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Women of Manga (Niger) [electronic resource]

This program is devoted to the women of a warrior tribe whose origin is ancient but unknown and which lives today in eastern Niger. It shows the life of the people, focusing on the traditions according to which the women live, behave, and make themselves beautiful-the complicated painting that constitutes makeup, the even more complicated hairstyles and their meanings, the role of facial scars and jewelry; the same standards of beauty are applied to objects.

Niger [electronic resource]: The Slaves

In the African republic of Niger, an estimated 870,000 people are born into slavery. Despite being technically illegal, slavery is so engrained in Niger's national psyche that a government spokesman downplayed it as a "cultural tradition." This film explores the state of slavery in Niger and the social and economic factors that keep the practice alive. In the world's second poorest country finding a job is unthinkable for many, especially when their family has been held in captivity for generations. But for others, nothing can undermine the simple pleasures of being free. "Now I can sit, sleep, and wake up whenever I want," states Asibig. "From the day I was born, I never felt happy until I was free.

The Wodaabe [electronic resource]

The Wodaabe of the Sahara are among the last true nomads. Anthropologist Mette Bovin travels with the Wodaabe as they follow their herds in an endless migration across African borders, resisting pressures to settle down and lead a "normal" life. Though their herds have been devastated by drought, they intend to hold on to their way of life, in which ritual and taboo play a major part. As the Wodaabe also value male beauty, the men adorn themselves with makeup.

Arlit [electronic resource]: Deuxieme Paris

This case study in "environmental racism" looks at the environmental and social wreckage left behind by a global uranium mining operation in Niger. Arlit, once a boom town, flourished in the early 70's its uranium mines employed 25,000 workers from around the world in high paying jobs. Arlit was alive 24 hours a day, earning it the nickname, 'le deuxiéme Paris.' Then came the collapse in uranium prices and the Tuareg rebellion against the central government in Niamey. When there was nothing more which the Europeans wanted they abandoned Arlit, leaving behind derelict machinery littering the desert. This film demonstrates the ultimate bankruptcy of overseas investment in commodity based industry as a strategy for development.
2014; 2004