Destinies Kindle Cover. Photo:

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This collection of flash fiction arose out of my reflections during the COVID-19 pandemic—a way to process the collective grief we were all experiencing, of both the health and social inequities that came sharply into focus in that time. In the process, perhaps because we all were forced to be still, consume global trends on all forms of media from our cocooned living spaces or had time to walk, think and process (consciously or unconsciously), we were confronted with truths that we could no longer disconnect from. Yes, Black, Indigenous and People of Colour are overrepresented in the communities hardest hit on every human development indicator during the pandemic, continuing a systemic trend that already existed. And in the midst, blatant racial discriminations and violence escalated. The world was captivated with the death of George Floyd in a way that elevated global movements to end anti-Black racism and establish equity-centered futures for global Black communities. Yet for anyone who had been paying attention, we know what happened to George Floyd was symptomatic of a larger persistent global reality.

It was in this context that I also started to notice everyday moments in sharp focus like seeing or hearing through a zoomed in camera lens (a bit of the inspiration behind for story #44—seen) or a megaphone. A word, a sentence, a phrase was enough to spark my imagination of what that moment might or could represent for global Africans, the communities of socially defined Black peoples born on or off the continent who live a significant part of their lives in global spaces, or in continental African in the continued shadow of colonial legacies. I started to document some of the moments of life, living, joy, sorrow and love that shape Black lives in the context of global African-ness & Blackness. These stories are subsequently a confluence of my lived experiences, the stories that unfold around me and my imagination. They point to the agency that we as global Africans can chose, moment by moment, to find our way forward.

Ultimately, this project and its prequels, the short story collections Identities and Ancestries, are leading me to an emerging framework for how leadership and social action are enacted for global Africans and Black lives. The framework is embedded in the core themes of each collection, although each includes aspects of all 3 themes: Identities (Black identity politics/dynamics), Ancestries (belonging & rootedness) and Destinies (agency). My emerging framework is that while unpacking our identities and anchoring to places and spaces of belonging grounds us, it is through a combination of chance/faith, community and agency that we find our way in this world, towards whatever we are called and destined to be and do. It is my conclusion, that the trifecta of engaging identity, belonging and agency, are core to defining how global Africans, and perhaps other socially constructed and disadvantaged racial groups, can engage the world and choose transformational social action, in small and big ways from wherever they find themselves. These transformational social actions happen every day as global Africans navigate identities, ancestries and destinies—on the street, at work, at the salon, at cocktail parties—through the choices they make, moment-to-moment.