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Kindred: Graphic Novel THINKbook (U.S. Literature)

Original price was: $24.00.Current price is: $18.00.

What does it mean to live with the legacy of slavery in the United States?

This is a big question, obviously, and it’s one Octavia Butler is interested in exploring in Kindred, a novel she describes as a “grim fantasy.” The story moved back and forth between 1976 California and antebellum Maryland as a young Black writer is inexplicably pulled back and forth between her present-day life and her family’s past. With this time travel set-up, Kindred is able to uncover the full horrors of 19th century forced labor camps while also acknowledging the lingering effects of slavery in the modern world. The past and the present are both haunted by the legacy of slavery.

What's inside this high school literature unit:

  • an introduction to real-life resistance of enslaved people
  • 6 as-you-read lessons to carry you through the graphic novel adaptation of Octavia Butler’s Kindred (including graphic novel-specific annotation tips)
  • tons of thoughtful discussion questions that go way beyond basic plot summary
  • a creative final project creating a visual analysis of Kindred

All curriculum materials are digital and downloadable. Because of this, all sales are final. If you have questions, please ask before you buy.

“Kindred—or, as I sometimes suggest to my students, Kin/dread—uses a clever and uniquely Afrofuturist twist on the time-travel trope in science fiction to show the radical embeddedness of the past within the present.  Butler’s time-traveling narrator, Dana, is alive after slavery and despite slavery, but also because of slavery, a compromised and morally fraught position that forces her to make deeply unpleasant choices in the name of preserving the circumstances that led to her own birth.”

— Gerry Canavan, Octavia E. Butler

What does it mean to live with the legacy of slavery in the United States?

This is a big question, obviously, and it's one Octavia Butler is interested in exploring in Kindred, a novel she describes as a "grim fantasy." The story moved back and forth between 1976 California and antebellum Maryland as a young Black writer is inexplicably pulled back and forth between her present-day life and her family's past. With this time travel set-up, Kindred is able to uncover the full horrors of 19th century forced labor camps while also acknowledging the lingering effects of slavery in the modern world. The past and the present are both haunted by the legacy of slavery.

We're reading a graphic novel adaptation of this book, and it's a brilliant but hard read. It does not shy away from the horrors of slavery, both physical and emotional. There is self-harm, suicide, violence, sexual assault, misogyny, racism ... like I said, a hard read. But it's asking important questions, and I think it's worth reading. Be gentle with yourself if you need a break from the heaviness.

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E-Book

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