The purpose of the African Women in Cinema Blog is to provide a space to discuss diverse topics relating to African women in cinema--filmmakers, actors, producers, and all film professionals. The blog is a public forum of the Centre for the Study and Research of African Women in Cinema.

Le Blog sur les femmes africaines dans le cinéma est un espace pour l'échange d'informations concernant les réalisatrices, comédiennes, productrices, critiques et toutes professionnelles dans ce domaine. Ceci sert de forum public du Centre pour l'étude et la recherche des femmes africaines dans le cinémas.


My photo
Director/Directrice, Centre for the Study and Research of African Women in Cinema | Centre pour l'étude et la recherche des femmes africaines dans le cinéma


Search This Blog

31 December 2014

My Friend Victoria by Jean-Paul Civeyrac starring Guslagie Malanda

My Friend Victoria by Jean-Paul Civeyrac starring Guslagie Malanda. Analysis by Olivier Barlet. Translated from French by Beti Ellerson for the African Women in Cinema Blog. Published on the African Women in Cinema Blog in partnership with Africultures 

[En Français] : 


Out in French cinemas on December 31, 2014, My Friend Victoria, adapted from a novel by Doris Lessing, is a beautiful film, both gentle and unexpected. Without fanfare, but with elegance and coherence, it gives food for thought.

In 2008, shortly after receiving the Nobel Prize for Literature, Doris Lessing wrote “Victoria and the Staveneys”, a long novella whose subtle manner and succinct language reflect the unembellished themes that were dear to her: insidious racism and social hypocrisy. (1) The novel is adapted with great fidelity by Jean-Paul Civeyrac, an intimist filmmaker fascinated by love beyond death (Through the Forest, 2005) and disconsolate adolescent disillusionment (Young Girls in Black, 2010). Essentially, an odour of death fleets through the story of the taciturn Victoria (Guslagie Malanda), the successive deaths of her relatives, but also of death itself.

Transposing to Paris a story set in London, and hence adapting certain dialogue, Civeyrac retains the simplicity of Doris Lessing's novel and the richness of the contradictions that are portrayed. Screenwriter as well as director, he condenses its progression somewhat and makes Fanny, the childhood friend and adopted sister of Victoria, an incarnation of the writer, narrating in literary voiceover to better discern Victoria's fate. This is not a heroine’s story, of a rebel, rather it is of a woman pummelled by life, who attempts at a young age to find her place among racial, familial and social circumstances.

The story never lapses into caricature, hence, everyone can recognise his or her own behaviour. The Staveneys, a left-leaning, liberal, white middle-class family, though with the best of intentions, at the discovery of a mixed-race family member, cannot help but mark the difference.

It begins one evening when Edward looks after eight-year-old Victoria. This chance encounter quickly forgotten by Edward, will stay with Victoria forever, fascinated by the immense residence and the paternalistic generosity that welcomes her. Here she plunges into a cycle of social nostalgia, but also, without admitting it to herself or knowing what to make of it, a cycle of sentimentalism, which leads to a summer liaison with Thomas, the brother of Edward, of which Marie is born. Not revealing the child’s father is undoubtedly Victoria’s attempt to forget this troubled relationship in which she merely exists as the Other, but also the Other in her own self-image. But as Marie grows up without a father and Victoria loses Sam, the man she loves, Victoria worries about stability and Marie’s future, and hence reconnects with Thomas. She plunges again into ambiguity, opening to Marie a destiny that she will no longer control, anxious not to imprison her daughter into what she perceives of her own life: an impossibility, a failure.

Edward, who came to fetch her from school, had not been able to identify her: he could not imagine that she would be a little black girl. Realising his mistake, he was overcome with shame, but the damage was done: the world of Victoria had become a world of the other, where the colour of her skin made the difference. Rather than being just black, she would be a Black person through the eyes of White people; finding herself trapped within it. Unless she rebels like her adoptive sister, Fanny, who said to her: "They are not our masters and we are not their slaves." (2) But Victoria does not listen to her. Sartre would have described this resignation as an inability to be "authentic". (3) And Fanon would have spoken of a psychopathology: "This is because the black woman feels inferior that she aspires to be accepted into the white world." (4)

While Victoria does not rebel, she nonetheless exhibits a stance of refusal, by leaving the Staveney’s country home. Rebellion does not come through words but through absence. Her absence from that world is in itself a revolt, undoubtedly passive but a means of protecting herself, while at the same time entrusting Marie in the hands of those who she thinks are better able to ensure her daughter’s future. This social consciousness, which passes through an internalisation of alienation, opens to this contradiction: giving her daughter the possibility of another experience, which will be her own and not a reproduction of her mother’s, miserably sleepwalking, tightrope walking in a society that assimilates her while denying her full membership, seeing her as foreign because she is black. "Crème caramel" or "milk chocolate" to use the grandfather Staveney’s clumsy terms, Marie will have a better chance later on to break the glass ceiling of the dollhouse that Victoria was able to gradually evolve. For Charlie, Victoria’s other child, who is black, to whom the Staveneys do not extend the same generosity reserved for their descendant, what is left for him is to watch the trains go by, hoping they will take him somewhere else.

