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Book Reviews: Targeting the world: Africa shoots back with new perspectives on film: Joseph Gugler, African Film: Re-Imagining a Continent, Oxford, James Currey; Cape Town, David Phillip; Bloomington, Indiana University Press, 2003. pp. 202. Illustrations. ISBN 0-85255-561-X (Currey p/b). Melissa Thackway, Africa Shoots Back: Alternative Perspectives in Sub- Saharan Francophone African Film, Oxford, James Currey; Cape Town, David Phillip; Bloomington, Indiana University Press, 2003. pp. 239.

Mhando, M. (2004) Book Reviews: Targeting the world: Africa shoots back with new perspectives on film: Joseph Gugler, African Film: Re-Imagining a Continent, Oxford, James Currey; Cape Town, David Phillip; Bloomington, Indiana University Press, 2003. pp. 202. Illustrations. ISBN 0-85255-561-X (Currey p/b). Melissa Thackway, Africa Shoots Back: Alternative Perspectives in Sub- Saharan Francophone African Film, Oxford, James Currey; Cape Town, David Phillip; Bloomington, Indiana University Press, 2003. pp. 239. Australasian Review of African Studies, 26 (1). pp. 77-84.

Abstract

These two new books on African cinema from the three publishers James Currey, David Phillip and Indianna University Press need to be read in tandem to be better appreciated. The two titles compliment each other in many ways and are both most welcome additions to the slowly increasing resources that support the study and understanding of films from Africa as well as African cinema in general. I make this distinction because Joseph Gugler does not shy away from confronting the breadth and width of the description and expression of the African environment through film by limiting himself only to texts that have been authored by Africans. Instead he conjoins texts that ‘image’ and re-imagine the African personality and environment despite their authorial origin. At the same time Thackway posits the Francophone region of Africa as a cinema by itself vis à vis the conventional homogeneous African cinema approach. These are two compelling aspects because the African personality needs to be contextualized in order for one to understand how to read the African film. Gugler and Thackway support the work of earlier critics including Diawara, Ukadike, Barlet, Givanni, the Pfaffs and many others who have paved the way to understanding the oftentimes difficult film.

Publication Type: Journal Article
Murdoch Affiliation: School of Media, Communication and Culture
Publisher: African Studies Association of Australasia and the Pacific (AFSAAP)
Publishers Website: http://www.afsaap.org.au/ARAS/Vol_XXVI-1.htm
URI: http://researchrepository.murdoch.edu.au/id/eprint/11255
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