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METROPOLARITY is a corner store sci-fi & action collective based, bred, and tested in the colliding future-present of Philadelphia.

METROPOLARITY: The manifestation of contrasting principles, tendencies, or lifestyles in an urban system and any reactions resulting from encounters between these forces.

We are a transtemporalspatial neighborhood we are city we are low income working class working always working survivors mothers professionals non-academics hashtag queer hashtag blacknbrown hashtag nonbinary walking w a k i n g portals of the African Caribbean mestiza European diasporas. We are four directions coming together.

We wield “science fiction” voice and word to manifest world-paradigms necessary for our survival. Empire does not welcome this. Ride with us against empire.

HELLO AND WE JACKED THIS CODE OFF LIES JOURNAL <3. HACK THE PLANET 2016.

READ

You may download full PDFs of our past zines, purchase our debut book, or interface with the individual pieces below.

UNCOLLECTED TALES

The Ark Charted Prism That Promised It's Light
Galactic
The Three Known Tales of Hatim Muzumbo
And Now I Am the Loveliest

STYLE OF ATTACK REPORT

METROPOLARITY is a DIY sci-fi collective based, bred, and tested in the colliding future-present of Philadelphia. This Style of Attack Report contains select work from METROPOLARITY's four founding members, who contribute theory, practice, and experience of home grown speculative visioning for both historical documentation as well as personal and collective survival. The collection serves as a model and a record of how Black, brown, queer, low-resource, working, ill and in-recovery people can project themselves into the future, conjuring resources, technology, and magic that aid us in the present.

Also this sci-fi is FIRE cuz the crew don't play.


122 pages
4.25" x 7"
13 USD
PURCHASE
Request a copy at your local library.
Add it to your Goodreads.

FUTURE NOW EPISODE

JOURNAL OF SPECULATIVE VISION & CRITICAL LIBERATION TECHNOLOGIES: SE 2 EP 1

FULL PDF
A Young Thug Confronts His Own Future
IT IS OKAY - Laura Pollard
SPONSORED MESSAGES from grey nebraska
commentary from Azeem Hill, Fred Pinguel, n Carolyn Lazard
BATTLEFIELD REPLICA SYMMETRY RETROSPECTA - Moor Mother
THE 40TH ST. CON - Skribbly LaCroix
CONSTANTEMIEDOCONSTANTE - Natis
DISTRICTS - Aja Beech
FLYBOYS - Billie Blazer
G.P.S. - Althea Baird
LIFE ONLINE WORKSHEET - Eighteen & Ras
PORTRAIT OF THE ACTIVIST AS A YOUNG SUPER-HERO - Alex Smith
BLACK QUANTUM FUTURISM - Rasheedah Phillips

2013 ARCHIVE SPECIAL

JOURNAL OF SPECULATIVE VISION & CRITICAL LIBERATION TECHNOLOGIES: PILOT + SE01 EP01

FULL PDF
Gentry
Yolanda
The Great Collapse and Our New Community
D.I.Y. Wormhole
IS SCI-FI POLITICAL: Our intentions
In Which Afro-Barista Dreams of a White Dwarf Star

PILOT EPISODE - THE POLITICAL

Hello Hello - Shane Jenkins
The PTSD - R.Phillips
Redundancies - Warren Longmire
Culling the Herd - C. Renee Stephens
Cyborg Apocalypse - M Eighteen Téllez
Networks
Resource Spotlight
Crew Love

EPISODE 01- SPACE INVADERS

The Adhesion of the Eyelids - Patrokolos
A 21st Century Mind Revolution - Melissa Moore
Creating New Space-Times - R. Phillips
centerfold - Pyroglyphics/Shawn Alleyne
Networks
Resource Spotlight
Crew Love

AUDIO & VIDEO

LISTEN

DEBRIEF: (1) SOFT TARGETS (2) LASER LIFE
YOU HAVE 4 MESSAGES
A Glimpse at Death - Dystopian Fiction x Grind Music
Performance: Sent(a)Mental Project

