By Lindiwe Dovey
Analyzing a number of South African and West African motion pictures encouraged through African and non-African literature, Lindiwe Dovey identifies a particular development in modern African filmmaking-one within which filmmakers are utilizing the embodied audiovisual medium of movie to supply a critique of actual and mental violence. opposed to a close background 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 simply representing socio-cultural realities in Africa, those motion pictures have interaction with problems with colonialism and postcolonialism, "updating" either the heritage and the literature they adapt to deal with modern audiences in Africa and in different places. 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 specified from ecu and American different types of adaptation.
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Additional resources for African Film and Literature: Adapting Violence to the Screen
Bhabha counteracts this statement by saying that this fixed concept is actually not as fixed as it initially seems to be. To Bhabha this fixed concept emerges out of a long history and tradition of “civil” discourse, in which a stereotype of the black African is anxiously repeated. The repetition of this fixed concept or stereotype becomes a form of mimicry that represents an ambivalence, a shifting in the Western psyche between fear and desire of the black colonial subject. . . as if the essential duplicity of the Asiatic or the bestial sexual license of the African that needs no proof, can never really, in discourse, be proved” (1994:94–95).
Drawing attention to the prominence of fidelity as a topic of debate within adaptation studies, Erica Sheen has argued that, “The way adaptations [that are perceived to be “unfaithful”] produce not just animosity, but incoherent animosity, suggests that what is at stake is institutional definitions and identities rather than textual forms and contents” (2000:3). In a theoretical context in which “institutional definitions” are at stake, there would seem to be little place for African film adaptations that employ radical infidelity not as a sign of splendid auteurism (in the manner of the Nouvelle Vague adaptations [Horton and Magretta 1981]), but as part of a sociopolitical project.
This sense of a dialectic is expressed in the two frequently cited assertions from The Dialectic of Enlightenment: “myth is already enlightenment; and enlightenment reverts to mythology” (Horkheimer and Adorno 1973:xvi). This statement seeks to acknowledge that magic and myth are already forms of cognition, of knowledge. The second thesis, that enlightenment reverts to myth, is explained by the way in which a totalizing rationality, such as that experienced in late modernity (according to Adorno), produces a complete reification of the world and assumes that it is the sole means to the truth, and thus inevitably becomes a myth (and incapable of offering critique) in that it fails to recognize its own contingency.