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Black Sun / Black Son: An AfroFutures Syllabus

#BlackSunBlackSon A Twitter Chat Q&A Presented by The CultSTATUS Arts Haven.

Black Sun / Black Son

Black Sun/Black Son: An AfroFutures Syllabus

Curated & Presented By The CultSTATUS Arts Haven

A Twitter Chat Q&A Hosted on August 21st, 2017

THE VISION: Founded by Constance SHERESE Collier-Mercado A Black Woman Writer/Artist and self-proclaimed “Anthropologist of the Arts” in search of all the culture she can get … The CultSTATUS Arts Haven is a multidisciplinary cultural & creative petri-dish which seeks to provide a safe space for the connection {and intersection} of writers, artists, wanderers, social instigators, scientists, activists, educators, and other critical thinkers rooted in a desire to elevate the African Diaspora and uplift Communities of Color. This radical arts clinic works to foster an holistic environment of Immersion & Experimentation with a commitment to achieving social equity from the chaos. ---------------

THE EVENT: Curated and presented by The CultSTATUS Arts Haven, this community discussion staged as a Twitter Chat Q&A, coincides with the politically charged month known as Black August and the 2017 North American Total Eclipse which is occurring for the first time in 38 years. What is Black August? How is the idea of a Solar Eclipse subverted to fuel this concept of liberatory struggle? Who were/are those leading the charge in the past and today? Where will this new iteration of organizing for freedom take us? Is there room for a healing nature as well? These ideas and more are discussed on the afternoon of Monday, August 21st, 2017. ----------------

Black Sun/Black Son harnesses the Black August legacy of righteous political rebellion and the awe-inspiring beauty of the 2017 Solar Eclipse to use as metaphor for Black Progress. It challenges old cycles of obscured vision & purpose to be replaced instead with a fiery conviction toward bold self/rediscovery. What lie yet on the horizon for a People of the Sun? A collective time of cooling off? or Supernova? ----------------------------------


Black August - A Political Primer on Resistance. N.A.S.A. - from the Space Race to “Post-Race” in America.


Retinal Patterns - Sun Spot, Blind Spot, or Willful Ignorance?


Shade. ---------------


Corona - The Crown Ain’t Worth Much. ---------------


Black Boy Joy. Zodiac - Mapping A People’s Journey. Time Capsule (2:40 / 2024) - Where Do We Go from Here? Black Sun / Black Son - Liberation as the Birth of a New Star. ---------------



BLACK AUGUST A Political Primer on Resistance

â€œâ€Ś a month of divine meaning, of repression and radical resistance, of injustice and divine justice; of repression and righteous rebellion; of individual and collective efforts to free the slaves and break the chains that bind us."

- Mumia Abu-Jamal

Soledad Brother - George Lester Jackson

If They Come in the Morning - Angela Y. Davis

Blood in My Eye - George Lester Jackson

Assata: An Autobiography - Assata Olugbala Shakur

Strategies for Freedom: The Changing Patterns of Black Protest - Bayard Rustin

Imprisoned Intellectuals: America’s Political Prisoners - Joy James, PhD

The Struggle is My Life - Nelson Mandela

Marissa Alexander Justice Project (MarissaAlexander.org) - Marissa Alexander

The Underground Railroad: Authentic Narratives - William Still

Harriet Tubman: The Road to Freedom - Catherine Clinton

Pay It No Mind: The Life & Times of Marsha P. Johnson (documentary) - Michael Kasino

Hidden in Plain View: A Secret Story of Quilts and The Underground Railroad - Jacqueline Tobin & Raymond G. Dobard

Revolutionary Suicide - Huey P. Newton

Black August (film) - Samm Styles

Whose Streets? (documentary) - Sabaah Folayan

Jonathan P. Jackson - 17y.o., Father, Revolutionary, Dead.

Dr. Mutulu Shakur

Happy Birthday, Marsha - Reina Gossett & Sasha Wortzel

Black Muslim Solidarity - Ramadan 1979

N.A.S.A. from the Space Race to “Post-Race” in America

Hidden Figures: The American Dream and the Untold Story of the Black Women Who Helped Win the Space Race - Margot Lee Shetterly

100 Year Starship / Team Pleiades (DrMae.com) - Dr. Mae Jemison

Space Challenger: The Story of Guion Bluford - James Haskins

Ghana Sat 1 (anusstl.com) - Ghana Satellite Team

Merlin’s Tour of the Universe - Neil deGrasse Tyson

The Offing Magazine/Back of the Envelope - EiC, Chanda Prescod-Weinstein

Saturn’s Child - Nichelle Nichols & Margaret Wander Bonanno

Beyond Uhura - Nichelle Nichols

Space Chronicles: Facing the Ultimate Frontier - Neil deGrasse Tyson

Aftermath - LeVar Burton

Jeanette Epps/International Space Station

Arnaldo Tamayo Méndez/Cuban Cosmonaut

RETINAL PATTERNS Sun Spot, Blind Spot, or Willful Ignorance?

© Toyin Ojih Odutola, ‘Looking at the Sunrise and Calling It Dusk’, 2016

Brown Girl in the Ring - Nalo Hopkinson

The Broken Kingdoms - N.K. Jemisin

The Black Parade - Kyoko M.

