In terms of the so-called 'clash of civilisations' after '9/11', Islamic states such as Algeria have too often been perceived in the West as 'other' and hence as threatening. This book, via an analysis of cinema, provides a discussion on some misunderstandings and assumptions about Algeria, which remains to a large extent underrepresented or misrepresented in the UK media. It is about Algerian national cinema and illuminates the ways in which the official mythologising of a national culture at the 'centre' of the postcolonial state has marginalised the diverse identities within the nation. Tahia ya didou occupies a pivotal position between fiction and documentary, capturing the hectic modernization of the Boumediene era while reflecting back on the aftermath of historical trauma. La Citadelle presents gender differences as culturally engrained and patriarchal power as secure. Youcef, Bab El-Oued City and Rome plutôt que vous present differing visions of how a Freudian melancholia in the shadow of a crushed revolt might relate to Algerian experience after Black October. Lettre à ma soeur listens to the voices of the subaltern; the film is a sense of re-emergence that follows the initial insurgency of Nabila's activism, the trauma of her killing and the subsequent years of silence and self-imposed incarceration.
women who worked with her, were educated by her and were traumatised by her
murder. Above all, then, Lettre à ma soeur listens to the voices
of the subaltern.
A key theme in the interviews throughout the film is a sense
of re-emergence that follows the initial insurgency of Nabila’s
activism, the trauma of her killing and the subsequent years of silence and
self-imposedincarceration. One of Nabila’s former colleagues, who
on his care,
Burden relied on donations of food and water from the employees of the gallery (the
Market Street Program, Venice, California) and his audience, who became activated
as participants – as carers or as jailers – for the duration of his self-imposedincarceration. If such activation forced some audience members to rethink their ethical duty
towards the artist, it also exploited their susceptibility to turn them into unpaid immaterial labourers, encouraged not to dialogue (for Burden remains mute) but to return
with provisions to sustain the artist