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Medium 9780253009234

3. The Nollywood Diaspora: A Nigerian Video Genre

Matthias Krings Indiana University Press ePub

JONATHAN HAYNES

THE PRODIGIOUS SPREAD OF NOLLYWOOD FILMS AROUND THE world has been accompanied by the spread of Nollywood filmmaking around the world, as Nigerian actors and directors have traveled abroad to make movies and Nigerian expatriate communities have sought to participate in this most powerful of Nigerian cultural forms. This essay analyzes a number of Nollywood films set partly or entirely overseas. One of my themes is how Nollywood imagines the foreign; mostly, my project is to define the films set abroad as a genre, with a typical story arc, moral and psychological themes, and formal features. It is a distinctly Nollywood genre, directly derived from some of the most fundamental conceptions in Nigerian filmmaking. The distinctiveness is not, however, a matter of melodramatic excess in story or style, or of the prevalence of occult elements – two elements many observers of Nigerian and Ghanaian video films have taken to be defining of this film culture, myself included. I was arguing along those lines in an earlier study of the theme of Africans abroad, contrasting the way the theme has been handled in celluloid African filmmaking with its treatment in the emerging popular video tradition (“Africans Abroad”). The more recent films surveyed here are substantially different on both scores, being generally much more restrained in style and seldom making reference to the supernatural.1

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Medium 9780253353801

1 The Really Big Sleep: Jeffrey Lebowski as the Second Coming of Rip Van Winkle

Edward P Comentale Indiana University Press ePub

Fred Ashe

At the conclusion of the Coen brothers’ 1998 film The Big Lebowski, the tale’s frame narrator, the Stranger, asserts, “It’s good knowin’ he’s out there, the Dude, takin’ her easy for all us sinners.” Most manifestly, Jeffrey “the Dude” Lebowski fits into the Jewish folk tradition of the schlemiel—the bumbling, charismatic character to whom things happen.1 Like the classical fool, the schlemiel’s “antirational bias,” as Ruth R. Wisse has written, “inverts the rational model underlying so much of English humor, substituting for it a messianic or idealist model instead” (51). The Dude’s bias is directed foremost against effort. Things happen to him because he is not the sort to make things happen, his priority being instead the stylish avoidance of societal expectations—employment, marriage, even hygiene—that might interfere with “takin’ her easy.” By placing this avoidance in the service of “all us sinners,” the Stranger explicitly figures the Dude as messianic. The Dude stands in for viewers who, on some level, would likewise like to forego responsibilities; he redeems our often-soulless bourgeois striving with his compelling, carefree sloth.

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Medium 9780253352521

7 Anecdotes and the Literary Character

Ray Cashman Indiana University Press ePub

If Aghyaran anecdotes are uniquely suited for contemplating the characters of those people depicted in them, then we need to know more about the issue of character. Of course, the term “character” has several meanings. “Character” may have an evaluative connotation when defined as a person’s relative moral excellence. “Character” may also have the more neutral connotation of an individual’s disposition or essential nature. In this chapter, I am concerned with “character” in the sense of an individual portrayed in narrative. In local character anecdotes these portrayals are established through various strategies for displaying psychological and ethical traits. These traits distinguish one character from another, perhaps assigning a character to a recognizable type and allowing that character to embody a given ideological stance. Put another way, my task in this chapter is to discuss character in literary terms. At issue here is what narrative strategies are employed in local character anecdotes in Aghyaran to depict personality.

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Medium 9780253016966

1934

Colin Crisp Indiana University Press ePub

(Street without a Name)

France, 1934, 82 min (now 78 min), b&w

Dir Pierre Chenal; Asst dir Roger Blin and Louis Daquin; Prod Les Productions Pellegrin; Scr Chenal, Blin, and Marcel Aymé, from the novel by Aymé; Cinematog Joseph-Louis Mundwiller; Music Paul Devred; Art dir Roland Quignon; Sound Jacques Hawadier and A. Puff; Edit Chenal; Act Constant Rémy (Méhoul), Gabriel Gabrio (Finocle), Paul Azaïs (Manu), Enrico Glori (Cruséo), Pola Illéry (Noâ), Dagmar Gérard (La Jimbre), Fréhel (Madame Méhoul), Paule Andral (Louise Johannieu), Robert Le Vigan (Vanoël), Marcel Delaitre (Johannieu), and Pierre Larquey.