WATCH & LISTEN

DEBRIEF: (1) SOFT TARGETS (2) LASER LIFE
Our Church LASER LIFE: a video recap
Smut, Cyberspace, and Hard SF: A video situation with Ras and R.Phillips
This is Our Church: A Laser Life Recap
In Which Afro-Barista Dreams of a White Dwarf Star
FILE THIS SHIT UNDER THE GENRE OF GOOD: Laser Life, the lifeblood.
THE WORLD HAS MOVED ON: A Wednesday evening
NODE CONSTRUCTION: A SUNDAY AFTERNOON
PERFECT TEXT BASED WIT: Ras Mashramani reads at Moonstone Arts Center
"Jenna is making love to a woman wearing a Louis Vuitton hazmat Suit . . ."
Previously at the Laser Life . . .

WORKSHEETS & POSTERS

#LIFEONLINE Worksheet PDF
WEAPONS OF PERCEPTION Poster PDF

REVIEWS

No Spoilers Beyond Episode 1 anime review series continues! Kabaneri of the Iron Fortress
The Town Without Me / finally some anime
Alex Smith in Stories For Chip
"Elysium" by Jennifer Marie Brissett
Why I Kinda, Sorta Don't Really Totally Love the Edy Hardjo's "The Secret Life of Super-Heroes" or Whatever
What's That On Her Bookshelf: Our year-end media picks
Media Blackout: Game one of our media review series

SHOP

All capital gain from the sale of our products go towards further propaganda efforts + getting things done in the city for us and ours.

NEWSLETTER




   

ABOUT

CREW

RAS MASHRAMANI

picture of ras mashramani in a gas mask

Ras Mashramani was born to two parents: immigration and high-intensity media saturation. She was raised by the Santa Ana winds, casareep, and the PATH train. She writes about the monstrosities inherent in the bodies and cultures of girlthings, DIY coping mechanisms in the form of virtual spaces, and how madness shapes and creates reality. She is a founding member of METROPOLARITY, and a recent a recipient of the Leeway Foundation Art & Change Grant, which funded her forthcoming sci-fi paranoia thriller, NO CALL//NOSHOW. In a parallel universe, she is a mental health worker. You can find her work by utilizing your friendly neighborhood online surveillance unit. She has no time.


@ANTI_GYAL on Twitter

ALEX SMITH

pic of a drawing by alex smith

Alex Smith exists in the seams in the cloth of existence where he desperately stitches together universes with one hand and with the other, armed with a espresso tamp, makes valiant attempts to keep his lights on. Smith's writing was born in a confusing mire of slam poetry, house/vogue culture, and the DIY community, his work forever damaged by retro-futurist cinema and Silverhawks cartoons. This cosmic eclecticism has led to the shattering of several go-nowhere punk bands and the inevitable demise of his superstar DJ career. A member of the sci-fi artist/activist collective METROPOLARITY, the founder of the queer sci-fi reading series Laser Life, and curator of the retro-futurist electro mash-up art-jam Chrome City, Alex's stories and writings emboldened the weird, strange, and revolutionary dichotomy of being black and queer in a world that marginalizes both. Selected by Rosarium Publishing for the anthology dedicated to the writing of Samuel Delany, Stories for Chip and for Black Quantum Futurism's Space-Time Collapse: From the Congo to the Carolinas, it's Smith’s flash fiction collection Gang Stalk Oprah, self-published sci-fi zine A R K D U S T and super-hero space opera comic book BELIEVERS that will kidnap you, convert you, shoot you in the leg and then set you free.


@AlexSmi54827599 on Twitter

M EIGHTEEN TÉLLEZ

pic of the back of eighteen's head

A hybrid mestiza cyborg and Philadelphia native, Eighteen writes and performs speculative fiction about bodies/objectification, intimacy/class, neighborhood/land/community, and the violence in relying on binaries to order the world. Eighteen is frustrated/pissed with institutional distinction, empire and white supremacy, and fixed rather than fluid treatment of language and identity. They consider the spoken and written word handy and inexpensive tools for deconstructing oppressive world-ordering narratives.

