Narrative how many girls during this practice have

Narrative within
Moolaadé, is a very important film element in order to educate and discuss
social and political changes within Africa. The audience is introduced to the
practice of female “purification” in which Sembene attacks by focussing on all
the physical and mental pain that comes with the practice, such as the
Caesarean scar, painful sex, the death of Diatou and the suicides of two young
girls. Collé gains support from the community of the wives as she describes her
own experience to the Salindana, “You also buried my two children” and “The
woman doctor opened me up here to let her out” as she shows the brutal
caesarean scar on her stomach, to give birth to her daughter, Amasatou.
Cardullo (2006, pp.644) argues “Collé is spiritually restoring the village’s
wholeness” and “preserving its source of life”. This is due to how many girls
during this practice have had difficult births, unable to bear children or have
died from either infection or blood loss (Cardullo, 2006). Within the
filmmaking, the women themselves are the subject to discussing socio-political
issues. They are not just representing gender as Petty (1996) comments, but as
constructs within political, sociocultural and historical contexts. Bouchard
(2013, p.5) also notes that “women are now viewed as subjects linked to and
interwoven with a plurality of systems: political, cultural…(Sembene’s)
feminine subjects is a site of contest and debate where sociocultural and
political struggles play themselves out, are heard by all, and are refashioned
and retransmitted on a woman’s own terms”. It is suggested through this quote
that women are the voice of empowerment and are a crucial role towards the
development of Africa. Sembene himself also believes there can be no
development within Africa, if women are left out (Petty, 1996).

Sound,
whether spoken or conducted, is a very important feature woven within
filmmaking to produce tension or get across a particular issue and provoke a
response to the spectator. Battleship Potemkin used rhythmic instrumental
montage, such as the intense instrumental in the introduction. However, the
most famous use of rhythmic montage is during the “Odessa steps” sequence.
Eisenstein (1949, p74) comments on how the spectator witnesses the, “rhythmic
drum of the soldiers’ feet as they descend the steps (which) violates all
metrical demands”. This further heightens the scene, making it memorable. A
memorable scene will spark discussion, where the spectator can question the
social and political values within the film. Moolaadé however, took advantage
of the power a woman’s voice can have. Sembene provided all women and young
girls with a voice, therefore marking the importance of self-advocacy (Borden,
2011) as one of the younger girls declares “We do not wish to be cut” although
a young girl, Sembene decided to give her a voice, and make her own decision
for what she wants to do with her own body which is a very powerful thing.

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It
is important within filmmaking, particularly to provoke a discussion about
social and political issues to portray characters in a specific way. This is
one of the main characteristics a spectator will initially engage with. For
instance, despite being a silent film, Eisenstein has cleverly been able to add
a lot of character depth within each person, highlighting the hierarchal
setting on board the ship and only focussing on the ‘weaker’ crowd of victims
up against an army of faceless soldiers during the Odessa steps sequence. For
instance, Eisenstein wanted to convey the social relationship between classes
throughout the film and the hierarchal status on board the ship by as Taylor
(2000, p. 62) comments, by “play(ing) with the montage of attractions. Objects
are chosen for associations that will resonate with the audience”. For example,
you see the pince-nez multiple times within the movie. Firstly, from Smirnov,
the ships moustached doctor, as he clearly sees the maggots within the meat for
the sailors. Hierarchy is clearly shown here, as Smirnov has the final word and
gesture, “The meat is good. No further discussion”. When the revolt on the ship
begins however, Smirnov is thrown overboard, leaving his pince-nez hanging from
a rope, as Taylor says (2000, p. 28) “an iconic reminder to his blindness to
reality”. The next time the spectator sees the pince-nez is on the
schoolmistress on the Odessa steps, which are slashed by the soldiers, “in
order to destroy both her vision and her life” and to “restore the proper order
of society” comments Taylor (2000, p.62). From this use of montage of
attractions, Eisenstein has been able to link socio-political issues, such as
hierarchy and conflict between classes.