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December 2005/January 2006
Featured Photography Book

Histories Are Mirrors: The Path of Conflict Through Afghanistan and Iraq, photographs by Tyler Hicks; essays by John F. Burns and Ian Fisher (New York: Umbrage Editions, 2004). $34.95 hardcover. 126 pages.

Histories Are Mirrors takes us from the flames burning in lower Manhattan to the Taliban and Northern Alliance soldiers in the mountains of Afghanistan, and later to the war-torn streets of Iraq. Tyler Hicks’s award-winning photographs capture and examine up close the realities of recent conflicts, showing cities destroyed and lives disrupted. Essays from John F. Burns and Ian Fisher further expand upon this reflection.

The following is a sample of Hicks’s riveting images.—S.I.

Najaf, Iraq. August 21, 2004
Marines watch over Iraqi detainees gathered in Najaf, following an early morning raid on a former Iraqi police station in Kufa which was a gathering place for Mahdi militiament loyal to radical cleric Moktada al-Sadr.
Photograph: 2004 Tyler Hicks from Histories Are Mirrors (Umbrage, 2004)

Ghorbond, Afghanistan. October 18, 2001
Northern Alliance soldiers look down onto the Taliban-controlled village of Ghorbond. The rocky terrain made transport of solders and their equipment a challenge. Also problematic was the condition of the defenders’ weapons, many of which were liberated from the Russians during and after their failed occupation in the 1980s. That war cursed Afghanistan with more land mines than any country on earth, a terrible legacy that will continue to kill and maim civilians for years to come.
Photograph: 2004 Tyler Hicks from Histories Are Mirrors (Umbrage, 2004)
Shebertoo, Afghanistan. December 5, 2001
Abdul Hussain, who had returned to his Shebertoo village once the war ended, feared that his two-year old son would soon die. As cold weather set in and food was in short supply, many Hazara tribespeople living in Shebertoo faced a bleak and difficult winter.
Photograph: 2004 Tyler Hicks from Histories Are Mirrors (Umbrage, 2004)


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