NAI library focusing on film

The Nordic Africa Institute library has made a big investment in movies this year. About fifty new films have been purchased, mainly documentary films but also movies. After the new investment there are 350 movies available for borrowers. The range of films that have been purchased are varied, from documentary films on topics such as the AIDS issue, women's issues, waste management, the gay debate in South Africa and the mining industry in South Africa to movies that have a historical value.

– The core of the collection is documentaries from Villon Films. We also bought a few movies, including 'African Jim', the kind of film that have influenced the course of events. It is made in 1949 in South Africa and is the first film that targeted a black audience, says Birgitte Jansen, Mergers and Acquisitions librarian at NAI and purchasing manager for the films that have been purchased from Java Film, New Day films and Villon Film.
Why have you bought these films?
– The library acquires books, films and materials with focus on contemporary Africa. We acquire films also within our disciplines. The core is films with documentary content becaus of the witness accounts. It is important from a research significance point of view because of witness accounts of historical events and social conditions, says Birgitte Jansen.
What does this initiative mean for the library and the Nordic Africa Institute?
– We can offer researchers and students all types of materials that they need for their research. It is with focus on our users that we provide these films.
The range of films that have been purchased are varied, from documentary films on topics such as the AIDS issue, women's issues, waste management, the gay debate in South Africa and the mining industry in South Africa to movies that have a historical value.
Are there any movies that you want to highlight and can recommend?
– The one who touched me most is a movie called 'The Devil's children'. It describes the terrible situation of children with different disabilities in West Africa. It's not a movie I like, but it affects me.
Brigitte Jansen also recommends a movie called  'Black Diamond: Fool's gold'.
– It's about football and it's a very interesting topic. Many boys dream to become football players but many are exploited. It's the life they dream of, but the reality may be different.
She says that the advantage of film is that you get to see images and get influenced in a different way than when you read.
– That is also what we want with the film collection, says Birgitte Jansen.

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