This is a typical instance of “the street film,” a subgenre inherited from the German cinema of the 1920s (e.g., Karl Grune, The Street, 1923; Georg-Wilhelm Pabst, The Joyless Street, 1925; Bruno Rahn, Tragedy of the Street, 1927).25 It was to flourish in 1930s France, and the titles of surviving films are indicative of the genre’s focus on harsh street life in the poorer quarters of Paris: Faubourg Montmartre (1931); Dans les rues/On the Street (1933); La Rue sans nom (1933); Jeunesse/Youth (1934); Ménilmontant (1936); La Rue sans joie/The Joyless Street (1938); and L’Enfer des anges/A Hell for Little Angels (1939). Typically this genre exploited the standard melodramatic conventions of such films as Les Misérables and Les Deux Orphelines but combined them with a raw realism often labeled “naturalism.” The teeming, seething squalor of “the street” rendered all too credible the inevitable corruption of innocent youth that was often a central theme, and aimed to evoke not pity for the vulnerable poor, as in melodramas, but rather a sort of fascinated horror.

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Medium 9780253355560

2: Why are Ethical Issues Central to Documentary Filmmaking?

Bill Nichols Indiana University Press ePub

2    Why Are Ethical Issues Central to Documentary Filmmaking?

HOW DOCUMENTARIES REPRESENT THE WORLD

The bond between documentary and the historical world is deep and profound. Documentary adds a new dimension to popular memory and social history. Documentary engages with the world by representing it. It does so in three ways.

First, documentaries offer us a likeness or depiction of the world that bears a recognizable familiarity. Through the capacity of audio and visual recording devices to record situations and events with great fidelity, we see in documentaries people, places, and things that we might also see for ourselves, outside the cinema. This quality alone often provides a basis for belief: we see what was there before the camera; it must be real (it really existed or happened). This remarkable power of the photographic image cannot be underestimated, even though it is subject to qualification because

• An image cannot tell everything we want to know about what happened

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Medium 9780253021359

Introduction: Oscar Micheaux and Race Movies of the Silent Period

Charles Musser Indiana University Press ePub

This catalog accompanies a seven-part program of American race films, which is premiering at the Giornate del Cinema Muto and will then be distributed by the Museum of Modern Art (New York) in a 35mm film format. The resulting Oscar Micheaux and His Circle package embraces virtually all of the surviving feature-length race films from the silent period as well as a selection of related shorts. These pictures were made between the end of World War I and 1930. Of the seven features, three were made by African-American filmmaker Oscar Micheaux (based in Chicago; Roanoke, Virginia; and then New York), two by the Colored Players Film Corporation located in Philadelphia, one by the Detroit-based Richard Maurice, and one by Richard Norman’s film company in Arlington, Florida. The shorter films were made for a wide variety of purposes: some are 35mm shorts that might be shown before a feature. Others were shot in 16mm: for the church circuit by James and Eloyce Gist and for ethnographic purposes by Zora Neale Hurston. Oscar Micheaux, recognized in his time as the foremost African-American filmmaker of this period, emerges as the central figure of this book. Enough films by his contemporaries survive for us to gain a context for his work. While these other films are certainly of considerable importance in their own right, it is Micheaux who emerges as a major figure of the New Negro Renaissance that flourished in the wake of World War I. In truth, Micheaux also emerges as one of America’s great directors, someone of absolutely world-class stature whose work is dense, rich, and complex. His films demand and reward repeated viewing and extensive critical engagement.

