• Black and white: cinema, politics and the arts in Zimbabwe

      Piotrowska, Agnieszka (Routledge, 2016-10-04)
      In Black and White Agnieszka Piotrowska presents a unique insight into the contemporary arts scene in Zimbabwe – an area that has received very limited coverage in research and the media. The book combines theory with literature, film, politics and culture and takes a psychosocial and psychoanalytic perspective to achieve a truly interdisciplinary analysis. Piotrowska focuses in particular on the Harare International Festival of the Arts (HIFA) as well as the cinema, featuring the work of Rumbi Katedza and Joe Njagu. Her personal experience of time spent in Harare, working in collaborative relationships with Zimbabwean artists and filmmakers, informs the book throughout. It features examples of their creative work on the ground and examines the impact it has had on the community and the local media. Piotrowska uses her experiences to analyse concepts of trauma and post-colonialism in Zimbabwe and interrogates her position as a stranger there, questioning patriarchal notions of belonging and authority. Black and White also presents a different perspective on convergences in the work of Doris Lessing and iconic Zimbabwean writer Dambudzo Marechera, and how it might be relevant to contemporary race relations. Black and White will be intriguing reading for psychoanalysts, psychotherapists and psychotherapeutically engaged scholars, film makers, academics and students of post-colonial studies, film studies, cultural studies, psychosocial studies and applied philosophy.
    • Lovers in time : practice research in the times of patriotic journalism in Zimbabwe

      Piotrowska, Agnieszka (Intellect, 2016-06-01)
      This article features my practice research in Zimbabwe. In particular, I focus on the issues surrounding the staging of the most controversial theatrical play during the Harare International Festival of the Arts in 2014, Lovers in Time, written by Zimbabwean Blessing Hungwe and produced and directed by myself. I present the case against the background of the media furore that surrounded the production. I see the press reactions, which changed from very positive to irrationally vitriolic, as an example of patriotic journalism and Althusserian interpellation. Under the particular circumstances in Zimbabwe, my whiteness, gender and European background were also an issue discussed both in the media and among the members of our theatrical company when decisions had to be made regarding where the lines of belonging lie and why. The article suggests that open discussions of this nature might be helpful in terms of de-mystifying the cultural challenges and subverting patriarchal notions of production of knowledge in which the myth of objectivity is still advanced as the only valid scholarly interrogation.