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Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie gets Candid on Wanting to be Addressed as Ms., Feminism & the Beauty of Igbo Language



Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie - March 2014 - BellaNaija

Nigerian author Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie recently had a candid interview with the Sun Newspaper.

In it, she discusses growing up, her parents’ influence on her career, wanting to be called a Miss instead of Mrs, Feminism and the beauty of Igbo language.

The interviewer kicks off the conversation by addressing her as Mrs Chimamanda Adichie, she quickly responded with “Before we start, please, I just want to say that my name is Chimamanda Adichie. That’s how I want it; that’s how I’m addressed, and it is not Mrs but Miss. Ms: that’s how I want it. I am saying this, because I just got a mail from my manager this morning. It seems that there are people who attended the church service, and they wrote about it, addressing me as Mrs. Chimamanda (Esega). I didn’t like that at all. So my name is Chimamanda Adichie, full stop!”

She further explains “This is because it is also responsible that people be called what they want to be called.”

Read excerpts from the interview;
On studying medicine, and later changing to pharmacy: “I did, because, in this part of the world, when you perform well in school, they’ll tell you that you’ll become a medical doctor. So, that’s why. When I was in the secondary school, I remember I took SSCE, and I got the best result in the history of the school.

Previously, people had been getting five. As and six As; but I got eleven (11) As. Everybody in the school was so happy. Since, it was in the junior secondary school category, afterwards the school authorities would put you in either science or arts; and I remember that, even then, I was very interested in arts.

I wanted to study history; I wanted to study French; I wanted to study literature, but, because I got the best result, they put me immediately in science class; immediately, no questions –and it was because of that thinking that, once you are brilliant, you are destined to go into sciences, which is a very pure fallacy. So, that’s how I was put in the science class. For Jamb UME; I put medicine, because that was what I was rather expected to do. I got in there, but my heart wasn’t there. I knew from the beginning, my heart wasn’t there. I was doing well anyway, but my heart was not there. So, that’s why I decided to leave –and I think it is the best decision I ever made.”

On not interpreting Igbo sentences in her novels: “It’s because I want people to go and learn Igbo. Many of my editors, many of them disapprove of that style, but I refused. I tell them it is because of two reasons: one is because Igbo is a peaceful and beautiful language; and my language matters so much to me, and, also, I am writing about a people who are speaking both languages; another reason is that when I was growing up, I read books where characters speak French –a book in English, and you will see one sentence in French, and nobody explains that.

We were supposed to try and understand. So, if you can do that with French, why not Igbo? Both of them are beautiful languages. So, I don’t take any excuses for that. There are many editors I have quarreled with be-cause of that. I know because, if you read it carefully, you can kind of understand what it is. And, then, if you are really that curious, you can go online and learn it; you can go and learn Igbo. There are Igbo programmes in various universities. It is not that hard.”

On if it doesn’t bother her if her readers don’t understand: “Almost one million people from across the globe read Half of the Yellow Sun, and they understood, and it has Igbo words in it. So, it didn’t bother them. Also, as a writer, I read books with little bits of the languages I don’t understand, but it doesn’t really; in fact, it gives me the flavours of that language, and I like that.

I think the question is a bigger question about the family and our language, because, if I wrote French in a book, I don’t think I would be asked questions about it, because the ideas are French. You can put French in an English book, it’s OK; but because it is Igbo, and we think Igbo doesn’t have that much value, people will get confused. Igbo is as beautiful as any other language.

So, I urge parents to allow their children to speak Igbo language. Some Igbo educated parents don’t allow their children to speak Igbo. It’s a disaster. They should just speak Igbo. Ndi’gbo can’t even read Igbo. It troubles immensely, because we are losing so much. It is very easy to speak Igbo language.

The same Igbo parents, who don’t teach their children Igbo, teach them French. It’s very annoying. I don’t even want to lose my voice talking about it because it is a very sad thing. My friends, who are Yoruba, would prefer their children to speak their language.

Many of them live abroad, but still speak Yoruba. But, even in Igbo land, when you speak Igbo to your fellow Igbo, they will start speaking English in response, because we now think that our language is so low that we have to show that we have arrived by speaking English. It is just terrible.”

Chimamda & Hubby Dr  Ivara Alistair Esege

Chimamda & Hubby Dr Ivara Alistair Esege

On stating she’s a feminist in an interview: “Oooh! Is that when I said that, because that quote has followed me everywhere in the world? That’s why I don’t like granting interviews, because whatever you say, in 20 years, you’ll still be quoted. Oh I said I’m a feminist? You know, what I meant was that: you know when people hear feminism, many things come into their head.

What I wanted him to understand is that feminism doesn’t mean that you want to be a man. I’m a feminist, I’m a female; a feminist meaning that I want to look like a woman, but I want the equal respect that a man has. I think that human being should be respected based on their achievements and not based on whether you’re a man or woman. But, since I said that, everywhere I go, people are asking about that. I went to Australia, and they had read that; they knew about that. I was on stage in a hall full of people.

They said they had a special present for me, and they brought in purse. I just started laughing. It was hilarious. But this is why you should be careful what you say. It was so funny. All the way in Australia!”

On starting the conversation by stating she is not a Mrs: “(cuts in) My name is Chimamada Adichie. If you want to put label for me, put Ms.”

On culture playing a part as being Mrs: “(Cuts in again) What does our culture do? Let me tell you about our culture. This thing that you are calling our culture –that when you marry somebody, you’ll start call-ing her Mrs. Somebody –is not our culture; it is Western culture. If you want to talk about our culture, you need to go to people in real Igbo land. But it is true.

My grandfather’s name is David. His name is also Nwoye. They call him Nwoye Omeni. Omeni was his mother. You know why? It is to help distinguish him, because there are often many wives. So, it was his mother that they used to identify him. They know that all of these people came from the same compound, but whose child is this one. You may go and ask people who is Nwoye Omeni, and they’ll tell you it is my grandfather. So, conversation about culture is a long one. I don’t even want to have it.”

On if she’ll change her last name: “Yes; because it’s all fused. You cannot then come and impose something on somebody. Nobody should come and impose something on somebody, because, if you come and tell me it is our culture, I’ll tell you it is not our culture. Where do you want to start counting? Do you want to start counting in 1920, or do you want us to start counting from 1870?”

