Princess to Slave
Once, the famous Armenian sculptor Heriqnaz Galstyan, showing me a photo from her childhood, told me, "I was a small princess for my father; after getting married I became something like a slave.”
"Princess to Slave" is a project, which shows violence against women in Armenia from various sides: physical, sexual, psychological, and gender discrimination.
There are many traditions in Armenia: women must be calm, silent, shy and never take the problems from inside the family out into the public.
There are many poems in our school books about mothers, and yet there are many mothers who are beaten and killed in Armenia.
The first woman's voice which was heard publicly belonged to a young orphan woman named Zaruhi Petrosyan. She was killed by her mother-in-law and husband in 2011.
It was the first time that society was disturbed. Zaruhi's sister spoke loudly about violence only after Zaruhi died, and social awareness on domestic violence has increased. Her husband has been sentenced.
The next young woman who stood for her rights publicly was 20-year-old Mariam Gevorgyan.
Her mother-in-low has been sentenced.
The last pictures I took were of a young pregnant woman Maro Guloyan. Her husband's family insists that she committed suicide, but the bruises on her neck are trying to speak about something else.
Anahit Hayrapetyan is an Armenian photographer born in 1981 in Karabakh. She has a master's degree in computer science. In 2005 Anahit participated in a photojournalism course organized by World Press Photo and the Caucasus Institute; later she studied at Danish School of Media and Journalism.
Her photos are published in Enter WPPH, Eurasianet.org, FotoEvidence, Le Point among others. She won awards including Asian Women Photographer Showcase, The President's Prize of Armenia.
Anahit is a co-founder of 4Plus Documentary Photography Center in Armenia. Anahit is currently based in Germany.