A SELF DOCUMENTARY PROJECT WITH LIBERIA'S CHILDREN OF WAR
From 1989 to 2003, Liberia was devastated by two brutal civil wars that claimed the lives of a quarter million people and displaced more than a million. Liberia's infrastructure was destroyed and an entire generation traumatized.
Children played the role of both victims and victimizers. It's impossible to know how many of the combatants during these years were children, but 21% of those demobilized at the end of the war were children. Children that did join the faction were often forced by threat of death. Whatever their exact role during these years, it is certain that none of Liberia's children emerged unscathed.
This project took place in 1997, between the first and second civil war. 100 children, both former combatants and non-combatants, in Monrovia participated in this project. Each was given a disposable camera and instruction on how to use it, then asked to take pictures of whatever they like over the course of three days. Each also was interviewed. Their short bios*, their portrait, and a sample of their own photo work follows.
* the participants' names have been changed
© Nathan Jones