To read the full interview, click here


  1. Ikido

    March 4, 2014 at 11:21 am

    Wait,wait,wait..Hold up!
    You are married and you dont want to be addressed as “Mrs. Esega”? SERIOUSLY??!!
    Men your husband is seriously f- up…BIG TIME!!
    Me that i have a pet peeve against hyphenated-names, we will now go and marry and you will tell me what? That you dont want to be know as Mrs. Ikido?
    ABOMINATION!!..that would be the day the marriage ends, and you can kukuma go back to your fathers house..since you want to keep his name!

    • Al Blossom

      March 4, 2014 at 11:55 am

      The way your ignorance shines through is blinding.

    • Que

      March 4, 2014 at 12:00 pm

      Ikechukwu is that u?

    • CallMeMsNotMrs

      March 5, 2014 at 2:34 pm

      Dumb asses like u think a woman goes from her father’s house to her husband’s house.
      Modern women go from their personal homes or family homes to thee MARITAL homes.
      Women, it’s for fools like this we work and contribute on every front ESPECIALLY financially, to the home. So that he doesn’t come and say “his” home. It is “our” home. F-ing catch that dirt.

    • Nani

      May 4, 2016 at 3:26 pm

      If she’s going to her marital home, then she should go by her marital name, which is her husband’s name. Don’t tell me that a lady who professes her love and admiration for her Igbo culture will willingly not bear her husbands last name. Or maybe her excessive love for the igbo culture is what is keeping her back since her husband isn’t Igbo. That being said, it’s an insult to her husband and his family and could point to the assumption that she thinks she married below her. Even the way she puts it is so off-putting. That man is just her handbag.

    • lalaroses

      March 5, 2014 at 6:12 pm

      What has this got to do with her husband?.. men like you end up being violent abusers. Let her be. You are not her husband

    • Traditional Feminist

      March 14, 2014 at 3:34 pm

      You have no right to insult her or her husband because of her choices. What’s the abomination, would you rather she carries mrs and go about sleeping around like a lot of women do these days?? Is it related? Yes it is…because we live in a culture that judges people’s decisions from the outside when it is none of their business but secretly go about doing heinous acts….it is their marriage, and you have absolutely NO right to judge!

  2. Anonymous

    March 4, 2014 at 11:25 am

    I may not understand why she still wants to be addressed as Ms. even though she is still married. However, what she said about Igbos is so true. Igbo is just as legitimate of a language as French is Yet, Igbo people don’t know Igbo or act like they cannot speak it. Why? I am American born and raised, yet I know more Igbo than my counterparts in Nigeria. Why? It is sad. It may not be European, but it is still a very mellifluous language. May I ask why Igbos especially Lekki and Ikoyi ones don’t like to speak it. I am curious?

    • yoke

      March 4, 2014 at 2:21 pm

      The answer is quite simple, they suffer from what we use to call ‘colonial mentality’ and that is, you are not good enough if you can’t or don’t speak and understand the ‘queen’s English’ whatever that means. It is so frustrating, what Chimamanda said about her grandfather being identified by his mother’s name is so true more especially about the Anambra Igbos. However, Igbos don’t know what is feminism, the Igbo man loves their women so much that feminism wouldn’t arise. Feminism is an import from the West and my advice for Chimamanda is; if you want to distance yourself from the influence of the West you must go the whole hog and distance yourself from feminism as it has no place in Igboland. The Igbo culture is very republican, which is respect for all,,,,tall or short, rich or poor, man or woman and this why traditionally the Igbos have no kings. It is a very egalitarian society as it were.

    • ForeverYoung

      March 4, 2014 at 3:26 pm

      Mmmmmmmmmhhhhh…. yoke, while feminism might not be an Igbo thing, I beg to differ that it’s totally western. I will cite an example of a woman in Yoruba history that can be likened to your modern day feminist – Efusetan Aniwura, the IYALODE OF IBADANLAND. She was a powerful Yoruba woman who did almost everything a man would do economically, socially and politically. In fact she had her own army she would send out in time of war, was super rich, liaised with the white man (which was quite a biggie then) and was very opinionated. If you check for the meaning of feminism you would see that as Ms Adichie put it, it doesn’t mean you want to become a man; a man is a man , a woman is a woman (unless of course you are transgendered) . It just means you want equal opportunities as man. That being said I don’t think it’s too much for women to aspire to be on par with men economically, socially and politically. In Yoruba culture as well most married women are addressed with their first child’s name e.g Iya yoke or mama yoke. The ones without kids are simply referred to iyawo or Iya aburo. If they want to go into the woman’s history, they would usually mention her father’s name.

    • Truthful

      March 4, 2014 at 3:55 pm

      Gbam. God bless you for that comment. She wants to lecture the whole world on ‘Igbo culture’ but doesn’t fully understand her own culture – picking and choosing what is convenient for her and making money off of it. In Igbo land, the same person being addressed as Nwoye Omeni will grow up, marry a wife and his wife will be called Nwuye Nwoye i.e. wife of Nwoye. Afterall is the surname Chimamanda is still struggling to answer her mother’s maiden name? Is it not a man’s name?? Hypocrite! I admire strong women but please let people in the public eye learn to get their facts right before opening their mouths in order to avoid confusing others.

  3. True talk

    March 4, 2014 at 11:30 am

    Whatever Chimamanda. On the one hand you say let live and let live (i.e. don’t impose titles etc on me) on the other hand it is annoying when people don’t speak Igbo for whatever reason. Surely then people are allowed to be annoyed with you for not calling yourself Mrs!! Stick to writing your books.

    • john22

      March 4, 2014 at 1:03 pm

      sharaaap young garl

    • CallMeMsNotMrs

      March 5, 2014 at 2:37 pm

      All her opinions. Get a life if she threatens you so much. Timid rat.

  4. Al Blossom

    March 4, 2014 at 11:30 am


  5. Zeebs

    March 4, 2014 at 11:32 am

    My oh my! Chimamanda is still a bristling hot headed ‘feminist’. We all were but she’s just still too fiery. However, that is surely heart warming than someone telling me she doesn’t believe in gender equality… The power of education!

    • peyton

      March 4, 2014 at 12:18 pm

      So because one person is a feminist makes her educated? Really??? This is were women miss it and that’s why we have major issues because we set tags “feminist” non feminist and the feminist always think that they are more intelligent which is so wrong. If someone chooses her way of life let her be so because chidinmanda says she won’t be referred to as mrs she’s now educated? That’s her personal life might I state that omotola is probably happy in her own role and enjoys it as does the writer chidimanda.they are women who reflect the different aspects of womanhood celebrate them but please make no comparisms to them they have different views, and they have chosen what they want. Iam sick and tired of women thinking one group is better more superior or more intelligent than the other.

