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Ousmane Sembène at 100: a guide to the life and work of the 'father of African cinema'

By Imruh Bakari, Senior Fellow in Department of School of Media and Film, University of Winchester
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The impact of filmmaker Ousmane Sembène’s work should not be understated. His films, made in the neorealist style, were concerned with working-class people and tended to use non-professional actors. This allowed him to represent African life on its own terms, focusing on African characters as distinct, thinking and speaking individuals beyond predictable stereotypes. He was also the first to make a film in an African language. For this, he is considered the “father of African cinema”.

Famously stating “

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