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NollywoodThe Creation of Nigerian Film Genres$
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Jonathan Haynes

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780226387819

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: May 2017

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226388007.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM CHICAGO SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.chicago.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of Chicago Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in CHSO for personal use.date: 18 May 2021

Creating Nollywood: Conditions and Foundations

Creating Nollywood: Conditions and Foundations

(p.3) Chapter 1 Creating Nollywood: Conditions and Foundations

Jonathan Haynes

University of Chicago Press

Video technology and the neoliberal deregulation of media environments permitted a true revolution in African filmmaking, overcoming the obstacles that have faced and limited celluloid African cinema. Nollywood had two principle precursors: the Yoruba traveling theater, an African popular art that extended into television and filmmaking; and the Nigerian Television Authority, arguably the most powerful force in creating a Nigerian national identity. In personnel and aesthetics, Nollywood sprang primarily from television serials, as illustrated by the inaugural Nollywood film Living in Bondage. This film appeared in 1992, a moment of crisis for the audio-visual sector and for Nigerian society generally. As Nigerians increasingly depended on the informal sector to get by, the “infrastructure of piracy” (Larkin) devised to service VCRs became the basis for marketing Nigerian video films on video cassettes.

Keywords:   Nigerian television, video, Yoruba traveling theater, media piracy, informal economy, Living in Bondage, African popular arts, aesthetics

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