The Yayas de l'Elegance # 85

The Yayas de l'Elegance

19:00, Friday 14th June, CMB 3

rai 85 the-yayas-de-elegance

  • Director/Anthropologist: Maria Jose Pavlovic
  • Year of Release: 2012
  • Duration: 27 mins
  • Country of Production: France/UK
  • Location: Paris
  • Language: French, Lingala (English)


S.A.P.E is the acronym for the Society of Ambience Makers and Elegant People. The followers of this movement call themselves Sapeurs, men devoted to elegant dressing. SAPE becomes a performed experience encompassing a world of meaning and symbols. Originally from the Congo, the Sapeur’s main goal is to travel to Paris, the accepted capital of this fashion. In that context they will try to become a Yaya, a very grand Sapeur. Through the stories of different characters, the film tries to reveal the main aspects of this practice.

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Organised by the Royal Anthropological Institute of Great Britain & Ireland (RAI) since 1985, it is an itinerant festival that moves biennially from one university host to another, in association with local community and cultural organisations.

The festival will be held from Thursday 13 June to Sunday 16 June 2013 in Edinburgh, hosted by National Museums Scotland and the STAR consortium. Scottish Training in Anthropological Research (STAR) is a collaboration between the Universities of Aberdeen, Glasgow, Edinburgh and St. Andrews. Over 60 new films will be screened alongside a conference 'New Observations' and a selection of special events and workshop about art & anthropology and the use of archival film.

The RAI Film Festival is held in collaboration with the Center for Visual Anthropology, University of Southern California.

Our Sponsors

The Festival gratefully acknowledges sponsorship from:

UDDA NMS SSGS ED Unversity of Aberdeen StAndrews WILEY