Back in the 1980s when video cameras became ubiquitous they slowly made their way around the world, and we started to get videos from indigenous communities in Brazil, such as the Videos in the Villages collective, and productions from native Alaskan people such as KYUK tv.
It is an eye opener for audiences to see an unmediated insider view of people from other places, not to mention the interest back in that home place. We at Penn Museum were one of the first to have the chance to stream the majority of our films online, as a result we have had some very exciting requests to re-use our footage by people from indigenous communities in many corners of the world. Three quick examples of recent requests include: A film made by the ministry of education about the reconciliation process in Rwanda, using colonial period footage of Rwanda; A film about the Quechua traditional culture made by a Quechua producer from Ecuador using footage from the Arthur and Kate Tode collection; and a film about a monk in Singapore who resisted the Japanese army in WWII made by a Singaporean producer.
Here is a sampling of [translated] comments that we have received on a single film from the Tode collections, Ecuador in 1949.
MetalBarce: Thanks for sharing this material with all of the new generations of Guayaquileños (people from Guayaquil)!
357juancar: It’s too bad that Guayaquil has become what it is now, a cave of rats.
Pennmuseum: We’re glad that you have enjoyed watching the archive of this film about Ecuador. It’s a great pleasure to be able to share our documentary of these scenes of the daily lives of the people of Guayaquil. Our best to everyone.
hrsonic rey: This video is a treasure of my old Guayaquil, they should show it in schools to plant the seed of public-spiritedness and hard work in the youth. A thousand thanks to the one who recorded it and put it here so we can see it.
Diegoelect21: that is colonial Guayaquil, when you walked down Rocafuerte street or down Malecon and it smelled like cacao and banana, where the Guayas river was always crowded with sailboats and steamboats, how I would have loved to live in these times. Guayaquil por Guayaquil.
JORGMV1: you can see how they’re building the San Jose high school, without words…
kevinlonpacheco: wow incredible I love this video
VicyDen: MY GOD THIS IS A TREASURE…ALL GUAYAQUILEÑOS SHOULD HAVE IT…GOD BLESS THE PERSON WHO FILMED IT AND KNEW HOW TO SAVE IT. A THOUSAND HEARTFELT THANKS FROM A GUAYAQUILEÑO.
uecona: one of the most beautiful videos I’ve ever seen, because of what it means.
csantanam: It’s like traveling through time. The way my city looked is incredible.
Alpacinote: you can see the construction of San José La Salle
kevinlonpacheco: and of the cathedral too
Alpacinote: It’s a work of art…It’s been 62 years since this video was filmed
ROLOCOTTE: REALLY, I WAS SPEACHLESS, THIS IS WHAT I’VE LOOKED FOR ALL MY LIFE, I’VE FELT THE SCENT OF THE CACAO, THE INNOCENCE OF THE GUAYAQUILEÑOS, THE VIGOR FOR WORK, THE HAPPINESS OF THE PEOPLE, I ENVY THEM, SEEING THIS VIDEO MAKES ME FEEL PROUDER TO BE A GUAYAQUILEÑO