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Alternative African cinemas: a case study of Rwanda

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There are various prescriptive and limiting discourses about what African Cinema is or should be. Because of the vastness of the continent and the heterogeneity of the people inhabiting it (as well as those interested in its culture and history), most of these theories and assertions provide little more than general statements and often omit the importance of national and regional particularity. This article examines the emerging film industry in Rwanda as well as the potential challenge it can pose to certain paradigms within discourses surrounding African Cinema. It also looks at different funding and distribution models, including international, collaborative and independent film projects currently underway in Rwanda. Analyses of two films Patrick Mureithi's Icyizere:Hope and Debs Gardner-Paterson's We Are All Rwandans are provided to support the article's argument.
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Keywords: African cinema; Hillywood; Icyizere:Hope; Rwanda; We Are All Rwandans; documentary film-making; genocide; short film

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Department of French, University of Cambridge.

Publication date: 2010-04-01

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  • The Journal of African Media Studies (JAMS) is an interdisciplinary journal that provides a forum for debate on the historical and contemporary aspects of media and communication in Africa.
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