Black History Month: The Black Man’s Burden

It sounds obvious, but it’s worth saying: the world was a very different place back in 1903, pre a couple of World Wars and all their geopolitical ramifications, before meaningful broadcast media, household telephones, petrol-driven cars, CCTV, pop music, space travel, personal computers. And let’s not get started on the internet, smartphones and the cornucopia… Continue reading Black History Month: The Black Man’s Burden

I Thank Whatever Gods There May be

It was the ancient Greeks who first coined the idea, and word, ‘icon’ – or eikenai – meaning ‘to seem’ or ‘to be like’, and in so doing captured the symbolism of the religious practices through which supplicants were drawn onto some higher ideal. Their gods – who were in essence their values abstracted –… Continue reading I Thank Whatever Gods There May be

Why Black Panther is the Movie of the Future

It’s true – You don’t exactly expect to find your thoughts being drawn to the writings of a dead academic (even a great one) whilst watching a Marvel movie, but if there’s one thing that becomes clear whilst watching Ryan Coogler’s quite frankly epic rendering of the Black Panther mythos, it’s that this is a… Continue reading Why Black Panther is the Movie of the Future

Tales Mama Would Tell

Originally published at Fantasy Faction to accompany the press release for Lost Gods… When I was a kid my mother would tell me and my siblings fables, these sort of half made up Nigerian folktales-come-bedtime stories that often began and ended with a fantastical twist. Like the tale of how the sky came to be so… Continue reading Tales Mama Would Tell

Book Review: ‘Technologies of the Self’ by Haris Durrani

So I recently had the pleasure of reading and reviewing Haris A. Durrani’s debut novella, Technologies of the Self, for Media Diversified. Durrani’s stories, memoirs, and essays have appeared in a variety of publications including Analog Science Fiction and Fact, The University of Toronto Undergraduate Journal of Middle East Studies, The 2014 Campbellian Anthology and… Continue reading Book Review: ‘Technologies of the Self’ by Haris Durrani

The Novel: Shark or Dinosaur

Late last year I had the pleasure of attending the Northern Lights Writer’s Conference, an event part sponsored by the Manchester Literature Festival, and in only its second year. I was bought the tickets by a couple of friends as a birthday present (pays to have good ones) and so, having never had the opportunity to… Continue reading The Novel: Shark or Dinosaur

Festivals and the Future

There’s nothing quite like hearing a full brass band play Daft Punk’s Get Lucky is there. Just one of many strange thoughts I found idling through my mind as I sat in Manchester’s Albert Square, or should I say Thwaites Festival Square. That’s one of the fun quirks of Manchester’s Jazz Festival, not only do popular songs get… Continue reading Festivals and the Future

What is Afrofuturism

You need only cast a quick glance over the considerable career of someone like Isaac Asimov to note the prescient and directive power of science-fiction. The man who popularised the idea of robotics in his classic I, Robot and, in his 1964 article, Visit to the World’s Fair of 2014, foresaw everything from kitchen top coffee makers and microwave meals… Continue reading What is Afrofuturism