#WCW: Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

Hey, hey, hey! Here we are, back at it again with empowering female role models!

For this special edition of #womancrushwednesday during Women’s History Month, I decided to profile an acclaimed author, speaker, and activist, who is credited with “attracting a new generation of readers to African literature" and making feminism fashionable. She has been awarded with the MacArthur Foundation Genius Grant and her novels and other writings have received the Commonwealth Writers' Prize for Best First Book and the National Book Critics Circle Award for fiction.  Among her other countless accomplishments, she gave a hugely inspiring and popular Ted Talk entitled “We Should All be Feminists” (which I HIGHLY recommend!), which was featured in Queen Beyonce’s song “Flawless.”

Of course, I am speaking of Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie.

Chimamanda was born in Enugu, Nigeria in 1977. She attended the University of Nigeria, Drexel University, and received her Bachelor’s Degree from Eastern Connecticut State University. She then continued her education at John Hopkins and got her masters in creative writing. She has received many fellowships, including at Princeton and Harvard.

Her writing career is vastly impressive. She is the author of four books, ”...Purple Hibiscus, which won the Commonwealth Writers’ Prize and the Hurston/Wright Legacy Award, and Half of a Yellow Sun, which won the Orange Prize and was a National Book Critics Circle Award Finalist, a New York Times Notable Book, and a People and Black Issues Book Review Best Book of the Year; and the story collection The Thing Around Your Neck. Her latest novel Americanah, was published around the world in 2013." She has also has many articles published in various journals and has had many profiles written about her.

Along with her distinctive writing career, she has always been an activist, especially for women's rights and gender equality in Nigeria and internationally. In her own words: “I want us to raise girls differently where boys and girls start to see sexuality as something that they own, rather than something that a boy takes from a girl." PREACH!!! She has spoken out recently about Nigeria’s new anti-gay laws.

My admiration for Chimamanda as both a writer and an activist is clear, but I don’t think anyone can describe how amazing she is better than Queen B herself. She recalls how she discovered Chimamanda’s Ted Talk: “I was immediately drawn to her..She was elegant and her words were powerful and honest. Her definition of a feminist described my own feeling: equality of the sexes as it pertains to human rights, equal pay and sexuality. She called the men in her family feminists, too, because they acknowledged the need for equality."

And if Beyonce says it, it has to be true.