Embracing Sankofa: Afrofuturism in Visual Culture (Online, tuition-free five-session workshop)

So much of Afrofuturism centers on representations of Blackness & the Black experience throughout time. Samuel R. Delany, an early proponent of Afrofuturism, famously said “Black people need images of the future, and they need them more than most.” Our past is continually & systematically destroyed through the erasure of these images, customs, family, & identity. And yet, all is not lost. Afrofuturism injects itself into the narrative by asking us to speculate different futures, acknowledge past traumas, and consider how to continue to overcome through the actions of today. We pivot our focus to stimulate the dream of better tomorrows.

Embracing Sankofa or “Go Back and Get It,” honors that all our experiences even the oppressive, offer the potential for healing & renewal in our futures and that we have the power to determine our course. That process begins with imagining something more. Cleverly applying technology, science fiction, and visual & sonic arts, Afrofuturism uses these hopeful & truth-telling mediums for storytelling & change.

Over the course of 5 weeks, we will explore storytellers and storytelling that nurture Black futures. This class will feature a condensed walkthrough of Afrofuturism’s history using the visual & sonic arts, science fiction & technology to ask the movement’s biggest question… What if?

Special Notes

This is an online class hosted through Zoom. We recommend that you download the free Zoom application on your computer, phone, or tablet in advance of the first class. You will receive a confirmation email containing a link to join the course via Zoom. The same link will be used each week.