Dr Jacqueline Maingard

B. Soc.Sci. (Natal), B. Soc.Sci. (Hons.) (Natal), BA (Dramatic Art) (Wits), MA (Dramatic Art) (Wits), PhD (Wits)

  • BS8 1LN

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Personal profile

Research interests

My research is primarily on histories of the cinema in Africa, particularly South Africa. South African National Cinema (Routledge, 2007), funded in part by the Arts and Humanities Research Council, is an historical overview of cinema produced in South Africa in relation to questions of race and national identity. It maps cinema’s role in the making, entrenching and undoing of apartheid from early silent film to anti-apartheid and post-apartheid films. Research into colonial film includes a focus on the colonial filmmaker Donald Swanson, who directed the historically significant African Jim (popularly known as Jim Comes to Joburg [1949]), (see my article in the Journal of Southern African Studies [2013]). Research on identity in African cinema includes a focus on Abderrahmane Sissako’s Bamako (2006), (two articles, Screen [2010) and Critical African Studies [2013]). My current research investigates the globalization of Hollywood and British cinema and its impact on black, South African audiences, beginning with District Six, Cape Town, an area demolished under apartheid, drawing on recorded life histories of former residents and extending to other similar areas across the country. I am an Honorary Research Associate in the Archive and Public Culture Research Initiative, University of Cape Town, and a member of the History of Moviegoing, Exhibition and Reception (HoMER) Network. I co-lead the Screen Research cluster at the University of Bristol.

I curate public events on South African/African cinema, most recently a UK-wide tour (2014/2015) of the silent film Siliva the Zulu (1927) with the acclaimed musician Juwon Ogungbe, in partnership with several creative and cultural organisations and festivals. I am a Trustee of Africa in Motion Film Festival, collaborate with Bristol’s Afrika Eye Film Festival, and am a member of the University of Bristol’s team working in partnership with the Royal Anthropological Institute Film Festival. My short film Uku Hamba ’Ze – To Walk Naked (1995), produced for the first Johannesburg Biennale, is distributed by Third World Newsreel and continues to enjoy wide international exhibition.


I joined the University of Bristol in 1998, having taught film and television at the University of the Witwatersrand (Wits), Johannesburg for ten years prior to that. I am a graduate of both the Arts and the Social Sciences. I completed a Bachelor of Social Science and qualified as a social worker at the University of Natal, Durban in 1973. I subsequently graduated with a Social Science Honours degree. This was followed by a shift into film studies, first by completing a BA in Dramatic Art at Wits University specialising in film, then completing an MA by research in 1988 with a dissertation on 'Community Film in South Africa as a Mode of Emergent Cultural Production'. I graduated with a PhD from Wits University in 1998 with my thesis on 'Strategies of Representation in Anti-apartheid Documentary Film and Video from 1976 to 1995'.  I have a wide range of work experience especially in Higher Education in South Africa and the UK, but also in community-based, Non-Governmental and anti-apartheid organisations in South Africa.

Teaching and Supervision:

I welcome postgraduate research proposals in any of the following areas: African cinemas; national and transnational cinemas; colonial cinemas; cinema audiences, publics, and cultures; screen research and archive; documentary film; film practice and screen-based practice-as-research.

Recent PhD students include: Nariman Massoumi, Lecturer in Film and Television, University of Bristol. Thesis: ‘Home in the Frame: Diasporic, Domestic Ethnography in Documentary Film Practice’ (2016).

Current students include: Samantha Iwowo, ‘Colonial Continuities in the Neo-Nollywood “Movement”: A Post-Colonial Study’.

Structured keywords and research groupings

  • Migration Mobilities Bristol
  • Centre for Black Humanities


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