Morocco in the Wing Mirror of Colonial Cinema: Anthropology of a Glance

“Of course, cinema is not the whole story. But without it, there would be no knowledge of our time.” – Marc Ferro

“To analyze colonial anthropological knowledge is to identify the prejudices and errors that have guided it. The sociology of knowledge would thus be reduced to a sociology of ignorance.” – – Hassan Rachik, Le proche et le lointain

“A starving man, a humiliated man, must be shown by name and surname; no fable for a starving man, because that is something else, less effective and less moral.”  – Cesare Zavattini.

Berber Symphony, 1947

A quarrel of images

 

First and taking heed of quite recent news: Cinema has been at the heart of major controversies involving the question of its relationship with society. The past year has been marked by two major events that could enlighten our debate with eloquent illustrations. In France, Abdellatif Kechiche’s Blue is the warmest color was denied an authorization of exploitation, in other words, a prohibition pure and simple from distribution in either movie theaters or through any other support. In Morocco,  Nabil Ayouch’s Much loved has been banned in conditions that speak volumes about our time. Two prohibitions attesting that images continue to arouse passionate reactions, beyond contingencies and procedures.

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