The Future of Black: The Advent of 21st-Century Second-Wave Afrofuturism Poetry

111AB, Pennsylvania Convention Center, 100 Level
Friday, March 25, 2022
10:35 am to 11:50 am


Afrofuturism has experienced a second wave in the 21st-century mainstream propelled by the success of the 2018 blockbuster film Black Panther. This panel explores the impact of this second wave on Afrofuturism poetry. Panelists featured in a new poetry anthology on Afrofuturism, black comics, and superhero culture discuss how their poetry contributes to second-wave Afrofuturism, along with insights to Afrofuturism poetry as a sustainable genre and defining it for future generations.

Outline & Supplemental Documents

Event Outline: Future_of_Black_Event_Outline.pdf



Len Lawson is the author of Chime  and the chapbook Before the Night Wakes You. He is also editor of Hand in Hand: Poets Respond to Race  and The Future of Black: Afrofuturism and Black Comics Poetry.

Cynthia Manick is the author of Blue Hallelujahs, editor of Soul Sister Revue: A Poetry Compilation (Jamii, 2019) and The Future of Black: Afrofuturism, Black Comics, and Superhero Poetry. She is the founder of the quarterly reading series Soul Sister Revue.

Tim Seibles has published several collections of poetry, including Buffalo Head Solos, Fast Animal—a finalist for the National Book Award in 2012—and, most recently, One Turn Around The Sun. His new and selected collection, Voodoo Libretto, will be released in January 2022. 

Teri Ellen Cross Davis is the author of a more perfect Union, 2019 Journal/ Charles B. Wheeler Poetry Prize winner, and Haint, a 2017 Ohioana Poetry Book award winner. She's a Cave Canem fellow, a Black Ladies Brunch Collective member, and poetry coordinator for the Folger Shakespeare Library in D.C.

Steven Leyva's poems have appeared in Nashville Review, jubilat, Vinyl, Prairie Schooner, and Best American Poetry 2020. He is a Cave Canem fellow and author of The Understudy's Handbook, winner of the Jean Feldman Poetry Prize.


February 7–10, 2024
Kansas City, Missouri

Kansas City Convention Center