This weekend I had the opportunity to visit with two of Africa’s more important artists, filmmakers, Gaston Kabore and Sidi Fassara Diabate. Kabore, honored at the 34th Annual Mill Valley Film Festival which continues through Sunday, October 16, 2011, graciously offered to translate from the French Diabate’s answers to me. Today's broadcast is a unique opportunity to hear from two directors from the African continent who agree that Africans need to continue to tell their own stories especially now. Today many African youth, mesmerized with the West, have forgotten the glory that is their own heritage. African greatness is not limited to European government hostility, in this case, French invasions nor is post-colonial independence (1960) an accurate view of the greatness limited to the recent history that is Burkino Faso (Mossi kingdom) in the case of Gaston or Mali in the case of director, Diabate, a country which was once “part of three West African empires that controlled trans-Saharan trade: the Ghana Empire, the Mali Empire (from which Mali is named). Both directors came to film through their study of history. Though Diabate has worked on every major film to come out of Mali for the past 20 years, Da Monzon,The Conquest of Samayana is his first major film which is in Bambara with English subtitles. Gaston's two major films are: Wend Kuni or God's Gift and it's sequel Buud Yam, screening this evening,Tuesday, October 11, 2011, at the Rafael at 7 PM. Visit mvff.com
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