Curious about film footage of life in India during British rule? This is a quick mention of a fab and free event this weekend, of public archive footage of this period in India, especially focusing on Punjab.
In “From the Archives: The Colonial Eye: British Empire images of the Punjab, India 1912 – 1947” artist Tajender Sagoo “has curated a series of short films produced during the British rule of India with a focus on the Punjab. The screening will bring together public information and travelogue films found in British public archives and rarely seen on the big screen.
The public information films selected are examples of state propaganda used to form public opinion, a practise still prevalent today in regions such as Afghanistan, Pakistan and India, even in this era of digital media. The travelogues selected are personal observations of places and people. Screened together they form a visual essay of Punjab as written by its rulers and administrators.“
The screening is going to be followed by a panel discussion with “four specialists on South Asian film, popular culture and history discussing what the films can tell modern day viewers and taking questions from the audience.”
Given my own family’s Punjabi background, it would be interesting to know more about how the Raj viewed the Punjab during my grandparents' time. Even for a south Londonist, this sounds well worth crossing the river for.
This event takes place Sunday 19 February at 14.00 at the Pheonix Cinema, 52 High Road, East Finchley N2 9PJ. It's free but booking is essential (Box Office 020 8444 6789)