    • slice

      March 4, 2014 at 3:18 pm

      I think u misunderstood the comment. She didn’t say she supports chi’s statement but rather that she prefers her stance to omot’s stance which took us back centuries with the whole I don’t believe in gender equality bit. Although I’ve sd I do believe omot just used the wrong term to explain her marriage. But that’s a difft story

    • AA

      March 4, 2014 at 2:01 pm

      erm, speak for yourself, I am still a bristling hot headed feminist. I wish I fought harder to keep my maiden name, but I won a little bit because it will always be on my passport. A woman is not a tag, she is an individual first and foremost. My mother taught me everything I know about feminism but that did not stop her from being a wonderful wife of 40 years and an excellent mother and she is still tops in her career. You see, she taught me that a woman can have it all if she demands it all. That is what I will pass on to my daughter, not to be an attachment to the ego of a man

    • Oma

      July 24, 2014 at 1:03 pm

      You just inspired me, thanks

  6. Kyjuan

    March 4, 2014 at 11:33 am

    Is it just me or she sounds a bit too forward in this interview?

    • trufactoid

      March 4, 2014 at 12:38 pm

      It is YOU

    • BC

      March 4, 2014 at 1:47 pm

      It is sooo YOU. You would rather she dilly dallied to make you comfortable?

    • AA

      March 4, 2014 at 2:01 pm

      its just you babes

    • kelz

      March 4, 2014 at 2:02 pm


    • Blessmyheart

      March 4, 2014 at 10:09 pm

      I think you mean defensive, not forward.


    March 4, 2014 at 11:35 am

    Pure Feminist No Doubt About That!!

    >Comment Moderation Disabled<

  8. fob

    March 4, 2014 at 11:39 am

    It’s amazing how much I dislike this woman yet I love her books so much…..
    I hated the character Ifemelu in Americana and it was so easy for me to merge Chiamanda and Ifemelu together. But there is no denying she is ridiculously talented. I will like to see her write a book with a yoruba lead character with no reference to Nnsuka!

    • Que

      March 4, 2014 at 11:45 am

      You might be waiting a whiiile…. but lets see..

    • john22

      March 4, 2014 at 1:05 pm

      being tribal and the name is Nsukka pls.

    • kelz

      March 4, 2014 at 2:13 pm

      why will she write a book with a yoruba character? is she yoruba? is that her reality? dont come here with your tribal sentiments please!!

    • Newbie

      March 5, 2014 at 8:47 pm

      Take several seats…bunch them close together to make a bed..make yourself comfortable…and then wait! Cos this is gonna take a loooooooong time!

    • PoshBlue

      December 30, 2014 at 4:34 pm

      It is Nsukka, get your spelling right.

    • Feminisat

      September 20, 2015 at 8:00 pm

      I also thought Chimamanda and Ifemelu alike alot too. I thought much of Chimamanda’s self was channeled into Ifemelu, and i dislike Ifemelu, however Chimamanda is still my love.

  9. omada

    March 4, 2014 at 11:39 am

    Lmao….gosh I love her! She is so fierce and outspoken and oh so intelligent!

  10. Que

    March 4, 2014 at 11:44 am

    I can see the drama brewing… all I hope is that the husband is one with her on all these….cos d public is about to go hard!!! Talk about an increasingly polarising figure…

  11. Amara

    March 4, 2014 at 11:57 am

    I love that Chimamanda speaks her mind no matter what. She is a brilliant, eloquent and talented feminist. I have no plans to change my name if I ever get married; so I’m glad that a Nigerian woman like Chimamanda exists.

  12. Abisoye Amosu

    March 4, 2014 at 12:00 pm

    No doubt she is good and talented and it’s tym to appreciate our own culture but on the issue of marriage rink she is wrong because since the day she got married she as become one with her husband and as a sign of respect she should be proud to have his name that doesn’t mean she as no equal right with a man she is taking it to an extreme that could put her in trouble.

    • corolla

      March 4, 2014 at 1:04 pm

      a woman changing her name does equate to disrespect. culture is dynamic and it changes overtime.It is her choice, and women should not be forced to do things they don’t want to under the guise of culture. How many men can drop their last names just like that? If a woman wants to change her last names, good…if she doesnt want to, that’s okay too!

    • corolla

      March 4, 2014 at 1:05 pm

      “does not equate”

    • AA

      March 4, 2014 at 2:03 pm

      GBAM!!! NUFF SAID! It should be a woman’s choice, simple!

    • Oyinade

      March 4, 2014 at 3:17 pm

      I like you. It is nobody’s business, except for the husband and wife.

  13. Vanessa

    March 4, 2014 at 12:02 pm

    another reason she may not want to take the man’s name is this: she might have been the one who wooed the man and paid for the wedding services. In that case, it is proper for her to keep her name since the man can’t bear her own name.

    • Dids

      March 4, 2014 at 12:42 pm

      LOOOL…. Where is this even coming from???

    • nwanyi na aga aga

      March 4, 2014 at 12:56 pm

      loooool! from the depths of unintelligible thoughts…

    • Bleed Blue

      March 4, 2014 at 1:41 pm

      ROTFL! As in I’m trying to decipher if it’s sarcasm or not

    • tish

      March 4, 2014 at 1:48 pm

      Chai Vanessa Ode! Hahahaha You made me spill my tea on myself….you are soo DUMB…OMG…LOL

    • Olori Tari

      March 4, 2014 at 6:22 pm

      LMAOOOO…Surely this is Sarcasm.

  14. Fashionista

    March 4, 2014 at 12:04 pm

    My recent liking for this woman seems to only be getting better. I am also married and maintain my name as is. It is nothing about clinging to my “fathers” name, it is just how I prefer to be addressed. In fact, my Fathers name is hyphenated but I do not use the first part, just the last. In some social settings, I may refer to or use my married name but I largely use my maiden name and I don’t plan to change my name officially and its been three years. I don’t believe a name suggests to any extent the commitment to your spouse or marriage, it is just a name.

  15. Dayo

    March 4, 2014 at 12:14 pm

    Bella Naija and folks reading. I TRUST that you understand what “Ms.” means. It is a term respectfully used to address women who may or may not be married. It is also used to address women who do not necessarily want/choose to be identified by their married name. Last I checked, it is one’s choice to determine how they want to be addressed. How dare anyone tell someone else how that person should be addressed? I am married and choose to be addressed as Ms.__ when I want and sometime use my married name. Biko, let’s not take panadol for another person’s headache. There are more pressing issues that this. You will find that most folks objecting (i.e. not using logic or actually comprehending) what Ms. Adichie is talking about in the interview reduce their entire self worth to their significant other’s names.

