Book Review : We Should All Be Feminists by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
Updated: Sep 5, 2020
Feminism is a concept that is often misunderstood. We all seem to have our own definitions and understanding of it. And of course, the beloved internet is always there to fuel up the things. Understanding feminism is difficult, and practicing is more intricate. Because many of us are just ‘privileged’ enough and just don’t feel the need for it. Many people even say that feminism is just an ‘agenda’ nowadays because, in today’s era, we don’t need it. One thing is very clear that there are a lot of myths about this concept.
“The problem with gender is that it prescribes how we should be rather than recognizing how we are.”
Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s book ‘We should all be feminists'' is a subtle book/essay that brings up all the myths and facts about feminism. It hits the nail right. According to Adichie, A feminist is a person who believes in the economic, political and social equality of the sexes. I cannot agree more with this. There are so many interpretations. There are so many talks. The author has done a brilliant job of narrowing a definition by widening the concept. Through her experiences, she has mentioned everything in our culture that goes wrong.
This 64 pages long book is a comprehensive handbook to understand feminism and the importance of it. I could resonate with the author at almost all the points. From the smallest of the things, discrimination, undervaluing and disrespect starts. And we often ignore that. All of us. I had a lot to talk about this but I just don't feel like writing anything more. Just want to wind up this review by saying that this book was surely a compelling read. I was reminded of the conversations with my 'friends' about feminism. If it would have been possible for me, I would have given this book to ‘many’ people. I have a list. A long list.
From the book :
“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.”
This book is a modified version of Adichie's Ted Talk. Check out the video if you are not going to read the book.
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