Naughts & Crosses Series - Malorie Blackman

The Devil in Silver - Victor LaValle

Let’s Play White - Chesya Burke

Black No More - George S. Schuyler


© Terion Montgomery, ‘Blocking Shade’, 2017

Dhalgren - Samuel R. Delaney

Starting Friction - Tenea D. Johnson

Sycorax’s Daughters - Kinitra Brook, PhD; Linda D. Addison; & Susana Morris, PhD

Streets of Shadows - Maurice Broaddus & Jerry Gordon

Zone One - Colson Whitehead

The Ballad of Black Tom - Victor LaValle

Sundown Towns - FIYAH Literary Magazine, Issue Three

CORONA The Crown Ain’t Worth Much

“… I know I watch the teeming masses of Black thousands split open the blazing sun in the name of the fading son I know there’s always going to be another dead Black body in Summer until we run out of houses for Black angels in the New Heaven where every Black grandma is Jesus to somebody and Sunday afternoon’s always on repeat after the knee’s been pressed to that old wooden church floor and we prayed for Black children climbing up that long ladder to the promised land and no one falls asleep to a chorus of bullets and don’t nobody turn on the news and see someone who got their baby’s eyes and it smells like chicken is always in the pan even when chicken ain’t in the pan and the song on the radio is always something that you and your grandma know and your name is still alive in someone’s mouth. My name is still alive in my father’s mouth …”

© Hanif Willis-Abdurraqib, ‘The Crown Ain’t Worth Much’, 2016

The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms - N.K. Jemisin

Meji: Books One & Two - Milton J. Davis

The Crown Ain’t Worth Much - Hanif Willis-Abdurraqib

The Sorcerer of the Wildeeps - Kai Ashante Wilson

Knights of Breton Court Series - Maurice Broaddus

The Kundalini Equation - Steven Barnes

When the World Wounds - Kiini Ibura Salaam


© Hebru Brantley, ‘Advertisement #59’, 2015

The Galaxy Game - Karen Lord

Kaya Abaniah and the Father of the Forest - Wayne Gerard Trotman

The Joys of Being a Little Black Boy - Valerie Reynolds

A Taste of Honey - Kai Ashante Wilson

The Coyote Kings of the Space-Age Bachelor Pad - Minister Faust

The Everleaf Series - Constance Burris

ZODIAC Mapping A People’s Journey

Nova - Samuel R. Delaney

Santeria Habitat Series - Kenya Wright

Griots: A Sword and Soul Anthology - Milton J. Davis & Charles R. Saunders

The Telescoping Effect, Part One - Rasheedah Phillips

Salsa Nocturna: Stories - Daniel Jose Older

Veterans of the Psychic Wars - Wayne Gerard Trotman

The Warmth of Other Suns - Isabel Wilkerson

Filter House - Nisi Shawl

TIME CAPSULE (2:40 / 2024) Where Do We Go from Here?

Joplin’s Ghost - Tananarive Due

Steamfunk! - Milton J. Davis & Balogun Ojetade

Redeemer - Balogun Ojetade

R/evolution - Tenea D. Johnson

Immortal Series: Books One to Four - Valjeanne Jeffers

The Voices of Martyrs - Maurice Broaddus

Stigmata - Phyllis Alesia Perry

Little Miss Strange - Winston Blakely

Electric Arches - Eve Ewing

Hayward’s Reach: Tales of the Twilight Continuum - Thaddeus Howze

BLACK SUN / BLACK SON Liberation as the Birth of a New Star

The Imaro Series - Charles Saunders

Luke Cage - Marvel Comics & Netflix

Destroyer - Victor LaValle

Miles Morales: Spider Man - Jason Reynolds

Stars in My Pocket Like Grains of Sand - Samuel R. Delaney

Smoketown - Tenea D. Johnson

The Best of All Possible Worlds - Karen Lord

Rebirth - FIYAH Literary Magazine, Issue One

The World Breach Series - DaVaun Sanders


With much appreciation, we thank the Malcolm X Grassroots Movement, Black Lives Matter, & the Black Theology Project whose many resources for Black August made this syllabus more robust.

All artwork and book references inclusive of all rights therein belong to their respective creators, with specific acknowledgement made to Toyin Ojih Odutola, Terion Montgomery, Hanif Willis-Abdurraqib, & Hebru Brantley.

Although not hosted this year at the Auburn Avenue Research Library on African American Culture & History, we continue to be grateful for their willingness to host our initial AfroFutures Syllabus, Hoo-Doula/Voo-Doula, and their ongoing guidance & support since that time.


Profile for The CultSTATUS Arts Haven

Black Sun/Black Son: An AfroFutures Syllabus  

Black Sun/Black Son harnesses the Black August legacy of righteous political rebellion and the awe-inspiring beauty of the 2017 Solar Eclips...

Black Sun/Black Son: An AfroFutures Syllabus  

Black Sun/Black Son harnesses the Black August legacy of righteous political rebellion and the awe-inspiring beauty of the 2017 Solar Eclips...