I don’t care if you don’t like me; I love me *wink*

'... don’t be too pushy … because you have to be likeable. And I say that is bullshit.' PREACH, Chimamanda. Preach!
‘… don’t be too pushy … because you have to be likeable. And I say that is bullshit.’ PREACH, Chimamanda. Preach!

Nigerian writer Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, who first came to my attention when her novel, Americanah, became a New York Times best-seller, and when audio of a speech of hers ended up in the Beyonce song, “Flawless,” is, as Blavity puts it, *everything.*

I’m such a fan of her feminist views. And, of course, the excerpt in Flawless is the kind of thing that should be required reading in the 5th grade:

“We teach girls to shrink themselves
To make themselves smaller
We say to girls,
“You can have ambition
But not too much
You should aim to be successful
But not too successful
Otherwise you will threaten the man.”
Because I am female
I am expected to aspire to marriage
I am expected to make my life choices
Always keeping in mind that
Marriage is the most important
Now marriage can be a source of
Joy and love and mutual support
But why do we teach girls to aspire to marriage
And we don’t teach boys the same?
We raise girls to see each other as competitors
Not for jobs or for accomplishments
Which I think can be a good thing
But for the attention of men
We teach girls that they cannot be sexual beings
In the way that boys are
Feminist: the person who believes in the social
Political, and economic equality of the sexes”

I can’t help but think of my five-year-old niece when I read her views. This latest one, which, in a perfect world, is taught to every little girl in the world, is from a speech she gave at the 2015 Girls Write Now Awards in New York City, where she was named the groundbreaker honoree.

Via Blavity:

During her speech, Adichie spoke less about her stellar accomplishments and more about why young girls and women shouldn’t care about being liked when trying to pave their paths as writers and storytellers.

“Forget about likability,” the 37-year-old exclaimed. “I think that what our society teaches young girls — and I think that it’s something that’s quite difficult for even older women, self-confessed feminists, to shrug off — is this idea that likeability is an essential part of the space you occupy in the world. That you’re supposed to twist yourself into shapes to make yourself likeable. That you’re supposed to kind of hold back sometimes, pull back. Don’t quite say, don’t be too pushy … because you have to be likeable. And I say that is bullshit.”

And, with that, I’ll leave you with one of the best little girls to ever grace Vine:

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