1962. The Algerian War draws to a close. In the French West Indies, poverty is rife and strikes rock the region. France desperately needs unskilled labor. Mass emigration is put into action. It is the period of the BUMIDOM (Bureau pour le développement des migrations dans les départements d’outre-mer – Office for the Development of Emigration from the Overseas Departments and Territories). For twenty years it will supply postal, customs, and subway workers, and domestic help.
This film is a witness to these journeys – that were often one-way. The exiled speak to us about their struggles, successes, and failures, their hopes, and the difficulty of being black French, and therefore citizens apart. Today their children bear the heritage of this generation and endure the integration difficulties specific to populations born of immigration.
This film tells a story hidden, or even ignored, by many West Indians and metropolitan French. With accounts by Aimé Cesaire, Henry Bangou, Lilian Thuram, Daniel Boukman, and many others in the French West Indies and Parisian region.