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“One Of America’s Best StoryTellers” – ZIMBABWEAN-Born Filmmaker, Author & Professor, M.K. ASANTE!



Filed under : Africa, Entertainment

Happy Saturday guys & dolls!

So we are counting down to April 18th, Independence Day of my birth country, Zimbabwe. The goal is to highlight those amongst us flying the Zimbabwean flag high….

The Herald, Zimbabwe’s leading news publication

Meet 29 year-old Zimbabwean born, master storyteller, M.K. Asante;

CNN‘s Isha Sesay spoke to M.K. Asante on African Voices. Check out the videos of the interview below;

Part One:

Part Two:

Part Three:

According to CNN:

As a disruptive teenager, M.K. Asante was expelled from school on more than one occasion.

Yet today, as an award-winning writer, filmmaker and professor, he’s welcomed back in classrooms around the world.

A master storyteller, Zimbabwe-born Asante is a major creative force. He’s written a number of books, as well as three movies, including 2008’s “The Black Candle,” which was narrated by American poet Maya Angelou.

Only 29 years old, Asante has also embarked on a mission to make art more accessible to younger generations.

As a tenured professor of creative writing and film at Morgan State University in Baltimore, he leads classrooms of students, many of whom are close to him in age, using language they can understand.

“I want to show them this is what a professor can look like. You know what I mean? Yeah, I write books, you can write books too,” Asante says.

Asante’s passion for art has also led him to travel across the United States and to many African countries where he gives passionate lectures about his craft.

He says the trips back to the continent in which he was born have been a great experience for both him and the young Africans who come to listen to him.

“They’re inspired and you can see it,” he says. “They’re shocked that this person from America is so rooted, you know, sometimes even more rooted than they are.”

Born in Harare (capital city of Zimbabwe) to American parents, Asante moved to the United States at a young age.

His life’s journey got off to a rocky start while growing up in Philadelphia — he was kicked out of his private school when he was 12 and then was sent to two public schools where he continued to get into trouble by being disruptive and fighting.

But Asante’s life took a major turn when he was 16 when he joined a creative writing class and was encouraged by his teacher to write about anything he wanted. He says that this was something he’d never been told before at school.

Asante says that defining moment changed his life forever, triggering his love for writing.

Asante made his film debut in 2005 when he wrote and produced “500 Years,” a film about the effects of slavery and colonialism on people of African descent that went on to win five awards on the international film festival circuit.

His latest film, “Motherland,” won Best Documentary at the Pan African Film Festival last year.

Despite his success, Asante isn’t slowing down. He says he wants his art to reach as many people as possible.

“I like to do things on a big level and continue to take things to a higher level because for me if you’re going to be serious about art and serious about the work you’re making, you have to also be serious about making sure it reaches people,” he says.

“If I’m going to investing my energy and time on something that I think is really important, I want millions and billions to read it and have access to it.”

Part Four:

HOW INSPIRED ARE YOU BY M.K. ASANTE?!?

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Photo: M.K Asante

farai – who has written posts on Farai Today.


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  • Mambokadzi

    wow

  • John davies

    extremely inspired!

  • Muta

    amazing is all i have 2 say

  • Anonymous2010

    Ddnt get to hear the interview coz of bad connection, however how is it that children who emigrate to USA at young age from african countries almost always get expelled from school for various reasons which include fighting? Akon comes to mind.