Upper school students in French 4 class recently explored the culture of Francophone West Africa during their reading of “Le coiffeur de Kouta” by Malian author Massa Makan Diabaté.
Students so enjoyed the novel and ensuing discussions that they decided to create a short film based on the story.
The novel, loosely based on the author's hometown of Kita, Mali, tells the story of a competition between two barbers that leads to a religious crisis in the community between Christians and Muslims. “Students found the novel challenging at the beginning because of cultural differences, but they worked very hard and ended up learning a lot about cultural aspects of Francophone West Africa,” upper school French teacher Abdoulaye Ngom explained.
The four-minute film that the group collaboratively wrote, filmed and edited is based on the students’ favorite scenes from the novel. Ngom expects that the video will make its world debut during an upcoming Morning Meeting.