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Voices, Languages, Discourses

Interpreting the Present and the Memory of Nation in Cape Verde, Guinea-Bissau and São Tomé and Príncipe


Edited By Ana Mafalda Leite, Jessica Falconi, Kamila Krakowska, Sheila Kahn and Carmen Tindó Secco

This volume brings together a selection of interviews with writers and filmmakers from Cape Verde, Guinea-Bissau and São Tomé and Príncipe in order to examine representations and images of national identity in the postcolonial narratives of these countries. It continues and completes the exploration of the postcolonial imaginary and identity of Portuguese-speaking Africa presented in the earlier volume of interviews Speaking the Postcolonial Nation: Interviews with Writers from Angola and Mozambique (2014).

Memory, history, migration and diaspora are core notions in the recreation and reconceptualization of the nation and its identities in Cape Verdean, Guinean and São Tomean literary and cinematographic culture. By assembling different generations of writers and filmmakers, with a wide variety of perspectives on the historical, social and cultural changes that have taken place in their countries, this book makes a valuable contribution to current debates on postcolonialism, nation and identity in these former Portuguese colonies.

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Júlio Silvão Tavares


Júlio Silvão Tavares was born in 1959 in Cape Verde; he is a specialist of Cape Verdean traditional culture and created a group of experimental theatre between 1993 and 1997. He is the producer and director of the cultural programme Dragoeiro broadcasted on TCV – Televisão de Cabo Verde [Cape Verde TV] between 1994 and 1996 and director of the cultural programme Articultura on Rádio de Cabo Verde [Radio Cape Verde] in 1999. He worked as producer for the film O desafio [The Challenge] in 2006 and is the director of the film Batuque: the Soul of the People (2010). He runs the project Cinema Aberta [Open Cinema], a joint initiative of Silvão – Produções, Filmes, Tavares’ own production company, and the French Cultural Institute, which organizes screenings of films produced in or about Cape Verde by Cape Verdean and foreign producers and filmbmakers. The screenings, on big screens, take place in public spaces in different towns and villages and are free of charge. His documentary Eugénio Tavares, Coração Crioulo [Eugénio Tavares, Creole Heart] was the only Cape Verdean project selected for funding in the competition DOC-TV CPLP, in which the Community of Portuguese-speaking countries (CPLP) awards grants to film makers producing TV documentaries.

Q. We would like you to talk a bit about yourself and your career, and about the relationship between literature and cinema in Cape Verde.

A. I only started out in my career...

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