The Tree of Iron

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The Blooms Of Banjeli - Technology and Gender in African Ironmaking
The Blooms of Banjeli documents research in Banjeli, Togo on iron-smelting technology, its rituals, and the sexual prohibitions surrounding it. Including rare historical footage from the same village in 1914, it provides a unique technological record of the traditional method of preparing a furnace to smelt iron. For centuries the…
Inagina: The Last House of Iron
Swiss archaeologist Eric Huysecom and cameraman Bernard Augustoni work with 13 master smelters to recreate the building of a traditional furnace for smelting iron in Mali. There has not been any traditional iron smelting in Africa since the 1960's, in part due to the importing of cheaper substitutes. The building…
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A group of young people visit the hillfort of Maiden Castle in Dorset, England, and think themselves back in time. They realize that archaeology is all about building up a picture of what life was like in the past. The archaeologist at work explains the techniques of modern archaeology and…
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Study the engineering materials available in classical antiquity. First look at the simple physics of compression and tension. Then consider six specific materials: stone, wood, clay, copper, bronze, and iron. Examine how they came into use and how their properties influenced the design of technological systems.
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Keita - the Heritage of the Griot
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Keita creates a unique world where the West Africa of the 13th Century Sundjata Epic and the West Africa of today co-exist and interpenetrate. Director Dani Kouyati's frames his dramatization of the epic within the story of Mabo Keita, contemporary boy from Burkina Faso, learning the history of his family.…
Tchitundu-Hulu Rock Art - Paintings and Engravings of Angola, Africa
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Human Journey: Out of Africa
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In Out of Africa, we go in search of the first humans and and try to piece together a picture of how they managed to survive in the dangerous environment of pre-historic Africa around 200,000 years ago. We discover how our species developed technologically and how eventually, a tiny group…
South Africa: The Apartheid Years - Generations of Resistance
From the moment that white colonizers stepped onto the shore of Southern Africa, there was black resistance. This resistance continued unabated until apartheid was defeated. But the story of this resistance was suppressed and distorted because whites controlled the history books. This documentary was an attempt to give back to…
South Africa: The Apartheid Years - The White Laager
In their quest for land in Southern Africa, the Boer people fought off the African inhabitants of the land they were invading from a circle of covered wagons, a laager.Long after they had won their battles, they still considered themselves a people besieged by black hordes even though these black…