Since the beginning of 2018, Rai, in partnership with Goethe-Institut and the French Institute in Kigali, has been hosted a project for the franco-german Cultural fund called DigiTales across borders.
Reconciliation is a topic that crucially determines the relations between all countries and particularly, Germany and France. The reconciliation and the lasting peace between these two countries is an occasion to ask about the importance of culture as a vehicle for reconciliation and collective identity in conflict regions. The transmission of this complex of topics lends itself to the region of the African Great Lakes, where Rwanda is geographically centrally located. Post-colonial ethnic conflicts not only affect Rwandan society, they dominate the entire region. First and foremost, western Congo bordering East Rwanda and Burundi bordering on the south are severely torn by ethnic and political conflict.
Tales are a significant intangible cultural heritage at risk of loss. They point to collective identities and are strongly community-building on the civil society level. The reference to narrative, which continues to point to a shared culture through the experiences and ongoing conflicts, is indicative of the peaceful progress of the emerging African continent in a region where more than half of its population is less than twenty years old. The project « DigiTales across Borders » picks up on this challenge. The dialogue with the poetry pens leads to a re-actualization of the fairy tales in the contemporary form of poetry slams, which has regional greatest importance as a mouthpiece for the young and constitutes the main stage for their socio-cultural engagement.
The project is organized into three phases: physical workshop, digital video clip production in Africa and Europe, and the final digital-analogue format consisting of conference and performance with shared-screen videos. In all three phases, the project will be jointly developed by the partners Goethe-Institut Kigali, Institut Francais Kigali and Goma / Bukavu (DRC), Yolé! Africa (Goma, DRC) and Rwanda Arts Initiative (Kigali, Rwanda).