E2
Contemporary African Cinema: Emerging Trends and Neglected Strands

Convenors:
Lizelle Bisschoff (University of Glasgow)
Stream:
Literature, media and the visual arts
Location:
G2
Start time:
11 September, 2006 at 16:00
Session slots:
1

Short abstract:

This panel will look at emerging trends in contemporary African cinema, focusing on the diversity of cinemas from the continent, in particular under-represented and neglected strands. The heterogeneity of cinemas from the continent is prevalent in the themes, genres, aesthetic styles and production conditions of filmmaking from the different African regions and countries. However, African film scholarship of the last few decades has focused pre-dominantly on francophone African film, and the purpose of this panel is to investigate some of the less-explored strands of contemporary African cinema. Some of these include the emergence of female filmmakers from all over the continent, and an investigation into how these upcoming female filmmakers draw on the legacies left by the pioneering female filmmakers, as well as how they incorporate notions of African feminism and womanhood into their films, stylistically and/or thematically. Not regarded as part of African cinema during apartheid, the last decade has seen the rise of a new wave of South African filmmaking in the post-apartheid era, as well as the increasing re-integration of South African cinema into the notion of African cinema as a whole. Other anglophone African countries, for example Nigeria and Zimbabwe, have likewise been establishing prolific national cinemas over the last 10-15 years. The cinemas from lusophone African countries - shaped by the legacy of "guerrilla" or activist filmmaking during the struggle for independence - have also not received due attention in the contemporary era. The overall aim of the panel is thus to explore the multiplicity of contemporary African cinema.

Long abstract:

This panel will look at emerging trends in contemporary African cinema, focusing on the diversity of cinemas from the continent, in particular under-represented and neglected strands. The heterogeneity of cinemas from the continent is prevalent in the themes, genres, aesthetic styles and production conditions of filmmaking from the different African regions and countries. However, African film scholarship of the last few decades has focused pre-dominantly on francophone African film, and the purpose of this panel is to investigate some of the less-explored strands of contemporary African cinema. Some of these include the emergence of female filmmakers from all over the continent, and an investigation into how these upcoming female filmmakers draw on the legacies left by the pioneering female filmmakers, as well as how they incorporate notions of African feminism and womanhood into their films, stylistically and/or thematically. Not regarded as part of African cinema during apartheid, the last decade has seen the rise of a new wave of South African filmmaking in the post-apartheid era, as well as the increasing re-integration of South African cinema into the notion of African cinema as a whole. Other anglophone African countries, for example Nigeria and Zimbabwe, have likewise been establishing prolific national cinemas over the last 10-15 years. The cinemas from lusophone African countries - shaped by the legacy of "guerrilla" or activist filmmaking during the struggle for independence - have also not received due attention in the contemporary era. The overall aim of the panel is thus to explore the multiplicity of contemporary African cinema. No space for further papers.