Africans vs. African Americans

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Bound Movie 2015Peres Owino, a filmaker who grew up in Kenya confronts the issues between African immigrants and African-Americans in the United States. She engages Africans and African-Americans in a dialogue about the misconceptions they have which are fueled by various stereotypes. She believes that if both groups understood each others history they would forge a much deeper bonds.

Bound: African versus African-Americans is a documentary that addresses the tension that exists between Africans and African-Americans. The film opens with a collage of personal testimonials that expose the rift as more than just childish name-calling with deeper wounds that span hundreds of years. Through exploring the historical experiences of both African-Americans and Africans, the filmmakers provide perspectives that take the events of history and brings to the fore the direct and indirect effects of slavery and colonization on populations that last for generations with no easy solution. Ultimately, Bound smartly focuses on the things that make Africans and African-Americans similar as opposed to dwelling on what divides them, culminating with ideas that promote reconciliation without assuming that it is a simple fix. Kenyan-born director Peres Owino has created an engaging, substantive, and compassionate film that will be a discussion starter and a catalyst for change across the African diaspora. But the film’s exemplary investigation of cultural relations succeeds in reflecting on all societies the importance of examining the ethnic, political, and geographical prejudices within us all.

Peres Owino is a Kenyan-born actress, writer, and dancer. Her latest projects include a lead role in Simon Brand’s feature film Default, a co-starring role in the FX TV show “Terriers,” and directing her original play, “Cut,” at the Walt Disney Concert Hall, an official selection of the REDCAT Fall Studio. Peres is also producing her new play “Stained Sheets,” a follow-up to her successful one-woman play “Beauty for Ashes.”

Ultimately both groups can benefit from unity. African immigrants could learn more about their new country through the eyes of African-Americans and vice versa. But in the end, identifying as one group will do more for our advancement.

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