Le discours cinématographique dans Afrique Je te plumerai de Téno et Guelwaar de Sembene : histoire, symbolisme, négritude et panafricanisme
Menneguin, Meghan Gail
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The reductive representations stemming from Western cinematic depiction of the African cultures have exacerbated the issue of Western hegemony over African countries. The first representations of Africa were of the exotic genre and failed to portray the socio-political history and culture of the indigenous people. Much of these depictions were due to years of Western colonialism, the dominant idea found in Jean-Marie Ténos film, Afrique je te plumerai. In this film, the Cameroonian filmmaker creates an avenue of viewing history through the lens of the colonized, breaking the chains of hegemony. Ténos use of revolutionary cinematic techniques forces the audience to understand Western colonization of Cameroon and of other African countries by dismantling our own preconceived ideas of that particular era in history. The ails of colonialism are portrayed in this film and these particular themes are found in the writings of the literary movement, la Négritude where we find definitions of colonialism, the effects of colonialism on the indigenous people and the root of the revolutionary spirit it engendered. Where there is colonialism, there is neocolonialism, or the continuing financial and cultural domination of a people. The subject of neocolonialism is portrayed in the second film studied in this research, Guelwaar by Ousmane Sembene. In this film, the Senegalese filmmaker brings to question the controversy of food aid in formerly-colonized countries in Senegal as well as around the world. This form of neocolonialism and other forms of foreign domination in economically-weakened countries are also invoked in the writings of the literary movement Panafricanism, which urges the cultural and economic independence of African countries. Ténos didactic message is obvious to the viewer and even shocking whereas the message of Sembene is ingeniously hidden behind a film so colorful and mesmerizing, it appeases to any audience.
- Masters Theses