Sandra M. Grayson’s book Visions of the Third Millennium “is visionary, original, and substantial.  She takes a signature approach which focuses on black science fiction, an area that is emergent and under-explored, especially from an Africanist point of view. . . . Visions of the Third Millennium:  Black Science Fiction Novelists Write the Future exemplifies Grayson’s engagement in discourse building.  Her original theoretical approach in her groundbreaking book shows that she makes a significant contribution to the academic disciplines of African and African American Studies.”   —Ronald Dorris, Endowed Professor of African American Studies and Professor of English, Xavier University of Louisiana

“Sandra M. Grayson is a serious scholar who has made significant contributions to African and African American Studies through her academic books and through her leadership position as Editor of Network 2000:  In the Spirit of the Harlem Renaissance and Langston Hughes Colloquy.  Her work covers African aesthetic and trans-Atlantic cross influences in African and African American arts, especially literature.  Her approach is different and refreshing.  While other scholars have spent time on obvious remnants in African symbols and references in African American literature, Grayson has in an intellectually engaging and highly competent manner, examined the impact and significance of specific African worldviews in African American literature, film, and oral traditions.  Her scholarly books Visions of the Third Millennium:  Black Science Fiction Novelists Write the Future  (2003) and Symbolizing the Past: Reading Sankofa, Daughters of the Dust, and Eve’s Bayou as Histories  (2000) suggest new paths in literary criticism in African American Studies.  Sandra M. Grayson is well grounded in her field, and also interested in, and conversant with, larger critical issues of society and the world.  Through Grayson’s efforts African American Studies matters are subjects of discourse as far afield as South Africa, Zimbabwe, Lesotho, and Namibia.”  —Alosi J. M. Moloi D. Litt, Professor of Black Studies and English and Chair of the Department of Black Studies, California State University, Long Beach

“Sandra M. Grayson’s well-written and substantial academic book Visions of the Third Millennium:  Black Science Fiction Novelists Write the Future  is important and timely.  In addition to analyzing the ways that writers of African descent use the codes of science fiction to explore various topics, including race and gender, Grayson also discusses how the works interweave influences of ancient African nations. Recognizing  the complexity, distinctiveness, and significance of African nations, Grayson effectively and accurately discusses traditional African cultures. Internationally recognized, Grayson’s  scholarship makes an important contribution to African Studies and African American Studies.” —Muyiwa Falaiye, Professor, University of Lagos, Nigeria

Sparks of Resistance, Flames of Change is “a testimony to glorious moments of black people, which hitherto had not been known — a celebration of the transformational power of the black soul.”   The Guardian, Nigeria 

In “Pauline Hopkins’s Of One Blood and Julie Dash’s Daughters of the Dust as Speculative Fiction,”  Sandra M. Grayson analyzes “the role of black women as agents of resistance, forerunners of change and empowerment.  Grayson establishes the criticality of this role by drawing symbolic connections between mytho-historical facts and metaphors of black female power in ancient African societies (nations and cultures), and the relevance of these symbolic connections for ‘contemporary social transformation.’ ”   The Guardian, Nigeria

“Grayson’s groundbreaking study is concerned with how Black science fiction writers interweave the memories of enslaved Africans in their works, revealing journeys in time through Africa that are both metaphorical and literal in their span of physical space, traditional beliefs, and African history . . . .  Refreshingly original, [Visions of the Third Millennium] . . . marks another significant contribution to scholarship by Grayson.”  —Africa World Press

Dr. Grayson’s masterpiece of criticism is powerful and lyrically beautiful. ‘Symbolizing the Past’ compels us to assume greater individual social responsibility and to work toward human transcendence.” —Leonard A. Slade, Jr., Professor and Chair of the Department of Africana Studies and Director of the Humanistic Studies Doctoral Program, University at Albany, State University of New York 

‘Symbolizing the Past’ is a major contribution to a better understanding of our past and future.” —James Jennings, Professor, Tufts University

. . . Grayson’s ‘Symbolizing the Past’ is an important contribution to African American studies, black cultural studies, and women’s studies. . . . She challenges contemporary scholars of African American studies to go beyond a generic Africa in their work, to contend with the diverse and distinct cultures of ‘The Continent.’American Literature

“Examples of constructing history through film, the three fictional narratives which are the focus of Sandra Grayson’s study provide insight into how the role of the African American woman has been overlooked to the point of suppression.  The women in these works are presented as warriors, educators, healers, seers, oral historians, as well as mothers, daughters, sisters, and wives.  Through research into archival materials and study of the symbols encoded in the films themselves, ‘Symbolizing the Past’ reveals the gap between black mythic history and its representation.” —University Press of America



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