depicts the psychology of the crowd, of rumors spreading, of individual
and collective behaviour. I walk in the city with my camera carried
vertically, in order not to show the poverty of the neighborhood. I
film the skipping of children surrounding me... There are three, then
six, then twenty, then thirty or more... a cloud of minuscule beings
agitated around me.
Suddenly a child pronounces the word ‘Toubabou’. A word
that parents teach their children, indicating - without rancor or
hatred - the white man. Toubabou comes from toubib, doctor... Once this
word pronounced, it spontaneously structures the amorphous collective
movements and transforms the random noise into a song and dance
whirling around me to the chanted rhythm of ‘Toubabou...
Looking at their behaviour, it is clear who will be who tomorrow, who will do what, who will have a lust for success at
the expense of others, who will be left on the borders of society...
Richness or poverty is also visible in their clothing – as is the
care or affection given or withheld by their parents. A rising
crescendo within the logic of crowds reveals steps leading from
curiosity, enthusiasm to protective or aggressive power relations.
video 16/9, 07:18 min, Bamako (Mali), 2007