My Friend Victoria is a ballad in a maze of hopes, fears and good intentions, soft as a whisper, cruel as reality. The voice of Fanny, which recounts the story and wonders what she could do to make it different, is not a caption to a photo that suggests to the audience what to think, but a literary voice that enhances the music and reinforces the elegance of the performance. This is similar to James Ivory, to employ romanticism to give the sense of human melodrama—provoking self-denial faced with social anthropophagy. Civeyrac brings his camera close to the faces, not in search of a misplaced sentimentality but in order to sense the pulsation of the intimate layer of contradictions. Without catchphrases and with extreme sensitivity, My Friend Victoria is a means to understand the assignment endured because of the colour of ones skin, and its concomitant internalisation of inferiority. It is in this awareness and the force of this emotion that the viewer may find creativity, breaking out of fixation and repetition.

1. Doris Lessing, Victoria and the Staveneys, J'ai lu  - Flammarion No. 9519, 125 p, 6.20 €..
2. Here Jean-Paul Civeyrac reverses the role of Fanny, named Bessie in the novel, who proposes to Victoria to offer a DNA paternity test to the Staveney family (p. 93).
3. John Paul Sartre, Being and Nothingness, Gallimard, Paris, 1976 (1st ed. 1943), p. 376.
4. Frantz Fanon, Black Skin, White Masks, Seuil, coll. Points, Paris, 1972, p. 48.

2014 Retrospective from the African Women in Cinema Blog

For the full list of titles of posts from 2014 on the African Women in Cinema Blog, including interviews, announcements for call for films and proposals, festival reports, film analyses, film releases, obituaries, crowdfunding campaigns, tributes, relevant events and announcements, visit the 2014 African Women in Cinema Blog Page at the Centre for the Study and Research of African Women in Cinema Website:  

27 December 2014

Wildtrack Newsletter #16, December 2014, published by Women Filmmakers of Zimbabwe (WFOZ)

The WILDTRACK NEWSLETTER, published by the Women Filmmakers of Zimbabwe (WFOZ) is accessible on the ICAPA TRUST website:

The Wildtrack Newsletter covers information, issues and events relevant and related to African women in cinema in general and specifically those from Zimbabwe, including coverage of the International Images Film Festival for Women (IIFF), the annual film festival which takes place in Zimbabwe. In addition, it covers gender related arts-based activities in the Zimbabwe area.

Back issues are also available on the ICAPA Trust site: Issue 13, Issue 12, Issue 11, Issue 10, Issue 9, Issue 8, Issue 7.

Current issue contents include:

-Women Alive: Women of Heart 2014 Opening
-Dress Your Diva
-What the people said about the festival
-IIFF Breaks the Silence

18 December 2014

International Migrants Day, 18 December: A tribute to Rahel Zegeye, Ethiopian migrant worker/filmmaker

International Migrants Day, 18 December: A tribute to Rahel Zegeye, Ethiopian migrant worker/filmmaker

"Let us make migration work for the benefit of migrants and countries alike. We owe this to the millions of migrants who, through their courage, vitality and dreams, help make our societies more prosperous, resilient and diverse."

Ban Ki-moon, General-Secretary, United Nations
Message for International Migrants Day,
18 December 2013

During the summer of 2011, Alex Shams of the Migrant Workers Task Force (MWTF) based in Beirut, Lebanon contacted me at the Centre for the Study and Research of African Women in Cinema, of which I am founder and director, to tell me about the fascinating adventure of Ethiopian Rahel Zageye, a migrant worker who had recently made a film. They were hoping that I could assist them in their effort to get Rahel's film project funded. I was absolutely delighted to learn that while doing domestic work during the week, she devoted her time off on the weekend to filming, and what is more amazing, she used her own funds to do so. She had recently completed the feature fiction film Beirut about the experiences of five Ethiopian women domestic workers in Beirut.

I immediately suggested an email interview, which could be published on the African Women in Cinema Blog to give visibility to Rahel Zegeye and her work. Using a list of questions for the interview, Janie Shen, also with the MWTF, assisted Rahel with responding to them in English. 

As a tribute to Rahel Zageye on International Migrants Day, excerpts from the 02 September 2011 interview with Rahel Zageye by Beti Ellerson are as follows:

"A very talented and unique woman, she is most probably the one domestic worker in Lebanon (or the world?) who has put all her savings and free time to filmmaking" (Janie Shen of Migrant Workers Task Force).

What brought you to Lebanon and what inspired you to make the film?

I came to Lebanon because of the unemployment situation in Ethiopia. I was inspired to make the film because of the bad situation of the Ethiopian girls working over here as housemaid. Beirut is a drama about a group of Ethiopian girls in Lebanon working as domestic workers. It is loosely based on the Ethiopian girls that I have encountered during my ten years working in the country.

Objectives of the film?

My main aim with the film was to show a different perspective on the lives of Ethiopian workers in Lebanon. We often hear stories of abuse and bad treatment of Lebanese employers towards their foreign domestic workers (maids). Most media and organizations working to help migrant domestic workers (MDWs) in Lebanon portray the worker as a helpless victim, her fate ruled by evil agencies and bad madams. Although this often does happen and is definitely an issue that needs attention, reality is much more complicated. I want to shed light on the inner lives and thoughts of a domestic worker, an aspect which is usually hidden from the Lebanese and foreign public.

