How do you talk about rape in a place where basic human rights are systematically violated? Does a bloody story have to be written in blood so that people understand? Where are the stories of dignity?
“The rape of the land, the mutilation of the flesh.” La femme Congolaise - courageous and industrious despite the vicissitudes and the turbulence of life. She continues to fight for
herself, taking on professions previously reserved for men. More often then not she must pay her children’s school fees and compensate for her husband who is either underpaid, unemployed, or absent.
She sells kikwembe at Zando market ; she is an engineer repairing electronics on the corner of the street, she is a designer, a stylist, minister, or teacher...
Demonstrating their incredible strength and their faith in their ability to continue their own advancement, these women stand strong in their communities even as they denounce the rape and the violence they experience. “Both earth and mother, she is the foundation, like Kinshasa herself, scorned and beloved.”
Matata is a film told primarily through dance. It features a young fashion model, Sarah, who becomes haunted by history when she is dressed as a replica of a photograph taken during King Léopold II’s brutal colonial rule of Congo. As she struggles to reclaim her identity, she encounters historic, contemporary, and futuristic characters, who collectively help her piece together her place in Congo’s past, present, and future.
“Ka-pi-ta”is the official job title given to Congolese charged with enforcing their white master’s bidding—through domination—over their fellow Congolese on plantations, in factories, in commerce, and other sites of capitalist extraction and production.
From one perspective, this history of exploitation in Congo is well documented from the colonial era to the present. There are a wealth of images of the copper and cobalt mines that fueled the industrial revolution, of the coltan and niobium mines that fuel the electronic revolution. But even in their efforts to reveal violence, such images often render the engines of exploitation invisible. By recoding archival footage and intertwining it with contemporary images, Kapita exposes patterns of extraction and burial to decode colonial representations—and exploitation—of central African land and people and mines the archival films for what they make invisible: the black-skinned workers evaporated by cameras calibrated to white, the collateral death and destruction interred in infrastructure..