By Lindiwe Dovey
Analyzing more than a few South African and West African motion pictures encouraged via African and non-African literature, Lindiwe Dovey identifies a particular pattern in modern African filmmaking-one during which filmmakers are utilizing the embodied audiovisual medium of movie to provide a critique of actual and mental violence. opposed to a close historical past of the medium's savage creation and exploitation via colonial powers in very varied African contexts, Dovey examines the complicated ways that African filmmakers are holding, mediating, and critiquing their very own cultures whereas looking a united imaginative and prescient of the longer term. greater than in basic terms representing socio-cultural realities in Africa, those movies have interaction with problems with colonialism and postcolonialism, "updating" either the historical past and the literature they adapt to deal with modern audiences in Africa and somewhere else. via this planned and radical re-historicization of texts and realities, Dovey argues that African filmmakers have constructed a mode of filmmaking that's altogether precise from eu and American types of adaptation.
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Extra info for African Film and Literature: Adapting Violence to the Screen
In particular, given the beleaguered state of the entire globe in terms of “terrorism” of all kinds, state-sanctioned violence, wars, and violence against women and children, it would appear to be vital for African filmmakers not to renounce the position they have taken up in critiquing violence. Ogunleye refers to “criticisms about the amount of blood, debauchery and violence (both physical and spiritual), witnessed on African video screens” (2003:x). While one would not want to prescribe to African filmmakers what kinds of films they and audiences should make and watch, it is vital that an intellectual community explores and debates the iconographies and impact of African films.
The “savagery imputed to the savage” in the earliest films made and shown in Africa is evident at every turn. It is of great interest, given the violence of colonization justified through the assumed violence of the colonized, that many of the first films made by Africans were fundamentally opposed to retaliatory violence. While, as Mbye Cham has noted, African cinema is no doubt a “child of political independence” (1996:1), its birth as a political cinema in a critical rather than revolutionary sense has not been adequately addressed.
Analyzing adaptation in Africa largely from a poststructuralist perspective, he rejects film adaptation approaches focused on fidelity and medium specificity in favor of a notion of réécriture or a poetics of repetition. . not the subjugation of a medium or a text, but that of the various creative, poetic and ideological processes implied in the repetition that brings change to any rewriting’” (2001:3). Tcheuyap’s definition of repetition is one that incorporates difference and that clearly does not locate itself within discourses, initiated by Benjamin and pursued by Baudrillard, around modernity’s modes of automatic, repetitive production.
African Film and Literature: Adapting Violence to the Screen by Lindiwe Dovey