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French (Neo-)Colonialism in (West) Africa: Revisiting Jean-Jacques Annaud’s Noirs et Blancs en Couleur (1976)

Siendou Konate


In 1976 French filmmaker Jean-Jacques Annaud took a spectacular step in the postcolonial debate by shedding considerable light on France’s colonial past, using sarcasm and irony to render France historically answerable to her former colonies. This paper seeks to revisit Annaud’s Noirs et Blancs en Couleur (Black and White in Color) against the backdrop of the current undying French imperialism. It will also examine the Hegelian attitudes that led to the occurrence of such imperial atrocities. As evidenced by then-President Nicolas Sarkozy’s 2007 address at Cheikh Anta Diop University in Senegal, in which he attempted to justify France’s colonial past, these viewpoints are still very much in existence. This gives the film an extra level of relevance in today’s world.


Cinema; Africa; West; Colonialism; Imperialism; French; Islam; Christianity; Humanism

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West Africa Review. ISSN: 1525-4488 (online).
Editors: Adeleke Adeeko, Nkiru Nzegwu, and Olufemi Taiwo.

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