Many Ethiopian MDWs who come to Lebanon decide to run away from their employers. Some do this due to real reasons of mistreatment, others don’t. They might be tempted to leave the boring household chores and duties at the employer’s house for a ‘freer’ existence. Once they leave the employer’s house and break their contract they do not have any documents and are illegal to stay in Lebanon. More than often they will choose to sell their bodies for a living whilst enjoying their freedom. They live life on the fast lane: drinking, smoking, partying and sleeping with many men usually without any form of protection.

The film tackles sensitive topics such as morality, prostitution and HIV/AIDS. These are important issues that
need to be brought into attention to both Ethiopian women in Lebanon but also back in Ethiopia, before they decide to go work in Lebanon. MDWs need to understand the risks that are involved when you runaway from an employer. Although many employers are difficult to live with and work for (and some outright impossible), the truth is that they still offer some protection against the risks of the outside society.

During the past three years Rahel Zegeye's work and advocacy for the rights of migrant domestic workers have become increasingly visible. In 2013, she wrote, directed and produced the play “Shouting without a Listener”. The play relates the experiences of Lily, a migrant domestic worker, who fights against discrimination in Lebanese society and the inefficiencies of the Ethiopian embassy in dealing with these issues.

Report by Beti Ellerson

Raja Amari's "Tunisian Spring": Back to the futur | « Printemps Tunisien » de Raja Amari : Retour vers le futur

Raja Amari's "Tunisian Spring": Back to the future, an analysis by Olivier Barlet |« Printemps Tunisien » de Raja Amari : Retour vers le futur analyse par Olivier Barlet
Source: Translated from French by Beti Ellerson
[En Français] : Programmé sur la chaîne culturelle française Arte le 18 décembre 2014. LIRE l'article en intégralité sur [AFRICULTURES]

Programmed for December 18, 2014 on the French cultural channel Arte 
Tunisian Spring is a charge taken on by one of the most talented Tunisian filmmakers.(1) It would be unfortunate to miss this telefilm, which was shot on location in Arabic with Tunisian actors; even though the scripting structure limits its impact.
In all her films, Raja Amari has been interested in transgression and alienation. Hence, it is obvious why she accepted the adaptation of the screenplay by Omar Ladgham about this historic moment—the revolution, when everything changes. However, it is difficult to recognise Raja Amari’s cinema in this telefilm, having been accustomed to the great delicacy of expression and the very good image quality of the feature films (Satin Rouge and Secrets), as well as the shorts (April and One Evening in July). In spite of this drawback, Tunisian Spring is definitely worth seeing.
In situations of revolution, filmmakers take their camera to document the events. Thus in 2012 the Carthage Film Festival showed the enthusiasm of a country just coming out of the throes of a dictatorship with a flood of films about the widespread momentum as well as the dramatic effects of the confrontations. How then will fiction, with its power of retrospection and metaphor, craft this historical memory? The process is still on going and it is not yet time for fiction. However, other feature film projects are incorporating it so as not to appear out of touch. Nouri Bouzid for instance adapted in extremis Millefeuille whose original screenplay on wearing the veil had been written before the events.
Like Bouzid, Raja Amari does not use the revolution as subject but focuses on characters whose lives will be disrupted by the events. The film centres on three penniless musicians trying to survive by playing at weddings. Each follows his own path. Moha (Hichem Yacoubi) is a good lutenist but is convinced that the only solution is to go abroad. The singer Walid (Bahram Aloui) is enough of an opportunist to accept a relationship with a counsellor of the First Lady at the Presidential Palace. As for Fathi (Bilel Briki) the darbuka player, because of the widespread corruption he cannot start a teaching career; moreover, he is in love with Noura (Anissa Daoud), a rebellious, beautiful bourgeoise.
By trying to aim broadly it is difficult to escape the tendency to stereotype, categorising each character according to a predictable, established programme; and thus the dialogue cannot avoid a certain theatricality despite the quality of the actors. Integrating the constraints of the telefilm, Raja Amari is not able to detach herself from it, which gives to Tunisian Spring, a hint of superficiality, of déjà vu: four friends tossed around by a life overtaken by the grand History, without them seeing it coming.
All is stifled and raging in a country where disgruntlement eventually challenges police violence, though everyone taking a separate path. Such as the fruit and vegetable vendor who sets a fire after being harassed by two police officers (reminiscent of Mohamed Bouazizi's confrontation with the civil police officer Fayda Hamdi), both their movements more suicidal than committed. It is only Noura who, following the images of the insurgency on her computer, gauges the intensification of anger and resistance, as these images are shared on social media. But her mobilisation remains epidermal and isolated, disconnected from reality. None of these characters is a hero and the film does not judge their choices: they suffer more than they act and are eventually drawn unwillingly into a wind that outpaces them.  
Raja Amari offers us in this telefilm, which at the shooting in November 2013 still bore the title "Tunisian youth", the current state of a youth marked by uncertainty, and trapped by the contradictions at the eve of the fall of Ben Ali. However, for this youth it is also the price of History, none of the characters escapes unscathed.
A useful reminder of what a dictatorship is and how it demeans individuals, Tunisian Spring can be read as a retrospective meditation on the contradictions at work before and during the historical phase of the revolution, and which the Tunisian youth continue to deal with today, now faced with the inevitability of disillusionment.
Despite their dissatisfaction, the contempt that characterises the relationship of the three musicians at the beginning—and we know that it is alive and well, as is the anger of the youth—appears to be the driving force of their survival.
But what Tunisian Spring has difficulty articulating in its rather too well-oiled scheme, is the substance of beings and the brilliance of their revolt, whether singular or not, whether it is or is not, morally acceptable.
1. The production company Telfrance (Plus belle la vie) initiated the project with scriptwriter Omar Ladgham. Initially, Abdellatif Kechiche was to direct the film, but the production of La Vie d'Adele took longer than expected. Raja Amari, who was asked to come on board, enjoys scenarios that do not fall into the glorification of the revolution. It was logical that the Tunisian executive production was assigned to Nomadis Images, the company of Dora Bouchoucha, Raja Amari’s long-time producer.

