UC Berkeley Library

African Studies

Berlin 1885: The Division of Africa

Both a reenactment and a documentary, relates the story of the first international conference on Africa, which established the division of Africa amongst the European powers, and created Congo as a personal possession of the Belgian king. Using actual transcripts taken down at the time, Berlin 1885 combines reenactments of the Conference proceedings and previously unexplored archival materials, with the insights of historians and scholars from six nations, to discuss the politics, implications, and legacy of the conference. written and directed by Joel Calmettes. 2010. 84 min.

Between War and Peace.(Life; 4)

Commencing in the late 1980's over half of the population of Liberia fled their homes in terror during a long and bloody civil war. After 14 years of anarchy, the international community has arrived in force in an attempt to stabilize the country. Many see this as Liberia's last chance. This program reports on Liberia's attempts to find a way of engaging the combatants (many of them children) in rebuilding their country -- to sustain the peace. 2005. 23 min.
web web sites:Description from Bullfrog Films catalog

Biko: Breaking the Silence.

Presents the story of Stephen Biko. Parts of the motion picture, Cry Freedom are shown. 1987. 55 min.

Birth of a Democracy (South series).

Looks at Cameroon's current political climate, and gathers the thoughts of Cameroonians from all social strata and economic backgrounds. A revealing collage of the birth of a uniquely African democracy is presented. 1991. 25 min.
web web sites:Description from First Run/Icarus catalog

Bishop Desmond Tutu Addresses the California State Legislature.

Nobel Peace Prize winner, Bishop Desmond Tutu, addressing the California State Legislature in May, 1985, describes how South African and President Reagan's policies are making non-violence less of a viable channel for social change in South Africa. 1981. 20 min.

Bitter Melons. (!Kung San Series).

Portrays the difficulty of survival in the central Kalahari Desert in southern Africa, in a zone where game is scarce because waterholes are dry most of the year. A native musician performs songs about animals, the land, and the social life. Includes traditional music, dances, and children's games. Director/camera, John Marshall. 1991. 30 min.
web web sites:Description from Documentary Educational Resources catalog

Black Athena

Reviews evidence that the culture of ancient Greece had its origins in Africa and the East and that the West should recognize what it owes to Black and Eastern cultures. 1990. 60 min.
web web sites:
Description from California Newsreel catalog
The Black Athena debate (web site)

Black Gold

After oil, coffee is the most actively traded commodity in the world with $80 billion in retail sales. But for every $3 cup of coffee, a coffee farmer receives only 3 cents. Most of the money goes to the middlemen, especially the four giant conglomerates which control the coffee market. Tracing the path of the coffee consumed each day to the farmers who produce the beans, Black Gold asks us to 'wake up and smell the coffee', to face the unjust conditions under which our favorite drink is produced and to decide what we can do about it.

Blaze Africa

Kenyan musician Odongo Mayaka presents Luo traditional music. 2006. 50 min.


Documentary that takes a satirical, hard-hitting look at how "blinging" in the flashy world of commercial hip-hop played a role in the 10-year civil war in Sierra Leone. Film takes U.S. hip-hop celebrities on a journey to Sierra Leone diamond mining communities where they meet former child soldiers, refugees and local hip-hop artists. Featuring: Tego Calderón, Raekwon, Paul Wall, Ishmael Beah, Johnny Dang, Jadakiss, Bishop Don Juan, Big Daddy Kane, Juelz Santana, Bill Stephney, Kanye West, Kareem Woods. Written and directed by Raquel Cepeda. Originally broadcast on VH1 in 2007. 87 min.