Chimamanda Adichie on “The danger of a single story”

Trust me, it’s well worth your while to set aside some time (18 minutes and 49 seconds, to be precise) and watch, read and/or listen to this. You can click on ‘view subtitles’ if you’re so inclined. There are also (interactive!) transcripts and subtitles in various languages. I don’t recall where I first found this video, and it’s been linked on so many blogs in recent months I can’t quite seem to trace my source!

So: this is a talk given by Chimamanda Adichie, a Nigerian writer. It’s on, oh, so many things. On nations, on stereotypes, on Africa. On owning stories, telling stories, framing stories. On having one idea about a group of people.

It is absolutely brilliant. I’ll not detain you any longer. Go watch, listen, read!

Author: has written 142 posts for this blog.

Chally is a student by day, a freelance writer by night, a scary, scary feminist all the time, and a voracious reader whenever she has a spare moment. She also blogs at Zero at the Bone. Full bio here.
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7 Responses

  1. E. Ericson
    E. Ericson April 15, 2010 at 7:20 am |

    I linked to this back in January (here), but I don’t have nearly the audience that Feministe does, so thanks for spreading it farther. It really is a remarkable talk.

  2. April
    April April 15, 2010 at 9:24 am |

    I love TED. That was a great talk. Thanks for sharing!

  3. Chocolate Tort
    Chocolate Tort April 15, 2010 at 11:33 pm |

    This may be the longest internet video I’ve ever sat through – it helped that I didn’t have to actually watch it, just listen to it. And wow, it was totally worth that twenty minutes (started and stopped a couple of times)! What a fantastic speaker – I’ll definitely be digesting the “second story” idea for the next while. I also loved her description at how happy she was when a woman told her how to write the sequel because the woman was taking ownership of the novel. What a cool way to look at audience interaction with a text.

  4. Kjerstin
    Kjerstin April 16, 2010 at 1:22 am |

    Amazing! thank you for sharing this link. It really does branch into so many different areas and is so powerful. I want to check out her novel too…

  5. Valerie2
    Valerie2 April 17, 2010 at 1:51 pm |

    Wow. This is great! Thanks for posting.

  6. Danielle
    Danielle April 17, 2010 at 5:41 pm |

    How insightful! I’m also very motivated to read her novel now.

  7. Jane
    Jane April 19, 2010 at 9:08 pm |

    That was amazing and beautiful. Thank you for spreading the link, and thank you, Chimamanda, for your thoughtfulness and your wise words.

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