Chadwick Boseman in a sexy catsuit. Janelle Monae and Tessa Thompson on a romantic tryst in a dystopian future. Oprah, looking like an all-powerful celestial being with bedazzled eyebrows. These are just a few of the recent images associated with afrofuturism, which experienced a verifiable uptick in popularity following the huge success of February’s Black Panther (and, to a lesser extent, the critical acclaim of Janelle Monae’s album/film combo Dirty Computer.)
But, while the word has typically been used to describe the aforementioned elements of an artistic aesthetic, for many, those same elements have applications outside of the fictional worlds of sci-fi novels or superhero movies. They serve as a framework for viewing the world and the future of black people in it. And if afrofuturism has imagined a spectrum of possible futures of blackness, another question seems right there to be asked: What’s the possible future for afrofuturism?
We spoke with some self-identifying afrofuturists, about where they think the movement is headed, as more and more people begin to understand what it is.
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