16 December 2014

Crowdfunding BEN & ARA: a film directed by Nnegest Likké, co-produced by and starring Constance Ejuma

The film project BEN & ARA directed by Nnegest Likké and co-produced by and starring Constance Ejuma is now in the post-production stage. An Indiegogo crowdfunding campaign has been launched to raise $25,000.

When asked about the positive reception of the film project so far Constance Ejuma had this to say in an interview with the African Women in Cinema Blog:

I think the reason for the positive reception is two-fold. One reason is that Ben & Ara is a love story, which makes it relatable and universal. I think there is something about the story that touches people and captures their imaginations. The other reason is that this film is a tangible thing that people who support us could get behind. Joe and I have spent many years in Los Angeles pursuing acting careers, and though we’ve been doing all the things that actors here do to move their careers forward, it’s really difficult to convince people back home that you’re making progress when they don’t see you on TV on a regular basis. The excitement around the prospect of seeing us on the big screen was also a motivating factor for our families and friends.

Constance Ejuma also shared her experiences working with director Nnegest Likké?

Nnegest Likké (Indiegogo)
For me Nnegest was the best fit. She wrote and directed Phat Girlz which was successfully distributed by a major studio. She was also familiar with the subject matter of our film and it certainly doesn't hurt that she has an African background. 

My manager is acquainted with her so he sent her the script to gauge her interest. We met, bonded over a love for art-house films, and she offered a lot of constructive feedback but ultimately agreed to come on board.

Drawing from her own experience as a writer, her goal was always to stay true to Joe’s intentions while figuring out the most authentic way to execute on those intentions with the limited resources we had. Working with her bolstered my confidence as an actor, especially since I had the added pressure of being a producer. I felt like she was always thinking ahead, trying to catch blind spots and constantly working to capture gems that would enhance this art-house feel we were going for. She was relentless in her efforts to make this a great film in spite of the challenges we faced, which is something I truly admire about her. (African Women in Cinema Blog)

Objective of film (Indiegogo website)

We believe that something amazing happens when two people, from drastically different points of view, are able to look past their differences and have a heart to heart connection. And two people connecting despite cultural barriers is something everyone should experience, if only vicariously through our story. That is our goal with BEN & ARA, to open us up to one another just a little more.

How You Can Help (Indiegogo website)

When it comes to making movies, it takes a village to make it come to life. We've gone pretty far in the production process and accomplished a great deal. We have a "film in the can" as they say. Now what? We're only halfway through the filmmaking process and we need YOUR help to see it through to the end. 
We need to raise funds to complete post-production, which involves editing, sound, music and color correction. Without these things we don't have a movie, and without your help, we'll have a pretty difficult time making this dream a reality. No amount is too small so we welcome any and all donations.

Visit BEN & ARA – Feature Film Indiegogo for details about the fundraising efforts and to make a contribution.

Images and text sources: Indiegogo 

15 December 2014

Luxor African Film Festival | Le festival du film africain de Louxor: ETISAL FUND | FONDS ETISAL

Luxor African Film Festival | Le festival du film africain de Louxor : ETISAL FUND | FONDS ETISAL

Luxor African Film Festival (LAFF)’s ETISAL fund launches a program to develop long narratives December 15, 2014. As champion of young African filmmakers, Luxor African Film Festival (LAFF) will present five feature films and short documentaries by young filmmakers from Ethiopia, Togo, Rwanda, Cote d'Ivoire and Egypt. The five films were sponsored by LAFF in 2014, and will be presented at its fourth edition in March 2015. LAFF’s ETISAL Fund also announces the launch of STEP (Space To Establish Partnership) as its Second Program for its 2015 edition. Azza Elhosseiny, director of ETISAL, announces that the program is to support the development of long narratives in their pre-production phase while addressing specifically the first or second work of young African filmmakers. A committee including filmmakers, scriptwriters, producers and film critics, will select the projects to which funds will be provided in the range of $5,000 to $8,000. The winners will be invited to Luxor for a five-day script development workshop conducted under the supervision of cinema experts from Africa and Europe.

