Africa in Motion – Notions of Citizenship

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Africa in Motion Launches New Film Series on Notions of Citizenship

29th April – 1st May 2021

With guest filmmakers and speakers including Bazi Gete, Dr Ophira Gamliel, Dr Awol Allo, Victor Opeyokun and Ellie

New film series titled Transgressing Citizenship in the Black Imagination. Drawing on the concepts of citizenship, the relationship to our environment and inter-faith relationships, examining how people have migrated, sought refuge, and settled, in and out of Africa. Films will cover historical and present-day examples from all over the continent illustrating how migration patterns are constantly in flux.

With the COVID-19 pandemic still very much with us,
this series will be held online, and so will the 16th edition of the festival later this year.

Films will screen online
from Thursday, 29th April, 17:00 for 48 consecutive hours.

The two feature films in this series (Red Leaves and Tinghir-Jerusalem) will begin a conversation on past and present-day thriving Jewish communities in Africa and beyond, as this year marks 30 years since Operation Solomon which brought more than 20,000 Ethiopian Jewish people to Israel. The two short films (Rooted and  No Traveler Returns ) in this series grapple with feeling dislocated in territories where one’s identity is unwelcome, and the diasporic predicament of ‘inbetween-ness’, where losing and reclaiming ground is a recurring dilemma.

Register at Eventbrite

The screenings and discussions are free, but registration is

Films include:

Red Leaves


And Shorts: Rooted and  No Traveler Returns 

Newly-appointed director of Africa in Motion, Liz Chege says:

“I’m delighted to present a platform where we can explore our African histories of refuge and inter-faith coexistence. This is especially urgent within a framework of a colonialist history, the Windrush scandal, and empire. Even more poignant, our series coincides with the recently published and widely criticized Commission on Race and Ethnic Disparities (Cred).

We believe it is not possible to contemplate the notion of citizenship without discussing the intersectional aspects of our lives including politics of race, gender, and class.”

Red Leaves

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Based partly on the director’s own life story, FIPRESCI Award-winner Red Leaves (Bazi Gete, Israel, 2015) is about a man who immigrated to Israel from Ethiopia 28 years ago with his family. He has chosen to zealously retain his culture, talks very little, and hardly speaks Hebrew. After losing his wife, he is afraid to be alone. Having come to know some of his life’s new realities, he tries to survive in his own way.

A pre-recorded interview with Gete will be freely available from Thursday 29th April.

 Tinghir-Jerusalem : Echoes from the Mellah (Kamal Hackar, Morocco/Israel, 2014)


Filmmaker and historian Hachkar, a Berber Muslim born in Tinghir (Morocco) and raised in France, returns to Tinghir and discovers a town that once had a thriving Jewish community. By the mid-1960s, 250,000 Jews of Morocco, had left for Israel. They were not driven out by rising Islamism or even political enmity over the Arab-Israeli wars that followed the founding of the state of Israel.

Hachkar sets off in search of that history.

Friday 30 April, 16:30, Online – Illustrated Talk

discussion interfaith communities aim

Illustrated talk from “Rooted” director Victor Opeyokun, followed by a conversation between Victor and Ellie Foumbi (director of “No Traveler Returns”) on each others’ work. (Details of the Zoom link will be included in your ticket. – Register at Eventbrite)

AiM will host a conversation about inter-faith communities, post-colonial migrations and displacement. Dr Awol Allo (Keele University) will host a conversation with Dr Ophira Gamliel (University of Glasgow) and Dr Yolande Cohen (University of Montreal). An animation illustrated talk from Rooted (UK, 1997) director Victor Opeyokun, followed by a conversation between Victor and NoTraveler Returns (USA, 2019) director Ellie Foumbi on each others’ work. Foumbi’s film was featured at the Smithsonian Museum of African American History in a Symposium on Immigration and the changing Dynamics of Blackness.

“A great introduction to the growing disillusion with the Israelis’ melting pot.”

— Yael Even Or, Africa is a Country (on Red Leaves)

“A riveting documentary which promises more debates and films on the place of Jews and Imazighen (Berbers) in Morocco today’s — Africultures (on “Tinghir-Jerusalem”) & Beautiful; touching. One of the most sensitive portrayals of the Israeli Moroccan community. Records a little known historical period of peaceful plurality and its subsequent loss.”

—Al Jadid: A Review of Arab Culture & Arts (on “Tinghir-Jerusalem”)


Glasgow Film Theatre - reopening May 2021
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Avatar of PatByrne Publisher of Pat's Guide to Glasgow West End; the community guide to the West End of Glasgow. Fiction and non-fiction writer.

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