    • Mz Socially Awkward...

      March 4, 2014 at 2:31 pm

      Seriously, Dayo, I’m surprised nobody picked up on that little fact before jumping up and down like agitated rabbits. Even though the “r” in the middle is missing, that formal mode of address is capable of being used by married women. But you know us Nigerians and how we love our titles…

    • CarliforniaBawlar

      March 4, 2014 at 3:56 pm

      All that one na Engrishh na my sister!! abegii do quick and UPGRADE to Chief Mrz Socially Awkard-Le’royalfamily’boo…
      Even our social media identity must change ooh!! How else would the world know that we have conquered the siege of singleness??!

    • Dayo

      March 4, 2014 at 4:02 pm

      Girl, you know our people. Once it’s marriage related or what dear pastor says, logic leaves the conversation. I tire. Bella Naija also caused the bullshit by not understanding the difference between Miss and Ms. I see that they have now edited the post. Again, other countries are there making ground breaking scientific discoveries and we are here debating whether a woman (who doesn’t care for the existence of the clowns on here) has the right to choose how she wants to be addressed. Sigh. We always manage to reduce everything to ethnicity and religion here. Daft people, daft nation. Yes, I said it.

    • Ife Love

      March 4, 2014 at 8:03 pm

      Abeg, Si… Don’t take away the shine of some of my Naija people o…. They only need to be trained to understand the differences… It could be annoying to have issues miscontrued and blown out of proportion by those who don’t understand it in the first instance. SMH

    • Iris

      March 4, 2014 at 4:37 pm

      Thank you! I don’t think people know what “Ms” means. And did anyone else notice how the tone of this interview was different from many of the others she’s done? Trust a Nigerian newspaper to focus on Mrs, Miss and Ms. First of all “Chimamanda Adichie” is a name she’s known by. A lot of artists keep their names for professional reasons (not that she needs a special reason to want to keep her name. It’s all about personal choice and her husband hasn’t launched a public appeal so why should it eat anyone up?) Secondly was this interviewer confused? Where did the person get the impression that she’d married someone whose last name was Adichie? The interviewer just set the tone for her to be irritated throughout. I don’t agree with one or two things Chimamanda has said in the past but on this one I’m in full support. I’d have been like “In your desperation to tag me as “Mrs” simply because you know I’m married, which spirit told you that I was married to a man called Adichie?”

  16. no heart to hate

    March 4, 2014 at 12:14 pm

    But why?

  17. @edDREAMZ

    March 4, 2014 at 12:35 pm

    Omotola should come and give this woman some lectures like put some sense into her brain….. Nansance….

    • kelz

      March 4, 2014 at 2:07 pm

      look at this one!!! incase you do not know historically Igbos didnt change their names. In fact, children in some Igbo communities answered their mother’s surnames. Everyone crying culture forgets that this taking up husband name thing is a western idea..very western!

    • Mz Socially Awkward...

      March 4, 2014 at 2:24 pm

      Very, very western. However, many Nigerians continue to prove their lack of enlightenment about their own damn history…

  18. Jaennie walker

    March 4, 2014 at 12:47 pm

    …This is a free world where everyone has a right to live the way he/she/they want to live, without questions. If the husband is comfortable with her, why should we be getting our head hot? She is and would never be under our obligations, so guys, let her be. She just aired her own view, so accept it… Then, as regards what she said bout Igbo people, its a born truth. And also, I think schools in Nigeria. Especially in the east should stop tasking their students for speaking igbo in class, cos they did it alot during my primary and secondary school day, and it doesn’t make sense to me @all… Its our language.. We need to live it, love it.. And Believe it… Daalukwanu!

  19. Aanu

    March 4, 2014 at 12:53 pm

    Idk why the fact that she chooses not to be called Mrs. Edega is an issue. Frankly, different strokes for different folks. When a woman gets married to a man, her identity changes, she becomes Mrs. Whatever his last name is, she leaves her father, in fact, I notice that some people will expect you to adopt the man’s culture, forget your hometown and claim his (whether or not you even know about the place). I personally do not understand why. I have yet to see where it says so in the bible. I recollect however that the bible asks a young man to leave his father and mother and cleave to his wife, and they shall become. Hw come it is never debated for the man to bear his wife’s name and culture? Or maybe a man to forget his hometown, and claim his wife’s hometown. If I choose to bear my husband’s last name when I get married, I will. But if someone chooses not to be addressed by her husband’s last name. Let her be. Changing one’s last name should be a choice. I do not think God really cares about that (I might be wrong, it’s a opinion). But I have come to see that unless the bible references something, if it’s harmless then let it be. I have other things to say but these are my main points.

    • Blessmyheart

      March 4, 2014 at 4:09 pm

      Speaking of hometowns, I was arguing with a friend on the state of origin thing. Someone help me please, my state of ORIGIN is my original state of origin, isn’t it? Do I now begin to claim my husband’s state of origin?

  20. Grace

    March 4, 2014 at 12:54 pm

    As for me Miss Chimamanda has the right to decide how she wants to be addressed. As a matter of fact bearing “Mrs” does not automatically mean that you love and respect your husband more. It is just a title and the society focuses to much on things that are not essential…. they are just details. I am also a feminist and I am facing so much pressure and reject because of that. But I will not change my mindset just to please the mass. Women are human being just like men and deserve the same respect. Peace to all!!!

  21. Tobenna

    March 4, 2014 at 12:54 pm

    Omotola Happier than Chimamamda #FACT

    • AA

      March 4, 2014 at 2:06 pm

      How do you know???? Are you in their homes??? Amebo people stating their opinions as facts

    • Onye Ara

      March 4, 2014 at 2:30 pm

      That is a very daft comment to term as fact.
      Omotola sure does display more anatomical selling points. That I must give to her. It probably makes her happier.

    • idoublecrossmyheart

      March 4, 2014 at 5:07 pm

      ahahahahahahaahahaha….that is like comparing Obasanj to Wole Soyinka or Apple to Microsoft. You may be surprised, Chimamanda may be happier than Omotola. Accepting a man as your superior does not equate happiness. If that is the case, then every African woman who accepts this ideology would be happy.