ETISAL lance un programme de développement de longs-métrages en collaboration avec le festival du film africain de Louxor. En tant que champion des jeunes cinéastes africains, le festival de Louxor du film africain (LAFF) présentera cinq longs-métrages et courts  documentaires réalisés par des jeunes cinéastes d'Ethiopie, Togo, Rwanda, Côte d'Ivoire et de l'Egypte. Les cinq films ont été parrainés par LAFF en 2014, et seront présentés à la quatrième édition de LAFF au Mars 2015. Le fonds ETISAL de LAFF aussi annonce le lancement de STEP (espace pour établir un partenariat), son deuxième programme pour 2015 qui aura lieu au cours de la 4ème edition. Azza Elhosseiny, directrice d’ETISAL, annonce que l’objectif de ce nouveau programme est de soutenir le développement de longs-métrages dans leur phase de pré-production concernant spécifiquement la première ou la deuxième œuvre des jeunes cinéastes africains. Un comité composé de cinéastes, scénaristes, producteurs et critiques de cinéma, sélectionnera les projets pour leur fournir des fonds variant entre 5000 et 8000 dollars. Les lauréats seront invités à Louxor pour un atelier de cinq jours d'élaboration de scénarios mené sous la supervision du cinéma experts d'Afrique et d'Europe.

لأول مرة: صندوق "اتصال" لدعم الانتاج المشترك بمهرجان الأقصر للسینما الافریقیة یشارك في انتاج الأفلام الروائیة الطویلة
15 ديسمبر 2014

في إطار دور مهرجان الاقصر للسینما الافریقیة في دعم صناع الافلام في القارة السمراء والذى تمثل في الدورة الثالثة من خلال دعم انتاجي لخمس أفلام روائیة وتسجیلیة قصیرة من دول أثيوبيا، توجو، رواندا، كوت دیفوار، ومصر ستعرض في الدورة الرابعة( 17-23 مارس 2015)، أعلنت "عزة الحسیني" مدیر صندوق اتصال بمهرجان الأقصر للسینما الافریقیة عن شكل الدعم المقدم لصناع الافلام في الدورة الاربعة تحت اسم (خطوة) " استیب " والذى سیتمثل في دعم الأفلام الروائیة الطویلة للشباب (الفیلم الأول او الثاني لمخرجه) وهو عبارة عن دعم لمرحلة التحضیر والاعداد لإنتاج یتراوح ما بین 5 إلى 8 آلاف دولار. وسیتم اختیار المشروعات الفائزة بعد ورشة تطویر السيناريو التي سیقیمها المهرجان في الدورة الرابعة بقیادة متخصصین في تطویر السیناریو من إفریقیا وأوروبا.

Women prominently featured at the First Luxor African Film Festival 2012:

14 December 2014

Understanding lesbophobia in West Africa: sixteen women’s voices | Seize voix de femmes pour comprendre la lesbophobie en Afrique de l’Ouest

Understanding lesbophobia in West Africa: Sixteen women's voices | Seize voix de femmes pour comprendre la lesbophobie en Afrique de l'Ouest

Source: - Publié par | published by Maëlle Le Corre


The 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence Campaign of QAYN 2014 (Queer African Youth Network) had as objective to provide visibility on the forms of gender violence against lesbians, bisexuals, queer women, and women who have sex with women (LBQFSF) in order to promote awareness of these types of violence as an integral part of violence against all women. Under the theme, 16 Voices, 16 Experiences, the queer women of West Africa and Cameroon talked about this violence; this campaign endeavoured to share personal experiences of women who have been victims of violence because of their sexual orientation and gender identity.

From 24 November to 10 December 2014, QAYN published an audio testimony each day of the campaign, from a lesbian, bisexual, queer or woman who has sex with women—from Benin, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Senegal and Togo. The women shared their experience with violence based on sexual orientation and/or gender identity.

Through this first campaign, QAYN’s objective was to make visible the violence against women LBQFSF in order to generate a collective commitment to protecting the rights of all women, regardless of their sexual orientation and gender identity.

The Campaign Team 

The Interviewers

• Addis- Credo Ahodi is a young activist Benin and a graduate in Communication from the National University of Benin. Benin-based researcher of the 16 Days Campaign and Secretary General of the Association of Women Sapphists (AFRO-BENIN), she is engaged in the fight against STDs, HIV/AIDS and for the promotion of women's rights in general and sapphists in particular.

• Anne Marie Manga is a Cameroonian activist living in Yaoundé, where she coordinates the Gender Unit of Humanity First Cameroon, an association for the prevention of STDs/AIDS and for the defense of LGBT rights. A trained psychologist and researcher on the subject of gender-related identity, she headed a community-level research project entitled: Social Pressures and Identity construction, a case study of women who have sex with women (FSF) of Yaounde.

• Nataka, LBQFSF Programs Coordinator of QAYN.

• Pegguy is a young 23 year-old Cameroonian student of Bioinformatics Biostatistics Level III. “Co-founder of the Lesbians of Cameroon, today ELLES and working daily with MSM, I began to feel the need to give particular attention to the LBT cause in order to bring together and unify this community that is not very visible, in the existing community associations. I decided to incorporate these communication strategies to defend this common cause. We did no wrong by having a different sexual orientation than other people who think they are legitimate. I decided to commit myself because nobody else would come to defend our rights and allow us to live without prejudice in our various societies.

The illustrators

• Xonanji, Franco-Cameroonian, has a passion for the image. She is both an illustrator and designer-architect and her skills extend to web design. Activist, she is involved in daily political and community life.

• CHOUF is a Tunisian LBT organisation consisting of people who are experts in the audio-visual, print, media, as well as legal fields. CHOUF aims to promote the rights of FSF persons in Tunisia, a country where homosexuality is still considered a crime penalised by imprisonment of up to 3 years.

