Table of Contents


A: Background Articles:


B. Films in Kiswahili:


Arusi Ya Mariamu


Clean Hands and Face


Clean and Strong Teeth                                                                       


From Sun Up                                                                                        






Kenya Beekeeping


Kenya Youth                                                               


Kiswahili: Lugha, na Utamaduni






Mama Tumaini


Once Upon a Time






Swahili Body Language


Swahili Gestures           


Swahili Language


Tanzanian Education for Self-Reliance


Tanzania: Path of a Nation


Taswiraza Ukimwi


Two Lifestyles




Ushirika Ni Umoja


Uvuvi Wa Magongo




A Young Leader in a Nation


C. Distributor Information


D.Teaching Appendix

-Other Teaching Resources

-WEB Resources

































Ciccone, Anthony, Teaching with Authentic Video: Theory and Practice, in Second Language Acquisition:

Theory and Pedagogy Eckman, Highland, Lee et al eds. (Lawrence Earlbaum Associates, 1995)


Diawara, Manthia Anglophone African Production, in African Cinema: Politics & Culture, M. Diaware, (Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1992)


Diawara, M.  Oral Literature and African Film: Narratology in “Wend Kuuni” in Questions of Third Cinema J. Pines & P. Willemen eds. (London: British Film Institute, 1989)


Gabriel, T. H.  Towards a Critical Theory of Third World Films, in Questions of Third Cinema J. Pines & P. Willemen eds. (London: British Film Institute, 1989)


Harrow, Kenneth  Introduction: Shooting Forward” in Research in African Literature (Special Issue on African Film) 26 (3) 1995 (pp 1-5)


Harrow, Kenneth Women in African Cinema, in Matutu: Journal for African Culture and Society (19) 1997 (pp vii-xii)


Racevskis, Maiji  Applications of African Cinema in the High School Curriculum in Research in African Literatures 27 (3) 1996 (pp 98 -109)


Tomaselli, Keyan Decolonising Film and Television (Teaching Film and TV in Africa) in MATHASEDI Nov/Dec 1994


Ukadike, N. F. “Introduction” in his Black African Cinema (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1994)












228 minutes in English

Distributor: Boston University, (617)-353-200

      AfroVisions, (517)-482-6669

      Education Film Center, 1-800-323-4222 (ext 43)

Purchase Price: $79.97:



Basil Davidson is the host of the series about the people and events that shaped African history and which continue to influence it today.  Visits Africa to show life there today.  Shows archival footage and dramatizations of the history of Africa.


Individual titles include:

Different But Equal/Mastering a Continent: Vol. 1

Caravans of Gold/Kings and Cities: Vol. 2

The Bible and the Gun/This Magnificent African Cake: Vol. 3

The Rise of Nationalism/The Legacy: Vol. 4




A documentary series, in English

Director: Ali Mazuri

Distributor: Cooporation for Public Broadcasting, (202)-879-9600


Instructional Activities

Watch Program 5 and compare it with Davidson’s Africa, Program 7.

I.  Group Task

Discuss the film in English.  Write notes on all important aspects of the film.  Compose  a narrative in Swahili.


(Created by Lioba Moshi)


See additional activities in teaching appendix.


ARUSI YA MARIAMU (The Marriage of Mariamu), 1985

36 minutes in Kiswahili, available with English or French subtitles

Directed by  Nangayoma Ng'oge and Ron Mulvihill

Distributors:             Mosaic Films, 213-673-8413

Gris-Gris Films, 810-881-8725

The Video Project, 800-475-2638



This is a story about a young woman who falls sick immediately after her wedding.  Medical help is sought from all the small and major hospitals without success.  Her family suggest a visit to a traditional medicine man who cures her by helping her reconcile with her deceased father.  The film focuses on the power of traditional medicine and culture.


Teaching Activities

I.  Group Tasks

A.  Students re-tell the story in their own words.

B.  Students discuss the food preparations as shown in the film.

C.  Students discuss the wedding celebrations in the film and compare with what they know about wedding celebrations. 

D.  Students discuss the different attires worn in the play.

E.  Students list other features that are unique in the play.


II.  Writing exercises:

A.  Ask students to write about the place of traditional medicine and beliefs in modern healing systems.

B.  Ask students to describe their cultural backgrounds and experiences with non-conventional medicine.

C.  Ask students to write a comparison bewteen western wedding preparation and what they have learned form the play.


(Created by Lioba Moshi)




CLEAN HANDS AND FACE FOR GOOD HEALTH                                                           

16 minutes in Kiswahili and English

Filmed by MAP International

Distributor: DSR, Inc.

