|PROGRAM 5 AN OCEANIC FEELING|
Direction: The Otolith Group
In the essayistic mediation of "Hydra Decapita", the dehumanization of chattel slavery metamorphoses into a speculative space of posthuman possibility. The Otolith Group (Kodwo Eshun and Angalika Sagar) reactivate the mythos of the 1990s Detroit techno group Drexciya, who imagined that the unborn children of drowned pregnant slaves would mutate and be able to live underwater. In the words of Eshun, this science fiction involves “nothing less than a reimagining of the biopolitical atrocity of the Middle Passage.” Images of the ocean’s surface, references to J.M.W. Turner’s 1840 painting of the Zong massacre, The Slave Ship, and the work of an invented transcriber who listens for “silent voices” resonate together, creating a constellation that is at once a requiem and a reparative fiction that looks forward to a future of more liveable lives.