They have performed alongside METROPOLARITY at the Philadelphia Free Library, Vox Populi's AUX space, New York's New Museum and Recess Gallery, among many other places. Their work has been assigned alongside LeGuin and Butler in University of Penn English department classrooms and saints know where else. They are a recipient of the Leeway Foundation’s Transformation Award (2015), Art & Change Grant (2014), and featured reader in the 2015 Trans Literary Salon. They think this very format of listing institutional accolades is classist, tiresome, and insulting to people everywhere with the wisdom, action, and knowledge that the instutitions of capitalist empire will never honor.

This year they appear alongside their comrade, Ras Mashramani, in the Procyon Press 2016 Science Fiction Anthology and METROPOLARITY‘s debut book, Style of Attack Report.


@cyborgmemoirs on Twitter | cyborgmemoirs on Tumblr

RASHEEDAH PHILLIPS

R. Phillips. is a practicing attorney, a mother, writer, the creator of The AfroFuturist Affair, the co-creator of Black Quantum Futurism multimedia arts collective, and 1/4th founding member of METROPOLARITY. In 2014 independently published her first speculative fiction collection, Recurrence Plot(and Other Time Travel Tales), followed by two anthologies of experimental essays from Black visionary writers called Black Quantum Futurism and Space Time Collapse. As part of BQF Collective, Phillips was a 2015 Artist-in-Residence at West Philadelphia Neighborhood Time Exchange, is a 2016 A Blade of Grass Fellow, and has exhibited and performed at Temple Contemporary, Stony Island Arts Bank in Chicago, and WORM! Rotterdam, Holland, Kimia in Copenhagen, Denmark and more. Phillips has work appearing in the book Keywords for Radicals: The Contested Vocabulary of Late Capitalist Struggle and Unveiling Visions: The Alchemy of the Black Imagination exhibition catalogue, Temple University Political and Civil Rights Journal, and other publications.

Stay up to date and subscribe to the Future Light Cone newsletter.


@afrofuturaffair on Twitter

PRESS

Institute of Contemporary Art Philadelphia: Free For All with Black Quantum Futurism & METROPOLARITY
SAMEK Art Gallery: Tomorrow Never Happens ~ Queer Futurity and the Aesthetics of Utopia
SF MOMA Open Spaces: assassinating infinity: an interview with metropolarity
Free Library of Philadelphia: Soft Targets: Vulnerability and Violence in the New Post-Apocalypse
New Museum Seminars: (Temporary) Collections of Ideas around SPECULATION watch full video - skip to 1:07 for our part
Kelly Writers House: METROPOLARITY LIVE at the Kelly Writers House WPXN 88.5FM
Recess Critical Writing Program: YOU HAVE 4 MESSAGES
Rhode Island Independent Publishing Expo: RIPExpo 2015 FEATURED GUESTS
4th AUX Curatorial Fellow Anthony Romero and METROPOLARITY present Erasures watch full video
Philadelphia City Paper: A West Philly collective aims to elevate underrepresented voices in science fiction literature and beyond
Broken Pencil Magazine: Zine Philosophy: METROPOLARITY
Digital Media + Learning: Teaching Urban Digital Literacy Outside Schools

MINDS FOR HIRE

All that you can imagine, we shall present it in human form, downloaded from our frontal lobe and into your cerebrum. Workshops, rituals, readings! Invite us to your school, your universities, your utopian gatherings. Seriously, dreams await and METROPOLARITY is here for you. Your sonic alter chiming, your cyborg Santeria, your moonbeam teleport dust ride into the future.

We can provide:

1. Thematic readings or lectures based on our work with subsequent Q&A. The four members of METROPOLARITY operate as individuals and as a group and sub-groups, willing to give voice in their particular understanding. These ideas are expressed through short sci-fi/speculative fiction stories, lectures, slide shows and are sometimes accompanied by music.

2. Workshops on zine writing, ritual practices from various disaporas, literature, DIY culture and distribution and how it relates to disenfranchised communities, sci-fi, afrofuturism, cyborgs, early internet culture, and vision-driven speculative fiction.

