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Miss Bamboo

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Cross-cultural seminar has provided me an opportunity to learn the new knowledge or contents I have never touched before, and also to meet people from all over the world.


I was assigned to the group to talk about the stereotype and misconceptions about Africa in contemporary cinema. In fact, I was so excited about this new topic since I do have the same stereotypes about those Africa movies. Similar with others' opinion, I thought that African movies only contain violence, disease, war, and so on. Also African people are all black people without smiling. On the other hand, I was so concerned about this new topic since I have never watched movies about Africa and I have never searched the information on the internet. However, our professor guided us to the right direction. He was well prepared to show us what the definition of stereotype and misconception are, what movies about Africa we should watch to get a deeper understanding, and what research we should be done to find the results. So after the lessons, researches and other groups' presentations, I know that not all African people are black. For example, Charlize Theron looks same as American people. She is not black but she is an African. Moreover, African people are good at dancing, music and rhythm. They are happy everyday, and they are nice and friendly. It seems that the western movie makers exaggeratedly described those negative things in the movies so that the audiences only remembered the bad things happened in Africa but positive topics.


In my group, we have 7 people. Surprisingly, five of them are French and the other one can speak French. The non-French speaking person is only me. At first, I thought it was hard to work with the French people because they all had a conversation in French and I can only understood a little. But they were very nice since they knew I cannot speak French. We started to speak English to communicate. Even though they cannot speak fluent English and sometimes, they didn't know how to express by using English, according to their body language and a few vocabularies I have for French, I totally understood what we talked. In addition, by communicating with them, I also learned and experienced some French culture. For example, one morning, one of my group male members came to me and kissed both my cheek, I was so shocked. Then they explained to me that this is French people's way to say hello. In order to involve in here, they were very willing to teach me some general basic French conversation so that I could go out to use those sentences.

In conclusion, from cross-cultural seminar, I not only had a chance to learn a lot about African cinemas, but also made friends from France. Knowing the real story about Africa, I could prevent the stereotype and misconception about African cinemas.



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