Skin Worlds: Science Fiction Theorizing in Black and Indigenous Science Fiction since the 1970s


Mellon/ACLS Dissertation Completion Fellowships




This project analyzes a range of science fiction (SF) texts by black and indigenous authors in order to argue that these speculative imaginaries are a crucial site for exploring the entangled global formations of black and indigenous studies. The study covers texts spanning across the Americas including Leslie Marmon Silko’s “Almanac of the Dead”, Nalo Hopkinson’s “Midnight Robber,” and Samuel Delany’s “Dhalgren.” The project analyzes these works as literary forms of theorizing the post-1492 “new world” at the nexus of settler colonialism and the transatlantic slave trade. Simultaneously the project puts forth as crucial the world building function of SF that allows black and indigenous authors to transform these contexts of dispossession and enslavement to pose different concepts of land and the human.