African Cinema

Discipline: African-American and African Studies
Instructor: Drame
Credits: 3
Day: B
Start: 1050
End: 1205
Field Work: Day 1 - Cape Town - Friday, 28 March | South Africa Download Syllabus

This course is a survey of African cinema since the 1950s. First, the course will examine the representations of Africa and Africans in Colonial films and the policies of colonial nations regarding cinema and filmmaking mainly in Francophone Africa. Second, the course will study the birth and evolution of celluloid filmmaking by Francophone Africans in the postcolonial era, the aesthetic forms and economic basis of filmmaking as well as the ideological and thematic structures of this cinema. Third, the course will examine the history and development of Nollywood (Anglophone video cinema, mainly Nigerian) into the first “film industry” in Africa in the last twenty years.

Field Work

Country: South Africa
Day: 1 - Cape Town - Friday, 28 March

In Cape Town, we will attend the screening of a new award-winning South African film “Felix” (locally produced and shot in Cape Town) at the Labia Cinema, Cape Town’s only Independent Cinema. We will then have a guided tour of Cape Town University TV studio. Students will study the concept of a TV studio through and African les; they are encouraged to take notes from direct observation and expert tour guide of the facility. Students will see the studio’s installations and technical equipment, and also learn about the socio-economic history of studios so as to become faimiliar with the role, use, and functions of TV studios. Students will attend a lecture on the “History of South African cinema”, followed by a discussion of the film “Felix.” A five-page report on the visit is required. The paper is expected to highlight what the student has learned about South African cinema during the visit. Academic Objectives: 1.      To study the concept of a TV studio particularly in the African context. 2.      Give students direct access to some modern tools of TV filmmaking

3.      Reflect on the potential role of TV studios in Africa.