The Africa Institute, in collaboration with the June Givanni Pan African Cinema Archive, present a film program titled Decolonizing African Cinema: A History. Launching October 21, this program seeks to situate influential works of African cinema in relation to contemporary films, and highlight the trends and developments that have defined the critical conversations and debates around this cinema.
Decolonizing African Cinema: A History will examine the influences that have shaped the foundations of African ideas about cinema. By positioning these perspectives in a broader context, the program discusses how various interventions have been informed throughout history. Presenting a curated selection of films and critical perspectives–which echo across contemporary debates on filmmaking throughout Africa and the African diaspora– the program will explore the impact of the past on present-day African cinema, with its various intersections, continuities and discontinuities.
Structured over four webinar symposiums, each session will focus on a theme to be explored by expert discussants. Each symposium will be accompanied by a complimentary set of films for both essential and recommended viewing. The theme of each symposium provides a framework for the discussions and creates a dialogue around the foundations of African cinema, and its significance for contemporary and on-going debates.
The symposiums are open to the public, and will be of particular interest to students of African cinema. Both The Africa Institute and the June Givanni Pan African Cinema Archive acknowledge the lack of knowledge and resources for the study of African cinema in Africa, and hope this program serves as an accessible contribution to the field. There is also a recognized need for a reframing of contemporary debates, inviting and encouraging new perspectives that prioritize issues pertinent to the African cultural economy and its future.