We Should All Be Feminists
Author: Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
Publisher: Fourth Estate
Publishing Date: 29th July, 2014 (originally published)
Genre: Gender studies
Cost: Rs. 150.96 (Kindle Edition)
In this personal, eloquently argued essay – adapted from her much-admired Tedx talk of the same name, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie offers readers a unique definition of feminism for the twenty-first century, one rooted in inclusion and awareness. Drawing extensively on her own experiences and her deep understanding of the often masked realities of sexual politics, here is one remarkable author’s exploration of what it means to be a woman now and why we should all be feminists.
The book is of course about feminism. In the beginning, Adichie relates a story about a childhood friend who once called her a feminist during a debate. She didn't know the meaning of the word at the time, but still understood that it wasn't a compliment. In fact, as Adichie notes, the word "feminist" has negative insinuation in our society, which is one of the reasons she wrote this book.
The word ‘Feminism’ seems like an insult in today’s generation but it is not meant to be that way. It’s neither a tool to attack other people. Adichie says that the reason we all should be feminists because Women’s rights are human rights, not only we all have to come together, united to fight for our human rights but also strive to attain equality in our society.
Adichie’s take on feminism is a little different:
In an interview, Adichie said: "I think men are lovely, but I don’t think that women should relate everything they do to men: did he hurt me, do I forgive him, did he put a ring on my finger? We women are so conditioned to relate everything to men. Put a group of women together and the conversation will eventually be about men. Put a group of men together and they will not talk about women at all, they will just talk about their own stuff. We women should spend about 20 percent of our time on men, because it’s fun, but otherwise we should also be talking about our own stuff."
Adichie also talks about the gender roles. She is of the opinion that we are foolishly led by the narrow ideas of what ‘Masculinity’ and ‘Femininity’ based on the traditional, regressive gender roles assigned to us for ages.
Audio from Adichie's talk was included in Beyoncé’s 2013 song ‘Flawless’. Adichie was credited with a featured role on the track.
About the Author:
Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie was born in Nigeria in 1977. Her first novel ‘Purple Hibiscus’ was published in 2003 and was longlisted for the Booker Prize. Her second novel ‘Half of a Yellow Sun’ won the 2007 Orange Prize for Fiction. Her short story collection, ‘The Thing Around Your Neck’, was published to critical acclaim in 2009. Her work has been selected by the Commonwealth Broadcasting Association and the BBC Short Story Awards, has appeared in various literary publications, including Zoetrope and The Iowa Review. She won a MacArthur ‘genius’ grant in 2009, and in 2010 appeared on the New Yorker’s list of the best 20 writers under 40. Her third novel, ‘Americanah’, was published to widespread critical acclaim in 2013. She lives in Nigeria.