Goodbye my Chechnya

                                                 Shown at the Documentary Arts Asia Gallery in July 2013. 

Goodbye my Chechnya

For young girls in Chechnya the most innocent acts could mean breaking the rules.

A Chechen girl caught smoking is cause for arrest; while rumors of a couple having sex before marriage can result in an honor killing.

The few girls who dare to rebel become targets in the eyes of Chechen authorities.

After nearly two decades of vicious war and 70 years of Soviet rule, during which religious participation was banned, modern-day Chechnya is going through Islamic revival.

The Chechen government is building mosques in every village, prayer rooms in public schools, and enforcing a stricter Islamic dress code for both men and women.

This photo essay chronicles the lives of young Muslim girls who witnessed the horrors of two wars and are now coming of age in a republic that is rapidly redefining itself as a Muslim state.

Diana Markosian

Diana Markosian is a documentary photographer and writer.

Her reporting has taken her from Russia’s North Caucasus mountains, to the ancient Silk Road in Tajikistan and overland to the remote Wakhan Corridor in northeastern Afghanistan.

Diana’s work has been recognized by a diverse number of organizations including The Magnum Emerging Photographer Fund, Open Society Institute, the National Press Photographers Association, UNICEF and Reuters. In 2013, Diana was selected to participate in the World Press Photo Joop Swart Masterclass.

She holds a masters from Columbia University’s Graduate School of Journalism.