Memoir and media: Anant Singh’s personage in contemporary South Africa

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Anant Singh is South Africa’s most prolific film producer. The publication of his memoirs in 2021 occasioned an assessment of this genre in relation to published scholarly research and some other biographies and autobiographies written by contemporary South African filmmakers, radio and television broadcasters. This article mobilizes the Singh story as a framing window through which to make connections with other such works, including studies on the media industry itself, from the early 1980s to 2021. Where autobiographies rarely offer self-reflexive analyses, this article attempts to facilitate a dialogue between different media personalities while simultaneously excavating some hidden transcripts that them-selves cast some light on professional practices. The article sketches some of the underlying structural conditions within which the various commentators had to work and on which they comment anecdotally, here examined as latent illustrations of their lived experience.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)167-187
Number of pages21
JournalJournal of African Cinemas
Issue number2-3
Publication statusPublished - 2022


  • Darrell Roodt
  • Don Briscoe
  • Jeremy Maggs
  • John Berks
  • apartheid
  • autobiography
  • biography
  • shadow economies

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cultural Studies
  • Communication
  • Visual Arts and Performing Arts


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