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Guide to African cinema /
Sharon A. Russell.
imprint
Westport, Conn. : Greenwood Press, 1998.
description
xv, 183 p. ; 25 cm.
ISBN
0313296219 (acid-free paper)
format(s)
Book
Holdings
More Details
imprint
Westport, Conn. : Greenwood Press, 1998.
isbn
0313296219 (acid-free paper)
catalogue key
1855613
 
Includes bibliographical references (p. [177]-180) and index.
A Look Inside
Full Text Reviews
Appeared in Choice on 1998-09-01:
This useful dictionary of films and filmmakers covers, as only one other book does (Lizbeth Malkmus and Roy Armes's Arab and African Film Making, CH, May'92), both North African and sub-Saharan Africa. Under the letter A, for example, Russell includes Egyptian film director Abou Seif (with filmography), Afrique (Cameroon), Allah Tanton (Guinea), Angano Angano (Madagascar), and Ansah (a director of Ghanaian films). Under E are films from Zimbabwe and Senegal; under S, four films and one filmmaker; under W, a Burkina film and a South African film. B contains a Nigerian director, an Algerian director, and The Battle of Algiers. So it goes for 150 pages: not at all overwhelming. After each two- or three-page essay, Russell (Indiana State Univ.) provides a filmography or bibliography: often an article in a film journal, more frequently two or three books (usually Diawara's African Cinema, CH, Jul'92, and Ukadike's Black African Cinema, CH, Jan'95). But Russell censors her entries. In a five-page preface and a 13-page introduction explaining special issues of African films (colonialism, racism, Third World poverty, spirituality, the oral tradition), she reveals her distaste for some films--nudity in Reassemblage, European perspective in Chocolat, racial stereotypes in The Gods Must Be Crazy. These she excludes from the body of the text. Russell's book helpfully guides one through those African movies she finds morally and politically proper, but users need to be made aware of its shortcomings. P. H. Stacy emeritus, University of Hartford
Reviews
Review Quotes
'œGuide to African Cinema is useful, especially for the general public, and is jargon-free. Russell should be commended for her interest in explicating the relationship of films to their political milieu and for attending at times to their cinematic aspects. Her book is superior in scope and information.'' Research in African Literature
"Guide to African Cinema is useful, especially for the general public, and is jargon-free. Russell should be commended for her interest in explicating the relationship of films to their political milieu and for attending at times to their cinematic aspects. Her book is superior in scope and information."- Research in African Literature
'œOverlooked and all but unknown in North America, African cinema, especially in the continent's post-colonial era, has been a channel both for reclaiming cultures suppressed by European domination and for exploring the problems and opportunities independence has posed....Covering the entire continent, Russell describes and analyzes significant films and the careers of major filmmakers....[He] helps the uninformed along by providing long, informative entries....Russell's guide begins to fill a gap in cinema collections.'' "Rettig on Reference" Gale Research, http://www.gale.com
"Overlooked and all but unknown in North America, African cinema, especially in the continent's post-colonial era, has been a channel both for reclaiming cultures suppressed by European domination and for exploring the problems and opportunities independence has posed....Covering the entire continent, Russell describes and analyzes significant films and the careers of major filmmakers....[He] helps the uninformed along by providing long, informative entries....Russell's guide begins to fill a gap in cinema collections."- "Rettig on Reference" Gale Research, http://www.gale.com
'œRussell has compiled a list of film distributors and an unusually extensive bibliography. Her volume is an important addition to world cinema students.'' American Reference Books Annual
"Russell has compiled a list of film distributors and an unusually extensive bibliography. Her volume is an important addition to world cinema students."- American Reference Books Annual
'œThe work's informative essays on 40 individual films...make a unique and important contribution to the literature on African cinema.'' Booklist/Reference Books Bulletin
"The work's informative essays on 40 individual films...make a unique and important contribution to the literature on African cinema."- Booklist/Reference Books Bulletin
This item was reviewed in:
Booklist, June 1998
Choice, September 1998
To find out how to look for other reviews, please see our guides to finding book reviews in the Sciences or Social Sciences and Humanities.
Summaries
Long Description
Intended as a guide to the filmmakers and films of the African cinema, this reference book also provides the framework for understanding the history and development of African film with respect to its situation in world cinema. The goals and achievements of African film are studied with respect to the forces that impact it, such as colonialism and racism. The importance of the creative efforts of African filmmakers and the diversity of their approaches to cinema are explored. Examined as well are the views of Africa presented by European colonial filmmakers, views often contested in contemporary African film. The listings include critical analysis, bio-bibliography, and filmographies. Both Saharan and sub-Saharan films are included. As an important reference to African film, the information outlined is valuable due to the current lack of researched data on African cinema, in part as a result of postcolonial attitudes on production and distribution. The book concentrates on films and directors who work toward defining a unique, African perspective without compromising thematic concerns due to commercial considerations. The research detailed in this text should encourage a wider appreciation of the film work being done in Africa, especially to those without the benefit of access to specialized libraries and collections.
Unpaid Annotation
An A-Z listing of directors, films, actors, and actresses in African cinema, including French and English films.
Table of Contents
Preface
Introduction
Guide to African Film Distributors
Bibliography
Index
Table of Contents provided by Publisher. All Rights Reserved.

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