Serious inquiries, please see our contact information below.

LINKS

Coming soon.

ESPAÑOL

METROPOLARITY: La manifestación de principios, tendecias, o estilos de vida que contrastan en un sistema urbano así como de reacciones producto del encuentro entre estas fuerzas.

METROPOLARITY nació en el verano pixeleado del 2012, desesperadxs por un espacio donde la tecnología y comunidad pudiesen encontrarse. Un colectivx que utiliza la ciencia ficción como herramienta para la especulación, conformado por escritorxs/artistas/activistas nacidxs/criadxs en Filadelfia. Pobres y de la clase trabajadora, de bajos recursos, queer, trans, sobrevivientes, madres, profesionistas, no académicxs, gloriosxs, amorfxs caminantxs de los límites y espacios, soñadorxs citadinxs de las diasporas Africana/Caribeña/mestiza/Europea. METROPOLARITY cree firmemente que aquellxs desempoderadxs deben tomar ventaja y control de los medios de comunicación a los que se tenga acceso. METROPOLARITY ha escogido la ciencia ficción como su prisma para manifestar los paradigmas del mundo necesarios para la sobrevivencia. Somos destructorxs y resurrectos.

HERALD

1. NUESTRA CIENCIA FICCIÓN ES NUESTRA REALIDAD
No todxs aquí hemos nacido en bandeja de plata, o en una nave espacial teñida tipo tie-dyed. Queremos lo filoso y áspero, la suciedad, la tierra, y que el acero se doble ante nuestros pies al tiempo que caminamos hacia la luna y las estrellas. Porque nuestra realidad no esta divorciada de nuestros sueños, le damos voz a la pasión de nuestros sueños.

2. NUESTRA GENERACIÓN ES ETERNA
Somos androides soñando con oevajas eléctricas, yendo a 20,000 leguas debajo de la tierra, desenterrando pergáminos perdidos y parabólas de sembradorxs olvidadas. Estamos en comunión con los Griots, los Orishas, lxs magxs y lxs videntes. Somos demonios, sabixs los somos y seremos por siempre.

3. NUESTRAS PERCEPCIONES NO SON NUESTRAS!
Lo que parece una cuchara no es una cuchara. Podemos explotar como 1000 arcoiris en un bosque sombrío, o llenar de psicoldeía tus vagones de tren, convertir balas en luciérnagas y el asfalto en nubes.

4. NUESTRA CIENCIA FICCIÓN ES NUESTRO NUEVA MITOLOGÍA
Aquellos pergaminos y escrituras arcaicos están deshilachados y rotos, reescritos por ogros para adaptarse a sus propias necesidades a través del tiempo, hacia atrás y hacia adelante al derecho y al revés una y otra vez. Nosotrxs tejemos cuentos de callejones llenos de confetti, de pasillos de vecindades cubiertos con el polvo de castillos, de hogueras y ritalues en los lotes baldíos. Creemos en el poder de estos rituales, este poder es nuestra guía.

5. NUESTRA CRITICISMO ES UN VIAJE A LO FANTÁSTICO!
Como una polilla de cristal, en el aire con sus alas translúcidas, la pregunta esta en el aire: ¿qué hay de nuestro futuro, qué hay de nuestra piel? Creemos en desconectarnos de la máquina, en sacar de nosotrxs los microchips y los dispositivos de rastreo incrustrados en nuestros lóbulos, y antes de aplastarlos, hacercelos saber, queremos que lo sepan. Somos lxs reporterxs en una arcoiristopía.

6. NUESTRA VOZ ES LA CANTO DE LXS SIN VOZ!
No nos esconderemos más tras bambalinias en sus bazares, acurrucados sobre brasas ardientes en las esquinas frías de sus bibliotecas, no seremos más lxs personajes perdidxs y olvidadxs detrás de la figura del Capitán Kirk de Star Trek. No tomaremos sus placebos, hemos escondido detrás de nuestras encías las malditas pildoras para después escupirlas como diamantes, para limpiar nuestra lengua, para aclarar nuestras gargantas listxs para cantar.

