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Free Content The ‘Nigerianization’ of Ghanaian eyes

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The popularity of Nigerian video films, also known as Nollywood, is growing across Africa and beyond. Ghana is one such country that has witnessed the growing popularity of Nigerian films on its local scene. ‘Nigerianization of Ghanaian eyes’ refers to the increasing presence of Nollywood in Ghana in the everyday lives of Ghanaians. This Nigerianization is expressed through regular screenings on local television, peddling of video discs on the streets and in shops, and through cross-border activities of film producers and actors with exchange of acting and film-making styles. It is also expressed through discourses of fondness for, and phobia (and protectionism) against, Nollywood. Generally, the phenomenon is seen to affect local ‘equilibrium’ in one way or another. This article therefore proposes that the Nollywood ‘invasion’ of Ghana has brought about some local transformations evident in the social responses of Ghanaians generally and in aesthetic and economic effects on the movie industry in particular. The article traces ‘Nigerianization’ through selective post-screening focus group discussions, university students’ responses, survey of media reports, interviews with industry players and readings of selected literature and movies.

Keywords: African cinema; Ghallywood; Ghana; Kumawood; Nigeria; Nigerianization; Nollywood; video film

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: University of Ghana, Legon

Publication date: April 1, 2014

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  • The Journal of African Cinemas will explore the interactions of visual and verbal narratives in African film. It recognizes the shifting paradigms that have defined and continue to define African cinemas. Identity and perception are interrogated in relation to their positions within diverse African film languages. The editors are seeking papers that expound on the identity or identities of Africa and its peoples represented in film.
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