'Black Panther slants more to an African American experience more than African'

Representation and the concept of an uncolonised African are part of what has pulled audiences to Marvel's Black Panther, says Ph.D. candidate in Anthropology and history of Art at Wits University, Mpho Matheolane.

The film which made its debut in South Africa on Friday has smashed multiple box office records.

The movie is the first Marvel movie to be directed by a black filmmaker and feature a predominantly black cast.

It stars South African actors, John and Atandwa Kani as well as Connie Chiume alongside Chadwick Boseman, who plays the titular role.

Matheloane says while it attempts to include African countries through its aesthetics, the narrative of the film points in the direction of the African American experience more than it does the African.

We are dealing with Africa from a point of view of Wakanda, this fictional place. We are not really dealing at any point with what is happening on the periphery of Wakanda, the rest of the continent.

Mpho Matheolane, Phd candidate in Anthropology and history of Art at Wits University

Instead a lot of reference keeps being made to Oakland, the experiences of black people overseas, incarceration and police brutality. So you can immediately see which side it is sort of slanting towards.

Mpho Matheolane, Phd candidate in Anthropology and history of Art at Wits University

Click on the link below to hear more from Matheolane....


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