on african feminism...akuko nke ato


this is part three (akuko nke ato) of a series of posts on african feminism. (for those of you who take Igbo language and grammar seriously, i apologize in advance for the absence of dots under certain vowels, if some can show me how to do this on blogspot - that would be very helpful).

I was reading BBC this morning in which, of course the Kenyan crisis featured prominently on the Africa page. It truly baffles me how, Kenya, once an exemplar of a peaceful and stable African nation, could collectively go mad in the span of a few days. it's deeply disheartening. it only serves to fuel the idea that the African continent is prone to such violent outbursts and is need of protection (according to the USAFRICOM website more on them in a later post and Bush's planned visit to Africa - minus Nigeria).

Amidst stories of gun-slinging and bows and arrows came up another weapon of war - rape. It should disturb our most common sensibilities that the female body (and sometimes male) is considered fair playing ground in war, conflict, and other clashes. It is literally universal that this happens. According to the article, formal reports of rape have more than doubled in some places rendering hundreds of women the living casualties of war. While trying to find an end this conflict, special attention should be paid to the most vulnerable - women. Additionally, more needs to be done in order to shed light on why this phenomenon happens and how can we prevent it. If anyone has any interesting reading suggestions, you are more than welcome to share. If I find anything, I will post in an addendum. I simply wanted to bring light to the issue.

So, what does a Nollywood film and wartime rape have in common. Well, for those of you who are so inclined to watch Naija films, I would encourage you to check out this film, Silver Stone (yes, part 1 and 2), starring Dakore Egbuson, Bimbo Akintola, Fred Amata, and Mike Ezuruonye. Besides having an awesome cast (woohoo! Mike and Dakore) it sheds light on some of the long-term consequences of wartime rape, using the Biafran war as the example and its effects on families decades later. The film is written by a budding producer in the Nollywood scene, Uche Ice - and I look forward to more of his works in the future. I would especially encourage you to take a peek at the interviews with actors/actresses, producer, and director. What is especially comforting is that the movie project was initiated by a Nigerian male sensitive to the extensive damage of wartime rape on both the female and the rapist. I think that Uche Ice is an African feminist, or at least one in the making...and much kudos on this particular film.

6 comments:

  1. SOLOMONSYDELLE said...:

    Hmmm, I'll keep my out fir this. Rape is such a sensitive issue and I know some Nigerians are trying to tackle it.

    How are you?

  1. I hope we will see more rape stories in our films,will grab a copy of the film. Cheers

  1. will have to look for this film...thanks for the heads up...

  1. pamelastitch said...:

    good...

    finally someone speaking up.

    I must find that movie and watch it.


    Pammy

    ps: I have often worried that nollywood was not exemplary in treating women issues, now you have given me something to blog about...

    :P


    lol

  1. nneoma said...:

    @solomonsydelle - yes rape is a sensitive issue. thinking about sensitive issues, I wonder if there are people working on domestic violence in general. I know in Naija films where domestic violence issues are raised, the writers use media to condemn the practice. I wonder who's out there in the frontlines attending to these issues, because outside of Nollywood, most, I have witnessed, encourage the woman to bear with the abuse.

    @for the love of me - yes, even beyond rape stories, I would like to see more films outside of the usual purely romance that try to address these social ills. of course, integrating romance into these stories is fine, i mean it is nollywood.

    @guerreiranigeriana - i watched it online through a subscription to izognmovies.com

    @pamelastitch - nollywood is trying to address some of these issues, though not as obvious as this particular film. I have watched many naija films that have condemned rape, domestic violence, shortchanging girls of education, etc. they might not come out and say - this is a feminist film - or even realise it, but they are changing the conversation and attitudes towards this subject.

  1. pamela said...:

    That movie was so good. You have to watch behind closed doors...