Sound Engineers

• Kalfou Danje, of Guadeloupe, lives in France. He is a filmmaker and audio and video editor. He regularly participates in activist radio programs as well as mixing for musical projects. In addition, he is an activist and artist in several areas: music, literature and photography.

Transcript and Publishing

• Nataka, LBQFSF Programs Coordinator of QAYN
• Felix, Assistant Coordinator
• Stéphane, Program Coordinator GBT

Campaign Design and Management 

Mariam, Founder and Coordinator of the Network

Source: - Publié par | published by Maëlle Le Corre

[English] 3 excerpts:

Since November 24, the QAYN association has published daily testimonies of lesbian, bi and queer women, or those who have sex with women living in Benin, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Senegal and Togo. Confronted with violence because of their sexual orientation, each recounts the rejection of their family, or the harassment that they face in the street or at school. The association publishes these 16 stories, illustrated by Xonanji, and transcribed by the Tunisian Association CHOUF. In addition, an audio version to available to listen to their testimonies.

"I had my first experience within the family unit with my dad, my mom, when the gossip began, when the stories started coming, people began to talk, people told them that their daughter was a lesbian, that their daughter spent her time with lesbians", says Renee, a 24-year-old Cameroonian. "There were girls in the city who were recognized as such and as soon as I was seen with them, I was labelled a lesbian. My dad scolded me, he abused me verbally and physically and told me he did not want to see me with these kinds of girls, he did not want me to spend time with them and that he wanted this gossip to stop, otherwise he would make it happen."

16 VOICES 16 EXPERIENCES: In Togo by Qayn on Mixcloud
Renee (Cameroon) says that it is difficult to find support because homophobic remarks often come from within ones entourage. "The ones who are the closest label us because they know us, they notice what we wear, our clothes. And sometimes it also comes from a stranger in a group when they see the way we are dressed, how we walk or when in front of a group we are said to be this or that, they impose certain labels on us. Even saying things aloud knowing that you cannot defend yourself."

16 VOICES 16 EXPERIENCES: In (Togo) by Qayn on Mixcloud
Domi, a 33 year-old Burkinabé who defines herself as lesbian, says that in her experience the failure to meet a certain physical type exposes one to the risk of being stigmatised, "For me there is a gendered violence which is based on the idea that a person with a certain personality type does not meet the expectations of her or his society or community. It can be a man who does not act in a manner that is expected of him and is thus branded, frowned upon, automatically categorised. The same with a woman who does not fit within the norm, who does not meet certain standards, she is immediately stigmatised.

Relevant links:

12 December 2014

UNESCO: Women in African History | Femmes dans l’histoire d’Afrique

Women in African History
Femmes dans l’histoire d’Afrique

Spread and share this website widely!

Partagez et diffusez ce site Internet plus largement possible !


You will find various learning resources (comic strips, sound tracks, pedagogical issues, and bibliographies) on a selection of historical African women or women of African descent. 

Vous y trouverez diverses ressources pédagogiques (bandes dessinées, modules sonores, dossiers pédagogiques, bibliographies) portant sur une selection de figures historiques féminines africaines
ou d’ascendance africaine.

11 December 2014

TAZAMA Festival 2015 – Congo-Brazzaville - 6-12 janvier | January

[English] – [Français ci-après]

The TAZAMA Festival was created with the idea to bring together women filmmakers from the African continent and provide a new platform for exchanges, meetings and sharing. The particularity of this festival lies in its desire to appeal to women who would like to participate and to serve a cause: The fight against Cancer in Africa. TAZAMA, which in Kiswahili means TO SEE, thus allows us to reflect on the need for African artists to engage and support the efforts of existing organisations in Africa. TO SEE, hence, in the sense to realise the extent of the disease and contribute to its eradication. Festivals bring the public together and women filmmakers are the carriers of powerful messages.

Festival Director: Claudia Haidara-Yoka

Source: (Hermione Desiree Ngoma)

From 6 to 12 January 2015 in Brazzaville, remarkable moments will be shared at the 2nd edition of the African women film festival "Tazama". Derrière les portes fermées, "Behind closed doors" by Moroccan filmmaker Mohamed Bensouda will be screened at the opening, and Toiles d’araignées, "Cobwebs" by Ibrahima Touré of Mali at the closing of the cultural festivities.

Short films in competition include, De quoi avons-nous peur, "Of what are we afraid" by Annette Kouamba Matondo (Congo-Brazzaville); A cœur ouvert, "A open heart" by Ayekoro Koussou (Benin); Cœur de femme, Woman’s heart" by Maxwell Cadeval (Cameroon). Also, a debate on women’s struggles via the image will be held in conjunction with the film screenings.

Also in attendance at this edition are filmmakers Françoise Ellong (Cameroon), Jacqueline Kalimunda (Rwanda), Moussa Sene Absa (Senegal), Dorcas Ahouangonou and Laetitia N'Da of Côte d'Ivoire. Several filmmakers whose films will not be screened but because of their talent and expertise are invited to the festival: Meiji U'tumsi- director, actor and producer (Congo-Brazzaville), Serge Abessolo- actor, producer and Master of Ceremonies (Gabon), Basil Ngangue Ebelle-President of the Pan African Film Festival in Cannes (Cameroon), Amog Lemra-director and producer (Congo-Brazzaville).

