Year of Publication
When Mozambique gained independence in 1975, film became one of its most important cultural projects, second only to radio. One of the pressing issues of the new government was to create an idea of nationhood in a country where many ethnic groups, cultures, and languages coexisted. With a literacy rate of only fifteen per cent, film became an important tool in the creation of national identity, by serving as a vehicle for imagining a new community, in the sense described by Benedict Anderson in Imagined Communities. In 1976, the government created the Instituto Nacional de Cinema (National Film Institute) – INC. In this article, I discuss how the new nation was imagined through cinema, in particular in the Kuxa Kanema series, and the impact that it had on the idea of Mozambican nationhood.