From Where Loss Comes is an unblinking look at how sacrifice and belonging are deeply rooted in the human experience.
Sixty photographs and close to 9,000 words consider a pain and suffering that is private, sacrificial, and yet rattles against values that are thought of as being inalienable — our fundamental human rights.
It is a story of the root causes of female genital cutting and mutilation (FGM/C). The practice presents a tragic dialectic. By submitting to a personal loss, a woman may be assured of membership in a community. Her alternative is to remain intact and enter into exile. It is an impossible choice.
For this work, Pradip Malde (Tanzania, 1957) returned to his birth country after an absence of forty-six years. WITH Sarah Mwaga, founder of the Anti Female Genital Mutilation Network (AFNET), he traveled more than 3,000 miles over three years, visiting remote communities to converse with and to photograph activist women (victims of FGM/C), the sacred sites where these rituals take place, and the cutting tools used by ngariba (Swahilli for “circumcisers”) who have renounced the practice.
Malde received a John Simon Guggenheim Foundation Fellowship in 2018 to complete the project. This book is dedicated to the life and work of Sarah Mwaga, who passed away in 2021 just as the book was at its final stages of production.