AfricAvenir commemorates Africa Day 2016 with the screening of Zabana!
AfricAvenir presents on 28 May, 19h00, the Namibian Premiere of “Zabana!” (Said Ould Khelifa, Algeria, 2012) at the Goethe Institute.
Zabana! was Algeria’s official entry to the Academy Awards (Oscars) for Best Foreign Film in 2013.
The liberation of the African continent, and founding of the OAU/AU is unthinkable without the anti-colonial struggle of the Algerian people, the contribution of its martyrs like Zabana and its theoretical discourse effecting the whole continent (e.g.Fanon).
Venue: Goethe Institute, Date: 28.May, 19h00, Entrance is 40,- N$.
In May 2016, sixty years ago, on the morning of May 19, 1956, thirty-year-old Ahmed Zabana, an Algerian militant associated with the Front de Libération Nationale (FLN), was executed in Algiers by the French colonial administration as an example and a warning to other freedom fighters. Dragged into the prison courtyard, Zabana had his hands tied and was forced to kneel and lodge his neck inside the guillotine. Twice, the blade stopped in mid-descent, until the third attempt took his life. Zabana’s execution – the first of many that day – galvanized the capital city and made Zabana into a national hero. Six months later, the Battle of Algiers erupted, and the country was launched onto the path that would eventually see Algeria throw off its colonial yoke.
About the film:
The blade stopped twice, before it decapitated the Algerian revolutionary Ahmad Zabana in a sharp stroke. Ahmed Zabana was the first Algerian martyr to be executed by guillotine (May 1956); after the French government with Francois Mitterand as the minister of justice, approved its use.
After Zabana, 222 Algerians were executed in this way.
Zabana’s execution formed part of the Battle of Algiers (as can also be seen in the open scene of the film with same title).
The execution was followed by a response campaign by the Algerian FLN that launched an entirely new phase of resistance to French colonialism in Algeria.
Barely 30-years-old, his martyrdom sparked the Algerian war that started six months after his execution.
An absolutely stunning and moving film on the power of both individual and collective will in resistance and liberation movements, with a strong focus on political imprisonment in anti-colonial struggle. This film is less of a history lesson or timeline of the Algerian War for Independence than it is a glimpse into the raw sacrifice that liberation often entails, for those we remember and those we do not.
Contact: Hans-Christian Mahnke, director & chairperson of the board, 0855630949, [email protected]