Analysis Of The Film Amandla

Superior Essays
“Throughout the struggle there was music,” the narrator says as depicting graphic images of death and cruelty in South Africa. That is how the movie Amandla! A Revolution in Four-Part Harmony begins, with the viewing of pictures and film that depicts the Apartheid in South Africa. Apartheid was the segregation movement in South Africa that with a textbook definition means “separate development” whereas truthfully it entailed a set of laws that were passed which decided who could live, travel, learn and be buried where and with whom dependent on their race (Roberts, 54). It classified people of white and black and distinctively separated them in a violent matter. Although all of this mass disappoint spread across South Africa, there was one …show more content…
interviews and portrays different musical performances and artists and their stories of how music helped them overcome the challenges they faced as an individual in South Africa during Apartheid. These artists and performances communicated the concept that music was an escape from reality and a form of empowerment during a hard time of repression, however they also shed light on the idea that the music would not have come if there was not a feeling of discontent and separation between 1948 and 1990. The ways that the songs are sung and performed and the ways that the artists speak during the film, seem to me to say that music came as a result of discrimination; that without these awful events occurring around them, the people of South Africa may not have sung such powerful songs and created intense musical …show more content…
The book Music and Protest in 1968 by Barley Norton and Beate Kutschke discusses various use of music through protest and struggle in many different countries. The section that I chose to focus on however is about the nueva cancion movement, otherwise known as the “new song movement” in Latin America, Spain and the Caribbean. This movement was during 1970 where the “coming together of political parties to form…resistance to brutal Latin American dictatorships…and their dark years…followed but the struggle for new democracies,” occurred (Norton, 119). Nueva Cancion was a time where different generations of music came together to help “support social and political change in their respective countries,” (Norton, 120). The specific section of this chapter that I chose to compare to Amandla! is where the authors discuss 1968 in Mexico where there Olympics were supposed to take place and the three hundred students who were “peacefully demonstrating in Mexico City were mown down by a hail of military bullets,” (Norton 125). The songs that came after this event were all ballads that depicted the story of what happened while acting as a source of education on what occured. This relates to some of the songs in Amandla! during the apartheid movement and how they painted a story through song as well. The song about the event in Mexico City was called

Related Documents

  • Improved Essays

    It made residential segregation compulsory, leading to eviction of Indians, Blacks and Coloureds from their homes. As a result, long established communities were destroyed (Visser, 2007). Apartheid was officially made a universal term by the United Nations in the 1976 (Mama, 1995). According to Mama (1995), apartheid is characterized by forcible transfer of populations, land control, labour exploitation, humiliation and murder. Under apartheid, various races were separated into different regions, and discrimination against people of colour was not only acceptable but legally entrenched; with whites having priority housing, jobs, education, and political power.…

    • 945 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Superior Essays

    Amandla! A Revolution in Four-Part Harmony Film Essay Amandla! A Revolution in Four-Part Harmony is a film that portrayed Apartheid in South Africa around the late 1940’s and early 1990’s. Music was a big influence to the South Africans during this time period, but the reason for that being is part of what is being discussed. Some believe that music resulted from the resistant movement against Apartheid because the songs that were sung were consisted of their struggles with the issue.…

    • 1625 Words
    • 7 Pages
    Superior Essays
  • Improved Essays

    One of the first writers in the Harlem Renaissance was Claude McKay. McKay channeled his strong feelings of pride and disdain into poetry that stood against racism in America. He was joined by Langston Hughes and Zora Neale Hurston, along with Countee Cullen, Alain Locke, and Dorothy West, who all wrote about their lives as African Americans living in a prejudice Caucasian America. In addition to writing, many Africans Americans funneled their feelings into music. Jazz, a type of music created from ragtime and Dixieland genres combined, was launched into the music scene by Louis Armstrong.…

    • 497 Words
    • 2 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Superior Essays

    Black South Africans were given harsh punishment for petite crimes that they committed. The justice system was in place to protect white South African at all means. Then came the apartheid law which was a law that was formally enforcing the separation of Black and White South Africans. Black South Africans were now even more limited in many aspects in their land. They now had restrictions for living, and…

