This Woman’s Work.

"Roshayati, Air Asia, 2006" by Brian Finke

For his book Flight Attendants, documentary photographer Brian Finke spent two years flying the friendly skies, with airline carriers from all over the world, in order to record the work, leisure time, and home lives of his volume’s titular employees. For example, this woman, Roshayati, above, was giving a safety demo before her Air Asia flight’s departure.

36Rachel Papo‘s Serial No. 3817131 goes inside the days and nights of young women in Israel’s Defense Forces, for whom service is mandatory, as it is for all young people in the that country. (The book’s title was Papo’s own i.d. number during her military stint in the late ’80s.) As the body language and expression on the face of the soldier, above, makes clear, not only is war long stretches of boredom spiked my moments of sheer terror, preparing for it, apparently, is also.

What’s truly interesting, though, is that while these women’s occupations seem to be as different as they get, they share more than might immediately be apparent. Safety, training, freedom, even boredom all weigh heavily as issues in their respective fields. That became clear to me, at least, when I had the chance to talk to Papo and Finke about their own work.

Both artists are guests today on my WBAI-NY / 99.5 FM radio show, NONFICTION, this afternoon, Friday, June 5, at 2 pm ET.

You can hear their ideas by tuning in at 2 pm. If you’re outside of the New York tri-state, check out our stream on the web. If you miss the live show, dig into our archives for up to 90 days after broadcast.



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