Emitai (Senegal: 1971)


Ousmane Sembène

Cast list

Robert Fontaine: Commandant
Michel Remaudeau: Lieutenant
Pierre Blanchard: Colonel


Writing Credits: Ousmane Sembène
Cinematography: Michael Remaudeau


The film, Emitai, is the story of the silent resistance among a Diola tribe in West Africa in early World War II. Desiring a strong army, the French tear through villages rallying up men to be transported to France while leaving the women behind to tend to children and the elderly. The tension between the army and villagers grow when the French demand access to their rice crop. The village resistance ends in violence and uproar because rice is not only essential but also sacred to the village.


David Murphy, Fighting for the Homeland? The Second World Ware in the Films of Ousmane Sembene, Project Muse

Robert Greenspun, Screen: 'Emitai' a Tragic Vignette from Senegal: The Program, The New York Times

Academic Articles:
Petty, Sheila. “Postcolonial Transformations: From Emitaï (Sembène 1971) To Moolaadé (Sembène 2004).” International Journal Of Francophone Studies 14.4 (2011): 323-338. Film & Television Literature Index. Web. 15 Nov. 2013.

Baum, Robert. “Tradition And Resistance In Ousmane Sembène’s Films Emitai And Ceddo.” Black and White in Colour: African History on Screen. 41-58. Athens, OH: Ohio UP, 2007. MLA International Bibliography. Web. 15 Nov. 2013.

Peters, Jonathan A. “Aesthetics And Ideology In African Film: Ousmane Sembène’s Emitai.” African Literature in Its Social and Political Dimensions. 69-75. Washington, DC: Three Continents, 1986. MLA International Bibliography. Web. 15 Nov. 2013.

Pfaff, Françoise. “Myths, Traditions, And Colonialism In Ousmane Sembène’s Emitai.” College Language Association Journal 24.3 (1981): 336-346. MLA International Bibliography. Web. 15 Nov. 2013.

Other movies from Senegal made in

Title Country Year Director More infos
Emitai Senegal 1971 Ousmane Sembène
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