Blackness & Utopia

We will examine how black writers have articulated utopian visions, from Emancipation to the 20th century, and how they have intervened in the utopian traditions of American literature and culture, including anti-utopia, heterotopia, and dystopia. Novels, short stories, and film by African-American authors that portray utopian societies and movements, along with cultural criticism grounded in the study of those texts, form the basis for our work in this course. We will engage with the ways in which Black authors have envisioned a better world and how they have articulated distinct agendas for self-determination.

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