Activist filmmaking in Africa, with a Focus on Cameroonian Jean-Marie Teno

Hjort, Mette (2020) Activist filmmaking in Africa, with a Focus on Cameroonian Jean-Marie Teno. In: Contemporary Radical Film Culture - Networks, Organisations and Activists. Routledge, London, pp. 100-112. ISBN 1138543608, 9781351006385

Full content URL:

Activist Filmmaking
Text accepted for publication

Request a copy
[img] Microsoft Word
Activist Filmmaking.docx - Whole Document
Restricted to Repository staff only

Item Type:Book Section
Item Status:Live Archive


I approach the phenomenon of activist filmmaking on the African continent through a series of brief evocations in support of my central contention, which is that much of the filmmaking by African filmmakers can legitimately be described as activist, in some sense of the term. Indeed, it is my view that a pervasive commitment to effecting change through moving images makes filmmaking by African filmmakers a considerable resource and source of public value, not only in Africa, but globally. In addition to fueling creativity and giving shape to the works of specific filmmakers, activist commitments have had a decisive impact, in Africa, on film-related institution building (film schools and festivals) and transnational discourses and alliances. Whether or not the envisaged changes have been effectively implemented, filmmakers’ activist intentions, across the continent and throughout the post-colonial era, have produced something of great public value, namely, a conception of filmmaking that has the potential to offer much needed resistance to dominant models of film production that yield forgettable (or worse still, ideologically questionable) content at astronomical costs, all supported by production practices that are not only unsustainable but a factor in the perpetuation of a variety of types of injustice, including those related to race and gender.

Keywords:activist filmmaking, African cinema, Jean-Marie Teno, public value
Subjects:P Mass Communications and Documentation > P303 Film studies
Divisions:College of Arts > Lincoln School of Film & Media > Lincoln School of Film & Media (Film)
ID Code:49649
Deposited On:08 Jun 2022 11:19

Repository Staff Only: item control page