Goethe University: New edition “Research Frankfurt” / The future of cinema lies in Africa

If you want to broaden the perspective of the European media and culture industries, you should look at the African media and film industries. The Frankfurt film scholars are convinced of this, researching African media culture with African cooperation partners and also jointly offering a unique master’s degree in film archiving. “It is the incredible energy, the inventiveness of small entrepreneurs and the creative capacity to achieve a great deal with very little” that fascinates film scholar Vinzenz Hediger about African cinema.

After the collapse of the Nigerian celluloid film culture in the 1990s, the Nigerian film market developed into one of the largest in the world, with filmmakers using what was available – technology and distribution – creatively: they sold it on VHS cassettes and also as pirated copies with simple means shot home videos. The cinema called New Nollywood , on the other hand, has been enjoying success since the noughties by using the new digital technology and the new sales channels on the Internet. How will the culture industry change if the production of film and music is increasingly digitized? The researchers at Goethe University are investigating these questions in the interdisciplinary, international research project Cultural Entrepreneurship and Digital Transformation in Africa and Asia(CEDITRAA) – together with partners in Mainz as part of the strategic alliance of the Rhine-Main Universities (RMU) and the cooperation partner Pan-Atlantic University in Lagos in Nigeria.

In the current issue of “Research Frankfurt”, researchers from Goethe University report on their research projects with an African perspective. For example, it is about the question of why African migrants in the Rhine-Main area learn German particularly quickly, how the population in Burkina Faso and Gambia assess the commitment of inner-African peace organizations and how the links between African and Asian countries are created beyond stereotypes are. You can read about archaeological research that looks at the migration movements and eating habits of earlier cultures, or about the exploration of previously unknown rock paintings in the Namib Desert. The post-colonial debate also has its place in the special issue: it asks