Claudia Haïdara Yoka is the director of the African women film festival "Tazama". This event celebrates the seventh art in all its diversity placing at the centre of its objectives the fight against cancer for which the fundraising campaign is organised during the gala evening.



Le Festival TAZAMA a été créé dans l’idée de réunir des femmes cinéastes du continent africain et d'offrir une nouvelle plateforme d’échanges, de rencontres et de partage. La singularité de ce Festival réside dans sa volonté de faire appel à des femmes qui acceptent de participer et ce, afin de servir une cause : La lutte contre le Cancer en Afrique. TAZAMA qui, en swahili, signifie VOIR, nous donne à réfléchir sur la nécessité, pour les artistes Africains, de se mobiliser et soutenir les efforts entrepris par les associations existantes en Afrique. VOIR donc, au sens de constater le fléau et contribuer à son éradication. Un Festival réunit un public et les femmes cinéastes sont porteuses de messages forts.

Directrice du Festival : Claudia Haïdara-Yoka

Source: (Hermione Désirée Ngoma)

Du 6 au 12 Janvier 2015 Brazzaville vivra des moments forts avec l’organisation de la 2ème édition du festival du film des femmes africaines « Tazama ». A l’affiche, "Derrière les portes fermées"  du réalisateur marocain Mohamed Bensouda   qui sera projeté en ouverture et "Toiles d’araignées" du Malien Ibrahima Touré qui clôturera ces festivités culturelles.

Des courts métrages mettront en compétition les films  "De quoi avons-nous peur" d’Annette Kouamba Matondo (Congo-Brazzaville) ; "A cœur ouvert" du Béninois Ayekoro Kossou ; "Cœur de femme" de Maxwell Cadeval (Cameroun). Aussi, un débat sur les combats de femmes par l’image sera organisé en marge de ces projections cinématographiques.

Cette édition connaitra également la participation des réalisateurs Françoise Ellong (Cameroun), Jacqueline Kalimunda (Rwanda), Moussa Sene Absa (Sénégal), Dorcas Ahouangonou et Laetitia N'Da de la Côte d’Ivoire. Plusieurs auteurs réalisateurs dont les films ne seront pas projettés mais grâce à leurs talents et expertise sont invités à ce festival il s’agit de Meiji U’tumsi : réalisatrice, comédienne et productrice (Congo-Brazzaville), Serge Abessolo: Comédien, producteur et Maître de cérémonie (Gabon), Basile Ngangue Ebelle : Président du Festival du film Panafricain de Cannes (Cameroun), Amog Lemra : réalisateur et producteur (Congo-Brazzaville).

Le festival du film des femmes africaines « Tazama » est  dirigé par Claudia Haïdara Yoka.  Ce rendez-vous qui célèbre le 7e art dans toute sa diversité met au centre de ses objectifs la lutte contre le cancer dont des collectes de fonds sont organisés au cours d’une soirée de gala.


CALL FOR PROPOSALS: THE ADAMIC WORKSHOPS ® - Film director training workshops for Cameroonian women cineastes



Film director training workshops for Cameroonian women cineastes



For a long time Cameroonian women have focused on cinema within the context of actors, script supervisors, make-up artists but were hesitant to enter into the areas that were considered men’s purview. Yet those who have endeavoured in these areas often succeed with flying colours. Josephine Dagnou, Yolande Samba Ekoumou, Blandine Foumane testify to the success of women's creative efforts. It is in this context that ADAMIC—with the support of the Goethe Institut Kamerun and the association MIS ME BINGA via its festival of the same name—was established by a group of talented and dedicated women who would provide opportunities for women to professionalize, to produce their work and also to develop their talent.


The competition aims to:

- Train women in the diverse areas of cinema,
- Strengthen the capacity of Cameroonian women filmmakers,
- Professionalize Cameroonian women in cinema
- Encourage Cameroonian film production


This first edition of the ADAMIC Workshops will be held from 18 to 30 December 2014 at the Mismebinga space in the Byem-assi school— with the exception of 24 and 25 December 2014. The workshop will work with the selected ten women participants on scriptwriting for fiction film; giving them the opportunity to learn different writing techniques. This workshop will also include a two-day refresher session in directing and camera technique. At the end of the workshop two films (13-minutes maximum) will be written and directed* as a practice exercise. 

*Films made in the context of this workshop are the property of ADAMIC.


1) Must be a Cameroon National
2) Minimum 21 years old
3) Have already written at least one completed film (short or feature film, music video, commercial) or have already worked on several film projects.
4) Have a fiction film project of a maximum of 13 minutes. The dossier should include the following:
- A Synopsis (½ page maximum)
- A Note of Intention (1 page)
- Treatment (8 pages maximum)
- A complete scenario (Running time between 05 and 13 minutes)
5) A CV
6) A cover letter
7) 1 photo ID
8) Speak and write French and/or English.
9) A completed application form
10) Attach a DVD copy or web link of the film made from your last scenario.

Each candidate must submit her file to the project office no later than 16 December at midnight by sending to both addresses must: and

A jury of professionals from the audio-visual media and cinema, will meet, deliberate and select 10 participants.

