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January 24, 2019 @ 6:00 pm – March 21, 2019 @ 9:00 pm UTC Timezone
The Library Company of Philadelphia
1314 Locust St.
Philadelphia, PA 19107, Philadelphia
PA 19107
Library Company of Philadelphia

Designing Afrofuturism: Imagining Black Futures through Art, History, and Literature

January 24 / January 31 / February 28 / March 21

6:00pm – 8:00pm

“Designing Afrofuturism” will examine the surviving art, architecture, and technology from indigenous civilizations across the African diaspora. Complemented by the upcoming Library Company exhibition “From Negro Pasts to Afro-Futures: Black Creative Re-Imaginings,” this seminar, led by Dr. Walter Greason (Associate Professor at Monmouth University), will explore how historical African American leaders envisioned the future. “Designing Afrofuturism” will draw upon the Library Company’s prodigious African American History collections, including rare Afrofuturist literature and drawings, poems and songs, and speeches and protests. Participants will learn how to reinterpret these historical records as the foundation of a twenty-first-century global society and to pursue that vision through recent public exhibitions, public art campaigns, and community literacy programs.

Seminars unfold over four two-hour sessions. Each session features an intimate and interactive presentation of historical materials in our reading room, followed by dinner in the historic Logan Room. Space is limited to 20 participants on a first-come, first, serve basis.

About the Seminar Leader:
Dr. Greason’s research focuses on the comparative, economic analysis of slavery, industrialization, and suburbanization. With a variety of co-editors, Dr. Greason has published Planning Future Cities(2017) – an innovative look at architecture, urbanism, and municipal design; The American Economy (2016) – a provocative examination of race, property, and wealth in the United States since 1750; and the Afrofuturist design textbook, Cities Imagined. His scholarly monograph, Suburban Erasure, won the Best Work of Non-Fiction award from the New Jersey Studies Academic Alliance in 2014. He also won grants from the Mellon Foundation (2011) and the National Endowment for the Humanities (2016). He is also the creator of the #WakandaSyllabus. The subsequent series of essays can be found on the award-winning website, Black Perspectives.


To pay by check contact Colleen Gill, Development and Membership Coordinator, at or 215-546-3181, ext. 136. For more information about the seminar series, contact Will Fenton, Director of Scholarly Innovation, at or 215-546-3181, ext. 119.

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