a very short intro to afro-pessimism


Go here for a free pdf of the book Afro-Pessimism: An Introduction. It is a collection of essays by writers within the framework of Afro-pessimism, meant to serve as an introduction to the field through writings by the authors themselves.

The “very short intro” that was on this page is no longer available outside the context of the full book. I made this decision so that it doesn’t continue to appear that we are at all a part of Afro-pessimism. Existing in whiteness, I don’t wish to take up space in a field that is by and really for Black people. While I believe Afro-pessimism has a lot to offer white people for understanding whiteness and anti-Blackness, publicly engaging with it like it’s ours to claim feels more than inappropriate.

The “intro” formerly here was getting way more reads than the actual book and it seemed like my voice was being overly representative when it was intended only to be a point of access to the actual writings by those within the field of Afro-pessimism. I don’t want to make excuses for myself or act like I didn’t want the book to be popular, but I did hope and believe that people would go to the sources and not stop at my summaries—this has unfortunately not been the case. While I never benefited from this project, academically or financially, I didn’t anticipate the “intro” becoming popular and making it seem that I had anything to do with Afro-pessimism. The book will continue to be available since it makes freely available articles that otherwise exist behind academic paywalls, but the “intro” is no longer its own thing.

If you are here but not familiar with Afro-pessimism, I would say you should look up some of the writers within it—Saidiya Hartman, Jared Sexton, or Frank Wilderson are all good people to start with. There are also a lot of Black writers/bloggers thinking about these ideas in a more informal way who can be found through a search on the topic.

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Isidore may have died, but they are many.

7 thoughts on “a very short intro to afro-pessimism”

  1. If you are not Black than you are not part of the Afro-pessimistic framework. Period. It is not for you and you should exit. Go away.


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