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12.16.21

Fulbright Lecture on Afrofuturism with Fulbright Germany Alumni Priscilla Layne and Dennis Chester

December 16, 2021, 1:00 PM EST

Black and white artistic rendering of speakers photos with black futuristic text at the top that reads "Afrofuturism." Promotional graphic for event.

The German-American Fulbright Commission will host a discussion with Fulbright alumni Priscilla Layne, from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and Dennis Chester, from California State University, East Bay on December 16, 2021 at 7:00 pm CET | 1:00 pm EDT | 10:00 am PDT.

The term “Afrofuturism” has its origins in African-American science fiction, and is used to describe the intersection of African diaspora culture and technology. Cultural critic Mark Dery coined the term in his 1994 essay, “Black to the Future,” in which he describes a decades-old cultural and theoretical phenomenon that spans countries around the world. Afrofuturism encompasses the space fantasies of jazz artist Sun Ra and the sci-fi stories and novels of Octavia Butler, and African diasporic artists’ engagement with science, science fiction, speculative fiction, and fantasy. Dery proposed that African Americans, in particular, had found solace in engaging in sci-fi narratives, whether in literature, music, or film. The speakers will present an introductory summary on Afrofuturism with recommended articles, books, short movies, and music.