Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie Quotes


I have chosen to no longer be apologetic for my femaleness and my femininity. And I want to be respected in all of my femaleness because I deserve to be.

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.

Privilege blinds because it's in its nature to blind. Don't let it blind you too often. Sometimes you will need to push it aside in order to see clearly.

I am interested in challenging the mainstream ideas of what is beautiful and what is acceptable.

Because I am female Iâ??m expected to aspire to marriage. I am expected to make my life choices always keeping in mind that marriage is the most important.

I can write with authority only about what I know well which means that I end up using surface details of my own life in my fiction.

She rested her head against his and felt for the first time what she would often feel with him: a self-affection. He made her like herself.

Perhaps it is time to debate culture. The common story is that in real African culture before it was tainted by the West gender roles were rigid and women were contentedly oppressed.

Americans think African writers will write about the exotic about wildlife poverty maybe AIDS. They come to Africa and African books with certain expectations.

Power is the ability not just to tell the story of another person but to make it the definitive story of that person.

For centuries the world divided human beings into two groups and then proceeded to exclude and oppress one group. It is only fair that the solution to the problem acknowledge that.

You must never behave as if your life belongs to a man. Do you hear me?' Aunty Ifeka said. 'Your life belongs to you and you alone.

Your life belongs to you and you alone.

You Americans always peering under people's beds to look for communism.

In America racism exists but racists are all gone.

I had consumed a lot of American culture but I was not quite prepared for the reality of American poverty.

Her bladder felt painfully solidly full as though it would burst and release not urine but the garbled prayers she was muttering.

I write from real life. I am an unrepentant eavesdropper and a collector of stories. I record bits of overheard dialogue.

Being defiant can be a good thing sometimes " Aunty Ifeoma said. "Defiance is like marijuana - it is not a bad thing when it is used right.

Stories can break the dignity of a people but stories can also repair that broken dignity.�

Race doesn't really exist for you because it has never been a barrier. Black folks don't have that choice.

I think human beings exist in a social world. I write realistic fiction and so it isn't that surprising that the social realities of their existence would be part of the story.

Nigerian politics has been since the military dictatorships largely non-ideological. Rather than a battle of ideas it is about who can pump in the most money and buy the most access.

I think you travel to search and you come back home to find yourself there.

That her relationship with him was like being content in a house but always sitting by the window and looking out

We teach girls shame; close your legs cover yourself we make them feel as though by being born female they're already guilty of something.

Is love this misguided need to have you beside me most of the time? Is love this safety I feel in our silences? Is it this belonging this completeness?

Feminist: A person who believes in the social political and economic equality of the sexes.

The truth has become an insult.

There are people who dislike you because you do not dislike yourself.

Death would be a complete knowingness but what frightened him was this: not knowing beforehand what it was he would know.

Sometimes life begins when the marriage ends

We do not just risk repeating history if we sweep it under the carpet we also risk being myopic about our present.

To choose to write is to reject silence.

You know I don't think of myself as anything like a 'global citizen' or anything of the sort. I am just a Nigerian who's comfortable in other places.

Our histories cling to us. We are shaped by where we come from.

This was love: a string of coincidences that gathered significance and became miracles.

My greatest vanity is my skin. It is the colour of gingerbread and thanks to my mother's genes smooth and mostly blemish-free.

I divide my time between Columbia Maryland and Lagos Nigeria.

Greatness depends on where you are coming from.

She could not complain about not having shoes when the person she was talking to had no legs.

I sort of consider myself a Nigerian who spends a lot of time in the U.S.

I own things I like but nothing inanimate that I treasure in a deeply consuming way.

I think it's possible to have been a happy child as I was and still question and push back with regard to societal conventions.

Racism should never have happened and so you don't get a cookie for reducing it.

Creative writing programmes are not very necessary. They just exist so that people like us can make a living.

Successful fiction does not need to be validated by 'real life'; I cringe whenever a writer is asked how much of a novel is 'real'.

People have crushes on priests all the time you know. Itâ??s exciting to have to deal with God as a rival.

Culture does not make people. People make culture.

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.

Yes there's a problem with gender as it is today and we must fix it we must do better.

Never ever accept 'Because You Are A Woman' as a reason for doing or not doing anything.

One of the things that struck me when I came to the U.S. was discovering American poverty.

There has always been a strange dissonance between the public and the private in Nigeria.

I am a strong believer in the ability of human beings to change for the better. I am a strong believer in trying to change what we are dissatisfied with.

This is our world although the people who drew this map decided to put their own land on top of ours. There is no top or bottom you see.

How [stories] are told who tells them when theyâ??re told how many stories are told â?? are really dependent on power.

You deserve to take up space.

There are many different ways to be poor in the world but increasingly there seems to be one single way to be rich.

If you followed the media you'd think that everybody in Africa was starving to death and that's not the case; so it's important to engage with the other Africa.

...he did not want me to seek the whys because there are some things that happen for which we can formulate no whys for which whys simply do not exist and perhaps are not necessary.

Each time he suggested they get married she said no. They were too happy precariously so and she wanted to guard that bond; she feared that marriage would flatten it into a prosaic partnership.

Iâ??m very feminist in the way I look at the world and that worldview must somehow be part of my work.

The higher you go the fewer women there are.

I was stained by failure.

I like the U.S. and feel gratitude towards it.

The problem with gender is that it prescribes how we should be rather than recognising how we are.

Sometimes novels are considered 'important' in the way medicine is - they taste terrible and are difficult to get down your throat but are good for you.

At some point I was a HappyAfricanFeminist who does not hate men. And who likes lip gloss and who wears high heels for herself but not for men.

No Sweetness Here' is the kind of old-fashioned social realism I have always been drawn to in fiction and it does what I think all good literature should: It entertains you.

If you start thinking about being likable you are not going to tell your story honestly.

How easy it was to lie to strangers to create with strangers the versions of our lives we imagined.

The single story creates stereotypes and the problem with stereotypes is not that they are untrue but that they are incomplete. They make one story become the only story.

I didn't know I was even supposed to HAVE issues until I came to America

Non-fiction and in particular the literary memoir the stylised recollection of personal experience is often as much about character and story and emotion as fiction is.

She wanted to ask him why they were all strangers who shared the same last name.

I have many problems in my life but I don't think that identity is one of them.

There are two answers to the things they will teach you about our land: the real answer and the answer you give in school to pass. You must read books and learn both answers.

I often make the mistake of thinking that something that is obvious to me is obvious to everyone else.

The only reason race matters is because of racism.

The language of marriage is often a language of ownership not a language of partnership.

Stories matter. Many stories matter.

Then she wished more rationally that she could love him without needing him. Need gave him power without his trying; need was the choicelessness she often felt around him.

And it's wrong of you to think that love leaves room for nothing else. It's possible to love something and still condescend to it.

Why did people ask "What is it about?" as if a novel had to be about only one thing.

I live half the year in Nigeria the other half in the U.S. But home is Nigeria - it always will be. I consider myself a Nigerian who is comfortable in the world. I look at it through Nigerian eyes.

I think I'm ridiculously fortunate. I consider myself a Nigerian - that's home; my sensibility is Nigerian. But I like America and I like that I can spend time in America.

When we realize that there is never a single story about any place we regain a kind of paradise.

We teach girls to shrink themselves to make themselves smaller. We say to girls 'You can have ambition but not too much'.

You can have ambition But not too much You should aim to be successful But not too successful Otherwise you will threaten the man

You can't write a script in your mind and then force yourself to follow it. You have to let yourself be.

Show a people as one thing only one thing over and over again and that is what they become.

There are some things that are so unforgivable that they make other things easily forgivable.