Purchase Price: $39.95

Rental Price: $20.00



“John, an African carpenter, has been able to earn a livelihood for his family from the skilled work he does with his hands.  But when his wife suddenly becomes sick, Aunt Jane tells about the illnesses that germs and chemicals on people's unwashed hands and faces can cause.  She shows the family how to thoroughly wash their hands and face even when there are only small amounts of clean water available.

Important public health information is given in a simple, straightforward and entertaining way.”


(Quoted from distributor's information)



16 minutes in English and Kiswahili

Filmed by MAP International

Distributor: DSR, Inc.

Purchase Price: $39.95

Rental Price: $20.00



“Although Isaac is a strong, healthy grandfather he is losing his teeth because of a lifetime of eating food with refined sugar and bad dental care.  He can no longer eat meat and hard foots.

When Isaac's son John, a volunteer health worker, returns to the village, he tells of the simple things that can be done to allow Isaac to preserve his remaining teeth and allow the villager's children to have a lifetime of strong and healthy teeth.  John demonstrates proper teeth brushing and gives sound public health information in a clear and enjoyable format.”


(Quoted from distributor's information)



28 minutes, in Swahili with English and French subtitles

Director:  Flora M'mbugu-Schelling

Distributor: Maryknoll Productions, 1-800-227-8523

Purchase Price: $149.00

Rental Price: $24.95



This is the story of women of black Africa, of their strength and courage, of their daily struggle, concerns and challenges.



“The film From Sunup chronicles the daily struggle of the Tanzanian woman to support herself and her family.  The rigorous demands of an agricultural life force her to adopt numerous roles just to meet her basic needs.  She is simultaneously mother, farmer, water-gatherer, craftswoman, builder and supporter, assuming each identity soley to survive.  Yet despite the insignificant economic results of such great toil, the Tanzanian woman triumphs - as a vibrant life-giver, a vital nurturer imbued with a spirit of hope and courage.


“From Sunup portrays the spirit and strength of the African female in the face of the inevitable poverty caused by social and environmental conditions.  Although only a segment of Tanzanian life is represented, it is an authentic picture of the life-death struggle against poverty.  In the film, women from rural and urban areas candidly comment on the diverse ways and inherent difficulties of earning insufficient income.


“While political ideology encourages progress through agriculture and applauds women’s contributions, implementation of policies has been slow, and the reality is harsh.  The work is physically exhausting, the opportunity sadly limited, the output disproportionately low.  Yet the women continue to persevere.  By organizing into self-help groups, they combine their resources and support each other, thereby illustrating the powerful resiliency and productiveness of the African woman.


“From Sunup can be used in the American classroom to depict many aspects of daily African life and to provoke discussions of similarities and contrasts between the two cultures.  The film can also be used  effectively as a vehicle for discussing the feminization of poverty, the significant role of women as the sole providers in many Third World situations, and the spiritual strength that empowers these women to continue incorporating varied roles for the good of their families, each other and society”


(Quoted from distributor’s information)


Instructional activities

I.  Discussions questions for before the film:                                                                                   

A.  What are some of the roles you play and activities you do in your daily life?

B.  Why are you doing them?

C.  Predict how your daily actions and roles may compare or contrast with those of individuals in Africa.

II.  Discussion question for after the film:

A.  List some of the roles and daily activities of the Tanzanian women.

B.  What common problems affect the women?

C.  Describe the function of the self-help group.

D.  Describe the significance of song and dance to the women.

E.  Describe the spirit of the Tanzanian women.


(Activities taken from distributor information)



27 minutes, available in Kiswahili, English or French

Distributor: DSR

Purchase Price: $19.95



This is a story about children who are on the streets where drugs, alcohol and solvents are used everyday. Life is hard for these kids. Many of them use substances for their own personal reasons and needs. What happens to some of them is deadly.




50 minutes in Kiswahili and English

Director: P.L. Carter



29 minutes

Distributor: Maryknoll World Productions

Purchase Price:$19.95



18 minutes in Kiswahili

Produced by the University of Guelph





A presentation of the traditional methods of beekeeping in Kenya and newer techniques which have evolved to increase productivity.



Although this film was developed primarily for teaching with the extension program in Kenya, it also serves as an excellent example of a development scheme stressing intermediate technology based on traditional methods that incorporated local industries.  The film is well‑organized and concise.  The role of the University of Guelph in developing the scheme is not overplayed, nor are the traditional methods of beekeeping presented in a negative light.





