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Comics play an important role in imagining and constructing futures in the African context. Perceptions of the continent have been dominated by colonial and neoco-lonial discourses, which imply that solutions to problems can only be delivered by specialists from abroad. While there are very few narrative genres on the continent about the future, like utopias or dystopias, there is a growing interest in comics and cartoons that are influenced by super-hero stories in the tradition of Marvel or DC but adapted to African contexts. The construction of positive role models draws on legends and myths to create local super heroes who can save Africa, as in the case of the Lagos based enterprise Comic Republic. In this chapter, I argue that drawing is a gesture in which thinking, imagining and acting are entangled, so that the positive heroes can inspire a free imagination of a utopian world and also incite the readership to follow the models.

Open Access
In: African Futures