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En 163
Octavia E. Butler and the Literature of Black Futures
9 units (3-0-6)  | third term
This advanced humanities course begins with a selection of Octavia E. Butler's (1947-2006) novels and short stories. Born here in Pasadena, CA, Butler's writing explored issues such as chattel slavery, climate change, genetic engineering, pandemics, nuclear apocalypse, and post-apocalyptic life. She was attentive to Black and indigenous modes of care, healing, social justice, and organizing. We will pay special attention to Butler's critical and theoretical contributions to the fields of Afrofuturism, Black studies, feminisms, gender and sexuality studies, and the environmental humanities by reading her works in conjunction with criticism and theory. In the second half of the seminar, we will explore connections between Butler and the works of other Afrofuturists and Black science fiction writers today. Finally, we will explore our own ideas for extending Butler's literature of Black futures today.
Instructor: Murphy