  22. Leggy

    March 4, 2014 at 12:56 pm

    She said “Ms.” Not “Miss”. God, y’all should pick up a book and find out the difference.

  23. koko

    March 4, 2014 at 12:58 pm


    • Onye Ara

      March 4, 2014 at 2:31 pm

      She comes across in all her interviews as in a state of permanent intellectual rage.

    • idoublecrossmyheart

      March 4, 2014 at 5:08 pm

      you see what you want to see. you feel what you want to feel. Perhaps she comes across as annoying, because you are an annoying person. You have projected your reality onto her….

  24. Onye Ara

    March 4, 2014 at 1:05 pm

    She just expressed her view. I am inclined not to agree with her. It is a free world.
    There are several ways of expressing your strength as a woman. There is no one right way,although there are several wrong ways.
    Another strong woman I know, Redi Thlabi insisted on changing her name and being called by her marital name soon after marriage despite having built a similar brand by her maiden name. To each her own. Both are intelligent and strong women in my book.
    My problem is when we mistaken fierceness for intelligence. Both are not synonymous.

    By the way, I support her stand on the Igbo language.

  25. Chigozie

    March 4, 2014 at 1:08 pm

    Read this Interview. Chimamamda would put your Marriage in Trouble!

    • Iris

      March 4, 2014 at 4:40 pm

      YOU read the interview again. It’s clear that all you read was the title.

  26. john22

    March 4, 2014 at 1:08 pm

    chimamanda cant tell me how to live my little life. On marriage shes so wrong but on Igbo shes very right… humble opinion say yours

  27. Ndidi

    March 4, 2014 at 1:12 pm

    Arab women of them all keep their father’s name: Princess Haya bint al Hussein
    Sheikha Lubna bint Khalid bin Sultan al Qasimin.

    Islam permits women to keep their maiden name.
    No big deal

    • AA

      March 4, 2014 at 2:08 pm

      THANK YOU!!!! Muslim women, including Hausa muslims have the choice of keeping their fathers’ name. So what culture are we talking about?

    • Truthful

      March 4, 2014 at 2:47 pm

      Since Chimamanda is Igbo and goes on about Igbo culture constantly, the reference point regarding her stance should be Igbo culture – not Islam or Ghana’s.

  28. whocares

    March 4, 2014 at 1:19 pm

    I remember a Turkish case I was reading 3 weeks ago. The woman in question was challenging the Turkish law that required her to make a written submission before she could keep her maiden name. The Turkish court refused her case and said this; ““The rule according to which married women bear their husband’s name derives from certain social realities and is the result of the codification of certain customs that have formed over centuries in Turkish society. According to the thinking behind family law, the purpose of the rule is to protect women, who are of a more delicate nature than men, strengthen family bonds, nurture the prosperity of the marriage, and preclude bicephalous authority within the same family. For the sake of protecting family unity the legislature has recognised the primacy of the husband’s name over the wife’s. Considerations of public interest and policy have been decisive. Moreover, under the new provision women are now allowed to keep their maiden name in front of their surname…only if they make a written application within 6 months”. (Tekeli v Turkey for those who care to know)
    I was astounded. I had taken it for granted that I had the right to bear whatever name after marriage, that a court could write and deliver such drivel in 2014, whilst at the same time claiming to protect women baffled me greatly. The right to one’s name is such an integral part of a person’s personality and women still have to fight for that to this day! Does anyone understand the enormity of this? (Luckily the ECtHR overruled the case)
    If Chimamanda wishes to keep her maiden name, I am glad she is in a society that allows her to do so without fighting for that right. People have misconstrued feminism and what it means and that is why I don’t refer to myself as that anymore, I never did to be honest, although I am in the front, centre and middle of women empowering causes. What exactly are we fighting for? Respect, equality, freedom from discrimination to name a few.. Rights that we should have by virtue of our humanity, therefore when people call me a feminist I refuse it, and I remind them that what I am fighting for is basic human liberties.
    It irks me when I read statements to the effect that marriage has not “lessened” her feminism, and she is still fierce… as if there is a correlation between the two, as if once married, the quest for liberty ends.

    • whocares

      March 4, 2014 at 1:34 pm

      Yes I realise “front, centre and middles” makes no sense. lol.

  29. Foxtrot

    March 4, 2014 at 1:26 pm

    Im married and prefer to be addressed as Ms. I have an identity that does not need to be defined by announcing to the world that I am married. Many Nigerian women change their names and start with the whole “Mrs” thing just to prove to everyone else that they have finally made it to the “promised land”. Its neither traditional nor biblical – it simply isnt written anywhere that ones name must be changed. Please, if you know where its written, feel free to correct me.
    The Igbo language is beautiful and must be taught to our children. Its very important. Its so sad to see many Igbo’s using English names to make life easier for others especially when they move abroad. Well done to people like Nneka, Chimamanda and Chiwetel for sticking to their traditional names. Enough with the English names Biko!

    • tish

      March 4, 2014 at 1:54 pm

      And yet you had to go an use Foxtrot as your name here… what happened to Fumnanya? Fatimah? Fisayo?

    • tish

      March 4, 2014 at 1:55 pm


    • Oyinade

      March 4, 2014 at 3:26 pm

      lol, seriously!!! Bella naija comments can’t kill me.

    • Anonymous

      March 4, 2014 at 2:23 pm

      Aptly put enyim aptly put.

  30. Bimpe

    March 4, 2014 at 1:36 pm

    this woman is starting to annoy me, she really needs to get off her high horse.
    first and foremost gender equality is a myth hun. women use it as a cover up, something to avoid them being a woman. thats all it is. i aspire to be so many great things, and am using ‘independent woman’ as a cover up but honestly i am just like the average woman deep down.
    Yes women deserve better than what we get, but using the word ‘feminist’ is quite extreme, its really really big, you wuld have to be a man to be a feminist. pls make use of other words.
    and hell no, i dont want to a be equal with a man, I aspire to be equal in terms of jobs and earnings but not at home hun, your marriage or family life will completely fail if so. if a thief comes into your house, who would protect the family, you? of course not, the man will make the move, so why cant they exercise the same ability at home. I want to be protected by a man, i want a man to make me happy but i know my boundaries.
    chi: maybe its because of your theory your marriage hasnt really done much, didnt even know she was in a relationship. therefore honey, you are not a feminist
    a woman is the soul of the world, you dont see the soul but the soul makes things right.

