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Title: The role of the black screenwriter-director in the development of feature film-making in Zimbabwe
Author: Kamwendo , Mosco
Awarding Body: University of the West of England, Bristol
Current Institution: University of the West of England, Bristol
Date of Award: 2013
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This practice-led thesis, with its accompanying artefact, a documentary film, explore the issues that confront the Black African film-maker. Its specific focus is on feature film production in Zimbabwe and the importance of story choice and screenwriting techniques to a film's success as an art form and as a commercial practice. The mode of analysis is empirical but this enquiry is informed by and engages with the broader historical, political and conceptual issues that shape the practice of all African filmmakers: the liberation from colonial rule; Third World cinema; the global dominance of Hollywood cinema; the nature of ' African cinema'; post-colonialism; the role of regional and national cinemas; and diasporic and transnational forms of film-making. The Introduction, chapter 1, describes the approach and methodology of the thesis and chapter two reviews the most significant literature on the central issues and the major shift - in film practice and in theoretical writing - from a homogeneous conception of an overtly political pan-African cinema to one that is heterogeneous and hybrid. Chapter three is a detailed contextual and aesthetic analysis of the development of Zimbabwean national cinema from its roots in British colonial rule to the present day, drawing on a variety of primary as well as secondary sources. Chapters four. five and six are case studies of three feature films - Neria (1 993), Flame (1996) and Matters of the Spirit (1998) - based on original interviews with their respective film-makers who were central to the development of Zimbabwean cinema. The chapters discuss their production and reception histories and analyse the nature of their story choice and narrative development. Chapter seven is an analytical auto-ethnographical account of the author's own history as a film-maker culminating in a detailed production history of the artefact, a documentary film, Camarada Presidente, about the Republic of Mozambique's first president. Samora Machel. The Conclusion summarises the issues facing the Black African film-maker and the particular instance of Zimbabwe and the continued importance of story choice and screenwriting techniques. It considers the author's future plans as a diasporic filmmaker who remains committed to full-length feature film production that combines indigenous subject matter with a well-honed screenplay to create audience appeal.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available