Africa

I’ve watched three episodes of David Attenborough’s new series on the iPlayer so far
and, as ever with his programs, am captivated by the photography and the
stories that unfold.  But there is something disquieting about this series, although it took a while for me to put a finger on what exactly was bothering me.   Then I realised … no humans.  Attenborough paints Africa as if it were a Garden of Eden, before Adam
and Eve came along and started spoiling things.   My own memories of Africa are of places teeming with people, not the vast, empty wildernesses that he portrays.   I found the “Eye to Eye” segments at the end of the program to be the most interesting parts because here, for a five minute segment, humans are allowed to intrude, albeit with the focus on the derring-do of the cameramen  as they collected the footage.  There is something of the colonial era in the footage of a column of native bearers plus one or two Europeans snaking through the bush.  Even in these segments the Africans themselves seem to be relegated to the supporting cast. 

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One thought on “Africa

  1. Pingback: David Attenborough: psalmist for our secular age? – microscopesandmonsters

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