History | African History and Film
J300 | 23331 | Moorman

A portion of this class reserved for majors
Above class COLL intensive writing section
Above class open to undergraduates only

The art of film and the practice of colonialism were born at the
same time.  This course studies the ways in which film has
represented African history and been implicated in it.  On the one
hand, Hollywood films have played a large role in representing and,
some would argue, misrepresenting Africa and African history.  On
the other, film was used both to promote the colonial project and to
undermine it and film production was important in newly independent
countries across the continent from the 1960s onward.  Filmmakers
from the African diaspora have been particularly important in this
process as well.  This course will study African history in the 19th
and 20th centuries and films produced in and on that history.  What
has been the relationship between film and colonization?  Film and
decolonization?  What happens to history when it is represented on
film?  And to what extent are our imaginations about Africa and
African history shaped by the images we have seen?

This is a writing intensive course in which students will be
required to do weekly writing assignments, revisions, peer reviews
and a final paper of 10-12 pages.  It requires no prior knowledge of
African history.