    • whocares

      March 4, 2014 at 1:59 pm

      I don’t even know where to start… Maybe you should try to understand what you are talking about first before you give an opinion?

    • AA

      March 4, 2014 at 2:12 pm

      Erm Bimpe, what the hell??? Myth??? Gender equality exists and I am proof of it. I am highly educated, have a SLAMMING JOB WITH AWESOME PAY, plus I am happily married with 2 kids. All thanks to gender equality. My husband supports my dreams and pushes me in my career, even though it can inconvenience him, thanks to gender equality. So before you open your mouth and miseducate people, abeg do your research well, well o. The fact that you can actually read and write is because of gender equality. If not, your father could have just married you off at the age of 12 and would not have bothered to educate you. So please, you owe the feminists of the past a HUGE apology for your ignorant statement.

    • Truthful

      March 4, 2014 at 2:50 pm

      Abeg, women were getting educated and doing well way before feminism. Feminism is not the saviour of womankind that it is made out to be.

    • Kelly

      March 4, 2014 at 4:12 pm

      AA. please shut it. Women in Nigeria have been doing all that before any feminist movement so I am not sure what your point is exactly. My great grandmother went to university and was a principal so did my grandmother and we are igbo. Oh they were also happily married and not into polygamy .

    • Bimpe

      March 4, 2014 at 8:54 pm

      darling please use your brain, gender equality is only about earning amount of money. it also includes being the head of the family.
      i am sure you are not that why u still have a marriage because obviously you wont have one if so.
      and please find what feminist means as well before coming to my door step, dont send for me unless i send for ya. this same chiamanda and beyonce regarded feminism as too extreme. feminism isnt in existence… if it was a lot of us wouldnt be mothers as we would be focused on getting to the top

    • bimpe

      March 4, 2014 at 9:56 pm

      Please get your facts right, you are not a feminist hun you are an average descent individual. Feminism is fighting for women’s rights at all times. But what do majority of women do? They look. down one each other, gossip about each other l, attack each other, don’t pay respect to colour, when I look back on how I have been discriminated or insulted it is through a woman, which links to my point that it isn’t in existence anymore, but rather women use it as a cover up to live a life without a man. A study shows that Feminism is dead and most women believe they have achieved equality with men, the Equal Opportunities Commission. Every time I think of feminism, I get this really awful feeling. In their quest for women’s rights, they really do oppress men, in which case, in my eyes, they are no better than men. Women don’t want it, we state it as a cover up that’s all

    • Que

      March 4, 2014 at 2:21 pm

      Walahi, you have done a great job of confusing me…. feminist is certainly big 4 u…try confusionist! How does having aspirations become a cover up to avoid being a woman?? What in hell does dat even mean-Reallyyy? So what exactly makes up the real woman who needs no covering up? Kindly educate us… seems like in your books all women are cut from the same cloth, so our lives must all be the same? Real shame then, cos you’ll spend eternity unnecessarily bitter at and admonishing the women different from you.

    • CarliforniaBawlar

      March 4, 2014 at 2:56 pm

      Sweetheart of all the shitty comments on here…You have been chosen by the gods……Let’s roll!

      1. If she has a high horse let her ride it gallantly…na your own?? If you like, be Oga Jona’s descendant and go walking shoeless…false humility or low self-esteem? pick ya choose.

      2. Your statement on using your ‘claims to be an independent woman’ as a cover-up for your aspiration for “so-many things” is incomprehensible? An unfinished thought, maybe?

      3. If the word feminist is a big and extreme word to you, then maybe picking a dictionary and reading the history/meaning of feminism should be bumped to the top of the list of those your unfathomable ‘aspirations’.

      4. Only men can be feminists? I have a feeling you think only men can be anything at all…
      (your ‘soulful’ invisibility in number8 explains it all)

      5. You don’t want to be equal to a man? God already created you equal (…Man and Woman he created them) …Oh now I get it!! Your aspiration is to NOT be equal to men!

      6. My dear, go and get self defense classes to defend yourself oh! My family doctor’s wife single handedly warded off armed robbers with her sharp tongue and boldness while he and the kids hid under the dinning table…. No real life Jackie Chan for anywhere oh! #talofefayaroban??

      7. She’s not a feminist because she doesn’t brandish her wedding band like the Talibans do their guns and run around town singing songs/tales about her ‘amazing leader’ of a husband?? omo!! Refer to number3 ASAP!!

      8. You are a soul? you cannot be seen?? Do you even know what a soul is?I know that was your ‘closing argument’ and it was meant to be deep…but girlie? e haff no make sense at all….

      Funny thing is, the interview itself didn’t inspire any new or stir any old emotions within me…to each culture its own…All I know is that all these chicks running around fighting against feminism should realize that it has brought them a right to vote, get educated and employed (not just as nurses , teachers & secretaries), get medical care without their husband or father calling the shots, & leave an unhealthy marriage amongst other things…but then o, some people are still living in the precambrian times sha!

    • Bimpe

      March 4, 2014 at 9:11 pm

      pls understand that the way feminism is defined today isnt how it was defined them. back then these women still let their husbands rule their homes. if one were to be a feminist, the person or persons wouldnt have a marriage supporting omotola’s point. please understand that, nowadays is become extreme and thats my point and every other persons point including beyonce. right to work and vote and all have all been given to all, a woman can pratically earn the same amount as a man because our respected women ancestors have fought for us. what else is there to fight for, when we should be focused on empowering women not trying to become a man. same way some women that are heavily pregnant want employers to employ them full time not part time, and also earn the same during these and they call it gender discrimination if not granted. of course, its not.

    • Cancel Reply

      March 4, 2014 at 10:16 pm

      @ CarliforniaBawlar, please marry me!I seriously love you!!

    • Iris

      March 4, 2014 at 4:45 pm

      Go and read up on what feminism actually is. It’s clear you don’t know. Also, if you’re over the age of 9 this is a big problem. The examples you’ve given to support your point are quite frightening.

    • kaydeechay

      March 5, 2014 at 10:43 am

      Gender equality is not a myth. It is a reality, it is what should be. We have this inequality because of man made norms and cultures. Women and men are created equal, but they are different. Equal but different.

  31. fashionandstylepolice

    March 4, 2014 at 1:46 pm

    I am loving this woman more and more.

