C’est Moi

C’est Moi

Screens March 30 – Rutgers University Newark – Paul Robeson Student Center

Howard Davis, Director, 2017, 9m, Canada

Set in modern day Montréal “C’est Moi” explores the collision of the past as it meets the present in the forgotten story of Marie-Josèphe Angélique, a figure of Black Canadian History and her efforts to fight against slavery in 18th Century New France.   How much of our past is erased in the restoration of history?

On Friday, June 21, 1734 Marie-Josèphe Angélique, a black slave in New France (nowadays Montréal), was tried, tortured and sentenced to death for burning down the city. Her story has been forgotten in history. Did she set the fire? Or was she the scapegoat? a Joan of Arc in her own right, Marie-Josèphe Angélique was an emblem of resilience against slavery in Canada and her story has exposed the underbelly of Canada’s dark secrets.

Director’s Statement

The subject of this film came from an exploration of my heritage. As a mixed race man and the “love child” of a huge discourse in racial history, my curiosity started in studies of pre-colonial African history at Ryerson University. Reading about the African Diaspora led me to Canada’s involvement in the story of slavery. As a Canadian, it is interesting to note how Canada’s involvement with slavery appears to have disappeared from our collective consciousness.

I believe it is important to have these discussions given our current climate on racial issues not only at home but throughout the world. I also think it is important to be accountable for our actions and recognize all injustices of our history as opposed to marginalizing and erasing it from our collective identity. how can we ever venture forward to being more tolerant and accepting of one another unless we learn from history?