Introductions and Discussions
Lizelle Bisschoff is the Festival Director of Africa in Motion and a PhD researcher at the University of Stirling, studying the role of women in African cinema.
As a filmmaker Peter has photographed, directed, and produced a range of documentary and fiction films in Africa, Latin America & the Middle East. He has worked extensively in Africa; as cinematographer for Babacar Samb and Samba Felix N'diaye in Senegal; Gaitée Fofana in Guinée; Djamel Sellani in Algeria and Madagascar. As a director he made a drama adapted from Nobel laureate Nadine Gordimer's book "Oral History", and more recently made documentaries on the World Bank in Uganda; "Our Friends at the Bank. And "the Origins of Aids" His films have won numerous awards among them the Canadian Gemini for "The Origins of Aids", and in France the silver FIPA for "Our Friends at the Bank" He is a member of the advisory board of MAISHA in Uganda, and has worked an advisor to Ramattan the Gaza-based News and documentary agency. Peter will host a discussion with Malawian filmmaker Villant Ndasowa after the screening of her film The Mystery Mountain on Tuesdau 30 Oct.
Acclaimed film critic, writer and producer Mark Cousins is a member of AiM's Board of Advisors and will introduce the screening The Sparrow on Sunday 28 Oct.
June Givanni has worked in film and broadcasting for many years. She worked at the British Film Institute for 8 years where she ran the African Caribbean Unit from the mid 1980s to the mid-1990s and launched the quarterly Black Film Bulletin. She set up and managed the ‘Screen Griots’ programme of 14 film-related projects in London in 1995, to complement the Africa ’95 nationwide African arts and culture festival. She is also the editor of the book Symbolic Narratives/African Cinema. More generally, June worked as a film and television programme consultant for over 20 years specialising in African and African diaspora film internationally, working with festivals and events, and writing about film and television. She programmed the Planet Africa section of the Toronto International Film Festival for 4 years, and has programmed African and African disapora cinema at festivals as far apart as Kerala in India and Images Caraibes in Martinique. June has worked with African film festivals and served on film juries at FESPACO, Zanzibar, in South Africa and others on the continent. June helped to organise the first meeting at FESPACO in 1991 that led to the setting up of the Panafricain Women Filmmakers Union UPAFI and organised the ‘Twende’ Women in African Cinema conference (within Africa At the Pictures), London, 1993. June continues her work as a curator of African and African diaspora cinema internationally and she is a UK patron of the Images of Black Women Film Festival in London. June will take part in the panel discussion on women's films after the screening of La Nouba on Sat 27 Oct.
Amadu Khan is a journalist, a performer-poet, a storyteller and currently doing a PhD in Social Policy at The University of Edinburgh. He graduated in Literature and Linguistics in the University of Sierra Leone, where he went on to serve as lecturer in the Department of Language Education. His teaching and research assignments were on African Oral Culture and Literature. His areas of research include the folklore and verbal art forms of Sierra Leone including collecting, transcribing and translating into English the indigenous oral art forms and cultures of the Themne and Mende ethnic groups of Sierra Leone. He has also researched various aspects of African prose fiction including storytelling and the cinematic technique in the African novel.
Amadu has co-directed for stage production the Chinua Achebe’s African novel, Things Fall Apart into a drama entitled Okonkwo. His academic work in oral art forms has been further enhanced by being a practising storyteller, who underwent apprenticeship under prominent oral performers in Sierra Leone for a period spanning over three decades. His forthcoming publication is on social aesthetics, artistic variability and the receptionalist theory in African oral performance. Amadu will take part in the discussion on African storytelling and film after the screening of Finye on Sun 4 Nov.
Kelone Khudu-Petersen is a storyteller, visual artist and lecturer in Art Education at the University of Botswana. Originally from the Kalahari region of Botswana, she is currently researching her PhD at the University of Edinburgh’s Department of Primary Education. She has a particular interest in 'intercultural education’, focusing specifically on the use of performing and visual arts to encourage collaboration between schools and rural communities. Kelone will take part in the discussion on African storytelling and film after the screening of Finye on Sun 4 Nov
Born in the UK and raised in the US, Andrew spent far too much time as an undergraduate and postgraduate in New York City watching films from Africa and around the world. After studying history and comparative literature at Columbia University, he wrote his PhD in comparative political economy at the City University Graduate Center, then taught African politics for several years at the University of Virginia. Currently at the University of Edinburgh's Centre of African Studies, Andrew convenes a proseminar in theoretical and conceptual underpinnings of African studies and teaches a course on African politics, literature and film in conjunction with the Africa in Motion film festival. Andrew is a member of AiM's Board of Advisors and will introduce various screening and take part in discussions after screenings.
Noèmie Mendelle, grew up in Paris and graduated in sociology from York University where she caught the film bug and became a founding member of Steel Bank Films, a Channel 4 film workshop. She is now living in Edinburgh and shares her time between running the Film & TV department at Edinburgh College of Art, Scottish Documentary Institute and producing international documentaries. Noe is a member of AiM's Board of Advisors. Noe will host discussions with directors Gabriel Mondlane and Richard Pakleppa after the screenings of their films on Friday 26 Oct, and will host a discussion with South African director Vincent Moloi after the screening of his film A Pair of Boots and a Bicycle on Sat 3 Nov.