7. NUESTRO SUEÑO ESPACIAL ES NUESTRA COMUNA!
Una comuna de hadas en lo profundo del espacio; niñxs callejerxs astronautas; cuerpos en las bodegas con su espíritu despedazado. Ofrecemos un nuevo espacio para las nuevas visiones e imaginarios de identidad entre aquellxs desposeídos, entrelazadxs en la arena de nuevos comienzos.

8. NUESTRA CIENCIA FICCIÓN ES NUESTRA LIBERACIÓN!
Para poder ir más allá al mismo tiempo en que incorporaramos géneros, cuerpos, etnicidades, religiones, identidades sexuales, con las luces de trasfondo en las ciudades, detrás de una pantalla verde cósmica, donde los grilletes de cada -ismo caigan sobre una página todavía húmeda como el rocío de una fresca mañana. Queremos la libertad para determinar nuestro propio destino, en nuestro tiempo, en nuestro espacio, en nuestros sueños, en nuestra metropolaridad.

Chilango spanish translation provided by the homie Ana

CONTACT

METROPOLARITY is seeking artists, educators, activists, and non-specifics for community building, skill-sharing, and narrative creation. We regularly do collab events, DIY publications, workshops, panels, and other shit they don’t teach you in school. Take a look at our past events for an idea of our past efforts.

For this and/or wholesale orders and bulk discount (10+) book orders, please .

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HERALD

1. OUR SCI-FI IS OUR REALITY!

Not all of us here are born with a silver spoon, tie-dyed space ship. We want the gristle, the grime, the earth, and steel to bend beneath our feet as we navigate towards the moon and the stars. Because we’re not divorced from the reality of our nightmares, we give voice to the passion of our dreams.

2. OUR GENERATION IS ETERNAL!

These are androids dreaming of electric sheep, going 20,000 leagues below the surface, scraping up lost scrolls and parables of forgotten sowers. We commune with the griots, the orishas, the wizards and the soothsayers. We are always imp, always sage, always forever.

3. OUR PERCEPTIONS ARE NOT OUR OWN!

What looks like a spoon isn’t (is) a spoon. We can burst like 1,000 rainbows in dreary forest, or pour onto your subway cars in psychedelic sprawl, turn bullets into fireflies and asphalt into cloud.

4. OUR SCI-FI IS OUR NEW MYTH!

Those ancient scrolls and scriptures are tattered and torn, rewritten by ogres to fit their own needs throughout time, forward and back again. We graft tales of exploding confetti in alleyways, of dust strewn castles in tenement hallways and of new, unfolding rituals in parking lot bonfires. We believe in their power, their power it guides us.

5. OUR CRITIQUE IS THE TRIP FANTASTIC!

Like a glass moth, in the air on wings of gossamer, the questions rise: what of our future, what of our skin? We believe in unplugging from the machine, in taking the microchips and tracking devices lodged in our lobes and, before smashing them, acknowledging them, making them known. We are the reporters in a rainbowtopia.

6. OUR VOICE IS THE SONG FOR THE VOICELESS!

No more will we slink into the back of the bazaar, huddled over embers in the cold spaces of your library, forgotten and lost playing back up to Captain Kirk. We slipped the bad pills behind our gums and ignored the placebos, to spit them out later as diamonds, to clear our tongues, to sing.

7. OUR DREAM SPACE IS OUR COMMUNION!

A faerie commune in deep space; street corner kid as astronaut; man in bodega as a disembodied spirit. We present this as offering space for new visions and imaginings of identity among the disenfranchised, entwined in the arena of new beginnings.

8. OUR SCI-FI IS OUR LIBERATION!

To simultaneously go beyond and embody gender, body, ethnicity, religion, sexual identity, with the city backlit on a cosmic green screen, where the shackles of every “-ism” falls as fresh morning dew subtly on a still wet page. We want freedom to determine our destiny, in our time, in our space, in our dreams, in our metro polarity.