Author Of The Month: Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

“There are some things that are so unforgivable that they make other things easily forgivable.” Half Of A Yellow Sun
Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie is an influential Nigerian writer, novelist, and a feminist. Her work range from novels to short stories to nonfiction. She was born in Nigeria and studied Medicine and Pharmacy for a year and a half. After that, she left for the United States to study communications and political science. She was the fifth of the six children and grew up in Nsukka. She received a Master’s degree in creative writing from Johns Hopkins University and studied African history at Yale University.

Her inspiration in writing came from Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe. Her first novel was Purple Hibiscus (2003), which received wide critical acclaim. It was awarded the Commonwealth Writers Prize for Best First Book (2005), and the Hurston/Wright Legacy Award. Adichie’s work has been translated into over thirty languages. Her work has also been appeared in various publications, including The New Yorker, Granta, The O. Henry Price Stories, the Financial Times, and Zoetrope. Her other notable books are Americana, Half Of A Yellow Sun, We Should All Be Feminists, and You In America.
She has spoken at various platforms around the world. Her 2009 TED Talk, The Danger of A Single Story, is one of the most-viewed TED Talks of all time. Her 2012 talk We Should All Be Feminists has started a worldwide conversation about feminism and was published as a book in 2014. She is also the author of the story collection The Thing Around Your Neck. It is a collection of 12 stories that explore the relationships between men and women, parents and children, Africa and the United States. Her novels, essays, and short stories have won numerous awards.

She has spoken in various interviews about discovering what it means to be black in America as a Nigerian immigrant. Adichie told in an interview that “Black meant something, and that wasn’t necessarily a good thing.” She has supported Black Lives Matter on various platforms. She thinks that Black Lives Matter is doing something really important. Adichie said that It’s raising awareness about things that have existed in the United States and the world for a long time. The black Lives Matter movement is a sign of success. Adichie has written about United States-race relations in her books.

Some people ask: “Why the word feminist? Why not just say you are a believer in human rights or something like that?” Because that would be dishonest. Feminism is, of course, part of human rights in general—but to choose to use the vague expression of human rights is to deny the specific and particular problem of gender. It would be a way of pretending that it was not women who have, for centuries, been excluded. It would be a way of denying that the problem of gender targets women.

Every human being in the world deserves dignity. Talking about her becoming a feminist, she said that “It was clear to me, very early on, that women and men were not treated the same way; that women were treated unfairly, just because they were women” Adichie was raised Catholic as a child, though her views, especially those on feminism, sometimes conflict with her religion. At an event at Georgetown University, she stated that “religion is not a women-friendly institution and has been used to justify oppressions that are based on the idea that women are not equal human beings”.

“Race doesn’t really exist for you because it has never been a barrier. Black folks don’t have that choice.”
Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

She has faced racism and stereotypes because of being Black after coming to the United States. When she came to the United States, she realized how many negative stereotypes were attached to blackness. As a black African in America, Adichie was suddenly confronted with what it meant to be a person of color in the United States. She takes a lot of pride in identifying herself as Black.

“Dear Non-American Black, when you make the choice to come to America, you become black. Stop arguing. Stop saying I’m Jamaican or I’m Ghanaian. America doesn’t care.”
Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

Adichie’s writings and talks focus on how individual experiences and stories can provide insight into feminism, intersectionality, cultural identity, stereotypes, and racism. She has been featured as one of the 15 women described as “Forces of Change” by British Vogue and selected by Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, to appear on the cover of the September 2019 issue.

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