Arthur Jafa

  • Menace II Society

    IT IS ONLY WITH DIFFICULTY that I tolerate the mediocrity of most contemporary black cinema, a trick I manage by constantly reminding myself that mediocrity is a necessary stage in the development of a mature practice. What I’m unable to tolerate is the delusional critical assessment of these films. Simply put, the so-called New Black Film Renaissance is as clear a case of the Emperor’s new clothes as I How can think of. With a handful of exceptions, these films are barely worth discussing in anything but the most base sociological or, worse, commercial terms. The incapacity, really the


    Ten years of research, fundraising, and production went into the making of Daughters of the Dust, which later this month will become the first feature-length film written, directed, and produced by an African-American woman, Julie Dash, to enjoy a major theatrical release. The story, set in the Carolina Sea Islands at the turn of the century, focuses on the Gullah people, a group of African-Americans who retained a distinct Africacentric culture during slavery because they were isolated from the Southern mainland. The film’s central theme is the spiritual conflict experienced by one Gullah family