Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

So I’m celebrating Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie today. A Nigerian novelist, activist, writer of short stories and nonfiction. A woman I admire so much. A woman who believes strongly that women should be allowed to be so many things. A phenomenal woman who is truly a source of inspiration to me.


Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie was born in Nigeria on the 15th of September 1977. Chimamanda grew up in Nigeria. Her work has been translated in to thirty languages and has appeared in various publications including the New Yorker, Granta, The financial times etc. She is the author of the novels Purple Hibiscus which won the commonwealth writers’ prize and the Hurston/Wright Legacy Award; Half of a Yellow Sun which won the Orange Prize and was a National Book Critics Circle Award Finalist and a New York Times Notable Book; and Americanah which won the National Book Critics Circle Award and was named one of The New York Times Top Ten Best Books of 2013. Her Novel Americanah was published around the world in 2013 and has received numerous accolades.


Chimamanda has been invited to speak around the world. Her 2009 TED Talk, The Danger of a Single Story is now one of the most-viewed TED Talks of all time. In Dec.2012, Chimamanda had a classic talk that started a worldwide conversation about feminism on the TEDxEUSTON, when she spoke on “We should all be feminist”. Chimamanda is a recipient of a Mac Arthur Foundation Fellowship.

These are few inspiring quotes from Chimamanda Adiche;

  • “We teach girls to shrink themselves, to make themselves smaller. We say to girls, you can have ambition, but not too much. You should aim to be successful, but not too successful. Otherwise, you would threaten the man. Because I am female, I am expected to aspire to marriage. I am expected to make my life choices always keeping in mind that marriage is the most important. Now marriage can be a source of joy and love and mutual support but why do we teach girls to aspire to marriage and we don’t teach boys the same? We raise girls to see each other as competitors not for jobs or accomplishments, which I think can be a good thing, but for the attention of men. We teach girls that they cannot be sexual beings in the way that boys are.”
  • “Of course I am not worried about intimidating men. The type of man who will be intimidated by me is exactly the type of man I have no interest in.”
  • “The problem with gender is that it prescribes how we should be rather than recognizing how we are. Imagine how much happier we would be, how much freer to be our true individual selves, if we didn’t have the weight of gender expectations.”
  • “Never ever accept ‘Because You Are a Woman’ as a reason for doing or not doing anything.”
  • “It’s not your job to be likable. It is your job to be yourself. Someone will like you anyway.”
  • “Never speak of marriage as an achievement. Find ways to make it clear to her that marriage is not an achievement nor is it what she should aspire to. A marriage can be happy or unhappy but it is not an achievement.”

She is truly a source of inspiration and a phenomenal woman!

Please drop your comments below or send an email if you have inspiring stories to share with us here. Thanks.

Have a lovely weekend guys.








2 responses to “Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie”

  1. Anike Lawal avatar
    Anike Lawal

    I totally love and admire Chimamanda. She’s one in a million and I believe if every woman had an atom of “Chimamandaness” in them, the world would be a better place.
    Although I do not believe in being actively a feminist as I do respect and believe in my African (most especially Yoruba) culture.
    However, that little atom of feminisn creates more awareness around how women are being treated in the world. I do think that we should encourage each other to be more and more out there. We can also rule the world, we can be president, we can be directors, we can be what we believe we could be and what we want to be.
    I have read a couple of her books including “We should all be feminists”. It was interesting to hear other people’s (who also read the book) thoughts around it. I remember someone did mention that she was a bit too extreme as she would use very rare examples such as : in Nigeria, when a man and woman goes out, if the woman tips a waiter for example, the waiter will then look at the man thanking him and not the woman. Simply because they believe that the man is the head and the breadwinner of the family. They believe that even though the money was given by the woman, it actually came out from the man’s pocket!
    I think such mentality is quite derogatory in regards to the women out there.
    This person did mention that the message in the book was being exaggerated as it is a case in a million. They also mentioned that the mentality has changed in Nigeria and women are now beginning to get the same respect as men.
    I would like to hear your thoughts around this as I think it’s quite interesting.


    1. nikkyosblog avatar

      Thanks Anike. Yes, It’s quite interesting actually. For me, I don’t think the message was being exaggerated. I think its better now but we still have a long way to go to achieve gender equality.


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