THE ROOTS OF CURE - Senegalese medicine between modernity and tradition

Science,medicine,power,magic. There’s a place where all of these terms interact, driven by the need to co-operate and the desire of improving: Africa.
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Duccio Servi
Film
Rome
Italy
2 Team Members

Science, medicine, power, magic; there’s a place where all of these terms live together and interact, driven by the need to co-operate and the desire of improving: Africa.

Talking about Africa, in OUR opinion, means sharing the discovery of a force which only african people seem to have preserved, nowadays; it means trying to help western world to re-discover the inner force inborn within any individual, a force which seems to have faded away in the civilization process.

This scarcely trodden path of knowledge can provide a lively example of co-operation between modernity and tradition.

IT VIDEO  FR VIDEO

IT pitch - ENG pitch - FR pitch

Synopsis

Madou, 25 years old, tall and powerfully built, is sick of "wind", a kind of madness. He lives on the edge of his village, marginalized because the community is helpless before his illness. His family is poor and cannot pay for treatment by a tradipraticien expert in madness.

Sècouba Sane, face furrowed by wrinkles and strong arms, is a tradipraticien specialized in madness treatment. One night, he dreams of the arrival of Madou and goes to collect roots and herbs which will be needed for the treatment.

Sècouba tries to cure Madou, who came from a remote village.

Madeleine, 30, a nurse, accompanies Lucas, 7 years, to Boubacar Faye, tradipraticien specialized in children treatment, finally trying to cure his chronic otitis with traditional medicine. After months of medicine and hospitals which had proven to be ineffective, Lucas eventually heals.

 

CONCEPT

The goal of the documentary is not demonstrating the effectiveness of traditional medicine, but helping the voice of an ancient culture to resonate standing as an example of high modernity. What is illuminating, in the Senegalese experience, is the ability to bring together tradition and an opening to the outside, creating a breeding ground for dialogue and circulation of knowledge. A way to firmly maintain the identity of a people and follow the evolution of a civilization, while preserving the heritage of their ancestors. In this context we find the traditional healing practices, who put together a range of skills and knowledge - based on the knowledge of the natural environment and human nature, the importance of experience and observation, the familiar transmission of knowledge, and consciousness of the presence of "the invisible" - representing an attempt to preserve the health of individuals and their relationship with the environment in which they live.

The basis of traditional medicine is in listening to the patient, not trying to treat the symptoms, but rather to detect the unbalances, physical, mental and social. The healing response is then the sum of the knowledge and skills of the healer and the response of the patient. The patient himself, once established a relationship of trust with the doctor, determines his/her own healing journey. This kind of approach was once found also in conventional medicine, which shares with traditional one the same natural basis. Now it seems to belong to a remote and forgotten past. In fact, until the second scientific revolution, the social survival of conventional medicine depended from placebo effects. While we find some features shared with holistic therapies, in the so-called industrialized countries, adaptations of traditional medicine, called "complementary" or "alternative", occupies a secondary place compared to conventional treatments.

The relationship between traditional medicine and conventional medicine is one of the central issues of the health situation in Africa today. The problem facing African governments is bringing together the two systems, also giving legitimacy to the operators of traditional medicine, with the official recognition of the professionalism of the healers.

The case of Senegal stands as an example of virtuous evolution, showing how to combine the preservation of tradition as a function of progress.

This can push our civilization to question what we have lost and what has to be recovered.


Work method and visual approach

I imagine the product as a practical synthesis of the concept of collaboration.Following the main characters, the result will be an observation documentary, with a hint of senegalese style (thanks to a senegalese camera operator) and the photograph of a photo-artist, alternated and introduced by graphic inserts.The outcome will be an alternate editing, shifting the focus back and forth between the daily life of the patient, Madou, the tradipraticien, Sècouba, and the story of the experiences of Madelin together with young Lucas. 
 

CREW

Director and sound
Photography
Valentina Maggetti (www.valentinamaggetti.it)
Graphics

Audio and video technician

Senegalese technician

Interpreter and driver

Mbaye Ba

What We Need & What You Get

We will end to shoot the documentary! We will leave at the end of november to Senegal. We need money to pay expenses, and the post production.
Travels, rent a car, sleeping places: 2000 $,
Translators, drivers: 1000 $,
PostProduction (graphics, editing, color, print): 3000 $.
 
We will send the documentary to festivals.
The movie will be released in dvd and private online screenings.
The dvd box will have the movie, some interviews to healers and doctors, extras and a back stage.
If we don't reach the entire goal we will produce this movie as we can.

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$6,000 USD goal
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This campaign ended on December 8, 2012
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