Speculative method-making for feminist futures: Insights from black feminist science and Afrofuturist work

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How can black feminist science and Afrofuturism inform the crafting of methods for future research? Can their strategies for visioning alternative worlds help shape a methodological scaffold to guide the doing of empirical speculative research? The article engages with these questions while drawing on the author’s experience on a youth futures project. The article identifies the challenges of empirical, speculative projects–the difficulties for participants in breaking away from the dead weight of the present and the difficulties for researchers in engendering research that allows newness–surprising and radical imaginaries of the future–to emerge. By exploring relevant ideas from the worlds of creative Afrofuturism and black feminist science, the article proposes a set of methodological prompts that may help understand and address these challenges. These prompts are also an attempt to construct a distinctive intellectual and ethical compass to guide everyday research practice, and are offered in a spirit of experimentation, to be used, amended, or selectively ignored by fellow speculative researchers. The intention is to support a form of speculative research that does not foreclose on the radical and liberatory possibilities of futurity advanced by black feminist creativity and scholarship.

Original languageEnglish
JournalAustralian Feminist Studies
Early online date5 Apr 2024
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 5 Apr 2024


  • Afrofuturism
  • black feminist science
  • engendering new futures‌
  • methodological framework
  • speculative research

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