African Diasporic Cinema: Aesthetics of Reconstruction

On this episode, we’re joined by Daniela Ricci to discuss her book, African Diasporic Cinema: Aesthetics of Reconstruction.

The African diasporic condition in the Western world is characterized by the intersection of various factors. As a result, quests for the self and self-reconstruction are frequent themes in the films of the African diaspora, and yet the filmmakers refuse to remain trapped in the confines of an assigned, rigid identity. Translated from the French by Melissa Thackway, Daniela Ricci’s African Diasporic Cinema: Aesthetics of Reconstruction analyzes the aesthetic strategies adopted by contemporary African diasporic filmmakers to express the reconstruction of identity.

The book analyzes the contemporary diaspora through the prism of cultural hybridization and the processes of recomposing fragmented identities, out of which new identities emerge. In the words of Francoise Pfaff, African Diasporic Cinema “brilliantly incorporates sociopolitical, psychological, and philosophical tools … Ricci’s well-documented book highlights personal journeys and diverse representations of global issues: migration, exile, biracialism, hybrid cultural identities, exclusion, alienation, and alterity. A must read for researchers in film, African studies, and diaspora studies.”

Daniela Ricci teaches film studies at Paris Nanterre University and the University of Paris 8 in France. She is part of the research laboratory History of Arts and Representations and is a member of the African Federation of Film Critics, the African Studies Association, and the African Literature Association.

Daniela Ricci’s book, African Diasporic Cinema, is available at and other fine booksellers. You can find her online at her website, which is linked in the podcast description and on Facebook. You can connect with the press on Facebook and @msupress on Twitter, where you can also find me @kurtmilb.

The MSU Press podcast is a joint production of MSU Press and the College of Arts & Letters at Michigan State University. Thanks to Daniel Trego, Madiha Ghous, Kylene Cave, and the team at MSU Press for helping to produce this podcast. Our theme music is “Coffee” by Cambo.
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