  32. Blossom

    March 4, 2014 at 1:59 pm

    She is an intelligent and talented woman and I enjoy reading her book but sometimes there is something off about her when it comes to issues other than writing. I agree with the igbo language complex thing but the married woman name thing, well it’s her choice but it doesn’t mean it’s wrong or right.. At the end of the day whether you are called ms or mrs, you are still married to a man. I don’t really care what people call me, I don’t expect someone to call me or not address me with a certain title.. It’s almost akin to the whole “I am a doctor or chief so call me with my title or vice versa”….Sometimes this intellects have read too much that everything has to be analyzed/deep blah blah.. I see that in my PhDs brothers and friends.. Just chill!!! Just my own opinion sha…

    • Miss_Flygerian

      March 4, 2014 at 3:32 pm

      Frankly, I was saying the same thing to myself. I don’t see the big deal in answering Mrs. To me, this is just a case of making a mountain out of a molehill. Mehn, people need to chillax sha, no be everything be fight.

    • Iris

      March 4, 2014 at 4:56 pm

      I get what you’re saying and thank God you agree that it is personal. I’m sure she knows she’s married to a man, but remember the interviewer started by labelling her first. We already know how things work in Nigeria where for many people a woman’s greatest achievement in life is having the title “Mrs”. It’s not even about being in a happy marriage (I may have been able to manage that one small), just being in a marriage period. Has Chimamanda ever said her name is Mrs Adichie?(again the interviewer even attached the wrong surname to the Mrs) Have YOU ever thought of her as Miss, Mrs or Ms? So where the hell did they bring the title out from? Also I didn’t quite understand the response section of the interview where they asked “at what point would you change your name?” but it seems she said she already had – maybe for legal documents and such. For her profession however, it simply makes no sense to be attaching titles out of the blue.

  33. BC

    March 4, 2014 at 2:10 pm

    She has made some truthful and valid points. African women did not change our names before the advent of Europeans and colonialism into our land. My grandmother kept her maiden name though she and my grandad were married till the very end. I was born in the early 80’s . Change of last names started with some women of my grand mother’s generation. My great grandmother I am told was somewhat of a figurehead (queen mother)among her tribe. Now women who held traditional leadership in African society back in the day never changed their last names. It was unheard of. So is Chimamanda wrong in not wanting to take her husbands last name? Is she trying to emulate our lost African tradition, and rejecting what the Europeans brought or does her decision make her “un-African.” Which one? We don’t know our own history in terms of the rights our foremothers had when it comes to this subject. In Ghana, among the Ashanti’s , a child historically does not even take the fathers last name. Boy or girl! They still practice it today. Their women folk historically did not take a man’s name either. Are THEY insane? I think not. It was “White Weddings” that ushered in this name change. If you married under traditional or customary law you retained your last name. Chimamanda has said nothing wrong. She is only going back to our “tradition”.

    Now her stance of feminism is another story for me. Because that word is so loaded and has broken up families in the West and we are seeing it’s unpalatable fruits sprouting in our backyards now.You don’t need to embrace Western style feminism in order to assert your rights as an African women. We just have to find outhow pre colonial African women asserted themselves without losing their womanliness and wrecking havoc at home. LOVED what Omotola had to say about that. Very interesting debate.

  34. Jane Public

    March 4, 2014 at 2:10 pm

    Illiteracy is definitely a problem here. Most def. She wants to be addressed as Ms and NOT MISS. Gosh, y’all need to read more in between your visits to My parents have been married for 31 years and my mother has kept her maiden name till date. 31 years is not beans. She is referred to as Ms O and my father actually supported it because her name *cough* *cough* means a lot in Nigeria. My father the ultimate famzer as we lovingly tell him, likes telling people his in-laws are the O’s. That name has opened doors for him and all of us. My surname and that of my siblings is a combo of Daddy and Mummy’s surname. When I lived in England they thought it was posh, because it is only rich people who hypenate the surname of both parents. The issue now is when I get married, I’m either going to drop both hypenated surnames or pick one to hyphenate with my husband’s name. Most likely, I will keep my mothers surname. That name is too useful. Ms Adiche never preached that you should follow her. The same people priasing Omotola for her uneducated words, who backtracked and said she never said you should do as she does, why are you now here castigating Ms Adiche? Apply the same reasoning won’t you? Ms Adichie also never said you should do as she does. This is what works in her marriage. If you want to be your husband’s assistant, secretary sef, whoopdie do, it doesn’t make your marriage any better or more successful than women who choose to be partners of equal worth. Nigerians and parapo i.e. herd mentality. Once someone doesn’t follow your way of conducting their marriage (inherent slavery), they become the enemy. Marriage or is it family is the bedrock of the society right? If our marriages were soooooo successful and happy, why is that country a SHITHOLE. Sorry for the harsh word, it kinda is a toilet. 20 billion dollars went missing, but as long as our women are still in their marital home, it is all well and dandy. Priorities, a term lost on us as a people.

    • Atoke

      March 4, 2014 at 2:12 pm


    • Onye Ara

      March 4, 2014 at 2:23 pm

      Are you not being hypocritical?
      Neither is Omotola (a lady I actually detest) asking you to follow her own example. What works for you and your mum might not be right for others. Your mum being married for 31 years proves nothing. Mine has been married for half a century and proudly bears are marital name. Does not prove much.
      The tone of arrogance in you and Ms. Adichie’s views are what I find offending.
      The need to validate your stands before a subjective public is worrying.

    • Jane Public

      March 4, 2014 at 2:35 pm

      Comprehension must be a problem for you. Let me copy and paste my words “The same people priasing Omotola for her uneducated words, who backtracked and said she never said you should do as she does, why are you now here castigating Ms Adiche? Apply the same reasoning won’t you? Ms Adichie also never said you should do as she does. This is what works in her marriage.” In English, that means, if Omotola can be defended with words like, this is what works in her marriage, she did not preach to you to follow her, then that means Ms Adichie should be allowed the same largese. No? Which part did you not understand in those words, or which part confused you and you thought I wrote that Omotola is asking you to follow her example. Read girl, you need to read more because you obviously skipped some lines in my comment, or maybe you got the words mixed up because you arrived at the same conclusion that I made. Copying from your words ” What works for you and your mum might not be right for others.” Same thing I said in different words. Your obvious lack of comprehension is quite worrying too.

    • Onye Ara

      March 4, 2014 at 3:04 pm

      @Jane Public, nice try!
      you think he who throws the most insults wins,right?

      How does advocating for a married woman to answer Mrs equate with this conclusion of yours?

      This is what works in her marriage. If you want to be your husband’s assistant, secretary sef, whoopdie do, it doesn’t make your marriage any better or more successful than women who choose to be partners of equal worth.