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Medium 9780861966738

Disney films analysed in this study, with plot summaries335

Davis, Amy M. John Libbey Publishing ePub

 

Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (1937)

An evil queen asks the slave in her magic mirror ‘who is the fairest one of all?’ to which the slave replies that Snow White is. Made jealous by the subsequent sight of Snow White being wooed by the prince, she orders her huntsman to take Snow White into the woods and kill her. The huntsman, overcome by Snow White’s goodness, tells her of the Queen’s rage, bidding her to flee. Later, Snow White is led by the animals to the seven dwarfs’ cottage. Snow White and the animals clean the house, hoping to persuade the dwarfs to let her stay. Snow White becomes tired and goes upstairs to sleep. The dwarfs return home, and a comic scene ensues as the dwarfs notice that everything is clean and assume ‘there’s dirty work afoot’ and in which we learn each of the dwarfs’ personalities. They then find Snow White, asleep, laying across several of their beds. Upon awakening, she tells them of the Queen’s jealousy, asking if she can live with them. They agree. Leaving for work the next morning, they warn Snow White to be on guard. The Queen, meanwhile, has used her black magic to disguise herself and has learned Snow White’s whereabouts. The Queen goes to the Seven Dwarfs’ cottage, bringing Snow White a poisoned apple. Snow White takes a bite and falls unconscious. Meanwhile, the dwarfs, alerted by the animals that the Queen is with Snow White, hurry to the cottage to protect her, but succeed only in chasing the Queen to her death. We are then told (by means of an inter-title) that because she was so beautiful the dwarfs did not bury Snow White (whom they think is dead). The prince, having searched for Snow White all along, arrives and sees the dwarfs and the animals praying around Snow White’s coffin. He lifts the cover, kisses her, and kneels down. Snow White awakens. After bidding good-bye to the dwarfs, she and the prince head into the sunset to live happily ever after.

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Medium 9780253018441

Cinematic Principles and Practice at Work in Nothing But a Man: A Conversation with Robert Young

David C Wall Indiana University Press ePub

Michael T. Martin and David Wall

MICHAEL T. MARTIN (MTM): Let’s begin, Mr. Young, with Nothing But a Man’s release in 1964 followed by its rerelease thirty years later in 1993. How was it received by critics and by audiences in 1964?

ROBERT YOUNG (RY): It was very well received in 1964, but the exhibition was very limited. All of the major press reviewed it. It got marvelous reviews and was on most of the “Best Ten” lists. I have a whole book of them. To me, it’s wasteful to read, but there was a lot of praise for the film because there hadn’t been a film quite like it. However, it opened at the Sutton Theater, and the distributor wouldn’t allow us to put photos of the cast in the ads. We wanted to put in pictures of Ivan [Dixon] and Abbey [Lincoln]. They wanted to use the Greek dramatis personae, the masks. And they wanted Nothing But a Man to be seen as an art film, which was to ghettoize it.

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Medium 9780253010407

4 The Backroom

Kathy Sloane Indiana University Press ePub

Two young cute black women . . .
you can go backstage at any jazz
concert you want.

devorah major

Eddie Marshall

The backroom. A glorious room. That couch was one of the most comfortable couches in any room, I’ll tell you. And if they wanted DNA evidence about anything, they could probably get it right on that couch. [Laughs] It’s funny, I look at that couch and I can see Flora [Purim]’s little girl sleeping on there, my kids sleeping on that couch in the back, and yeah, little Ayisha. Oh man. You could call it a family-oriented place – [Laughing] – even with all the carrying on.

Most backrooms were small rooms. Like the Five Spot. I don’t know – did the Five Spot even have one? Birdland had a pretty nice one, but it was still small.

I really love Yoshi’s. I find it a very musician-friendly place. You know, they have a backroom and everything, but it could be anywhere. Either you can’t get back there, or when you get back there, it’s really small, very cold. They don’t have people’s autographs on the wall.

