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Charles Mudede

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Charles Mudede
Charles Mudede in 2016
Charles Tonderai Mudede

(1969-02-08) February 8, 1969 (age 55)
Occupation(s)Writer, filmmaker, journalist, editor, critic

Charles Tonderai Mudede (/mʊˈdɛdɛ/;[1] born February 8, 1969) is a Zimbabwean-American writer, filmmaker,[2] and leftwing cultural critic.[3] Though born in Kwekwe (then called Que Que, Rhodesia),[2][4] he spent much of his childhood in the United States, and returned to Zimbabwe shortly after independence.[5] Between 1982 and 1988, his mother, Tracy Mudede, was a lecturer at the University of Zimbabwe, and his father, Ebenezer Mudede, was an economist for the Zimbabwe government. Between 1990 and 2001, his father worked as an economist for the Botswana government[5] and his mother lectured at the University of Botswana. In 1989, he moved to the US to study literature, art history, and political philosophy.[citation needed] His parents moved to the US from Botswana in 2002 for medical reasons. The Mudedes are Manicas and were once close to Bishop Abel Tendekayi Muzorewa, the prime minister of the short-lived coalition government called Zimbabwe Rhodesia (1979–1980).

Mudede is currently Associate Editor for the Seattle-based weekly The Stranger, as well as a lecturer at Cornish College of the Arts.[4] His Police Beat column was turned into a film of the same name in 2004. The movie was selected for competition at the Sundance Film Festival 2005.[6] In 2003, Mudede published a short book called Last Seen with Diana George. Mudede was also a member of the now defunct Seattle Research Institute, a Marxist circle inspired by the Frankfurt School and the work of Hardt and Negri. SRI published two books, Politics Without The State and Experimental Theology. (Mudede and George edited the former.) Mudede has also published essays and articles with Nic Veroli, a French-American Marxist philosopher, and is on the editorial board for Arcade, an architectural journal. Mudede's work has appeared in The New York Times, The Village Voice, LA Weekly, and Ctheory, which published one of his most popular pieces of writing, "The Turntable," a theory of the hip hop practice of scratching and sampling.

In addition to his journalistic career, Mudede is also a filmmaker and screenwriter. In 2019, he directed and co-wrote the feature film Thin Skin, about a jazz trumpeter in Seattle whose estranged Nigerian father re-enters his life.[7] He has also co-written three independent films with director Robinson Devor. Police Beat (2005), adapted from Mudede's weekly column for The Stranger, follows a Muslim-American police officer on his bicycle patrol around Seattle.[8] Zoo is a movie about the late Kenneth Pinyan and the Enumclaw stallion incident.[9] Mudede also co-wrote Devor's film You Can't Win, starring Michael Pitt, based on a 1926 hobo memoir.[10] The movie was filmed in 2012 but has yet to be released.[11] As an actor, Mudede played a priest in The Naked Proof, released in 2003.


  1. ^ "Charles Mudede". YouTube. 27 July 2007. Retrieved 2 April 2018.
  2. ^ a b Patricia O'Brien (a.k.a. OlallieLake), Charles Mudede, short documentary film. Uploaded to YouTube 2007-07-27. Accessed 2012-12-20.
  3. ^ http://www.thestranger.com/seattle/kshama-sawant-return-of-the-alternative/Content?oid=18085005 Essay on Kshama Sawant
  4. ^ a b Mudede, Charles (2019). "Instructor of Film Charles Mudede". Cornish College. Seattle, Washington. Retrieved December 4, 2022.
  5. ^ a b Charles Mudede, Our Wars: Three Vignettes from Thirty Years Ago in Africa, The Stranger, 2010-08-16. Accessed 2012-12-20.
  6. ^ Voynar, Kim (June 15, 2005). "SIFF: Police Beat Interview". cinematical.com. Weblogs. Retrieved 7 April 2010.
  7. ^ "About the film..." Thin Skin. Retrieved June 11, 2021.
  8. ^ Macaulay, Scott (April 28, 2006). "If You're in New York, Go See This Movie!". Filmmaker. Retrieved September 13, 2020.
  9. ^ Chansanchai, Athima (May 1, 2007). "Film tracks sex lives of those who see beauty in the beast". Seattle Post-Intelligencer. Hearst Seattle Media. Retrieved 7 April 2010.
  10. ^ Adam Chitwood (April 18, 2012). "Michael Pitt to Write, Produce, and Star in Adaptation of YOU CAN'T WIN". collider.com. Retrieved January 23, 2015.
  11. ^ "You Can't Win". IMDb. Retrieved June 11, 2021.

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