When Sierra Leone appears in the western media the focus is on health pandemics; child soldiers and civil wars. But what of other kinds of narratives? Those that focus on everyday people and ordinary lives, stories that speak to the nuances, the humanity and the complexity of experience rather than to the flattened out, one-dimensional narratives propagated by the media.
I shot these photographs on a recent trip to Sierra Leone, away from urban centres, in a rural village called Golahun Vaama. The images show trades and industries and people from elders to children. Two of the images show the digging of foundations for a children’s hospital.
I’m less interested in sensationalist narratives, the media’s emphasis on a singular type of story (usually involving death and disaster) and more engaged by the idea of human beings living out their lives and surviving.
Peter Moi Conteh is a writer and filmmaker. Born in Sierra Leone, he now lives in Manchester. He is a regular contributor to Minor Literature[s]. @peetahmoykontay