The Preservation of Terror [A series of 10 photographs; I began my investigation into Baalu Girma's Oromaye after I made these images and learned more about the history of photography in Ethiopia.] In 1977 in the midst of the Red Terror, the Soviet-supported communist government in Ethiopia known as the Derg outlawed photography in public. Officials feared photographs might threaten the precarious authority of the regime. As a result, during that time, Ethiopians could only have their images made in studios sanctioned by the government to produce official documents of identity. The Derg collapsed in 1991 but its psychological legacy continues to mystify identity and politics in Ethiopia and terrify those old enough to remember it. Of course, Ethiopians are now permitted to have cameras and there is a surge in street photography in Ethiopia; but people continue to visit photography studios and carry around passport photographs of their loved ones. On holidays, families still line up to have their pictures made. I have visited friends and neighbors in Ethiopia, and in the United States, and have asked to see the images they preserved in their homes, in photo albums, in forgotten boxes, on cluttered desks. I asked to rephotograph these images and the marks left on them over the turbulent intervening years. I have also begun to explore pictures Ethiopians in the diaspora carried with them, as well as photographs that Eritrean and Ethiopian refugees remember but, for some reason, had to leave behind. Many of these photographs depict people lost during the Red Terror or in its wake. Some are made more recently with this photographic history in mind. The photograph “Mother and Son Reunited…”, for instance, was brought to me by someone who used the darkroom to combine an old image of a boy, missing since 1982, with a new image of his mother who still carries his photograph with her to try to find him. I am interested in what these images say about the elision of personal and official histories. What do disintegrating government-sanctioned images say about the legacy of an authoritarian regime? What do old monochromatic pictures recall of the subjects, of what they endured or of their memories? And how do these images inform the new, full-color national self-image Ethiopians are busily creating?