Join us for a special discussion with the Kheprw Institute’s resident Afrofuturist, Maurice Broaddus, led by Dr. Leah Milne about his novel, Pimp My Airship.


The book reimagines a retrofuture Indianapolis in a world where America lost the Revolutionary War, remains a colony of England, and has various oppressive systems in place. But art (and artists) lead the way for changing the system:

All the poet called Sleepy wants to do is spit his verses, smoke chiba, and stay off the COP’s radar—all of which becomes impossible once he encounters a professional protestor known as (120 Degrees of) Knowledge Allah. They soon find themselves on the wrong side of local authorities and have to elude the powers that be.

When young heiress Sophine Jefferson’s father is murdered, the careful life she’d been constructing for herself tumbles around her. She’s quickly drawn into a web of intrigue, politics and airships, joining with Sleepy and Knowledge Allah in a fight for their freedom. Chased from one end of a retro-fitted Indianapolis to the other, they encounter outlaws, the occasional circus, possibly a medium, and more outlaws. They find themselves in a battle much larger than they imagined: a battle for control of the country and the soul of their people.

Read the first chapter here.

Here’s what’s been said about it:

“Imagine the anarchic spirit of Sorry to Bother You given a turn away from body horror and toward steampunk.” — B&N Sci-fi & Fantasy Blog

“Broaddus has managed to create what could be considered a steampunk classic in the years to come. The contemporary relevance, prose, and characterization make this a book that cannot be missed.” — Pyles of Books

Maurice Broaddus’ essay “Steampunk as Afrofuturism”

Profile on Maurice Broaddus on Ozy.com: “Meet the Man Behind Afrofuturist Steampunk”

Afrofuture Fridays brought to you by a partnership with folks we’d like to thank: