In photographer Anastasia Taylor-Lind’s photo series “The National Womb”, a unique and unknown program was the focus of her work. In 2008, the de facto government of Nagorno Karabakh, a republic located within Azerbaijan, created the “birth encouragement program” which pays newlyweds cash for getting married and cash towards each baby they birth. The program was created in an attempt to repopulate the area after their devastating war from 1991 - 1994 when a majority of the population fled the area never to return. In response to the “birth encouragement program”, a mass wedding was held in October of 2008 where 674 couples were married. As a result of the program, the area’s birth rate has increased 25.5%.
text by Canbra Hodsdon