaya (http://www.madanpuraskar.org)
Street: Madan Puraskar Pustakalaya, Patan Dhoka
Website or Map: http://www.apeoplewar.com/
Phone: 554-9948 & 500-5515
Event Type: photos, exhibition
Organized By: Nepalaya
Latest Activity: Feb 25, 2011
The trilogy of books on the Nepal conflict (1996-2006) in which 16,000 people were killed has been recognised as a model in how media (especially photojournalism) can help in the post-conflict reconciliation process.
Nepal's Maoist war was dirty with many human rights violations and war crimes. The majority of the victims were non-combatants, but during the conflict we in the media just chronicled the carnage, counted the bodies and covered only the battles. The book, A People War which came out in December 2006 six months after the ceasefire tried to compensate for this
lapse by looking at the civilian victims and their relatives through the medium of photographs.
The book became an instant best-seller with 20,000 copies sold to date. The publishers, nepa-laya, also took the pictures on a three month tour of the country in a traveling photographic exhibition witnessed by 350,000 people. The comments of the visitors were so powerful, nepa-laya decided to publish a second book of testimonies, Never Again. A documentary Frames
of War was also made with profiles of women and children affected by the war.
The third book in the trilogy, People After War in 2009. It follows up on 55 of the characters in the first book to see where they are now. There are dramatic stories of a vigilante killer who has turned into a holy man. A female guerrilla in the original book it turns out had a brother who served in the army, and the siblings have an emotional reunion with their father. A policeman had a son who was also in the police and a daughter who was a Maoist. Nepal’s conflict, it turns out, wasn’t just a civil war but a war between siblings.
The photographs have so far been exhibited at the Himalaya Exhibition in Amsterdam, Chobi Mela in Dhaka and the India International Centre in New Delhi. The curator of the photographs and editor of the three books, Kunda Dixit, has been invited to speak on the project at media conferences attended by students of conflict studies, social science, politics and media.
The exhibition has found a permanent space on a floor of Nepal’s foremost archive, Madan Puraskar Pustakalaya (MPP) in Patan Dhoka. The materials from the traveling exhibitions have been on display since January and have had over 2,000 visitors. MPP is working to make this venue the nucleus of a Centre for Peace and Reconciliation through Photography.
The photographs and panels from all three books are in a permanent exhibition at the Shanti Sangralaya of the Madan Puraskar Pustakalaya in Patan Dhoka.
The Sangralaya is open 11Am -4PM and closed on Tuesdays.
Entrance is Rs 20 for Nepali and South Asian (50% discount for students) and Rs 100 for other nationalities.