“My own definition is a feminist is a man or a woman who says, yes, there’s a problem with gender as it is today and we must fix it, we must do better. All of us, women and men, must do better.”
We don't usually review nonfiction on the blog, and nor do we such short books (this is an essay adapted from a 2013 TEDx talk of the author), but I feel this is so very important, and relevant even to this day- will always be relevant, to be honest- that I cannot not talk about this here. I actually have the compulsion to throw a copy of this in the face of anyone and everyone I meet, so yeah. It's pretty good.
Feminism has always intrigued me, but I never called myself or identified myself as one until a couple of years back, and this is more due to all the negative baggage around that term than anything else. I live in a society that is unapologetically patriarchal, and a woman may as well put up a sign inviting trouble before outright advocating feminism.
While the Nigerian culture is vastly different from ours (admittedly worse in terms of equality, it seems, if I may say so), but starting from the stigma around the word "feminism" to tackling everything else related to the topic, the author, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, manages to form a strong, coherent idea about intersectional feminism and why it is important that each and every one of us fights for it in this short yet powerful essay.
Calling this is an essay may make it sound drab- but trust me, this is anything but. In a conversational tone and through personal anecdotes, the author conveys what she sets out to very effectively, making this one quick, resonating read. So brilliant is this that my mother, someone quite very opposed to the term feminism, found this book enlightening- she even read it in one sitting without complaining about it!
In short I'd say- freaking read this already!!! If you don't feel up to reading it then do please spend 30 mins of your time to check out the author's TEDx talk of the same name. I promise you won't regret it.
“Culture does not make people. People make culture. If it is true that the full humanity of women is not our culture, then we can and must make it our culture.”