WOUBI CHÉRI

Laurent Bocahut, Philip Brooks
France 1998 | 62 Min. | BetaSP, OmeU

WOUBI CHÉRI is a doc­u­men­tary that looks at gay life in con­tem­po­rary Africa. The film takes place in the Ivory Coast and fea­tures a range of char­ac­ters from Vin­cent, a tra­di­tion­al African sto­ry­teller and shaman, to Bar­bara, the viva­cious Pres­i­dent of the local Trans­ves­tite Asso­ci­a­tion. We travel from modern Abid­jan, the cap­i­tal of the Ivory Coast, to small towns in the more tra­di­tion­al coun­try­side. In WOUBI CHÉRI, we exam­ine cru­cial polit­i­cal ques­tions raised today as gays in the Ivory Coast are torn between an old time silent accep­tance and their own desire for more open recog­ni­tion.

In this film dif­fer­ent people from the gay scene of the Ivory Coast will tell their own sto­ries, bring­ing a new sense of gay and les­bian life as it has never been seen before – its humor, emo­tions, pol­i­tics and tra­di­tions, its plea­sure and pain. Our char­ac­ters take us on an explo­ration of their cul­tur­al and sexual iden­ti­ties, lead­ing us into their world as they see and expe­ri­ence it.

Here the para­me­ters are dif­fer­ent to those in the West­ern world, and the expe­ri­ences of homo­sex­u­al Africans change the notion of what is ‚gay’ and what is ‚straight’ for those in the West as well.