This was taken in 1877. It has been etched in my mind for years since I saw it.
He is a man looking at his family during the British Raj in India. There were many cases of cannibalism and he was afraid that someone would try to kill and eat his children or his wife.
I admit this picture is hard to look at – but I included it for a reason. Many people in the US/West are not even aware of the terrible famines that swept through India, which are comparable to the holocaust in terms of deaths (~30 million people are estimated to have died in famines in India).
This was taken from the Great Famine of 1876–1878, which was much worse than the infamous Bengal Famine. This was caused by crop failure/drought and was exacerbated by the export of crown wheat abroad. A total of 5.6-9 million people died (exact numbers are hard to come by).
And in huge statistics like these, there are forgotten stories.
These are individuals and families who have slowly faced the despair of knowing that they do not have and will not have any food in the near future. They faced the horror of knowing there was nothing they could do to save their lives or the lives of their children.
The above picture is remarkable for many reasons, namely and obviously because of how emaciated this family is – and yet still manages to be alive. They undergo catabolism, the process by which your body breaks down other tissues to feed itself when it has no other option.
And incredibly, the father still uses every last ounce of his strength to defiantly watch over his family. The picture correctly captures the hellish landscape these poor people had to endure.