We’ve all heard about the “Arab spring”. We watched history unfold before our eyes in the papers and on TV as the people of Egypt took a non-violent stand to end a dictatorship and bring about democracy. What many didn’t hear about and still don’t know is that the ideas and methods behind these movements [and other successful non-violent revolutions] came from the writings of a humble man in East Boston.
You can read about Gene Sharp, the author of “From Dictatorship to Democracy” in this article by the BBC.
I had the opportunity to take Gene Sharp’s portrait a couple of weeks ago. It was humbling to be entrusted with photographing a man who’s name carries the save gravitas as “Ghandi” in the world of peaceful protest and non-violent revolution. Take 2 minutes to watch this moving trailer for an upcoming movie about Gene and his work, “How To Start A Revolution”
I went to the Einstein Institute‘s office in East Boston for the shoot. My contact there mentioned that many of the recent photographs taken of Gene highlighted his age and his modest surroundings and that they wanted to portray him in a different light, the way those who work with him see him: a fierce fighter and champion of peace. I tried to capture that – a leader who stands up to tyranny and oppression; armed with his intellect, fighting with his words.