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Hammurabi's law
Photo essay

By Sadegh Tirafkan
November 13, 2001
The Iranian

As a hobby, during my adolescent years, I pictured myself as others. Later on, as a photographer, this notion took another format, that is, I placed myself in photographs where others stood in the past.

Five years ago, while I was in Choghazanbil Temple, shooting self portraits for a project, I began to study Hammurabi, King of Babel. He is known to have written legal codes, some 2,500 years ago.A few were most interesting: Code 129 : If a man's wife was caught sleeping with another man, they were tied together and drowned. Code 133 : If a man's wife refused her husband, she was condemned and drowned.

These photgraphs reminisce the nightmare of the era and I have tried to place myself as the woman, the lover, the husband and the King Hammourabi who wrote and implemented the law. These photgraphic series were taken in Shoush, in Choghazanbil, in southwest of Iran, near the Karoun River, last March and will be exhibited at Seyhoon Gallery in Tehran during November 2001.

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