UC Riverside, California Museum of Photography > Keystone-Mast Collection > 136 In the foreground a hole in the ground from which the women just emerged. She went underground to fetch water from a “ganat.” Water in Iran is very scarce. Small streams would quickly dry up under the torridly hot sun. So the system of bringing water from a well in the hills is the ganat. With this sketch (see sketch on title list) I have tried to illustrate 8 to 10 km long is a costly undertaking and can only be paid for by a rich man. The man who pays for the construction of a ganat is entitled to 1/3 of the agricultural product the soil gives and because he (mostly owned by the water he gets a second 1/3 of the produce, one-third for the construction and 1/3 for the water equals 2/3. The farmer, or peasant, who is tilling the soil only keeps 1/3 for himself and from the money he earns from that he has to pay to the landowner the rent for the soil. That is the reason why Iranian peasants are VERY poor and hardly ever free of debt to their squires. The buildings in the background have been built by the American Point Four program (inauguration that same day, July 1953) as life-stock station. the ganat existed already
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