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From Science Fiction to Visionary Fiction: Learning from Octavia Butler

Mon, May 9, 2022 @ 5:00 PM - 6:30 PM

$35.00 – $65.00

“All organizing is science fiction. Organizers and activists dedicate their lives to creating and envisioning another world, or many other worlds—so what better venue for organizers to explore their work than science fiction stories? ” from Walidah Imarisha’s Introduction to Octavia’s Brood: Science Fiction Stories from Social Justice Movements.

This reading group, centered on Octavia Butler, begins 15 years after her passing. Appropriately, her influence continues to grow. Her writing and her life has nurtured a rising generation of social-justice oriented authors of color, particularly women. When looking at the  wider culture, it is apparent that at least five films and series based on her novels have hit or may soon be widely available.

Writing in the years of momentous change from 1971 to 2006, Octavia Butler embodied the emergence of “visionary fiction” as a new way to write, read and draw inspiration from science fiction. This spring, the Marxist Education Project’s first literature reading group devoted to science fiction will read Kindred (1979) and Parable of the Sower (1993), both now graphic novels and soon film and streaming series. Fifteen years on since her passing, Butler’s influence continues to grow. We will also read NK Jemisin’s Fifth Season (2015) and  Martha Wells’ All Systems Red (2017) to explore some of Butler’s lasting legacy. We will also make room to explore related short stories, graphic novels, essays, films, and more.

For a taste, check out “To Build a Future Without Police and Prisons, We Have to Imagine It,” by Walidah Imarisha. embed the url: https://onezero.medium.com/black-lives-matter-is-science-fiction-how-envisioning-a-better-future-makes-it-possible-5e14d35154e3


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