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Medium 9780253329059

Eight Bambi

Elizabeth Bell Indiana University Press ePub

David Payne

Technoscience and science fiction collapse into the sun of their radiant (ir)reality—war. (Haraway 1991, 185)

My father is a wise and gentle man. He was never drunk, loud, violent, abusive, competitive, aggressive, unfaithful, or impatient. He never, in my presence or to my knowledge, made a fool of himself trying to prove that he was a man.

Until he was drafted into the army just after World War II, my father had never left the panhandle of western Oklahoma where he was born to a displaced Missouri farmer and Nora Jones, child of a half-Cherokee father. My father had avoided going to war through a farm deferment, graciously awarded even during war years to the last remaining son on a farm. In the army, he typed paychecks for his committed time, and then returned to the clay-red bluffs and coarse panhandle grasslands to become what every man raised there became: a farmer. After the birth of his second son, me, he decided what countless others in 1952 decided, and moved his young family to the city where he was to do factory work for most of the next thirty years. In Wichita, Kansas, he built and repaired the large bombers for Boeing Aircraft. He sired two more sons, but no daughters.

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Medium 9780253356772

Appendix 4. Giant Rat

Harri Englund Indiana University Press ePub

A story broadcast on Nkhani Zam’maboma on July 15, 2003, followed by translation.

Chikhoswe chachikulu champhongo chimene chinali ndi mphinjiri zitatu m’khosi mwake akuti chafa chitalephera kulowa m’mpanda kwa sing’anga ŵina [location omitted]. Sing’anga akuti anachoka kunyumba kwakeko chama half past five m’maŵa kukakumba mankhwala kuphiri. Ali kumeneko chikhoswecho chinafuna kuti chiloŵe kunyumba kwakeko, koma chinangoyamba kujenjemera mpaka khangati chakomoka. Pamene sing’anga anafika kunyumba anapeza anthu atadzadza kukaona chikhoswecho. Iye sanalankhule ndi munthu koma anangoloŵa m’nyumba kukasiya mankhwala amene anakumbawo ndipo kutuluka ndi mankhwala ophera amene anaŵaza chikhoswecho mpaka kutsirizika. Ataitanitsa nyakwaŵa ya m’mudzimo sing’anga akuti anang’amba chikhoswecho ndipo mkati mwake anapeza masingano, flexafoam, tsitsi la mwana ndi la mzungu kudzanso nsanza. Sing’anga anatentha zinthu zonsezo atasakaniza mankhwala ndipo analonjeza kuti munthu amene anatuma chikhoswecho aona. Pasanathe masiku mkulu ŵina ndi mkazi wake akuti anapita kwa sing’angayo kukamupempha aŵachotse ufiti popeza kuti anamva kuti anapha chikhoswe kunyumba kwakeko. Sing’anga analamula anthuwo kuti amene akudwala kuti alipire mbuzi imodzi kapena nkhuku zisanu.

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Medium 9780253008794

4 Bisexuality on the Boob Tube

Maria San Filippo Indiana University Press ePub

Alice (Leisha Hailey): I’m looking for the same qualities in a man as I am in a woman.

Dana (Erin Daniels): Big tits!

THE L WORD (“Pilot,” 1/18/2004)

 

As the flippancy of this chapter’s naming and epigraph suggest, the vast majority of representations of bisexuality in television involve femme women, with the bi-suggestive character or narrative inevitably reconsigned to monosexual logic – if not immediately (as with Dana’s retort above) then soon thereafter. As a number of lucid if lesbian-centric readings have pointed out, televisual representations of non-monosexuality historically have featured sensationalized forays into “lady love” sparked by the short-term appearance of an alluring temptress timed to coincide with network sweeps periods or as a last-ditch effort to revive flagging ratings. These “very special episodes” (as networks are known to bill them) feature visits by characters established to be “real” lesbians, thus serving, as Sasha Torres argues about their frequency in the single-woman sitcom, to “ease the ideological threat of such ‘feminist’ programs by localizing the homosexuality which might otherwise pervade these homosocial spaces.”1 But rather than fully resurveying that history here, I wish to consider the rich (though rarely realized) potential of serial television’s extended narrative format to create spaces for representing sexual fluidity, and to consider what’s happening lately – by asking how and to what degree representations of alternative sexualities escape the constraints of bisexual disavowal and compulsory monosexuality in contemporary English-language serial television.

