Carlos Moore (writer)

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Carlos Moore
Carlos Moore (writer).jpg
BornCharles Moore Wedderburn
(1942-11-04) 4 November 1942 (age 76)
Camaguey, Cuba
Pen nameCarlos Moore
OccupationWriter, social scientist, activist

Carlos Moore (born 4 November 1942) is a writer and social scientist[1] dedicated to African and Afroamerican history and culture.[2] He has lived for various periods in France, Africa, the US, and the Caribbean.[3]

Moore is widely recognized for his outspoken rhetoric against racism[4] and defending pan-Africanism and for writing the authorized biography of the Nigerian singer, saxophonist and activist Fela Kuti, Fela, Fela: This Bitch of a Life,[5] which inspired the stage musical Fela![6]


He was born Charles Moore Wedderburn in Camaguey, Cuba, of working-class Jamaican parents.[7] When Moore was 16 his father and stepmother sent for him and his siblings to come to New York to pursue better opportunities, and after completing high school, Moore returned to Cuba in 1961 to work as a translator for the ministries of Communications and External Affairs.[3] However, he became disaffected with the Castro regime, denouncing what he said were the government's attempts to ignore racism, and having fallen out of favour with the leadership Moore fled the island two years later.[8][3]

He lived in exile from Cuba from 1963; he resided and worked as a journalist in France, until in 1975 he moved to Senegal at the invitation on Cheikh Anta Diop, subsequently becoming involved with the initial phase of FESTAC '77 (the Second World Black Festival of Arts and Culture) in Lagos, Nigeria.[9][10]

He wrote a biography of Nigerian Afrobeat musician Fela Kuti – first published in 1982 and reissued in 2009[11] – on which the Broadway musical Fela! drew, as was acknowledged in the settlement of a copyright dispute about the stage production.[12][13]

Moore was a visiting professor at Florida International University, where in 1987 he was instrumental in organizing the conference "Negritude Afro cultures and Ethnicity in the Americas", featuring Aimé Césaire, Maya Angelou, Alex Haley and Leopold Senghor.

From 1996 to 2002 Moore was Senior Lecturer in the Institute of International Relations, University of the West Indies at St Augustine, Trinidad and Tobago.[3][9]

In recent years he lived in Brazil with his family, taking the opportunity to write and learn more about Latin American and Brazilian culture.[14]

Selected bibliography[edit]

  • Pichón – A Memoir: Race and Revolution in Castro's Cuba (Foreword by Maya Angelou), Chicago: Lawrence Hill Books/Chicago Review Press, 2008, ISBN 978-1556527678.
  • African Presence in the Americas, Trenton, NJ: Africa World Press, 1995, ISBN 978-0865432321.
  • Castro, the Blacks, and Africa, Los Angeles: Center for Afro-American Studies, University of California, 1988, ISBN 978-0934934329.
  • Were Marx and Engels Racists? – The prolet-Aryan outlook of Marx and Engels, Chicago: Institute of Positive Education, 1972. Accessed 4 February 2013.

Fela Kuti biography – editions and translations[edit]


  1. ^ Doctorates from the University of Paris 7
  2. ^ "Carlos Moore: Roots Archived 17 February 2013 at the Wayback Machine", Official website – Dr. Carlos Moore, Accessed 4 February 2013.
  3. ^ a b c d "Carlos Moore Biography", The Ralph J. Bunche Center for African American Studies.
  4. ^ Marlie Hall, "The fight against racism in Cuba goes viral", The Grio, 14 May 2010.
  5. ^ Fela, Fela: This Bitch of a Life. First English edition, London: Allison & Busby, 1982. Accessed 4 February 2013.
  6. ^ Aimee Shalan, "Fela: This Bitch of a Life by Carlos Moore – review", The Guardian, 4 December 2010.
  7. ^ "Featured Authors: Carlos Moore", Sacramento Black Book Fair.
  8. ^ Achy Obejas, "Race in Cuba: The Root Interviews Carlos Moore", The Root, 29 July 2010.
  9. ^ a b "Race in Cuba: 50 Years After the Revolution – EBCCI Lecture by Carlos Moore; 18 March 2009", The Bajan Reporter, 17 March 2009.
  10. ^ "Festac 77 | Cultural emissaries", Chimurenga Library.
  11. ^ Novell Zwange, "South Africa: This Bitch of A Life Launches in Johannesburg", Shout-Africa, 14 November 2010.
  12. ^ Aimee Shalan, "Fela: This Bitch of a Life by Carlos Moore – review", The Guardian, 4 December 2010.
  13. ^ Lemn Sissay, "Carlos Moore resolves case against FELA THE MUSICAL", 18 December 2011.
  14. ^ "Curriculum Vitae Archived 3 February 2014 at the Wayback Machine". Accessed 4 February 2013.

External links[edit]