The Country Upside Down (Le Pays à l’envers)
A film by Sylvaine Dampierre (2009, 90 min.). Screening followed by Q&A with director Sylvaine Dampierre, Kim Hall, and Nora Philippe
This is part of the film series "Blackness in French and Francophone Film" organized by the Columbia Maison Française and co-sponsored by the School of the Arts.
In this personal journey through the memory of slavery, A Country Upside Down follows Dampierre while she researches for the first time the history of her name in Guadeloupe. Her father left the island to study in France, and he surely conveyed to his daughter a sense of heritage and pride – but it takes the help of a local genealogist, thousands of pages of forgotten archives, and a choreographer to understand the intricate history of the Dampierre family. Composed like a Creole garden, mixing dance, interviews, archives, and intimate reverie shot in Super8, A Country Upside Down shows the other side of France’s mirror.
Columbia University co-sponsors of Blackness in French and Francophone Film: Maison Française; School of the Arts; Institute for Research on Women, Gender and Sexuality; Institute for African Studies; Columbia Global Centers/Paris; European Institute; and Society of Fellows/Heyman Center for the Humanities
Film series presented with support from the Paul LeClerc Centennial Fund, Cultural Services of the French Embassy, la Scam, and the Knapp Family Foundation.