Photojournalist and Author who Documented Mother Teresa to Present at SWOSU


Linda SchaeferLinda Schaefer, photojournalist and author of the book Come and See: A Photojournalist's Journey into the World of Mother Teresa, will share her experiences from a recent trip to Kolkata, India, on Tuesday, October 27, at 7 p.m. in the Southwestern Oklahoma State University Memorial Student Center on the Weatherford campus.

The event entitled "Passage to India" will be preceded by a photo exhibition reception at 5:30 p.m. in the Al Harris Library.  Both the evening presentation and the reception are free and open to the public.

Recently, Schaefer traveled with three East Central University students to Kolkata, the location where she had documented the work of Mother Teresa, hoping they would have a similar experience to the one that profoundly affected her. Two of the students, Jarrod Doyal and Luke Cypert, will accompany her to SWOSU on October 27 to present information about their personal experiences, along with photos and video footage they took during their trip to India.

Schaefer, a former editor and photojournalist for CNN, holds the distinction of being the last professional to be granted full access to the late Nobel Prize winner, Mother Teresa. Before Mother Teresa would allow herself to be photographed, Schaefer was asked to volunteer inside the orphanages, houses of the dying, and the leper colony that is run by the Missionaries of Charity (a Roman Catholic order established in 1950 by Mother Teresa) to gain a ‘Come and See' understanding of their work. Schaefer's long hours and eye-opening experiences gave her tremendous documentary material and proved Schaefer's commitment to their story to Mother Teresa.

During her career, Schaefer has documented other equally challenging people highlighting the positive and negative aspects of humanity. She has photographed subjects such as the Martin Luther King, Jr. family; Democrat and Republican National Conventions; Xevante tribe of the Amazon; street children of Rio de Janerio; Winter Olympics in Albertville, France; non-violent civil rights protest; war on the Adriatic coast between the Croatians, Serbians and Muslims; and New York City crime scenes, including gang members, prostitutes, and the homeless. She began her career as a free-lance photographer for the Associated Press and began working as a CNN reporter in 1985. Schaefer has been recognized by a variety of esteemed media outlets, with her work appearing in Time, Newsweek, the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, Parade Magazine, GQ, and many others.

She currently teaches at East Central University, where she inspires students "with that passion for the art and science of a medium that captures the soul of our culture." A retrospective exhibition of Linda Schaefer's photography, Come and See: The Journeys of Linda Schaefer is currently on display at the Mabee-Gerrer Museum of Art in Shawnee.

For more information about the evening event or the photo exhibition in the Al Harris Library, please contact Jason Dupree, head of public services, SWOSU Libraries, at 580.774.3031.