“Non-Zero Probabilities” and the Afrofuturistic

The piece by Jemisin was a great read that even though it was about someone just going about their life in a “more” luck effected city, it made me want more. With that said, this piece, in my opinion, is not overtly Afrofuturistic, and the sci-fi influence is even in question by the protagonist, Adele. What I found to be Afrofuturistic was the relationship that Adele has with the community. The passage that put this relationship with the community on display starts about half way down on the last page of our excerpt. The only threats Adele talks about avoiding are those that have to deal with bad luck, or “danger-spots”, not areas notorious for “muggers”. This avoidance in the name of luck has given her the chance to walk more, to learn the names of her neighbors, and to feel more involved in the community. Adele at the end of the passage even rejects the idea of having to focus on luck, and it seems, opts instead for the acceptance of change. It makes me wonder if Afrofuturism goes beyond sci-fi and can be based more on the values and involvement in the community. We see this community involvement at the end of Black Panther with the philanthropy of Wakanda, but instead of that being on the fringe of the focus of an Afrofuturistic work, maybe it can be the main focus.

One Reply to ““Non-Zero Probabilities” and the Afrofuturistic”

  1. I confess, I was also quite confused as to how this reading related to Afrofuturism. I did some digging and found that the author (N.K. Jemisin) is a black woman. Since the reading had a science fiction feel, I can only surmise that this is where the Afrofuturist component comes in. Unless the superstitions of Adele represented the oppression that black culture faces and
    (SPOILER ALERT)
    her release of her superstitions (the paper airplane) represented the black community shedding its chains of oppression.
    I apologize, I maybe really grasping at straws here.

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