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The Women of Kashmir

I just returned from Kashmir, a magnificent region of India.

Referred to as a tropical paradise in old literature, there is no wonder why it has been the subject of many disputes and is now divided between India and Pakistan.

Kashmir is surrounded by Himalayan Mountain Ranges whose rivers have created large, beautiful lakes. I was so taken by the gorgeous scenery and by the warmth, openness and beauty of the people, who have gone through many conflicts.

I wasn’t sure what I would experience in Kashmir and found the people to be so open, gentle, endearing, and ready to embrace a new, modern society.

Kashmir is over 93% Muslim. Many of the women wear headscarves, some cover their faces totally; some walk around without any head coverings. All of the women were as curious of me as I was of them. They welcomed me, shared their stories &#8212 some surprisingly spoke English very well and even invited me into their homes for tea.

I was fascinated by their culture and their tumultuous history but I left hopeful for a new, peaceful and good future. I hope my portraits help express the heart and the soul of these interesting women.

People ask me why I travel to all these different places. For me, meeting women from different parts of the world opens my eyes and my heart to women’s struggles and strengthens the belief that we are all connected.

WE ARE ONE.

Three women in burkas
Beautiful eyes behind a burka
Woman in burka in mosque
Woman in black and red burka
Eyes obscured by burka
Woman in headscarf
Woman in headscarf looking off camera
Woman outdoors in headscarf
Smiling woman in red scarf
Girl in burka behind notebook
Enigmatic smile under headscarf
Two women in white coverings
Woman in light blue coverings
Woman with bracelets
Woman in front of blue stripes
Woman holding goat
Two women and girl
Woman in red scarf
Two women in front of green wall
Woman in red in front of shelves

#Kashmir #Women