28 minutes, in English

Distributor: Maryknoll World Productions



This film is a comparison of three Kenyan families.


Instructional Activities

Discuss the film in English.

Ask students to compose a narrative, in Swahili, about schools in Eastern Africa.


(Created by Lioba Moshi)


Instructional Series

Directed by  Lioba Moshi

Distributor: University of Georgia, (404)-542-1184



This twenty three lesson sequence contains authentic footage from Tanzania and can be used at any level of instruction.


Instructional activities

For further information, video scripts, and teaching ideas see Appendix A.





118 minutes in Kiswahili and English

Directors:  Ron Mulvihill and Martin Mhando

Distributor: Gris-Gris Films, 1-800-881-8725



54 minutes in Kiswahili

Distributor: DSR



This is a teenage pregnancy drama.




61 minutes in Kiswahili and English

Directors: Martin Mhando and Sigue Endressen

Martin Mhando

Media Studies

Murdoch University

Perth W.A. 6150

Tel(08) 9360 2987 (w)

Tel(08) 9337 2758 (h)

Fax(08) 9360_ 6570


A Tanzanian woman,, and a Noreigan woman, Eliza, with mutual interest in pottery making befriend each other.  They soon find they have another common bond, they are both having marital problems, Both are having The Tanzanian woman is having trouble having a child and Eliza is bored



29 minutes in English

Distributor: AfroVisions, (517)-482-6669



27 minutes in Kiswahili

Distributor: DSR

Purchase Price: $39.93

Rental Price: $20.00



This is an animated drug abuse drama.



90 minutes, Kiswahili with English subtitles

Distributor: DSR (only available in VHS PAL)

Purchase price: $79.95



A young Maasai girl is promised to the chief's son for marriage and forbidden to continue her education.  She escapes to Nairobi to pursue her dreams, only to find broken promises and lost innocence in the big city.  She returns home and attempts to cope with her family's decisions for her future.




13 minutes, Kiswahili with English subtitles

Produced by the University of Wisconsin-Madison

Distributor: Indiana University, 1-800-552-8620

Purchase price:$99.00



Produced by the University of Washington

15 minutes in Kiswahili with English subtitles



85 minutes in KiSwahili with English subtitles

Filmed by Ahmed Shariff

Distributor: Indiana University, 1-800-552-8620

Purchase Price: $99.00                                                                                   



30 minutes, in English

Distributor: AV-ED Films

Purchase Price: $30.00



A presentation of the steps taken in a rural Tanzanian village towards self reliance in housing construction. 



This film is an accurate demonstration of the process of 'conscientization' developed by the Brazilian educator Paulo Freire to help poor communities in assessing their needs and resources.  Through community dialogue initiated by Tanzanian government officials, this village is shown actively seeking local solutions to housing problems as well as developing 'self esteem.'  As a contrast to the more common 'top down' and 'interventionist' approach to rural development, villagers are shown in this film criticizing attempts made in the past by themselves and by others to improve their standard of living.


Unfortunately, only the successful side of the development education model is presented.  It should be noted that this film depicts a model community‑an experiment.  There are few places in the world where such local initiative is given such strong governmental support.  In addition, housing is only one of the problems facing rural communities.  A discussion of the film could also focus on how this approach would work in other sectors.


Technically, this film is somewhat flawed; for example, 'the film inside a film' (the basis of the community's discussion) is difficult to see.  Nevertheless, such defects do not prevent this presentation from being very useful as a training tool or a basis for discussion of issues related to self reliance.


(Quoted from the African Media Program Database of African Film, Michigan State University)



28 minutes in English

Distributor: New York University



Julius Nyerere talks about his country's struggle to be a self sufficient and well fed nation with scenes of Tanzanian farms and villages. 



“President Julius Nyerere, who is our guide in this film, explains his country's determination to seek a single citizenship for all its people, to overcome problems of hunger, poverty and ignorance without putting the country in debt to outside exploiters, and to build new systems of cooperation at all levels. We visit Tanzania's farms and villages, the countryside upon which the overwhelming majority of its twelve million people live; and we come away with a sense of the determination of this African people to chart a new course to the national goal of sufficiency with dignity.”


(from United Nations Film Catalogue 1975‑76, U. N., New York, p. 24) 




20 minutes, in Kiswahili

Distributor: DSR

Purchase Price: $39.95



18 minutes, in English

Produced by the BBC

Distributor: UCLA Media Center, (301)-825-7771



52 minutes

Distributor: Les Films du Village, (1) 44 62 88 77



A portrait of the agrarian revolution in Tanzania.