    • 1753 Words
    • 8 Pages
    Superior Essays
  • Superior Essays

    This hatred stemmed not from natural instinct but instead had been carefully cultivated through propaganda and threats. This can be seen in R.W. Johnson’s, SOUTH AFRICA A BRAVE NEW WORLD, in which it is stated that, “One was told, ‘the country would burn’ and there would be ‘blood on the streets’.” (Johnson 2009). This kind of threatening diatribe did not aid in giving a fair view of the black population but rather drove the white population to start associating black people with death and danger. A concept introduced within the white community, ‘Die Swart Gevaar’ created a literal fear of black people, insinuating that they are a race to be wary of (Koen 2013).…

    • 2081 Words
    • 9 Pages
    Superior Essays
  • Great Essays

    In order to research why music hasn’t been a leading factor in the battle against racism, I first need to discover many positive uses in which, music, as an art, has leap bounds over political speech and protests. I can use this knowledge of both history and deeper inflections in the music to express why music will be a better healer of the wounds of racism as well as a defender and preserver of pop culture for minorities. Malcolm, Douglas. “"Myriad Subtleties": Subverting Racism through Irony in the Music of Duke Ellington and Dizzy Gillespie.” Black Music Research Journal, University of Illinois Press, 1 June 2016, muse.jhu.edu/article/619211. Accessed 17 Sept. 2017.…

    • 1537 Words
    • 7 Pages
    Great Essays
  • Improved Essays

    It is my opinion that during that time the state of racial injustice and suffering African Americans needed a musical leader/s that weren’t so inclusive with whites. I think what Sly and the Family Stone were proving by being all-inclusive of everyone was meant to benefit their musical sound which sacrificed their credibility when singing about African American struggles. On the other hand James Brown was able to unite blacks and whites with his performances, but by still portraying himself as a strong black figure for his people. For example, He was the first black performer to go to Vietnam during the war. An article in “Next Avenue” states, “James Brown’s willingness to perform for U.S. soldiers in Vietnam had a significant impact on easing racial tensions overseas and at home.” I believe that by James Brown stepping up to the plate in this way demonstrated his unparalleled ability to bring people of all races together and…

    • 737 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    Desmond Tutu was a freedom fighter with a big goal at the end of the apartheid era; to reconcile the country through the influence of Ubuntu. This topic was selected because today black South Africans are still facing the horrors of apartheid, despite its ending in the 1990s. Desmond Tutu is a freedom fighter who still living, he has recently worked to bring equality to South Africa. Tutu 's efforts to reconcile the country are relevant today, since he uncovered the truth behind the injustice that black South Africans were subjected to. As a result, South Africans are attempting to heal from their past in the hopes that the various ethnicities can work together to secure a better future.…

    • 753 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Great Essays

    Cry Freedom Themes

    • 1808 Words
    • 8 Pages

    He even declares that the system of apartheid is tied up with the systems of capitalism, white supremacy and deliberate oppression. In Peter Davis’s In Darkest Hollywood: Exploring the Jungles of Cinema's South Africa, he suggests that the film disarms Biko and making him non-threatening to whites. Davis goes on to say that this depiction isn’t authentic to how Biko’s generation perceived him and the implicit message that he carries throughout the movie of ‘ love thy white neighbour’ isn’t truthful whatsoever. Biko protested that Blacks need to have their own singular voice and for White liberals to appeal to their white neighbour’s conscience instead trying to speak for black people. It is hard to rationalize the representation of…

    • 1808 Words
    • 8 Pages
    Great Essays
  • Improved Essays

    Blacks and whites couldn 't be in public places together they had different parks, bathrooms, entrances to buildings, post offices, public transportation and more. Black were given a special type of education which were being useful to labors. They prepared Africans for unskilled, hard labor positions. The white government discriminated against Blacks South Africans using social laws, unfair economic policy. Nelson Mandela fought for apartheid in South Africa.…

    • 1109 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Improved Essays