Working in the Future Tense

Professor Lonny Avi Brooks is a leading voice in Afrofuturism 2.0, the philosophy of science and history that explores the intersections of the African Diaspora culture, technology, and queerness. Lonny takes us through re-imagining the world’s white colonial past to superhero Black Panther’s home of Wakanda; and through that into our very own Oakanda.

About the speaker

Lonny J Avi Brooks is an Associate Professor in the department of communication at California State University, East Bay, where he has piloted the integration of futures thinking into the communication curriculum for the last fifteen years. Emerging in recent years as a leading voice of Afrofuturism 2.0, Brooks contributes prolifically to journals, conferences and anthologies on the subject, as well as serving as executive producer and co-creator, with Ahmed Best, of The Afrofuturist Podcast. He is currently the lead co-editor for a forthcoming special issue of the Journal of Futures Studies: “When is Wakanda? Afrofuturism and Dark Speculative Futurity”. He is lead organizer in Oakland and advisory board member for the Black Speculative Arts Movement (BSAM), co-founded by Reynaldo Anderson, a national and global movement dedicated to celebrating the Black imagination and design. Dr. Brooks serves as Creative Director for BSAM Futures, which aims to promote, publish and teach forecasting with Afrocentric perspectives in mind using gaming and facilitation for imaginative, action-oriented thinking.

He has a passion for creating games to envision social justice futures including black and queer liberation from Afro-Rithms From The Future to United Queerdom and Futurescope. He and his co-game designer Eli Kosminsky are committed to articulating emerging new future visions for traditionally underrepresented voices. He is currently writing his book Imagining Queer Futures with Afrofuturism@Futureland: Circulating Afro-Queer futuretypes of Work, Culture and Racial Identity. He recently became a research affiliate with IFTF working with IFTF Research Director Tessa Finlev on the California Equitable Futures Network initiative with the Blue Shield Blue Cross Foundation.

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