David Murphy is one of the leading experts on African cinema working in Britain today, and a Senior Lecturer and Head of French in the School of Languages, Cultures and Religions at the University of Stirling. He has published widely on African, particularly Senegalese, culture and on the relationship between Francophone and Postcolonial Studies. He is working on a long-term research project on Senegalese culture and identity from 1848 to the present, for which he has received two major research awards. He has published a very well-received book in 2000 on the leading Senegalese filmmaker Ousmane Sembene, entitled Sembene: Imagining Alternatives in Film and Fiction, and is currently co-authoring a volume entitled African Cinema: Ten Directors. David is a member of AiM's Board of Advisors and will introduce various screenings and take part in discussions after screenings.
Paul Nugent is a Professor of Comparative African History as well as Director of the Centre of African Studies at the University of Edinburgh. His research has been based in West Africa: Ghana, Togo and more recently Senegal and Gambia. He is currently working on a comparison of divided border communities in those 4 countries and on Ghanaian electoral politics. He is the author of 3 books, most recently Africa Since Independence: A Comparative History. He is an elected member of the Council of the Royal African Society and a Fellow of the Royal Historical Society. Paul is a member of AiM's Board of Advisors and will introduce the screening of Heritage Africa on Monday 29 Oct.
Beti Ellerson teaches in the recently created African and African American Studies Program in the Department of Social Sciences at Winston-Salem State University in North Carolina, USA. Her work on the cinema of Africa and the African Diaspora has been included in many publications and she has spoken widely on African women in cinema.
She was producer/host of Reels of Colour, a 27-episode local television series focusing on independent filmmaking by people of colour; which featured filmmakers such as, Djibril Diop Mambety, Gaston Kabore, Gloria Rolando, Felix DeRooy, Cesar and Marie-Clemence Paes, and a focus on FESPACO 1997; the program aired in the Washington DC area from 1997 to 2000.
As a 1996/97 Rockefeller Humanities Fellow, Beti focused her research on the cultural politics of African women in the visual media, which has emerged into an ongoing project on African women in cinema. The results of the research evolved into the book, Sisters of the Screen: Women of Africa on Film, Video and Television (Africa World Press, 2000), the documentary, Sisters of the Screen: African Women in Cinema/Cinema d’Afrique au féminin—French version (2002), and the website: African Women in Cinema. She is currently working on a teaching-learning primer for African Women Cinema Studies.
Mbye Cham is Chairman and a Professor of Literature and Film in the Department of African Studies at Howard University, Washington, D.C. He attended the University of Dakar, Senegal and the University of Besancon in France before receiving his B.A. degree from Temple University in Philadelphia. He holds an M.A. degree from the State University of New York at Buffalo and a Ph.D. from the University of Wisconsin in Madison. In addition to numerous essays and chapters in books on African and Caribbean literature and film, he is the editor of EX-ILES: Essays on Caribbean Cinema (1992), and co-editor of Blackframes: Critical Perspectives on Black Independent Cinema (1988) and African Experiences of Cinema (1996). Dr. Cham is the recipient of numerous grants and awards to support his program of research and writing on oral traditions, film, literature and society in Africa and the Caribbean. He directed a Rockefeller Foundation funded project on Culture and Development in Africa from 1994 to 1997, housed in the Department of African Studies at Howard University, and most recently, a National Endowment for the Humanities grant to conduct an Institute on African Cinema in Dakar, Senegal in June-July 2005 for twenty five US college and university teachers.
Jacqueline Maingard is a Senior Lecturer and Head of Education in the Department of Drama: Theatre, Film and Television at the University of Bristol. She is author of South African National Cinema, forthcoming in the Routledge National Cinema series. She is developing an edited volume on The Cinema of Southern Africa for the Wallflower 24 Frames Series.
Saër Maty Bâ has a broad teaching experience in cinema (Francophone, French, Hollywood, and Black Documentary Aesthetics), postcolonial francophone literature, and French. He has been a course convenor and lecturer at Exeter University (1995-2007), and a visiting research fellow at the University of East London (2006-2007). Bâ was recently appointed Postdoctoral Research Development Officer at the N.I.E.C.I., University of Wales Bangor.
Bâ's research interests blur boundaries between Film, Media, Cultural and Black Diaspora Studies. He examines ‘intertexts’ (across cultures and national cinemas), theory and practice in film representation. His current and future (francophone) research projects include: Afro-diasporic ‘French’ Cinema, rap and postcolonial French popular culture, Senegalese filmmaker Djibril Diop-Mambety, and French Transnational TV.
Bâ was the co-director and co-organiser of the international conference ‘Re-presenting Diasporas in Cinema and New (Digital) Media’ (Exeter, 24-25 July 2007), funded by the British Academy and the Information Society Network (Stanford University and Exeter University).. Work towards publishing its (multimedia) proceedings is under way.
Astrid Treffry-Goatley was trained as an ethnomusicologist at the University of KwaZulu-Natal in South Africa. An integral part of her Master’s research was the production of a documentary film on indigenous Zulu music. In 2005, she moved to the UK to work at the British Library Sound Archive. Here she applied her knowledge of indigenous South African musical heritage to the documentation of The Rycroft Collection. In 2006, her involvement with film production was revived through her attendance of a number of training courses held by the Oxford Academy of Documentary Film and through her role as a production assistant at the New Media and Film Department at Oxford University Press. In 2007, she was awarded the Andrew W. Mellon Research Fellowship to do a PhD at the Centre for Film and Media Studies at the University of Cape Town. The subject of her PhD thesis is the representation of national identity in post-apartheid cinema.