CFP: African Journal of Rhetoric (AJR) Call for Papers: SPECIAL EDITION on the Black Panther Movie Africa, Afro-futurism and Wakanda Imaginings AJR Volume 16

The death of Chadwick Boseman evoked emotions across the global African community as evidenced on social media and new channels. Most Africans imagined him as T’Challa, an African royalty. T’Challa, a young man, succeeds his father, but must deal with his father’s mistake. T’Chaka’s spirit asserts: ‘That is the truth I chose to omit.’ But this is the predicament of African nation states’ leadership: choosing to omit fundamental truths that subsequent generations would have to deal with. Sometimes they win, but most times, they lose. But myth has always been a method of reflexivity for any nation. From its classical origins, the theatre has always been a channel of rhetorical exchange and application of propositional rhetoric and conflictual dialogue to litigate moral and operational failings of leaders and nation states. To paraphrase Femi Osofisan, it is a site where the past confronts the present and the real present confronts itself. Most commentaries on the Black Panther movie suggest that Africa saw in the movie, what the continent would have become, had the leaders managed appropriately the vast resources with which Africa is endowed. Paradise lost? Can it ever be regained? 

This project seeks original ruminations on the state of Africa’s politics and economic management strategies based on Wakanda imaginings. Can Africa reverse that current trends of state fragilization and economic mismanagement practices? How can Africa’s political systems better engage its youths in political processes? Can Africa’s youth really turn the current tide for the betterment of the African peoples? Vision 2063, how possible? What is the role of the African diaspora in the making of a better and greater Africa? Again, in the words of T’Chaka, ‘You are a good man. . . with a good heart, T’Challa. It is hard for a good man to be King.’ Are good hearted Africans in leadership positions today? Can they lead African states out of this economic quagmire? What is the place of virtue ethics in Africa’s 21st century politics? What is the role of oral tradition/storytelling in present-day Africa’s socio-political imaginings?

Suggested sub-themes are the following: 

·         Chadwick Boseman: Tribute (s)

·         The Black Panther Movie and the African Literary Imagination 

·         Orality, Storytelling and 21st century African Politics

·         The African Epic and Oral Tradition

·         Reception, Adaptation, and the Re-appropriation of African Mythology

·         Leadership and succession struggle in the Black Panther

·         Tribal Conflicts, Mercenaryism and Warlordism in Africa

·         Managing Africa’s resources: Challenge to Leadership 

·         Role of Virtue Ethics in Africa’s 21st Century Politics

·         Youth and Leadership development in Africa

·         Gender and the Rhetoric of Science and Technology in Africa

·         Africa’s cultural Heritage and artifacts in western Museums 

·         African Art: The rhetoric of restitution

·         Imagining Africa’s Leadership in World Politics

·         Writing Africa in Children’s Literature

·         Imagining a New Africa: Prospects and challenges

·         Africa’s security: instability and the involvement of External Actors

·         Capitalism and African ancestral sites: The desecration question

·         An African Superhero: Marvel Comic and the invention of an African Myth

·         Performing Africa: Masks and the African Identity

Abstract: 250 words. Submission date: October 30, 2020

Paper: 6000 words. Submission date: April 30, 2021

Publication Date: December 2022