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    An Afghan woman learns how to knit a dress for a doll at a workshop sponsored by American NGO Mercy Group  A farmer puts his harvest on a tank left behind in war in Panshir, north of Kabul A man gives his children their daily ration of opium. In some areas, parents addict their infants by puffing opium smoke in their face so they will sleep more and give them more hours to work.

    Life in War

    While Afghanistan has been one the most heavily documented countries over the past decade, few photojournalists have approached it with the depth and perspective of Majid Saeedi. Saeedi, a native of Iran, was not allowed to work in his home country for four years, following his coverage of the turbulent 2009 Iranian election. This exile led him to embrace the people of Afghanistan as his main subject. ‘War is not the only thing going on in Afghanistan,’ he writes. ‘Sharing a common tongue, I found that I could live alongside the Afghans, understanding, laughing and crying with them.’

    Saeedi was recently honored with the FotoEvidence Book Award for his work. See more from Life in War.

    Sha’abi music (literally translating to ‘the music of the poor’) is the soundtrack of a new Egypt: recorded in bedrooms, mixed on shoddy laptops and capitalizing on anger at the country’s economic and political situation. Young singers seethe about their frustrations through irreverent lyrics like “The people want phone credit! Just phone credit,” a play on the popular 18-day Tahrir Square uprising chant: “The people want the fall of the regime!”

    8%, the post popular Sha’abi band, performs on rickety wooden stages in alleys in their neighborhood of Matareya. Their latest recordings are passed from phone to phone by bluetooth; their YouTube videos have over 1 million listens; their Facebook page has hundreds of thousands of likes. 

    See more from Sha’abi Music, by David Degner

    CAIRO, EGYPT: Lorna belly-dances in front of a mixed Egyptian-Chinese audience. Owner of “Hotel Belly Lorna,” Lorna teaches belly dancing to young female Chinese students. Belly dancing, once an Egyptian folkloric dance, is now taboo by current Egyptian social and religious standards and Lorna is the only British belly dancer with a legal working permit to dance in Cairo today. (Photo by Kim Badawi/Reportage by Getty Images)

    'In a globalised world, it has become “much easier than before to consume Western products, therefore an increasing number of Arab parents worry that their children are getting too Westernised. This creates a demand for businesses that adapt Westernised products to their values, and it has been taking place across the Middle East – in television programmes, hip-hop music, comic books and ‘Arabised’ Barbie dolls called Fulla dolls.” A Fulla doll is, in essence, a Barbie doll that is “loving, caring, honest, and respecting of her mother and father”, say the doll’s creators.'

    With all of the issues roiling the Middle East, the cultural characteristics of everyday life often get overlooked. But for Natalie Naccache, a former member of Reportage Emerging Talent, the nuances of youth culture in the region can be especially telling. “I wanted to take a deeper look into how young people in the Middle East are growing up, who they look up to, and what moulds their beliefs.”

    Read more about Natalie’s project in British Journal of Photography.

    Introducing the brand new Reportage by Getty Images Instagram. Follow along as Reportage photographers explore the world.

    Image: Framed photos of women’s eyes, for sale in the Souk, Marrakech, Morocco. Photo by @selliottphoto

    benlowy:

    Taiz, Yemen | April 12, 2013 A woman takes a sip of a late night fruit juice at a Shesha bar in Taiz. After my experience in Libya - where women were forbidden to smoke in public - and with the conservative reputation that Yemen has - this came as quite a surprise. #photojournalism #photooftheday #documentary #iphoneography #iphoneonly #igers #streetphotography #picoftheday #yemen #cafe #shesha #taiz

    Children play in dry farmland near the President Saleh Mosque January 25, 2010 in Sana’a, Yemen. Inaugurated in 2008, the mosque cost $60 million to build, a price tag that has angered many citizens of the poorest nation in the Middle East. (From Yemen, by Ed Ou)

    January 2011 - Egyptian protesters cheer members of the military as they arrive in Cairo after a day of unrest. (Photo by Ed Ou/Reportage by Getty Images)

    Two years ago, the Egyptian Revolution began; it would eventually end Hosni Mubarak’s almost 30 years in power.  Take a look back at more of Ed’s photos from Egypt in 2011 here

    In 2010, photographer Paula Bronstein documented a special section of the Marines working in Afghanistan - a Female Engagement Team (FET). Muslim tradition often forbids interaction between men and women, so the FET was created in order to engage with the local female population.

    Yesterday, US Defense Secretary Leon Panetta announced that the Pentagon would formally open combat roles to female soldiers.

    See more of Paula’s images featured on Time and NBC News.

    guardian:

    An ultra-Orthodox Jewish boy builds a snowman at the Western Wall. The worst snowstorm in 20 years has shut roads and schools in Jerusalem as the harsh weather affects regions across the Middle East Photograph: Uriel Sinai/Getty Images

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