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The Afghan Girl’s Escalation: Say Hello to Sharbat

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December 7th, 2009

afghan girl 565x400 The Afghan Girls Escalation: Say Hello to SharbatPerhaps the most famous photograph of a child ever taken, an Afghan girl staring intensely into the camera, appeared on the cover of the June 1985 issue of National Geographic. The image of this girl with the striking, greenish, marbled eyes, and telling expression, seemed to say so much about the life of a young girl in her country, and the life she was destined to lead. The future did not look bright for this beautiful child, who appeared defiantly precious as she stared into and beyond the camera as the photo was taken. There was truth in her eyes; and it was both enchanting and haunting.  Having been reproduced a number of times, the photo has captivated millions around the world and given credence to the old adage ”a picture is worth a thousand words.”

A few years ago, National Geographic went on an expedition of sorts, to find the girl whose face they had made famous back in the summer of 1985, and as you can see in the picture above… they found her. What has become of her life, and what has happened since that day is chronicled in the article and shown on video. Her name is Sharbat Gula and she is married with children – three to be exact.  I won’t go into too much detail here because I think it is worth reading – from the original source. The story is very informative, and with the recent events concerning Afghanistan and “the west”, I thought it a good idea to show people this story and remind them of the girl they all remember but don’t really know. As for me, this was probably the first National Geographic issue/image I ever held. I was less than a month on earth when the original was published, but my mother collected the issues and had this one in a box.  I discovered the picture at the age of three while going through stuff I probably should have. From that day forth I too was a collector. And although I didn’t ever read the actual article till much later, there was something about  ”the girl with the eyes” that stayed with me.

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