SOAS University of London

Centre of African Studies

International Mother Language Day special event: Colours of the Alphabet Screening and Discussion

Professor Nick Higgins (University of the West of Scotland), Dr Seraphin Kamdem (SOAS)

Date: 21 February 2018Time: 7:00 PM

Finishes: 21 February 2018Time: 9:00 PM

Venue: Russell Square: College Buildings Room: B202

Type of Event: Film

Colours of the Alphabet (2016, Zambia/UK/NZ, dir. Alastair Cole) is a feature documentary film on language and childhood in Africa, telling the story of three Zambian children and their families over two school terms, and asking the question: does the future have to be in English?

When nearly 40% of the world’s population lack access to education in their own language, the film offers an intimate, moving and often humorous insight into a global phenomenon from the unique perspective of three innocent children.

Steward, Elizabeth and M’barak are three first time school pupils in rural Zambia, struggling to make sense of an educational system where the language they speak at home is different from the language used in the classroom, and slowly discovering that their tongue is no longer their own.

The film will soon be available with subtitles in 27 African Languages as part of a unique continent wide release with the Afridocs platform.

Come join the academic producer and director of the film for a post-screening discussion on the theme of mother-tongue education.

Professor Nick Higgins (University of the West of Scotland) -
also producer of the film
Dr Alastair Cole (University of Newcastle) -

Chair: Dr Seraphin Kamdem (SOAS)


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