The Kenyan Afro-futuristic film Pumzi provides a vivid, compelling account of how unregulated global markets might devastate all forms of life on Earth. Written and directed by Wanuri Kahiu, this film opens on an apocalyptic note, specifying a new era known as “post-Earth” in which there are no visible signs of life. It is 35 years after World War III, what countries once referred to as “The Water War.” Various old newspaper clippings move across the screen, which give us some indication that most life forms are now extinct. One newspaper clipping reads, “People Journeying a Whole Day in Search of Water.” Newspaper images show devastation created by nuclear radioactive waste as well as the Greenhouse Effect. There is no living human, animal, or plant left within the natural environment of the Earth. One can infer in this film that World War III was caused by the increased scarcity of water (among other things that depend upon water, such as food crops) due to humanity’s competitive, destructive environmental and economic practices, destroying most of the world’s population. At this point, the viewer encounters the only known small community surviving within a technological bubble in East Africa. They are known as the Maitu community (“Maitu” means mother in Kikuyu language).
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