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Daughters of the Dust (1991)

TV-PG | | Drama, Romance | 27 December 1991 (USA)
1:33 | Trailer

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Languid look at the Gullah culture of the sea islands off the coast of South Carolina and Georgia where African folk-ways were maintained well into the 20th Century and was one of the last ... See full summary »



3 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Cora Lee Day ...
Nana Peazant
Alva Rogers ...
Eula Peazant
Barbarao ...
Yellow Mary
Trula Hoosier ...
Umar Abdurrahamn ...
Bilal Muhammad
Adisa Anderson ...
Eli Peazant
Haagar Peazant
Iona Peazant
Viola Peazant
Tommy Redmond Hicks ...
Mr. Snead
Newlywed Man (as Malik Farrakhan)
Cornell Royal ...
Daddy Mack Peazant
Vertamae Grosvenor ...
Hair Braider
Sherry Jackson ...
Older Cousin
Ervin Green ...
Baptist Minister (as Reverend Ervin Green)


Languid look at the Gullah culture of the sea islands off the coast of South Carolina and Georgia where African folk-ways were maintained well into the 20th Century and was one of the last bastion of these mores in America. Set in 1902. Written by John Sacksteder <jsackste@bellsouth.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Drama | Romance


TV-PG | See all certifications »





Release Date:

27 December 1991 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Córki pylu  »

Box Office


$1,642,436 (USA)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Selected to the Library of Congress National Registry of Film in 2004. See more »


[first lines]
Nana Peazant: I am the first and the last. I am the honored one and the scorned one. I am the whore and the holy one. I am the wife and the virgin. I am the barren one and many are my daughters. I am the silence that you can not understand. I am the utterance of my name.
See more »


Featured in These Amazing Shadows (2011) See more »

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User Reviews

A movie for feminist film theory.
7 May 2003 | by (iowa city, iowa) – See all my reviews

The film Daughters of the Dust is argued to be a stand out film in the genre of feminist film theory. The film is to show a break from the traditional male and female roles in a society; to break away from the traditional narrative to represent the present, past, and future as one to show woman as a strong active influential being. Yet, it did not accomplish this task.

The film's narrative has a circle feel bring elements of the past, present and future together as one unit in the form of the child with the indigo ribbon. Images of the enslaved people of the islands are counter set by images of the modern dressed family awaiting the boat to go to America's main land. The family is to be mainly formed on this island after slaves were brought there to work in the indigo market, it is to be formed around this one woman. She takes on the lead role of the family, the matriarch in this instance instead of the patriarch. This attempt to change from the patriarch fails for the matriarch takes on the same role with the same strong masculine tendencies. The feminist ideals and theories are also lost as the woman of the family cook and tend to the work of packing for the journey while the men are relaxing and talking the day away. Yet, as the woman of the family do work they argue and talk. These woman in turn are to represent the different woman of society; the audience sees the daughter, the mother, the wife, the modern social woman, the elderly, the religious, the rebellious and the quite individuals that make up all social structures.

Having the present, past and future working together as one creates too much confusion in the eye of the audience. At different instances the ideas are hard to connect to the ideals of the film theory and follow the themes of the narrative for it jumps around too often. Not introducing all the characters is another flaw of the film. The audience is lost as to how they fit into this family, how they are important to the plot of the new daughter changing the lives of the family members in the mainland, and how they affect the feminist film theory. In the end, not all the questions or problems that the film poses are answered and not all the loose ends are tied up. The style chosen to show a strong feminist woman was made in a too particular way. It was made for only a small subset of society where not all persons could identify with the characters and care for the meaning of the migration to the mainland. Instead the film creates a feeling of detachment, where the audience becomes uninterested. The ideals and theories for such a film are strong in context and in thought but fail to come across in the execution of the project. The true concept of the film is lost within the frame work of the circular plot and the feeling of randomness to some of the films content. This film does in turn do a good job of showing the complexities of a family, mixing old traditions and new as they are passed to different generations, and addressing fears that come when entering into a new society or world that one does not truly understand or know.

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