Previous Page: Introduction


Life and Landscapes

Rowing riverboat-home.
Bangladesh, 1987

River transport commerce.
Bangladesh, 1987

Unloading goods on river.
Bangladesh, 1987

Farm haystack.
Bangladesh, 1987

Winter shoals on river.
Bangladesh, 2001

The strategic importance of railroads.
Bangladesh, 2001

Vegetable bazaar (market).
Bangladesh, 1998

Grameen Bank customer.
Bangladesh, 1998

Activists of Naripakkha demonstrate in.
Bangladesh, 2000

Working class women demonstrate against.
Bangladesh, 2000

Bulldozing illegal (unlicensed) rickshas.
Dhaka, 2000

Burning a ricksha in Dhaka.
Bangladesh, 2000


Ricksha Traffic Jam, Photo by John Miles.
Dhaka, 1999

Rickshas often take over.
Dhaka, 2001

Lost in the movies--driver awaits fare, Photo by Kevin Bubriski.
Dhaka, 1992

Moving plastic containers and other stuff.
Dhaka, 1998





Paan (betel chew) stand.
Dhaka, 1998

Brand new ricksha made by Shujon Mistri.
Dhaka, 1998



Pope rides a
ricksha in Dhaka          Contemporary Rural Possibilities       Baby taxi air pollution in Dhaka


Severe traffic jam               Smoke free street, Dhaka                 

credit: See this website for more on Bangladesh.

Islam in Bangladesh
About 80 percent of Bangladeshis are Muslims, making Bangladesh one of the largest Muslim countries in the world. The Muslim community in Bangladesh tends to be accommodating to other faiths and beliefs and Bangladesh is known for its lack of communal strife, although such restraint has broken down since the Babri Mosque riots in India in 1992. At that time, Hindus in Bangladesh were attacked, beaten, their shops and temples torn up, in response to the Indian mobs that destroyed the Babri Mosque, not in use and only a ruin. But it was a ruin which Indian Hindu nationalists claimed to be the birthplace of their deity, Lord Rama. The old communal peace of Bangladesh is now on tendentious ground. Hinduism is professed by about 12 percent of the population while there are significant numbers of Buddhists in Bangladesh. Bangladesh also has a very small Christian community. Here Muslim prayers are in progress outside an overflowing mosque.

Bangladesh Muslims praying outside overflowing mosque, probably on a festival day.

Tara Mosque.
Old Dhaka, 1980s

Decorative designs on mosque in Old Dhaka





Hindu temple guardian lions, tea plantation.
Bangladesh, 1987

Buddhist monks in Bangladesh.

Frieze from temple in Dinajpur, Bangladesh 18th c, dedicated to the deity Krishna.


Animal combat terracotta frieze, Bangladesh


Durga Puja, Bengal festival extraordinaire:

The annual mother goddess pujas for deities Durga, Lakshmi and Kali are celebrated by Hindus in Bangladesh as in west Bengal, India, beginning in mid-October this year (2002). Following is a Durga image from Bangladesh, and some Durga images and a pandal (temporary shrine) from this year's puja in Kolkata, plus a link for viewing the elaborate pandals in Kolkata. This year silver seems to be the favored gilt medium for the protimas (deity images), but there are also some in gold. Many of the pandals are made of unusual substances, like seashells, sugar cane, gramophone records, even biscuits (commercially made cookies).Some pandals imitate village architecture with thatch roofs; some imitate famous temples in India like Jagannath at Puri; most pandal styles seem to emulate Indian and Kolkatan architecture of the 19th century. Views of a full shrine with all the deities present should include the deities Lakshmi Devi to left of Durga, and Ganesh to her left; Saraswati Devi to right of Durga, and Kartikeyya to her right. Viewers can see their mounts in some of the photos in the netguruindia link -- an owl for Lakshmi, a goose for Saraswati, the mounts of Ganesh (a rat) and of Kartikeyya (peacock) seem invisible in these photos. The lore of this festival views the other deities as Durga's children.

Goddess Durga protima at Dhakeswari Mandir, Dhaka. Independent photo.

Durgapuja in Kolkata, October 2002





 Expat Portrait Commissioning

Helpers and Friends

Prof. Jahanara Haq and author.
Dhaka, 1987

Sarah Boido and friend, Krishna Shah
Rajshahi, 1976

Author, and Prof. Shahanara Husain, History Dept., Rajshahi University.
Bangladesh, 1986

Baghdad Wall Art


In a dull Baghdad world of concrete and razor-wire, chicanes and blast barriers, a little color has just re-appeared. Every official building or media base these days has a frontage of four-metre(13ft) high concrete walls to protect against bombs and mortars, but Iraqis have begun to see the grey expanse as a public canvas, reports the BBC. There is of course graffiti, but mostly great swirling apolitical exuberance - everything from retro-Chagall to prog-rock album-cover teenage fantasies. For more on this art, visit Article on Readings Page

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