Letter from My Village / Kaddu Beykat

Director: Safi Faye
Country: Senegal
Year: 1975
Running Time: 95 min.
Language: Serer

letter from my village

Shot in three weeks during a rainy season with a crew of three, Letter from My Village was Safi Faye’s first feature-length film. In a sparing, docu-drama style, Faye’s voiced-over letter to a friend is punctuated by sharp black and white images of her rural hometown, held captive by wildly fluctuating prices for its crops. Although Faye is deeply concerned with the economic crisis produced by a reliance on an outdated, colonial system meant to hamper self-sufficiency, she also warns against the corruption of the new Black middle class in the city. African film critic Françoise Pfaff, describes Letter from My Village as “soberly poetic yet politically effective.” The film was banned in Senegal.