Octavia Butler's Parable of the Sower tells the story of a near-future with the climate crisis in full-swing. People can't afford water, living in a house is a luxury few can experience, and the world is on fire. Amidst this world, Lauren Olamina dreams of Earthseed. A religion based upon the idea that God is Change, and that humanity's, Earthseed's, destiny is to "take root among the stars".
The sequel, Parable of the Talents, tells of a similar near-future in which a president is elected on the platform, "Make America Great Again". He promises to do this by returning to the United States' staple values of xenphobia, by placing various oppressed peoples, including religions, into concentration camps.
As many have said, Octavia Butler was indeed a prophet. She saw what was coming to meet us in the 2020's; a world on fire, a return to fascism. But, in the center of all of this, she offers us a story of hope told by a disabled, queer, Afro-Latina heroine. I originally read this book in the wake of the 2016 presidential-election. I needed this story because it reminded me that those of us who experience systemic oppression already know the answers to surviving the end-of-the-world. We've always already been preparing our whole lives through our experiences and our traumas. We're going to be okay.
If you want to come check out this piece in-person, it's going up tomorrow as part of Push/Pull's Black, White, And Re(a)d All Over show. 15% of the sales for this piece are going to Got Green, a climate justice organization in South Seattle, so buy my piece so the money can go to a good cause!
We just sent you an email. Please click the link in the email to confirm your subscription!
OKSubscriptions powered by Strikingly