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"bereba is a rural village in the small west african country of burkina faso. i have been living and working there for two months every year since 2007. each morning my friends and neighbors travel to their farms outside the village on foot, bicycles, motor cycles or in carts drawn by mules or oxen.

"in the evening they return along a dirt path that passes beside my front door. at twilight, as the harsh equatorial sun softens, i linger on the roadside. the villagers stop and proudly pose for portraits as they make their way home. the stark, sub-saharan landscape provides a simple backdrop in the fading light.

"in the western media, africa is often portrayed either as a continent of war, famine, corruption and disease, or as an exotic place for safaris and tribal rituals. the simple beauty of everyday life is seldom seen. [these photos] present contemporary village life in a positive and realistic light, and emphasizes the strength and dignity of the people of bereba." - photos and text by david pace

(according to a 2012 gallup survey, burkina faso is the most optimistic country in the world)

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