Review & Friday 56 – We Should All Be Feminists by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

Happy Friday Sunday! I’m especially happy because Frdiay was my birthday.

πŸŽ‚πŸŽ‰πŸŽŠGo, Erica, it’s you’r birthday!πŸŽ‰πŸŽŠπŸŽ‚

Now that I have publically and shamelessly wished myself a happy birthday, let me get on with the review and Friday 56 of We Should All Be Feminists by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie.

Title: We Should All Be Feminists
Author: Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
Format: Paperback, 48 pages
ISBN-13: 978-1101911761
Publisher: Penguin Random House
Release Date: February 3, 2015

Adichie is, dare I say it, my hero.

I was on the wait list for this essay, which is a modified version of the TedxEuston Talk she did in 2012. (I attached the talk if you’re interested) I had already watched the Talk, prior to readingΒ We Should All Be Feminists, and I must say that this short book does and should bear reading by women and men, alike. I don’t know of any woman who has not experienced at least one of the things Adichie relates.

Adichie states in the beginning of the essay that her best friend said to her,

You know, you’re a feminist.

which she did not take as a compliment nor did she know what a feminist was. Adichie was again called a feminist while promoting her novel Purple Hibiscus by a journalist and what she calls

a nice, well-meaning man. . .

He wanted to advise her that she should never call herself a feminist

since feminists are women who are unhappy because they cannot find husbands.

I chuckled when I read that because I know my share of unhappy women that have husbands. And speaking strictly for myself as a single woman and a feminist, I am indeed quite happy, and no I don’t hate men. I tend to dislike men and women equally based on how deplorable of a human being they are.

Anyway, I related to several of the points. But one incident Adichie related hit particularly hard as it was one that happened recently. She was at a restaurant with a male friend, and ignored by the waiter.

Here’s my experience:

My boyfriend and I had gone to a winery. I am much more knowledgeable about wine than he, but theΒ sommelier kept addressing my boyfriend, even when I asked a question the answer was directed to my boyfriend. After a few times of being blatantly ignored, I turned to my boyfriend while the sommelier was in mid sentence and told him I was ready to go. Needless to say the sommelier was a shocked by my blatant impudence. But oh well.

So, what is a feminism?

According to ForWomen.org feminism in a nut shell is ”the social, economic and political equality of ALL genders.” This includes seeking to establish educational and professional opportunities for women that are equal to such opportunities for men.

Now, please tell me what so hard about that?

The Friday 56

But by far the worst thing we do to males – by making them feel they have to be hard – is that we leave them with very fragile egos. The harder s man feels compelled to be, the weaker his ego is.

And then we do a much greater disservice to girls, because we raise them to cater to the fragile egos of males.

We teach girls to shrink themselves, to make themselves smaller.

We Should All Be Feminists, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, page 27

Oh yes! Speak Chimamanda!

Because the book is so short it is virtually impossible to go into many details. It is a wonderful introduction into the world of feminism and how we need to change the way in which we raise our boys and our girls.

This short essay gives some pretty solid advice as to how we can and must do better in order to raise boys that don’t have fragile egos and how we can raise confident girls that don’t make themselves smaller.

4 thoughts on “Review & Friday 56 – We Should All Be Feminists by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

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