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African Studies

Angola
Roberto Berliner
1991, 55 min., Color, Brazil/Angola
This documentary from a Brazil captures the tenacity and diversity of Angolan society. Beginning with a brief history of Angola's war for independence from Portugal, the documentary's up-beat pacing p...

Bamako Sigi-kan
Manthia Diawara
2002, 76 min., Color, US
This original documentary shot by Arthur Jafa brings a new look to the modern African city and enables a better understanding from the inside of how democracy takes root in Mali. Discover how politics...

Between the Cup and the Election
Monique Mbeka Phoba & Guy Kabeya Muya
2008, 56 min., Color/BW, DRC/Belgium
Inspired by the 2006 elections in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, formery Zaire, a group of film students sets out to make a film. With the help of veteran filmmakers Monique Mbeka Phoba and Guy...

Body and Soul (De Corpo e Alma)
Matthieu Bron
2011, 54 min., Color, Mozambique
Victoria, Mariana and Vasco are three young Mozambicans with physical disabilities living in Maputo, Mozambique’s capital city. The film explores how they see themselves, raising questions about self-...

Conakry Kas: The Conakry People
Manthia Diawara
2003, 82 min., Color, US
In January 2003, Director Manthia Diawara visited Guinea-Conakry to see what was left of the artists (Ballets Africains, Bembeya Jazz National) and intellectuals (D.T. Niane, Telivel Diallo) of the Gu...

Democracy in Dakar
Ben Herson, Magee McIlvaine & Chris Moore
Producer: Nomadic Wax and Sol Productions
2007, 66 min., Color, US/Senegal
"Democracy in Dakar" explores the transformative role of Hip-Hop in politics in Senegal, West Africa during the 2007 presidential election campaign. This documentary mixes interviews, freestyles, and ...

Diamonds in the Rough: A Ugandan Hip Hop Revolution
Brett Mazurek
2009, 53 min., US/Uganda
From the ashes of four decades of war, AIDS and corruption in Uganda, The Bataka Squad artists, Babaluku and Saba Saba, rise to forge a revolutionary path using music. They are on a mission to empower...

Diaspora Conversations: from Goree to Dogon
Manthia Diawara
2000, 47 min., Color, US
Actor Danny Glover and director Manthia Diawara travel through West Africa from Goree to Dogon, creating conversations that link different sides and accounts of the African diaspora. "Diaspora Convers...

Edouard Glissant: One World in Relation
Manthia Diawara
2010, 50 min., Color, US
In 2009, filmmaker Manthia Diawara, along with his camera, documented his conversations with Martinican philosopher, writer, and poet Édouard Glissant aboard the Queen Mary II on their transatlantic j...

From Mali to Michigan: A Musical Bridge
Louise Bourgault
Producer: Louise Bourgault & Robert Thomson
2006, 28 min., Color, US/Mali
A documentary about musical collaboration in the global age, From Mali to Michigan follows African World Music pop diva and griotte (traditional female bard) Naïny Diabaté during her 2005 visit to the...

I Love Hip Hop in Morocco
Joshua Asen & Jennifer Needleman
Producer: Rizz Productions, Inc.
2007, 80 min., Color, US/Morocco
This feature-length documentary follows the creation of Morocco's first-ever Hip-Hop festival, from inception all the way to the stage. Along the way we meet DJ Key, a self-taught turntable prodigy wh...

In My Genes
Lupita Nyong'o
2009, 78 min., Color, Kenya
What is it like to be 'white' in a 'black' society? IN MY GENES shares the lives of 8 people with albinism in Kenya. It reveals the uplifting life story of Agnes, a woman with albinism of few means wh...

Indochina: Traces of a Mother
Idrissou Mora-Kpai
2011, 72 min., Color, France/Benin
INDOCHINA: TRACES OF A MOTHER documents a little-known chapter in African, Asian and French colonial history and the personal story of Christophe, a Beninese-Vietnamese orphan that returns to Vietnam ...

Is It Sweet? Tales of an African Superstar in New York
Jesse W Shipley
Color, US
Reggie Rockstone is a celebrity rap musician in Accra, Ghana, where he inspired a young generation of musicians and continues to draw huge crowds. But when he comes to New York to play for the Ghanaia...

L’Esprit Prêt-à-Partager
Jamika Ajalon
2009, 28 min., Color, Germany/Senegal
Documents an art workshop held in Dakar, Senegal, in 2008, where artists from Africa and Europe explore issues surrounding fashion, sport and diasporic art and identities. The artists collaborate with...

Living the Hiplife
Jesse W Shipley
2007, 61 min., Color, US/Ghana
This film is a musical portrait of street life in urban West Africa. It follows the birth of Hiplife music in Accra, Ghana, a mix of various African musical forms and American hip hop. Archival footag...

Madina Boe
Jose Massip
1969, 40 min., BW, Cuba/Guinea-Bissau
Filmed in the liberated areas of Guinea Bissau during its war of independence from Portugal, Madina Boe follows the activities of the People's Army for the Independence of Guinea Bissau/Cape Verde. It...

Maison Tropicale
Manthia Diawara
2008, 58 min., Color, Republic of Congo/France
In 2008, filmmaker Manthia Diawara and artist Angela Ferreira travelled to Brazzaville, Republic of the Congo to “search through the debris left behind by those who took away the [Maison Tropicales]....

Masizakhe: Building Each Other
Angelica and Scott Macklin
Producer: Open Hand Reel
2008, 80 min., Color, South Africa/US
"Masizakhe, Building Each Other" explores the role of art, social activism and Hip-Hop in education and presents students, teachers, artists and principals working to support each other while re-estab...

