“Cheesy as it sounds, I remember dancing to this video with my sisters, feeling hopeful for the future”
For all the playfulness of Janelle Monae’s Queen video ‘The booty don’t lie” (hahahaa) it concretely envisions a more positive future for African American culture in the States. The opening speech of this video is a clear afrofuturistic manifesto. Janelle Monae and Erykah Badu have envisioned a time in the not too distant future, where radical artists sharing “musical weapons program”, “freedom movements disguised as songs, in motion pictures and works of art”, paid tribute to in museums. Specifically, in Janelle’s version of the future, black women are free to express themselves fully and furthermore the work they have created is historicized and analysed in museums. Cheesy as it sounds, I remember dancing to this video with my sisters, feeling hopeful for the future and empowered by the refrain, “Even if it makes others uncomfortable, I will love who I am”
Watch the video (and peep Janelle’s last verse, some amazing writing there!)
What would your manifesto for a bright future look like? Could you sum it up in one sentence?