We celebrate Black futures all year long.
Read selected writing from incredible writers across the African diaspora.
These writers explore topics ranging from identity, afro-futurism, family ties, black maternal health, and more.
“Mainstream publishing’s deep and enduring love of Black Pain doesn’t leave much room for different types of work by Black authors. And non-literary humour is pretty much at the bottom of the list. If, like me, you’re a Black writer who aspires to seriousness but can’t resist the pull of comedy, this is discouraging. That said, there are some brilliant role models out there. Here are 3 of my favourites.”
Yes, you can be a Black, female, funny writer! by Dawn Kofie
“When I began writing, I wouldn’t have submitted anything without the validation of the writers and editors around me. Recognising my instincts and feeling supported by hooks’ tone inspires me to go deeper regarding my perspectives on race and identity and has helped me to grow as a writer and as a creative. I do not feel ashamed to write and share myself with the world.”
Right Place, Right Time: Reading bell hooks by Zoe Lorimer
“Every time I shook the almost-Saharan dust from my feet to enter yet another relative’s home, I would feel confusion and then panic. The Urhobo language is already in danger of dying out for want of being taught to the next generation — will the land we belong to disappear next? How do we keep traditions and languages from dying out when the very land they come from is in mortal danger?”
Tropical Creatures by Garen Abel Unokan
“Away from what she considers ‘home,’ she attempts, alone, to find answers to her questions. This journey helps her learn that, despite her feelings, being a mother opens up new conversations. Being in the wild and facing her fears can help her find healing.”
Beyond the Surface by Kolia Walker
“My yearly visits here are a ritual in memory and timelessness or perhaps, more accurately, ‘timefullness’. As I go about the valley I remember the stories that are patched into the landscape, the ones I was there for and the ones that I wasn’t. My ancestors feel as present as the children I hope to bring here one day.”
To the Body, to the Earth by Martha Adonai Williams
“You cannot create ‘community’ without a common purpose and a shared understanding of how to get there.”
In Conversation with Briana Pegado by Briana Pegado
“Afrofuturism displaces us while also firmly placing us. Its narratives often see the diaspora in imagined spaces – whether that is a different city, planet, or universe. These spaces are unknown to us and therefore the rules are of our own making.”
On Afrofuturism, an estranged father, and our dystopian reality by Eilidh Akilade
“I will stay here in the vicinity of Gorgie Road where I can recreate my past from new ingredients. From my own childhood, I know family is better shared, and little to do with having the same DNA.”
I became an Auntie on Gorgie Road by Clementine E. Burnley
“I’m stuck between two worlds, an outsider hovering unsteadily between two very different places. If only there was a map that could locate and direct me to a place of true belonging, to “home”.”
Between Two Worlds by Amanda Amaeshi
“We experience violence. And we continue to dream. We find happiness. We experiment. We organise. We build. We nurture. We tell stories. We make art. We preserve wisdom.”
Black Lives Matter, a Protest Speech by Clementine E. Burnley
Read the Metaphors for a Black Future Zines
Metaphors for a Black Future, curated by Martha Adonai Williams, featuring workshops for Scotland-based writers, non-writers and artists of all experience levels, who are Black/from the African diaspora, including people of mixed heritage. This includes a programme of free workshops, interdisciplinary responses and sharings that respond to futurist thinking and practices as a strategy for change and a stimulus for writing.
- Metaphors for a Black Future Zine (2020)
- Metaphors For A Black Future Zine: to the body, to the earth (2021)
Curated by the Scottish BPOC Writers Network.
The online replay is Pay What You Can.
Eilidh Akilade spoke with writer Clementine E. Burnley, artist and researcher Natasha Thembiso Ruwona and writer T L Huchu to discuss the potential that Afrofuturism has to build community in the Black diaspora in Scotland, and to connect on a common past, present and future.