A while ago I had the chance to reconnect with Nnedi Okorafor, author of Zahrah the Windseeker and The Shadow Speaker. She’s got a lot going on, including 3 new books next year (!!), but take a look at this article she wrote on science fiction’s appeal for folks in Africa. Can you get excited about computers taking over the earth when you can’t get enough steady power to run the computer on your desk? How does our relationship to material reality affect the way we dream about the future? Here’s a sample of her interesting article:
“Science fiction films from the West are failures here. Even Star Wars!” he said. “The themes aren’t taken seriously. Science fiction will come here when it is relevant to the people of Africa. Right now, Africans are bothered about issues of bad leadership, the food crisis in East Africa, refugees in the Congo, militants here in Nigeria. Africans are bothered about food, roads, electricity, water wars, famine, etc, not spacecrafts and spaceships. Only stories that explore these everyday realities are considered relevant to us for now.”
In other news, Laura Atkins (who wowed many of you with her powerful article on white privilege in children’s publishing) is back from the conference in Germany and has posted the final version of her paper here. She’s looking for a way to post it online so people can leave comments throughout (as opposed to putting it on her blog where you could only leave comments at the end of the post). If you have ideas, let us know!