Colonialism & Invasion

Watching both Ceddo directed by Ousamane Sembene and Perfumed Nightmare directed by Kidlat Tahimik, gave me a much deeper insight on colonialism and invasion in cultures that I don’t often learn about. I’m going to first focus my analysis on Ceddo and then switch over to discussing Perfumed Nightmare, and in the end, tie the two together.

Ceddo follows a tribal community who is being affected by the spread of Islam. While some of the community wants to preserve their old customs and traditions, others are willing to submit to the laws of the Islamic religion. We watch how a series of events effect the relationships. This view on history puts colonialism in a whole other perspective. I know from my education that parts of Africa were colonized by the Europeans. I didn’t realize how Islam also impacted these people and how the impact drastically changed whole communities.

Perfumed Nightmare, is a much more narrative film. We watch how history affects and shapes society. The film is a semi-autobiographical account of Kidlat’s experiences. We watch how Filipino goes from idolizing Western culture in regards to technology, to then rejecting the rapid advancements within his own society.

The films reflect post-colonial thought in a way. The films reflect how the producers views colonialism and invasion of thought on one’s culture. For much of human history, colonialism seems to be an occurring act. The British were one nation who had control of much of the globe as far as territory go. Yet, these films go deeper in looking at events in history that are not as commonly talked about. Ceddo analyzes the impact of Islam on a Senegalese community. Perfumed Nightmare analyzes how people can be infatuated with different cultures, without necessarily wanting those cultures to encroach their own.

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