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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Beyond colonial stereotypes: reflections on postcolonial cinema in the African Great Lakes region
Author:Nkunzimana, Obed
Year:2009
Periodical:Journal of African Cinemas
Volume:1
Issue:1
Pages:79-94
Language:English
Geographic terms:Great Lakes region
Congo (Democratic Republic of)
Burundi
Rwanda
Subjects:cinema
stereotypes
colonialism
Abstract:The African Great Lakes region - Rwanda, Burundi and Congo-Kinshasa (Democratic Republic of Congo) - is usually remembered for its social upheavals and fratricidal wars, rarely for filmmaking. Moreover, some cinema critics recognize that in the region, like in other African countries, many contemporary films remain subtly informed by colonial clichés and Western sponsors' unilateral choices, with little or no consideration for African filmmakers' interests and needs. This article reflects on how colonial filmmaking strategies and motives linger on in today's films about the region, whether they are African or Western made. It first describes the core of colonial cinema with its stereotypical and sensationalist images, which are the ingredients likely to stir Western audiences. Second, through the analysis of some representative films, it shows how the colonial-inspired marketable clichés surreptitiously inform today's filmmaking. Finally, it shows how some filmmakers are trying to reaffirm their distinctive cultural identity by producing a diversity of qualitative films in which they tell their own story. The conclusion points to production initiatives with a view to countering colonial stereotypes. Bibliogr., filmogr., note, ref., sum. [Journal abstract]
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