Paradoxa

Paradoxa publishes articles on genre literature: science fiction, horror, mysteries, children's literature, romance, comic studies, the fantastic, best sellers, the occult, westerns, oral literature, and more.

Call for Papers

"Africa Science Fiction" -- closed

In 2010, Pumzi, the first Kenyan sf movie, won the best short film award at the Cannes Independent Film Festival, and the South African co-production District 9 was nominated for multiple Oscars. In 2011, Nigerian-American Nnedi Okorafor became the first author of African extraction to win the World Fantasy Award, with Who Fears Death, and South African Lauren Beukes became the first person from Africa to win the Arthur C. Clarke Award, with Zoo City.

Recent journal issues (African Identities 7.2, Science Fiction Studies 102, Social Text 20.2), edited collections (Barr’s Afro-Future Females) and monographs (Lavender’s Race in American Science Fiction, Nama’s Black Space and Super Black) have been devoted to afrofuturism, African-American sf and African Americans in sf. In addition, there have been numerous publications on the relationships among sf, imperialism, colonialism, postcolonialism, globalization and Empire – cf. Science Fiction Studies 118, Hoagland/Sarwal’s Science Fiction, Imperialism and the Third World, Kerslake’s Science Fiction and Empire, Langer’s Postcolonialism and Science Fiction, Raja/Ellis/Nandi’s The Postnational Fantasy, Rieder’s Colonialism and the Emergence of Science Fiction.

Yet sf from Africa, and the Africa(s) in sf, remain relatively unexplored. In order to address this lacuna, the “Africa SF” issue of Paradoxa is interested in essays that address:

  1. Critical work on sf by Africans, including such novels as Mohammed Dib’s Who Remembers the Sea (1962), Sony Labou Tansi’s Life and a Half (1977), Kojo Laing’s Woman of the Aeroplanes (1988), Major Gentl and the Achimota Wars (1992) and Big Bishop Roko and the Altar Gangsters (2006), Ngũgĩ wa Thiong’o’s Wizard of the Crow (2006), Lauren Beukes’ Moxyland (2008) and Zoo City (2010), and Ahmed Khaled Towfik’s Utopia (2008), and such films as Sankofa (Gerima 1993), Les Saignantes (Bekolo 2005), Africa Paradis (Amoussou 2006), District 9 (Blomkamp 2009), Pumzi (Kahiu 2009), and Kajola (Akinmolayan 2010). Can such novels as Ousmane Sembene’s The Last of the Empire (1981) and Adaobi Tricia Nwaubani’s I Do Not Come to You By Chance (2009) be productively read as sf? Is there African sf produced in other media?

  2. Critical work on Afrodiasporic authors, filmmakers, musicians and artists, especially as they address Africa, imperialism, colonialism, postcolonialism, globalization, Empire, and/or diaspora, such as Steven Barnes, Octavia Butler, Copperwire, Samuel R. Delany, Tananarive Due, Minister Faust, Andrea Hairston, Pauline Hopkins, Nalo Hopkinson, T. Shirby Hodge, Anthony Joseph, LaBelle, Nnedi Okorafor, Outkast, Parliament-Funkadelic, Charles Saunders, George S Schuyler, Nishi Shawl, Sun Ra, and John A. Williams.

  3. Critical work on the representation of Africa in sf by non-African authors, such as JG Ballard, VF Calverton, George Alec Effinger, Jon Courtenay Grimwood, Theodor Hertzka, Julian Huxley, AM Lightner, Ian MacDonald, Mike Resnick, Mack Reynolds, Jules Verne, as well as in comics (e.g., Marvel’s Black Panther, the British-authored Nigerian Powerman) and other media.

Prospective contributors may contact the guest editor with questions about a particular topic’s appropriateness. Double-spaced submissions should be between 6,000 and 10,000 words in length, not including “Works Cited,” and prepared in accordance with MLA style. Please forward manuscripts as MS Word attachments. Within the email itself include name, affiliation, 250-word abstract, and any other relevant information. Submissions should be directed to Paradoxa’s guest editor, Mark Bould at mark.bould@gmail.com by March 1, 2013. For more information about Paradoxa see www.paradoxa.com.