“Ujamaa, the corner‑stone of African Socialism, is seen in practice in eight Tanzania villages.  Ujamaa, the African family in the broadest sense, is a society of mutual aid, security, sharing and collective ownership.  ‘Education for Self‑Reliance’  is appropriated to the kind of life it intends to build.  Both teachers and pupils are farmers.  With farms located on the school‑grounds, they study agricultural collectivism and planning in practice.  Women are particularly proud to testify their social evolution.  Farmers recount their steps towards socialism as defined in their language as an humanism based on equality, mutual respect and dignity.”


(Quoted from Les Films du Village's information)



USHIRIKA NI UMOJA (Sharing is Unity), 1983

23 minutes in Kiswahili and English

Directors:  Nangayoma Ng'oge and Ron Mulvihill

Distributor: Gris-Gris Films, (818)-881-8725

Mosiac Films, (213)-673-8413

Purchase Price: $100.00



A short documentary about life in the countryside where cooperation and sharing are important aspects of community life.



“Sharing Is Unity explores the rural life and feelings of the Iteso people of Kenya.  The African sense of community is experienced through their daily activities ranging from farming to storytelling.  The film portrays the Iteso's spirit of sharing and reciprocal giving, values which contribute to the unity and survival of communities in Africa. The film is narrated by members of the Iteso community.”


(Quoted from Gris‑Gris Films brochure)


Instructional Activities

I.  Ask students to list cultural observations and to comment on the concepts of family, and community spirit.

II.  In groups, students discuss and write the significance in fostering cultural                                     experience and understanding.

(Created by Lioba Moshi)


See activities in teaching appendix.


UVUVI WA MAGONGO (Fishing with Poles), 1985

52 minutes in Kiswahili

Director:  W. Baraniecki, Zanzibar Arts Cooperative



This film was produced as an introduction to new fishing methods in Zanzibar.  Recently, comprehensive research and practical trials have improved fishing methods.  In this film, the technique of fishing with poles ‑‑ a method more beneficial to the environment than net‑fishing ‑‑ is explained in detail.




Instructional Series

Director:  Lioba Moshi

Distributor: University of Georgia, (404)-542-1184



A brief look on three African cities on the coast of Tanzania and Kenya: Dar es Salaam; Lamu, and Mombasa. A look at layout and selected activities.


Instructional Activities

I.  Group Tasks:

      A.  Students discuss the dialogue about the city of Lamu. 

      B. Students compare Lamu with Dar es Salaam. 

      C. Students describe the layout of the University of Dar Es Salaam.

      D. Students discuss the historical background of the city of Mombasa


II.  Language Use:

      A.  Provide three transcribed poems from the video and ask students to identify: vina, mizani, mistari,               beti.

      B.   Attempt a general discussion of the meanings of the poems.

      C.   Have students attempt to write their own poems.


(Created by Lioba Moshi)




Distributor: UCLA Media Center, (301)-825-7771



This film is a documentary on the training of Tanzania’s leaders during the time when the country was moving towards the concept of self-reliance and looking at a breed of young leaders. It is a presentation of how Tanzania is shaping its future by carefully educating and employing young people in national development. 



A simplistic but enthusiastic portrayal of nation building in Tanzania. The idea of involving the nation's youth in development is properly described. Skills such as teaching and nursing are essential for national growth. Cooperative villages, plantations and fishing endeavors are all valuable in a realistic context. There is an unfortunate implication that the Masai are especially in need of ‘development.' Although this production is not suitable for some audiences because of its superficial approach, it is appropriate as an introduction to Tanzania's development goals and approaches for middle and secondary school levels. An appropriate introduction is necessary. 


Teaching Activities

Suggested questions (to be asked in Kiswahili):

1.  Which country was the documentary about?

2.  Why was the film called “a young leader”?

3.  Describe the culture of the people.

4.  What does Ahmed Kiluvia say about leadership?  Do you think he is right?

(Created by Lioba Moshi)





AV-ED Films

7934 Santa Monica Blvd

Hollywood, California 90046


DSR, Inc

9111 Guilford Road

Columbia, MD 21046


Fax: 301-490-4146



Maryknoll World Productions

Maryknoll Media Relations

Maryknoll, NY 10545




New York University

Instructional Media Center

26 Washington Place

New York, NY 10003


University of Georgia

Attention: Steve Gamble

Office of Instructional Development/ Instructional Resources Center

Instructional Plaza

University of Georgia

Athens, Georgia 30602‑3015

V: 706‑542‑1582

F: 706‑542‑0518




1) Other Teaching Resources



Johnson, Frederick. (1939). A Standard English/Swahili, Swahili/English Dictionary. Oxford: University             Press. two volumes.


