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Postcolonial Nation and Narrative III: Literature & Cinema

Cape Verde, Guinea-Bissau and São Tomé e Príncipe

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Edited By Ana Mafalda Leite, Hilary Owen, Ellen Sapega and Carmen Tindó Secco

This volume investigates literary and cinematographic narratives from Cape Verde, Guinea-Bissau and Sao Tome and Principe, analysing the different ways in which social and cultural experience is represented in postcolonial contexts. It continues and completes the exploration of the postcolonial imaginary and identity of Portuguese-speaking Africa presented in the earlier volume Narrating the Postcolonial Nation: Mapping Angola and Mozambique (2014).

Memory, history, migration and diaspora are core notions in the recreation and reconceptualization of the nation and its identities in Capeverdian, Guinean and Saotomean literary and cinematographic culture. Acknowledging that the idea of the postcolonial nation intersects with other social, political, cultural and historical categories, this book scrutinizes written and visual representations of the nation from a wide range of inter- and transdisciplinary perspectives, including literary and film studies, gender studies, sociology, and post-colonial and cultural studies. It makes a valuable contribution to current debates on postcolonialism, nation and identity in these former Portuguese colonies.

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Between Realities and Scenarios: Duty and Authority to Narrate the Nation between Images (Sheila Khan)

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Sheila Khan

Between Realities and Scenarios: Duty and Authority to Narrate the Nation between Images

When knowledge comes,

memory can also slowly return.

Memory and knowledge are one and the same thing.

— Gustav Meyrink, The Golem

abstract

This article sets out to position and critically reflect on the richness of thinking about memory and the authority of memory within the project on written and visual narratives in Cape Verde, São Tomé e Príncipe and Guinea-Bissau. For this specific article, we have analysed two documentaries, As duas faces da guerra (2007) by Flora Gomes and Diana Andringa, and Mionga ki Obo, by Angelo Torres (2005), essential tools for understanding the dialogue between past and present that remains underground.

Introduction: The Duty to Narrate the Nation

2015 was a year crammed with celebrations, a year that invited us to celebrate the independence of many Portuguese-speaking African countries. However, it was also a year of reflection on human interdictions, on walls that reduce to ‘nothing’ the lives of those who seek a little hope in order to survive because of political cynicism and ineffectiveness. It was a year that deserves to be analysed because of the imprisonments, injustices and diplomatic failures of which all those who believe in freedom of expression, freedom of thought, and the values and principles for which the so-called African Portuguese-speaking countries fought, are victims. It was a year...

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