TOPSHOT-AFGHANISTAN-SOCIETY

Afghanistan: Far From the Front Lines

Beyond the bombings and the Taliban, an insider celebrates the workers who keep Afghanistan bustling.

The Afghanistan that makes headlines in the West — suicide bombings, the Taliban, the opium trade — is far from the full story. There is another Afghanistan, a hard-working Afghanistan, that outsiders seldom see: the carrot-stackers and broom vendors, those who shovel coal and bake bread. Photographer Farshad Usyan, who taught himself to use a camera as a 16-year-old medical student, has done his share of photojournalism from the front lines. But today his focus is on those who toil, day in and day out, in Mazar-i-Sharif, a city of over 500,000 near the Uzbekistan border. These are his portraits of Afghans at work.

Packing Carrots FARSHAD USYAN/AFP/Getty Images Packing Carrots Shoveling Coal AFP Contributor/AFP/Getty Images Shoveling Coal Selling Dresses FARSHAD USYAN/AFP/Getty Images Selling Dresses Cutting Wood FARSHAD USYAN/AFP/Getty Images Cutting Wood Skinning Meat FARSHAD USYAN/AFP/Getty Images Skinning Meat Selling Watermelons AFP Contributor/AFP/Getty Images Selling Watermelons
AFGHANISTAN-ECONOMY-COAL
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AFP Contributor/AFP/Getty Images Selling Yarn AFP Contributor/AFP/Getty Images Selling Yarn Preparing Kebabs FARSHAD USYAN/AFP/Getty Images Preparing Kebabs Sorting Brooms AFP Contributor/AFP/Getty Images Sorting Brooms Ironing Burqas FARSHAD USYAN/AFP/Getty Images Ironing Burqas Selling Balloons FARSHAD USYAN/AFP/Getty Images Selling Balloons Dying Wool AFP/AFP/Getty Images Dying Wool Selling Coal FARSHAD USYAN/AFP/Getty Images Selling Coal
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AFGHANISTAN-ECONOMY-LABOURER
FARSHAD USYAN/AFP/Getty Images Farming Poppies FARSHAD USYAN/AFP/Getty Images Farming Poppies Selling Snacks FARSHAD USYAN/AFP/Getty Images Selling Snacks Harvesting Wheat FARSHAD USYAN/AFP/Getty Images Harvesting Wheat Drying Hides AFP Contributor/AFP/Getty Images Drying Hides Selling Bread FARSHAD USYAN/AFP/Getty Images Selling Bread Shoveling Coal FARSHAD USYAN/AFP/Getty Images Shoveling Coal Extracting Oil From Vegetables Using Camel Power FARSHAD USYAN/AFP/Getty Images Extracting Oil From Vegetables Using Camel Power Preparing Snacks FARSHAD USYAN/AFP/Getty Images Preparing Snacks Selling Birds FARSHAD USYAN/AFP/Getty Images Selling Birds Selling Flatbread FARSHAD USYAN/AFP/Getty Images Selling Flatbread
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