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Cosmic Underground Northside
Cosmic Underground Northside

Cosmic Underground Northside

An Incantation of Black Canadian Speculative Discourse and Innerstandings

By Quentin Vercetty, By Audrey Hudson, Introduction by Nalo Hopkinson, Foreword by Zainab Amadahy



284 Pages, 8.5 x 11

Formats: Trade Paper

Trade Paper, $34.95 (US $34.95) (CA $39.95)

Publication Date: June 2021

ISBN 9781941958971

Rights: WOR

Cedar Grove Publishing (Jun 2021)

Not Yet Published. Estimated release date: June 2021


Cosmic Underground Northside operates as a seminal collection consisting of works from cross-generations and pan-national Black creatives and cultural producers from Canada. This generous book offers a glimpse of different innerstandings, a profound comprehension or conviction within one's spirit or soul. We consider the following: what does Afrofuturism look like from a Canadian perspective? What are the unique elements of artistic expression in Black Canadian art? Considering Canada's history on Indigenous land, how do Black Canadians imagine their future in a colony that promotes erasure, yet claims multiculturalism? So ah wah dis? Qu'est-ce que c'est? Kisa sa ye? Cosmic Underground Northside: An Incantation of Black Canadian Speculative Discourse and Innerstanding is an archival book comprised of diasporic dialogues around liberation and spirituality. Significant contributions of poems, lyrics, prose, short stories and other expressive forms of literature along with vibrant illustrations, photographs, posters, mixed-media digital and analog rendered artworks by over 100 talented, gifted Black Canadian scholars and creatives. This is who we are.


"(Cosmic Underground Northside) address(es) the state and the fate of the world, the long march of humanity through history, all of our voices, our perspectives, our imaginary worlds, and our struggles must be engaged. The peoples of Africa and of African descent all over the world can no longer tolerate to be excluded, bear to see the singularity and rich diversity of their experiences, their marks of civilization relegated to oblivion, to disregard, to indifference, to narratives of pity and misery, or to fatality…. (Cosmic Underground Northside) draw(s) in bold, broad strokes, in the here and now, the contours of a dazzling vision for the future. Each contribution is a priceless treasure, and an act of resistance."  —the Right Honorable Michaëlle Jean, 27th Governor General of Canada, 3rd Secretary General of the International Organization of la Francophonie

"This is very timely with the success of the Raptors and everything within the creative industry... Growing up with a love for sci-fi and carnival, all of this together in a Canadian context is not just exciting and ground-breaking but important for the cultures of both, in Canada and the world."  —Director X, Hip-Hop Mogul

 "Quentin VerCetty and Audrey Hudson have assembled a ground-breaking and delightful collection, Cosmic Underground Northside, which dreams a Black Canadian future in conversation with the past, present, and global Africa real and imagined. Thus, time, space and consciousness are collapsed because to have a Black future requires that we have a tremendous leap of imagination."  —Dr. Afua Cooper, Professor of Black Studies at Dalhousie University, 2018 Poet Laureate of Halifax Regional Municipality. Author of The Hanging of Angelique: The Untold Story of Slavery in Canada, and the Burning of Old Montreal

Author Biography

Quentin VerCetty is an award winning visual griot (storyteller) and art educator who knows no boundaries when it comes to his creative expression. His work builds off his Masters in Art Education thesis from Concordia University, exploring speculative narratives like Afrofuturism addressing issues of representation, immigration, decolonization and other social and environmental issues through public art. Quentin's work has been in numerous academic journals, magazines and a variety of publication including making contributions to the Cosmic Underground: A Grimoire of Black Speculative Discontent. Along being his artistry has showcased in countries on every continent from Haiti, Peru, Ghana, Australia, United Arab Empire and France to name a few. His passion for artivism, using art as a tool for social change, lead to launching the Canadian chapter of the Black Speculative Arts Movement (BSAMCanada) in 2016 and has since then continued to spread it across the nation. Through his work he hopes to engage minds and inspire hearts to help to make the world a better place not only for today but for many tomorrows to come.Dr. Audrey Hudson is an artist, educator, researcher and futurist. Audrey is on the leadership team at the Art Gallery of Ontario (AGO), where she is the Richard & Elizabeth Currie Chief, Education & Programming and teaches Black Canadian Studies at University of Toronto. She holds a PhD from University of Toronto/Ontario Institute for Studies in Education (UT/OISE). Most recently, Dr. Hudson co-edited a ground breaking text entitled, In This Together: Blackness, Indigeneity and Hip-Hop, with a chapter, entitled, All eyes on Hip Hop: Afrofuturism and Indigenous Futurities. Other chapters and articles include: Where We @?: Blackness, Indigeneity and Hip-Hop's Expression of Creative Resistance (co-authored) (2015); Here We Are On Turtle Island: Navigating Places, Spaces and Terrain (2016); Integrating Black Lives into education: Black Lives Matter Freedom School (2019); and Learning From A Young Indigenous Artist: What Can Hip-Hop Teach Us? (2020). This book, Cosmic Underground Northside, unites Audrey's passion for art, social change and voicing astounding Black creative intellect. Nalo Hopkinson is a Jamaican-born Canadian writer and editor. Her debut novel Brown Girl in the Ring was nominated for the Philip K. Dick Award and received the Locus Award for Best New Writer. She is also the author of Midnight Robber, Skin Folk While, The Salt Roads, The New Moon's Arms, and Sister Mine. She lives in Riverside, California.Zainab Amadahy is an author of screenplays, nonfiction, and futurist fiction including the cult classic, Moons of Palmares. She also co-authored Indigenous and Black Peoples in Canada. In her role as Intergenerational Sharing Facilitator at Children's Peace theatre, Zainab connects Elders and seniors with Black and Indigenous youth who are exploring healing and decolonization through artistic processes. She lives in Toronto.