“Many stories matter. Stories have been used to dispossess and to malign. But stories can also be used to empower, and to humanize. Stories can break the dignity of a people. But stories can also repair that broken dignity.”
-Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
Each and every one of the women featured in Newsweek’s “150 Fearless Women” is tremendously worthy of being honored for making a difference in our communities by empowering and inspiring women and becoming agents of change. Personally, one of the women I can relate to best is Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie. Adichie is a Nigerian writer and the “heir apparent” to Chinua Achebe, also a Nigerian writer, who wrote the novel “Things Fall Apart.” Adichie writes with wisdom about reality, specifically the Biafran War, and the seriousness of the issues that we all face today.
Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie has written two novels, a book of short stories and a short story that was published in a book of short stories; her first novel is “Purple Hibiscus” and received the Orange Prize for Fiction, her second novel is “Half of a Yellow Sun” about the Biafran War and was also awarded the Orange Prize for Fiction, her book of short stories is entitled “The Thing Around Your Neck”, and her short story that was published in a collection is entitled “Ceiling.” All of her works show her readers the truth of the issues that we face today. Through her writing, people begin to see where changes need to be made and what they can do to make these changes. Chinua Achebe even went so far as to state that “we do not usually associate wisdom with beginners, but here is a new writer endowed with the gift of ancient storytellers.” Especially coming from a writer as influential and inspirational as Achebe, this is very high praise for Adichie.
Throughout her entire life Adichie has been exceptionally ambitious and has sought out many roads leading to success in her life. She studied medicine and pharmacy at the University of Nigeria and worked editing a magazine entitled “The Compass”, and at age 19 travelled to the United States to pursue studies in communications and political science at Drexel University. She then continued her studies at Eastern Connecticut State University and John Hopkins University. While growing up, her father was a professor at the University of Nigeria.
I have not read any of Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s works, nor have I heard of her prior to seeing her face and short biography in Newsweek’s “150 Fearless Women”, but I plan on experiencing some of the magic that she brings to the world by reading her novels and short stories as soon as I can. I think that she is definitely worth being honored for showing the world the truth through the medium that she understands best, writing. I really appreciate this because reading and writing are one of my greatest passions, and through these personal accounts I feel as if I can truly grasp a glimpse of reality.
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