Why it is Important to Tell Stories about Black People in the Future

In class we talked about the importance of storytelling and the many purposes that storytelling serve. Stories about the future are also very important. Telling stories about how you imagine the future will be is a very important prediction of how the future will actually be. A point was made in class that there were no black people in the future according to science fiction and other futuristic forms of storytelling. We now have black futuristic stories that help us to think about how it will be for black people in the future thanks to authors such as Octavia Butler but before she started writing black people into the future we were excluded. 

Octavia Butler is one of the first authors to write black science fiction and it is a very important part of black literature. Adding black people to a previously all-white future allows black people the chance to dream and to think about how things can be. Butler’s novels such as Parable of the Sower allow black people to picture themselves in the future. In Parable of the Sower, you get to envision the near future (2024) from the point of view of a black family. I found this very important because not only is futuristic literature important in helping people dream of the future but it also helps people examine the behaviors of the past and the present and how they will contribute to the future.

Something I found very interesting about Parable of the Sower was the focus on the state of the environment in the future. I think it is important to think of how black people will be affected in the future by the environment because the lives of black people are currently being affected by the environment and there is not much attention drawn to it. 

Parable of the Sower and similar futuristic literature are important because they can help us to prepare for the future by changing the way we live in the present. 

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