UC Berkeley Library

African Studies

Africa Speaks!

Narrator, Lowell Thomas. Documentary account of Paul Hoefler's photography expedition through central Africa in 1928-1929. Containing many varied and interesting shots of African tribes and wildlife, the film footage from it was later interpolated into many jungle-themed adventure movies. Originally released as a motion picture in 1930. 60 min. [preservation copy]


8 part series by Basil Davidson. The story is unfolded on location all over Africa, showing life as it is today, plus archive film and dramatized reconstructions. Two programs per cassette, each an hour long. 1984. Different But Equal (Part 1). Describes how some of the world's greatest early civilizations had their origins in the heart of black Africa and discusses some of their artistic, technical and scientific achievements. Mastering a Continent (Part 2). Looks at two important developments in early African society, the growth of cattle keeping and agriculture.

Africa: The Uncovered Continent. Part 1

The first segment examines the wisdom and consequences of American and United Nations humanitarian intervention in Somalia. In the second segment the economic and social decay and poverty in Zaire are examined through the eyes of Zairian human rights advocate Floribert Chebeya. Segment from the television program Rights & wrongs broadcast April 11, 1993. 27 min. <

Africa: War is Business

The world is slowly awakening to a disturbing reality-that the diamond trade is a major source of financing for warfare and brutality in Africa. But diamonds are only one natural resource among many that feed bloody conflicts in Liberia, Sierra Leone, the Congo, and other countries. This program explores the role of international business interests in fomenting rebellion and arming renegade military forces across the African continent-often as a means of obscuring other, equally nefarious, dealings and activities. Dist.: Films Media Group. 2005.

African Jim.

Made on the eve of apartheid's inception, this is the first full length feature film made in South Africa with an all native African cast. Featuring top African singers and music of the 1950's, this is a unique record of a lost era. 1995. 51 min.

African Underground: Democracy in Dakar

Documents the role of Hip Hop in the 2007 Senegalese elections. The film follows rappers, graffiti writers, DJs, journalists, professors and people on the street at the time before, during and after the controversial 2007 presidential election in Senegal. Examines hip-hop's role on the political process as music and spray cans were used to educate and empower the people. Directors, Ben Herson, Magee McIlvaine, and Christopher Moore. c2007. 70 min.

Afrique, Je te Plumerai (Africa, I'm Going to Fleece You) (Cameroon, 1992)

A film by Jean-Marie Teno A sardonic essay on the history of colonialism in Cameroon, and by extension, on the African continent. Focuses on historical as well as contemporary European cultural domination, particularly in the publishing and media industry. French with English subtitles. In French with English subtitles. 88 min.
web web sites:Description from California Newsreel catalog


Looks as the information technology revolution which has become a daily reality in many African countries where the Internet, mobile telephones and digital video cameras are being used with extraordinary creativity. Visits a marabout who explains he no longer replies by letter to questions but uses his mobile phone and email to transmit his advice. Another illustration of the digital revolution in Africa is the rise of internet cafes and cyber teahouses. In some towns in Senegal and the Congo, increasing numbers are connecting to internet using a laptop computer with a mobile phone. 2003.

Against the Tide of History: Landmines in the Casamance

Landmines continue to kill and maime civilians in Senegal while authorities disregard their obligations under the Mine Ban Treaty to provide assistance to victims. Since 1982, a civil war has been raging in Casamance, Senegal which has made Casamance the most mine-ridden zone in West Africa. A production of the Witness Project which uses video technology to investigate human rights abuses. Dist.: Witness Project. 2004. 27 min.

AIDS in Africa

Describes the harsh reality of the AIDS epidemic in Zimbabwe, the hardest hit by the disease in Africa. Three successive reports address the hardships of a society composed of mostly the very old and the very young, and the grim future facing a nation deprived of its core adult population. Archbishop Desmond Tutu joins in the discussion of this monumental tragedy. Episodes from the television program, Nightline, originally airing Mar. 8-10, 2000. Reporter, Ted Koppel; correspondent, Dave Marash. Dist.: Films Media Group. 58 min.