(complete and return)

Prénom:                                                            Nom:    
(First Name)                                                        (Last Name)     

Nationalité:                                                       Date de Naissance:
(Country of Citizenship):                                         (Date of Birth) 

Ville de Résidence:                                             Genre/Gender :            M           F
(City of Residence)

Adresse / Address:

                                                                            Work Phone:
                                                                            Home Phone:
Ville/ City:                                                             Cell Phone:   


Titre du Film / Film Title:        
Durée estimée/ Estimated Length:                                             
Genre / Genre: Fiction 

Shooting Format: (specify 16mm or 35mm film, Beta, DV, HD, etc):      

  1. Un scénario complet 
  2. Une Note d’intention
  3. Un Traitement (8 pages Maximum)

Contact :

1.077, Rue Joseph Mballa Eloumdem
S/c Goethe-Insttitut, BP: 1.067 Bastos

Telephone: +237 696 11 20 42/ 651 13 63 74/ 696 37 70 57

APPEL À PROJETS: LES ATELIERS ADAMIC® Ateliers de formation en direction des femmes cinéastes camerounaises 2014

Ateliers de formation en direction des femmes cinéastes camerounaises


Pendant très longtemps les femmes camerounaises se sont concentrées sur les métiers du cinéma tels que l’actorat, le script, maquillage sans jamais oser toucher du doigt les autres métiers qu’elles pensaient être destinés aux hommes. Pourtant celles qui se sont essayées à ces métiers se sont souvent en sortie avec brio. Joséphine Dagnou, Yolande SAMBA EKOUMOU, Blandine FOUMANE témoignent du succès des initiatives féminines. C’est dans ce contexte que l’ADAMIC -avec le soutien de l’Institut Goethe Kamerun et de l’association MIS ME BINGA via son festival du même nom-  a été mis sur pied par un groupe de femmes talentueuses et dévouées qui voudraient offrir la possibilité à la gente féminine de se professionnaliser, de produire leurs œuvres et aussi valoriser leur talent. 

Le concours a pour objectif :
  • - former les amatrices de cinéma,
  • - renforcer les capacités des femmes cinéastes camerounaises,
  • - professionnaliser le secteur cinématographique féminin camerounais 
  • - favoriser la production cinématographique camerounaise,

                                                                III. LE DEROULEMENT     

Cette première édition des Ateliers ADAMIC se tiendra du 18 au 30 décembre 2014  à l’espace mismebinga à Byem-assi école. A l’exception du 24 et 25 décembre 2014. L’atelier accueillera dix femmes et portera sur l’écriture du scénario du film de fiction. Il sera donc question de leur donner l’occasion d’apprendre les différentes techniques d’écriture. Cet atelier comprendra aussi une session de recyclage de deux jours en réalisation et caméra. Au sortir de l’atelier deux films devront être écris et réalisés* en guise de pratique. Les films écris auront une durée maximale de 13 minutes. 
*Les films réalisés dans le cadre de cet atelier sont la propriété de l’ADAMIC.

  1. Etre de Nationalité Camerounaise
  2. Avoir minimum 21ans
  3. Avoir déjà écrit au moins un film réalisé (court métrage ou long métrage, clip vidéo, spot publicitaire) ou avoir déjà travaillé sur plusieurs projets de films.
  4. Avoir un projet de film fiction de maximum 13 minutes. Le dossier devrait comprendre les éléments suivants :
  1. Un Synopsis (½ page maximum)
  2. Une Note d’Intention (1 page)
  3. Traitement (8 pages maximum)
  4. Un scénario complet (Durée du film comprise entre 05 et 13 minutes)
  1. Un CV
  2. Une lettre de motivation
  3. 1 photo  d’identité
  4. Parler et écrire le français et/ou l’anglais.
  5. Une fiche de candidature dûment remplie
  6. Joindre une copie DVD ou un lien internet du film réalisé à partir de votre dernier scénario.
Chaque candidat doit faire parvenir son dossier au bureau du projet au plus tard le 16 décembre à minuit en envoyant obligatoirement aux deux adresses: et

Un jury, composé de professionnels de l’audiovisuel et du cinéma, se réunira, délibérera et retiendra 10 participantes.

(à retourner dûment remplie)

Prénom:                                                            Nom:      
(First Name)                                                        (Last Name)     

Nationalité:                                                       Date de Naissance: 
(Country of Citizenship):                                         (Date of Birth) 

Ville de Résidence:                                             Genre/Gender :            M           F
(City of Residence)

Adresse / Address:

                                                                            Work Phone:  
                                                                            Home Phone: 
Ville/ City:                                                             Cell Phone:     


Titre du Film / Film Title:        
Durée estimée/ Estimated Length:                                             
Genre / Genre: Fiction 

Shooting Format: (specify 16mm or 35mm film, Beta, DV, HD, etc):      
  1. Un scénario complet 
  2. Une Note d’intention
  3. Un Traitement (8 pages Maximum)

Retourner la fiche dûment rempli obligatoirement aux deux adresses: et au plus tard le 16 décembre à minuit.

Contact :

1.077, Rue Joseph Mballa Eloumdem
S/c Goethe-Insttitut, BP: 1.067 Bastos

Telephone: +237 696 11 20 42/ 651 13 63 74/ 696 37 70 57

Blog Archive