English 166

Special Topics: Black Science Fiction


Section Semester Instructor Time Location Course Areas
3 Fall 2017 Serpell, C. Namwali
TTh 3:30-5 130 Wheeler

Book List

Butler, Octavia: Dawn; Delaney, Samuel: Babel-17; Duffy, Damian: Kindred: A Graphic Novel; Johnson, Mat: Pym; LaValle, Victor: Destroyer; Laymon, Kiese: Long Division; Lovecraft, H.P.: The Narrative of Arthur Gordon Pym; Schuyler, George: Black No More

Other Readings and Media

Screenings of a Star Trek episode (1966), Sun Ra, Space is the Place (1974), John Sayles, The Brother from Another Planet (1984). Stories by Octavia Butler, Ray Bradbury, W.E.B. DuBois, Samuel Delaney, Derrick Bell.

Description

This course addresses two genres—black fiction and science fiction—at their point of intersection, which is sometimes called Afrofuturism. The umbrella term “black fiction” will include texts that issue out of and speculate about the African-American experience. The category “science fiction” will comprise texts that speculate about alternative, cosmic, dystopian, and future worlds. Overlapping—and mutually transforming—concepts will include: genetics, race, diaspora, miscegenation, double consciousness, technology, ecology, biology, language, history, futurity, space (inner and outer), and, of course, the alien. We will consider stories, novels, graphic novels, comics, films, music, and television clips. 

Other Recent Sections of This Course

fall, 2019

166/1

Special Topics: Getting Global: Literature & Film of an Expanding & Unequal World

166/2

Special Topics: Literature in the Century of Film

166/3

Special Topics: Writing as Social Practice

166/4

Special Topics: Literatures of the Asian Diaspora in America

166/5

Special Topics: Seeing Is Believing: Early Realist Painting and Writing

166/7

Special Topics: Charles Dickens

166/8

Special Topics: Green Thought in a Green Shade

166/9

Special Topics: New Orleans

166/11

Special Topics: The Works of Vladimir Nabokov

Naiman, Eric
spring, 2019

166/1

Special Topics: Gothic

166/2

Special Topics: Marxism and Literature

166/4

Special Topics: Poetry and Prose of Race and Social Class

166/5

Special Topics: Asian American Literature - World, Nation, Locality

166/6

Special Topics: Realism, Then and Now

166/7

Special Topics: Anton Chekhov

Muza, Anna
fall, 2018

166/2

Special Topics: Alfred Hitchcock

166/3

Special Topics: Journeys: British World-Building, c. 700-1700

166/4

Special Topics: "this morning's minion": Sonic Mysticism in Gerard Manley Hopkins and Emily Dickinson

166/5

Special Topics

spring, 2018

166/1

Special Topics: Comedy & Violence

166/2

Special Topics: Romantic Science

166/3

Special Topics: Classical & Renaissance Drama

166/4

Special Topics: Marxism & Literature

166/5

Special Topics: Emily Dickinson

166/6

Special Topics: Speculative Fiction

summer, 2018

166/1

Special Topics: Speculative Fictions, Possible Futures

166/2

Special Topics: Games of Thrones, Medieval to Modern

fall, 2017

166/4

Special Topics: Writing Poetry and Nonfiction, Writing as Social Practice

spring, 2017

166/1

Special Topics: Marxism and Literature

166/2

Special Topics: Studies in Literature and Environment (Shelter and Weather)

166/3

Special Topics: Slavery and Conspiracy

166/4

Special Topics: Literature in the Century of Film

166/5

Special Topics: Modern Irish Literature


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