Deep Pasts to Deep Futures: African urbanism and the future of civilization

As the fastest urbanizing region in the world, our planetary futures of place and civilization will be significantly influenced by African cities. The spaces that lie beyond our immediate grasp, on Earth or beyond, invite further reflection on what it means to make places of/for humanity and non-humanity. This panel seeks to explore the following: How is place making linked to ideological constructs of the human? Are our megalopolises ideal spaces for life to flourish? How might posthuman and Afrofuturist configurations contribute to a conversation about the spaces we humans call “home” from our deep pasts to our deep futures?


Date: Monday March 11th, 2024
Time: 1:00 PM – 2:00 PM
Location: ASU Memorial Union, room 085
Address: 1301 E Orange St., Tempe, AZ 85281


Suyi Davies Okungbowa

Suyi Davies Okungbowa is a Nigerian author of fantasy, science fiction and general speculative work. He has published various novels for adults, the latest of which are Warrior of the Wind and Son of the Storm—both of The Nameless Republic epic fantasy trilogy—and the forthcoming Lost Ark Dreaming. His debut novel, David Mogo, Godhunter, won the 2020 Nommo Award for Best Novel. His shorter works have appeared in various periodicals and anthologies and have been nominated for various awards. He earned his MFA in Creative Writing from the University of Arizona, and lives in Ontario, where he is a professor of creative writing at the University of Ottawa. Follow him on Twitter and Instagram at @suyidavies, or via his newsletter,

Patience Akpan-Obong

Patience Akpan-Obong is an associate professor in the College of Integrative Sciences and Arts at Arizona State University, Polytechnic Campus. She holds a doctorate in political science (University of Alberta, 2003), a master’s degree in journalism (Carleton University, 1996) and a National Diploma in mass communication from The Polytechnic (now Cross River State University of Technology) in Calabar, Nigeria (1984). She researches the role of information and communication technologies (ICTs) in socioeconomic development. She is equally interested in the impact of science and technology on culture, women and technology, social change and ICTs, and processes of globalization in the context of developing countries. Her research in these areas is widely published.  Publications include “Information and Communication Technologies in Nigeria: Prospects and Challenges for Development” (New York: Peter D. Lang, 2009) as well as many peer-reviewed academic articles. She is also the author of “Letters to Nigeria: Journal of an African Woman in America” (2013). In the classroom, Akpan-Obong teaches courses in leadership and organizations, diversity in organizations, gender and race in organizations and innovation, technology and leadership especially in the context of developing countries.

Prior to becoming an academic, she practiced as a journalist for several years in Nigeria and Canada, and later became a regular contributor to Saturday Punch, a nationally circulated weekly newspaper based in Lagos, Nigeria (2007-15). A self-described “Global Citizen,” Akpan-Obong, born in Nigeria, has dual citizenships in Canada and the United States, and has travelled to 15 countries on five continents. She believes that travel is perhaps the best educational tool ever “invented.”


Header image: Photo by Nick Kharlanov on Unsplash