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Is Science Fiction Coming to Africa?

Duration:
25 minutes
First broadcast:
Sunday 17 June 2012

Is science fiction coming to Africa? Or is it already here? Lauren Beukes, South African author and winner of the prestigious Arthur C. Clarke Award for Science Fiction in 2011, investigates.

Beukes hears from film-makers Neill Blomkamp (South Africa - director of the international hit District 9), Wanuri Kahiu (Kenya), blogger Jonathan Dotse (Ghana), writer Nnedi Okorafor (Nigeria/USA) and others on how their particular experiences have influenced their work.

Science fiction often explores the interaction between people and technology. In Africa that theme plays out in surprising ways, from making an appointment with a traditional healer over email, to women in remote villages collecting water while chatting on their mobiles.

It’s this mix of magic and technology, challenge and innovation that shapes the science fiction coming out of the continent.

Leaving behind the traditional visions of a high-tech Tokyo, futuristic LA or dystopian New York, and challenging clichéd views of the entire African continent, this is a science fiction being told by the people who live there.

Producer: Deborah Basckin.

(Image: A young girl wearing 3D glasses in Johannesburg, South Africa. Credit: AP Photo / Darko Bandic)

  • Agbogbloshie Market, Accra, Ghana 2010

    Agbogbloshie Market, Accra, Ghana 2010

    ©Pieter Hugo. Courtesy of Stevenson, Cape Town and Yossi Milo, New York

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