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Jonathan Ball

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Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie on Feminism and Whether the Danger of a Single Story Has Been Overcome

AmericanahBelinda Otas interviewed Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie about her famous 2009 TED talk, titled “The Danger of a Single Story”, and a more recent TEDxEuston video in which she said that, “We should all be feminists”.

“If somebody chooses not to call it feminism, it is fine for me,” Adichie explained, “It is just the awareness that it is not okay, we can do better.” She spoke about women who put constraints on themselves, because they have internalised what they were taught about their so-called place in society. “Women need to step up and men, here is the thing – I don’t think feminism is for women only. It is for men and women…that is the way we are going to change things,” she said.

When it comes to challenging conventional wisdom where the African woman is concerned, which areas do you consider to be urgent, needs to challenge and a discourse created around it?

I don’t know…whenever I am asked which one is most important, I am like all of them are important. I don’t like the way we raise women in Africa in general. I think it’s about raising them differently. I think it is really important. Which is why you see women who are accomplished and educated and there is a lot holding them back and it is internal. Things that they have learnt…which is why a woman who has a house in the US, and is 39 is like I want to get married, I am going to sell my house…anyway, I don’t want to get into all of that and start another rant…

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