“Black to the Future”: Understanding Afrofuturism and Beyond
Dibrugarh University Journal of English Studies (DUJES, ISSN [Print] 0975-5659, ISSN [Online] 2581-7833) is accepting submissions, this time keeping its focus on a distinctive topic on Afrofuturism and beyond, to highlight the importance of this emergent literary genre. The purpose behind considering Afrofuturism is to discern out the pertinence of contemporary debates and immediate discussions which are oriented towards this area of inquiry in the field of literary studies. This issue aims to inspire scholarship on “Afrofuturism”. Mark Dery first used the term “Afrofuturism” in his 1994 essay “Black to the Future: Interviews with Samuel R. Delany, Greg Tate and Tricia Rose”. Afrofuturism is a generative and heuristic movement of black speculative performance that solicits a do-it-yourself perspective to subjective experience. It comprises cultural production and scholarly thought— literature, film, photography, multimedia art, visual art, performance art, music, and theory— that imagine greater justice and more unrestrained expression of black subjectivity in the future and in alternative places and times or realities. It seeks to establish a future where people of African descent are central to their own stories. The Afrofuturist endeavours to understand where the black body ends and representation begins, and how the imposition of historical circumstances emerges as a politics of the present and future collective belonging. Afrofuturism reimagines new forms of temporality, new black experiences and identities via science and speculative fiction or other artistic and intellectual means. It explores both the potential and pitfalls of techno culture and posthumanism. The movement has gained prominence in recent years, especially since 2000, however, its intellectual and aesthetic underpinnings can be traced back to mid and late 19th century African American novels that imagined alternative realities and communities for black people.
Mark Dery’s “Black to the Future: Interviews with Samuel R. Delany, Greg Tate, and Tricia Rose” offered an early introduction to and definition of the movement. Alondra Nelson’s Social Text (2002) represents a watershed moment in the development and theorization of Afrofuturism. Kodwo Eshun in his 2003 essay “Further Considerations of Afrofuturism” focuses on African diasporic artists, musicians, and writers, and offers an important theorization of the complex temporalities of Afrofuturism. John Akomfrah’s The Last Angel of History (1996) provides an indispensable overview of Afrofuturist thought and cultural production, especially music, from the African diaspora. Julie E. Moody Freeman et al. edited The Black Imagination: Science Fiction, Futurism and the Speculative (2011) includes scholarly essays that consider speculative and science fiction, futuristic poetry, film, comics, and television in relation to blackness and race.
The following works, to name a few, may be considered for initiating/engaging in a discussion on Afrofuturism. Their Eyes Were Watching God (1937) by Zora Neale Hurston, Native Son (1940) by Richard Wright, Captain Blackman (1972) by John A. Williams, Dhalgren (1974) by Samuel R. Delaney, Lilith’s Brood (1987) by Octavia E. Butler, Brown Girl in the Ring (1998) by Nalo Hopkinson, The Intuitionist (1999) by Colson Whitehead, The New Moon’s Arm (2007) by Nalo Hopkinson, Nigerians in Space (2014) by Deji Bryce Olukotun, Binti (2015) by Nnedi Okorafor, and The Fifth Season (2015) by N. K. Jemisin.
The research papers may draw upon various fields of inquiry such as critical Race theory, Postcolonial theory, Posthumanism, Body, Gender, and Sexuality and so on as theoretical frames of reference.
Topics and lines of critique could include, but are not limited to, the following:
Ø Afrofuturism, Gender and Sexuality
Ø Techno culture and Posthumanism
Ø Afrofuturist posthumanism
Ø Afrofuturism and Africa
Ø Black liberation
Ø Afrofuturism and Black Diaspora Identity
Ø Black Sci-fi and Fantasy Culture
Ø Afrofuturism and Music
Ø Afrofuturism and Film/Photography, Visual Art
Ø Afrofuturism and Mythology
Ø Queer Afrofuturism
The journal invites unpublished and original research articles on the theme of Afrofuturism. All contributions will be sent anonymously to the Board of Reviewers for blind peer-review, evaluation and approval/rejection. The editors and reviewers shall have discretion in the matter of recommending the submissions for publication. The name of the contributor(s) and the full official address should be submitted with a short biographical note (not exceeding 100 words) and email id in a SEPARATE DOCUMENT along with the research paper. The Bio-note should also include a declaration that the submission has not been published previously and that the work has not been submitted elsewhere for publication. No part of the document with the submission should contain the author’s name(s) or credentials, in order to facilitate confidential peer reading. The contributors are expected to conform strictly to the following guidelines:
Ø Manuscripts of the full-length articles should be between 4000-6000 words (inclusive of works cited and endnotes – please do not use footnotes). Contributors are to note that the preliminary overview of the work includes a plagiarism check. If the work has been previously submitted in the form of an M.Phil or Ph.D dissertation, the contributor should declare the same. The contributors are also requested to submit a plagiarism report (OURIGINAL/ TURNITIN) and the ID of the report so that the same may be cross-verified.
Ø Only one submission per contributor shall be considered for review. Multiple submissions through the same or different email accounts shall lead to rejection.
Ø Consecutive submission by contributors who have published in the latest volume of the journal is not accepted.
Ø Contributors are requested to submit a declaration that they have read the submission guidelines, agree to the policy of the journal and that the submission is original and does not contain any plagiarized material or content.
Ø In-text citations must not be left incomplete, if found, may lead to rejection. Similarly, submissions without Works Cited will not be accepted.
Ø An abstract of around 200-400 words along with Keywords must accompany the submission.
Ø Submissions with typographical and grammatical errors will be evaluated in an overview of the paper/article before the blind peer-review process, and if found in excess, shall be returned to the author(s) or rejected – the discretion of the Editorial Board is final in this regard. The guidelines stated here are to be strictly adhered to, else the submission will be rejected.
Ø Times New Roman, 12 pt Font, and font-size must be strictly adhered to, and lines must be double-spaced. Submissions must be submitted in the .docx format. No other format will be accepted.
Ø The editors urge contributors to have their articles/papers proofread for typographical, grammatical, factual and technical errors BEFORE submission. Articles/papers which overlook the same shall be summarily rejected without intimation.
Ø The manuscripts should be prepared strictly according to the MLA Handbook (8th Edition) style. Works cited must conform to the recommended format of the MLA. Failure to do so may result in rejection of the submission.
Ø Works cited should be included in the manuscript and not in a separate document.
Ø Formatting issues due to incompatibility of software and/or other related problems will be treated as the responsibility of the contributor. The same will have to be rectified if the concern is raised by the editors.
Ø Simultaneous submission of the same manuscript for publication in other journals is not allowed and the work should not have been published previously. A declaration to this effect must be included in the Bio-note.
Ø Submissions and Queries not pertaining to the focus area of this volume of the journal shall not be entertained.
The special issue of DUJES (Vol. 31) is scheduled for publication between March and June, 2023. Contributions for possible inclusion must reach the Editors: Dr. Lakshminath Kagyung, Assistant Professor, Department of English, Dibrugarh University, and Dr. Ritushmita Sharma, Assistant Professor, Department of English, Dibrugarh University, by 31st October, 2022, at email@example.com
Submissions after the deadline will not be considered for publication.
Contact Info: The research papers for publication and any other queries pertaining to the issue must be sent in the following email id: firstname.lastname@example.org
For further information and queries, write to:
The Editors, DUJES (Vol. 31)
Department of English,