Experience of Diasporic Nigerians watching Nollywood Films - ADEKUNLE DETOKUNBO-BELLO

Experience of Diasporic Nigerians watching Nollywood Films
By ADEKUNLE DETOKUNBO-BELLO (London South Bank University, London)

Cultural memory occupies an integral part of the diasporic community’s collective media activity in the 21st Century. It is observed that members of these groups demonstrate compassion and pride each time they individually or commonly experienced viewing their traditional films on television, video or at the cinema.
Academic attention has shifted rapidly towards Audience/Reception studies on this area of narratives and cultural forms as a result of this phenomenological development. A prominent example of this is Marie Gillespie (2000) study on how television and video are being used to re-create cultural traditions within the South Asian Diaspora in Southall, London. However, the popularity of ‘Nollywood’ video films – Nigerian Film Industry – amongst diasporic Nigerian- Londoners encouraged the researcher of this paper to develop a fresh investigation on: Why this new cultural narrative genre becomes so famous in London?
What sense does the Nigerian community in London make of these movies? How do they experience the video films? Focus group and interviewing methods serve as instruments for collecting data which involved five different groups of twenty two participants. The empirical research lasted for thirty days. The study purposely focused on Yoruba- Nigerians who are based in South East London being the primary target audience of the researcher. Some of the major outcome of the study as suggested by the participants indicate that the experience of watching these films remind them of ‘home’ and also give them sense of belonging. For instance, someone said, “when I watch them, they make me feel at home”, and another one said “the hairstyles of the actresses, dressing styles and the traditional costumes are great”, and one particularly said “I enjoy the incantations and verbal expressions”. The outcome of the study reflects the existence of cultural influence in the lives of migrants community wherever they find themselves away from their original homeland, if only a way of relieving nostalgic feelings.

culled from http://www2.lse.ac.uk/media@lse/events/MeCCSA/pdf/papers/Detokunbo-Bello,%20Experience%20of%20Diasporic%20Nigerians-new%20year%20day.pdf

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