Mr. Devious
John Fredericks
2006, 73 min., South Africa
MR. DEVIOUS is an exploration of the life and impact of South African Hip-Hop artist Mr. Devious on the youth and community of Cape Flats in Cape Town, South Africa. The film traces Mr. Devious' intro...

The Mseyas
Gustavo Vizoso
2007, 72 min., Color, Tanzania/Spain
AIDS kills more than two million people every year in Africa. As a result of this epidemic, there are more than 11 million orphans. This documentary is the story of the Mseyas, AIDS orphans from Iring...

Namibia: Independence Now!
Christine Choy & Pearl Bowser
Producer: Third World Newsreel
1985, 55 min., Color, US/Namibia
This moving film was shot inside refugee settlements in Zambia and Angola. It examines how exiled Namibians worked to free their country from illegal South African exploitation and prepare for their c...

Negritude: A Dialogue Between Wole Soyinka and Senghor
Manthia Diawara
2015, 59 min., Color, USA/France/Germany/Portugal
This imagined dialogue between Léopold Sédar Senghor, one of the founding fathers of Negritude, and Nobel laureate Wole Soyinka was reconstructed almost entirely from archival materials. It probes the...

Nelson Mandela: the Struggle is My Life
Lionel Ngakane
1985, 45 min., Color
"Your freedom and mine cannot be separated" are the words written by Nelson Mandela from his prison cell to the people of South Africa in 1985. Through interviews with leaders of the African National ...

An Opera of the World
Manthia Diawara
2018, 70 min., Color
Manthia Diawara’s film is based on the African opera Bintou Were, a Sahel Opera, which recounts an eternal migration drama. The Bintou Were opera, filmed on location in Bamako, in 2007, serves as a mi...

Ọya: Something Happened On The Way To West Africa!
Seyi Adebanjo
2015, 30 min., Color, US/Nigeria
In this documentary, Queer Gender-Non-Conforming Nigerian media artist Seyi Adebanjo tells a tale not often heard about gender and indigenous Yorùbá spirituality. ỌYA follows Seyi's journey to Nigeria...

Politics from a Black Woman's Insides
Yuko Edwards
1997, 26 min., Color, US
Follow one woman's search for the Hottentot Venus, the legendary link between ape and human and icon of black female subjectivity. Edwards's film explores the construction of race through both scienti...

Promised Land
Yoruba Richen
Producer: Yoruba Richen
2010, 57 min., Color, South Africa/US
Though apartheid ended in South Africa in 1994, economic injustices between blacks and whites remain unresolved. As revealed in Yoruba Richen’s incisive PROMISED LAND, the most potentially explosive i...

The River Where We Live
Sylvain L'Espérance
2006, 92 min., Canada/Mali
The Niger River in Mali crosses a vast plain in the heart of the Sahel. It is a vivid patchwork of canals, rivers, lakes, islands, seas, prairies and flood zones. Throughout this territory, human soci...

Rouch in Reverse
Manthia Diawara
1995, 52 min., US/UK
Malian filmmaker and scholar Manthia Diawara critiques visual anthropology through the work of Jean Rouch....

Sembene: the Making of African Cinema
Manthia Diawara & Ngugi Wa Thiong'o
1994, 60 min., Color, UK
This rich documentary follows the legendary Senagalese filmmaker Sembene Ousmane from the Pan African Film Festival in Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso back to the streets of Dakar and his Galle Ceddo home a...

Slave Routes: Resistance, Abolition and Creative Progress
Jayne Cortez
Producer: Manthia Diawara
2009, 100 min., Color, US
From the 1400s to the 1800s millions of Africans were forcefully removed from Africa and shipped across the Atlantic to the so-called "New World". In 1808, the passage of the Transantlantic Slave Trad...

Tunisian Women: We Will Stand Up
Hajer Ben Nasr
2013, 56 min., Color, Tunisia
On December 18, 2010 Tunisians of all ages took the streets of Tunis to demand better living conditions and the end of President Ben Ali's repressive dictatorship, starting what would become the 2011 ...

Twelve Disciples of Nelson Mandela
Thomas Allen Harris
Producer: Thomas Allen Harris
2005, 73 min., Color, US
In the wake of his stepfather’s death, Thomas Allen Harris embarks on a journey of reconciliation with the man who raised him as a son but whom he could never call "father." As part of the first wave ...

Viva Frelimo
Newsreel/Dutch Television
Producer: Newsreel/Dutch Television
1971, 45 min., Color, US
This film shows the development of the Frelimo party during Mozambique's struggle for independence from Portugal. Traveling throughout Northern Mozambique with several of the provincial leaders includ...

Who's Afraid of Ngugi?
Manthia Diawara
2006, 83 min., Color, US/Kenya
Novelist, essayist, playwright, journalist, editor, academic and social activist Ngugi wa Thiong'o was born in Kenya, in 1938 into a large peasant family. In 1977 his novel Petals of Blood was publish...

Women of the Sand
Ricardo Lobo
Producer: Chaim Litewski
2003, 52 min., Color
"Women of the Sand" is a documentary about nomad Islamic women in the Sahara desert. Filmed in Mauritania, it follows the day-to-day activities of women, documenting their work, family and community l...

Yari Yari Pamberi: Black Women Writers Dissecting Globalization
Jayne Cortez
2007, 75 min., Color, US
Globalization, now a buzzword in the West, has been a phenomenon that has shaped the culture and politics of Africa and its diaspora for centuries. YARI YARI PAMBERI brings together women from across ...


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