Who decides the worth of the land? Who decides which area is deemed “beautiful” and deserving of a multi-million dollar price tag while vistas of equal beauty in ‘third world countries’ remain free and open to the public?
What is the point of taking water, a natural occurring mineral liquid necessary for life sustainment, and putting a price tag on it? Why are the Coca-Cola Company and Nestle trying to privatize the largest water reserve within South America? Why is tap water that we pay for in-home or apartment utilities filled with fluoride and other unhealthy chemicals? Why is wanting clean water being criminalized? I think of Standing Rock as I write this.
What is the point of raising prices for national parks, such as the Grand Canyon, Yosemite, and Yellowstone? I know it’s apparently for infrastructure, but if the average person cannot pay to visit…what happens to the park then? Will the big companies have the privilege and honor of ravaging these scenic oases of the senses for profit? Steal all of the natural resources and then move on to the next?
Watching Hallmark movies on the Hallmark channel, I keep seeing commercials for ‘BuyBelize’. Promoting the sale of land in Belize to presumably upper middle class or wealthy Westerners. Do the people of Belize know that parts of their country are literally being sold in commercials like trendy sneakers? Is this their government allotting land that is being deemed unusable? Are Western countries lobbying for more space to utilize, destabilize, and destroy for consumption?
I have been into the Solarpunk movement for a while now. Solarpunk is the hope of a green, sustainable future that relies on solar power, community gardens and living within our means. It is utopian in ideals, equality and a decentralized government. Heavy emphasis on agriculture and community bonds.
It’s so beautiful.
Solarpunk ideals would also fit swimmingly into the Afrofuturism movement. Afrofuturism reclaims people of African descent’s place in sci-fi and the future. Because for some reason, it seems sci-fi is determined to erase the presence of black people and make them somehow alien. Along with sci-fi, it combines historical fiction, Afrocentrism, magical realism and fantasy to define the black future and black experience.
I’m so thankful for the movement Marvel’s Black Panther has reinvigorated.
It has surged people’s interest in the future of the African diaspora, and what can truly be achieved and brought into our collective realities.
There are also a lot of great resources and books on the subject of Afrofuturism.
Octavia E Butler wrote Afrofuturism themes in many of her work. Seed to Harvest is a series I’ve heard great things about! You could start there on your literary journey, as I will begin here as well.
Afrofuturism: The World of Black Sci-Fi and Fantasy Culture by Ytasha L. Womack is also a great read from what I’ve heard.
Black Quantum Futurism by Rasheedah Phillips also seems to be an interesting read; focusing on methodologies and theories in the genre.
Maybe I will do a review of these works here once I am able to purchase them.
Sun Ra made music to elevate the African diaspora to another plane of existence.
Solarpunk and Afrofuturism are ‘newer’ genres, but I believe they can change our future and our realities. They truly give me comfort in these troubling, disjointed times.
I have been working on several novellas and graphic novels. They have mainly African-descended protagonists and heavy Solarpunk and afrofuturistic themes. I use the term “African-descended” and not just “Black” because in my stories I am trying to fill the gap between Black American/Black – ____ and the continent of Africa. I write about people who know they have African ancestry, but like me…it’s jumbled and lost. I want them to feel a connection to their mother continent, and not a connection to a term that like negro, coloured, etc before it – has been placed upon them by their oppressors. Connections to a term that evokes images of land, seas, skies, cultures, and foods…not a color found in a fucking crayon box. We are so much more than that.
I am so excited to share them with the world but also very scared. But I feel like I need to share them. Please look forward to reading them when I finish them! (=