Mile 46

Face to Face in Maasailand

Written By: Joni Binder, Darius Himes
In this unique exploration of African culture, author and photographer Joni Binder revisits journals she wrote at twenty-one while living with a traditional Maasai family on the outskirts of Kenya. As both witness to and a part of the rhythms of a proud but disenfranchised family, Binder lived for months as the Maasai live, in a dung hut and on a diet limited to cow’s blood and milk—and, in celebratory times—meat.

Her photographs of these alluring people, their daily lives, and their sacred rituals are interwoven with journal entries from that time and juxtaposed with contemporary entries. These entries and photos speak to the timeless quality of the Maasai, a people that has retained its traditional rites—including male and female circumcision, warrior brotherhoods, and polygamous marriage—in the face of an unrelenting torrent of Western influence.

Chronicling the author’s attempts to reconcile her respect for her hosts and their beliefs with the Western feminist perspective to which she was accustomed, Mile 46 is a thoughtful and rare snapshot into the everyday life of the Maasai, written with a mindful sensitivity to the cultural differences that both bring us together and set us apart.
Format: Hardbound
Publication Date: 4/5/2016
ISBN: 9781608877522
Pages: 192
Trim Size: 5.5 x 8 x 1

  • About the Author 
  • Press
Joni Binder, Author: Joni Binder received a BFA in photography
from California Institute of the Arts, where
she now serves as a trustee. She also served
as a trustee at the San Francisco Museum of
Modern Art and as the president of the museum’s Modern Art Council. Joni has provided leadership as an arts education advocate in California, serving as one of the subcommittee chairs for the CREATE-CA Task Force, and nationally as a Fine Arts Committee member and Education Committee co-chair for the Diplomatic Reception Rooms of the U.S. Department of State. She serves on the Leadership Circle for Futures Without Violence and is currently helping lead a campaign in partnership with The Representation Project in an effort to raise awareness about healthy masculinity and its role in eliminating domestic violence, particularly in professional sports.

Darius Himes, Foreword Contributor: Darius Himes oversees a global team in three locations producing auctions, exhibitions and catalogues as International Head of Photographs at Christie's. Prior to joining Christie’s in Fall 2014, Himes was director of Fraenkel Gallery, San Francisco from 2011–2014.