“Goodbye My Chechnya” chronicles the lives of young Muslim girls in the aftermath of war. This piece aims to document the resiliency of ordinary girls as they come of age in a republic that’s struggling to rebuild itself after nearly two decades of war.
For young girls in Chechnya the most innocent acts could mean breaking the rules.
A couple holding hands in public is punishable; the sight of a Chechen girl smoking may lead to her arrest. Rumors of a girl having sex before marriage will often end in an honor killing.
The few girls who dare to rebel – whether by religion, music taste, style of dress or aspiration are often punished. The Chechen president himself publicly announced that women are “the property of their husbands” and their main role is to bear children. Few finish school and are employed.
Through these set of images, I tried to reveal a more intimate perspective on the personal lives and choices of young girls who witnessed the horrors of two wars, and as a result, lost their childhood along the way.
This post is also available in: Turkish