New York African Film Festival 2013

Africa is a Country (Old Site)

This year marks the 20th anniversary of the New York African Film Festival. The Festival–from April 3rd to the 9th at Lincoln Center–is still the longest running, and probably most significant, African film festival in North America. (I’ve helped out on the festival in the past, so I’m biased.) It is worth remembering what the festival’s executive director and founder and executive director, Mahen Bonetti, has achieved. In a 2004 interview–around the time I first met Mahen–with the UN Chronicle, she said that before she started the festival, “there were very few opportunities for American audiences to see African cinema.”  There were lots of  images of Africa circulating in the media at that time, but  they were mostly negative and decontextualized. And as she wrote much later: “Those of us over the age of thirty probably remember well, the images of famine in Ethiopia that had become…

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