Perrott, D.V. (1965). Swahili Dictionary. London: Hodder and Stoughton, $6.95.



Ashton, E.O. (1944) Swahili Grammar. London: Longmans.


Miachina, E.N. (1981) The Swahili Language: A Descriptive Grammar. London: Routledge & Kegan.             PL8702 M54.



Bennett, Patrick R. (1985) Swahili Today: An Introductory Course and Reference Grammar of Modern Standard East African Swahili. Madison, WI: African Studies Program.


Hassan, Mohamed M. (1973) Tuseme Kiswahili. Berkeley, CA: Simba Publishing. PL8702 H34.


Hinnebusch, Thomas J. and S. Mirza. (1979) Swahili: Foundations for Speaking, Reading, Writing. Lanham, MD: University Press of America. 28 lessons, illus, exercises/key, glossary PL 8702 H5 $12.95.


Indakwa, John. (1970/5) Swahili: Conversation and Grammar. Buffalo, NY: Black Academy Press, 374/507p. 100 lessons, glossary, focus on US, no illus., exercises. PL8702 I5 1975.


Johadmy, Ali. (1969) Swahili Made Easy. Madison, WI: College Printing and Typing. 142p. PL8702 J3.


Maw, Joan. (1985) Twende! A Practical Swahili Course. London: Univ. of London ‑ SOAS, 317p. 35 units. il PS8702 M335 1985.


Moshi, Lioba J. (1988) Building Proficiency in Kiswahili: AManual for Second/Third Year Swahili. $11.75 PL8702 M67 20


Musyoki, Agnes. (1985) An Elementary Swahili Newspaper Reader. Kensignton, MD: Dunwoody Press.   PL8702 M87.


Mwalozi D. Chilaylya (1971) Swahili. Philadelphia, PA: Center of Curriculum Development. PL8702 M9.


Perrott, D.V. (1965) Teach Yoruself Swahili. London: Hodder & Stoughton. exercises with                                      answers.          


Rutayiga, John B.K. (1984) An Intermediate Swahili Newspaper Reader. Kensington, MD: Dunwoody Press. PL8702 R78.


Safari, J. F. (1980/1988) Swahili Made Easy. Dar es‑Salaam: Tanzania Publishing House. 173p. 28 grammar lessons, 11 reading lessons, answer key, glossary S/E, E/S. $7.50.


Steere, Edward & Hellier. (1976) Swahili Exercises. Nairobi: Oxford University Press. PL8702S83 1976.


Salim, Ahmed Ali. (ND) Living Language Conversation Manual: Swahili Basic Course. NY: Crown Publishing..


Stevick, E.W., J. G. Mlela, & F.N. Njenga. (1963) Swahili Basic Course. Washington, DC: Foreign Service Institute, 560p. &  tapes. PL8702 U54


Wilson, P.M. (1979) Simplified Swahili. Nairobi: Kenya Literature Bureau. PS8702 W.


Zawawi, Sharifa. (1971) Kiswahili Kwa Kitendo. NY: Harper & Row, 290p. PL8702 Z3.


2) WEB Resources‑12/Swahili_Teaching_16181.html


Swahili Library Project Distribution Report Press  Release

October 17, 1995


COLUMBIA, MD ‑ Media for Development International has just released a report entitled: Kiswahili Library Project ‑ Evaluation of Videos/Films Distribution in Africa by Tokunboh Ogunleye of MAP International, East and Southern Africa Region. (It is a WordPerfect for Windows 5.2 document. You may wish to save it to disk and print it out.)


In late 1994 MFDI shipped over 800 Kiswahili‑language African social message videos and 50 16mm films of 8 different titles to about 70 agencies around East Africa. This report evaluates the utilization and impact of them a year later. There were several problems and limitations with the survey as it had essentially no budget, but it seems that the videos and films do help precipitate behavior change among millions of viewers.


One of the most interesting ideas arising out of this report is that perhaps charging a small reasonable price for these social message videos would improve their distribution. MFDI is interested in this subject and plan to do further research and try to find out the experience of other donors with videos distributed free and sold.


If you would like a copy please contact Sally Smith at DSR, e‑mail: Hard copy cost is US$5 to cover postage and copying/binding.