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Medium 9780861966820

Madrid – “We Read Hemingway and Lived Hemingway”

Beardmore, Marie John Libbey Publishing ePub

 

John took up his Madrid post for Rank in autumn, 1952, age 25. He calls it “the most fun time of my life” which culminated in his marriage to the lovely Bettina.

On arrival in Madrid, John rented the previous manager’s apartment in the Gaylord Hotel, mentioned in Hemingway’s For Whom The Bell Tolls. It was quite a centre during the ’60s and John had a nice place near The Ritz and The Prado. Two elderly ladies, American expats, befriended him and spoilt him with presents, and enjoyed the occasional glass of sherry on his spacious terrace. Hotel life didn’t really suit John, even if there was an excellent restaurant in situ, probably less of a bonus in Madrid where every corner revealed some new culinary temptation. He took an apartment off the Plaza Principeza, somewhere quite central but very different to where he had been living; the plus was a car parking space in the basement and a daily breakfast, sent up to his flat. Madrid was a vibrant intoxicating place. Life didn’t come much better for a young man and John made the most of it; not yet tethered by the responsibility of marriage and family, he did what any other red-blooded male would do and partied. Rank paid a monthly salary of £100.00, drawn in pesetas from the bank. As saving at that age wasn’t on, he would blow whatever was left over each time on a party, just so he could go back and get the next lot of pesetas. “I got quite popular, not surprisingly.”

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Medium 9780861967223

Chapter 8 Concluding discussion: Archive as biography of the nation?

Emma Jean Kelly John Libbey Publishing ePub

Dennis’ works (listed as an appendix) contributed to the growing archive of New Zealand and South Pacific culture, and demonstrate how he was never the sole author of these works; he was seeking to frame, curate and be the catalyst for the presentation of the artistic productions of others. Dennis understood that the work he did was collaborative – because he did not have all the information or skills required nor the doxa or habitus, he sought to encourage the work of others and engage with them to create presentations in various fora. Dennis shaped materials for various ends, and sought to incorporate a critique of the society within which he lived and worked.

Although Dennis never described it in these terms, an archive is simultaneously a tangible institution in which materials are stored and an intangible concept, an ideology and a platform. Michel Foucault had many years before exposed the archive’s connection to power (Amad, 2010 p.19) and yet he did not support the view that power itself was only repressive (Foucault, 1976/2008). Dennis understood the connection between the archive and power. Those who were able to control the representation of history controlled contemporary understandings of the nation. He worked with others to address the power imbalances he recognised had occurred through the marginalisation of particular voices and perspectives. When he felt his position was no longer tenable, he stepped down as Director of the NZFA and continued his work without the economic capital of the Director’s position to support him.

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Medium 9780253010407

17 The End of Keystone

Kathy Sloane Indiana University Press ePub

A gauntlet has been thrown down
for generations as a way that the
music can be presented.

Todd Barkan

Todd Barkan

Well, it always had financial problems. Keystone closed because of financial problems, but also because I didn’t know where to turn in terms of financing it. Yeah, it closed because of financial problems, but as much as anything it closed because of myself: I think I ran out of steam of knowing how to keep it open. My creative adrenaline had run out.

Eddie Marshall

It lasted so long and Todd was so dedicated. You know, a lot of people would’ve folded that club in two years. I really have a hard time when I hear people try to suggest criminal activity, that his integrity was questionable. I say, “What are you talking about?” I don’t hear many musicians talking like that. I don’t hear that so much any more, but I certainly heard it – mostly about cocaine. I don’t know if they felt that they didn’t get their share or had to badmouth him. I don’t know.

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