      How does choosing to answer Mrs mean you are choosing to be your husband’s assistant or secretary? You can be your husband’s assistant while answering Ms and retaining your maiden mane.

    • whocares

      March 4, 2014 at 3:09 pm

      @Onye Ara, “Mrs” is different from “Ms”.. Mrs is a formal term for married women, and Ms, is the formal non-committal term. A married, unmarried or widowed woman can be reffred to as that.. J.P’s mother is referred to as “Ms O”.. the implication is that she did not expressly change her last name to her husband’s, she chose the more neutral one to stick to…

    • whocares

      March 4, 2014 at 3:14 pm

      message sent before I finished typing, and now I have lost the plot..

    • Jane Public

      March 4, 2014 at 3:30 pm

      Comprehension is still a problem for you. Let me type again and please read slowly this time. First of all, the phrase ‘Whoodie do’ means good for you. So, I urge you to read my sentence again and this time, replace whoopdie do with good for you, if it will better help you comprehend. I never said choosing to be caled Mrs —— insert your husband’s name means you are his assistant or secreatry. Not insulting you, but you keep proving again and again that comprehension is not your strongest suit

    • Onye Ara

      March 4, 2014 at 3:54 pm

      @whocares, where in my comment did I allude to a misunderstanding of Ms against Mrs? Or you just want to show off a newly acquired knowledge of yours?

    • Mz Socially Awkward...

      March 4, 2014 at 2:36 pm

      “20 billion dollars went missing, but as long as our women are still in their marital home, it is all well and dandy. Priorities, a term lost on us as a people.” Indeed. Doesn’t it make you a little sad? It really is a crap-laden state of affairs.

    • Jane Public

      March 4, 2014 at 4:13 pm

      You can say that again Mz S.A

    • Dids

      March 4, 2014 at 2:43 pm

      I don’t even know what to make of your comment…. . I don’t know why you are implying your dad is a social climber and that you in turn want to be identified with your mum’s name because it opens doors, I don’t think that is what Chimananda is promoting. I don’t know what’s wrong with you, silly child. I don’t think you deserve access to the internet.

    • nwanyi na aga aga

      March 4, 2014 at 3:06 pm

      When I was younger, I never understood the need for the topic ‘reading and comprehension’ in English language. But I must confess, i understand it fully now. Dear Dids if what you wrote above was what you could understand from ‘Jane public’s write up, nne/nna you need to start from Pri 1 macmillian then slowly study up to SS3 intensive English. Take it slow, dont rush it after 6months, you will surely thank me. Chai!

    • Jane Public

      March 4, 2014 at 3:25 pm

      @Dids. I can see that comprehension is a problem today. Obviously when it gets to this marriage of a thing, anyone who doesn’t conform to the norm gets people knickers in a twist, common sense flies out of the window. I mentioned my parents story to counteract other comments saying she has no respect for her husband, how will her husband allow such, she must not be happy, to the point someone used the word FACT. I wanted to show that not everyone does things your way, and it doesn’t mean their marriages are not successful. If you want to interpret my father as a social climber, well that’s not our problem. He has plenty money of his own and my mothers family respect him wella. If he is proud of being part of that family, who wouldn’t. Doesn’t make him less of a man. I wanted to point out that not all Nigerian men are gung-ho about this bearing their name thing. To further buttress my point, even though American examples. Ivanka Trump is married and is still called Ivanka Trump. Does that mean she is not happily married? Her husband’s name is also influential and all that jazz, but she is still Ms Ivanka Trump. My colleague’s mom is a Rothschild, and till date her mother still bears Ms Rothschild and her parents have been married far longer than mine. Does it make her father a social climber to allow his wife keep her name.? My colleague also happens to be married and she hyphenated her Rothschild name with her husband’s name. Any crime in that? There is a crime in lack of comprehension, I can see with you too.

    • Fashionista

      March 7, 2014 at 12:49 pm

      Jane Public, while I completely comprehend and agree with the points you have made above, from your comments on BN and this one in particular, you come across very aggressive and sometimes give roundabout insults. I believe that’s what Onye Ara has picked up on in this particular thread, which is why you are not getting through (to her).

  35. Truthful

    March 4, 2014 at 2:36 pm

    This woman and her double standards sef. You love ‘Igbo’ so much that you married a Benin man? There is nothing wrong with inter-tribal marriages of course but when a person goes on and on and on about ‘Igbo Igbo’ all the time, then it is rather surprising. Also, Igbo culture is not matrilineal, stop kidding yourself please. Igbo women answer Nnwuye Okafor, Lolo Okonkwo etc. meaning wife of Okafor and Okonkwo. Chimamanda appears to want to play the Igbo culture card when it suits her. Her true colours are really coming out.

    • kelz

      March 4, 2014 at 2:50 pm

      oya go and drink cold water; you are angry! bye…

    • Truthful

      March 4, 2014 at 4:00 pm

      Go and drink hot water, dear. Since you also want to state your own point just like I have done.

    • ij

      March 4, 2014 at 3:10 pm

      love knows no tribe pls

    • Que

      March 4, 2014 at 3:19 pm

      You must not have a lot of vital things to be surprised about…thats d only reason why her marrying a non igbo man is surprising to u. Alika! So all d igbo women dat married igbo men, did so cos dey love their culture soooo much???…. you needn’t comment if you haven’t gathered ur tots well….d page will still be open when you do.

    • Truthful

      March 4, 2014 at 3:37 pm

      Abeg, go and sleep. Alika giwakwa. If she is that much a champion of Igbo culture and determined to preserve it at all costs she should have married from there. It’s all part of practising what she preaches. Igbo Igbo Igbo, every minute. Abegi.

    • nwanyi na aga aga

      March 4, 2014 at 3:45 pm

      Marrying from another tribe has nothing to do with love for one’s own tribe. If you dont like Chimamanda just state it, I have the same sentiments but I don’t think she is playing the tribal card, what she said about differentiating kids by the maternal names in Igbo polygamous homes are true, also our(we igbo ppl) mumulity in ensuring that our kids don’t know a syllable of Igbo language while they rap yoruba and hausa is undeniably true. so I dont see where she is playing the card from.

    • Truthful

      March 4, 2014 at 4:49 pm

      I disagree. People who are very protective of their culture and consider themselves to be custodians of that culture often do not marry outside their culture. Fact. In Igboland till date, it’s a real issue. For instance, many ‘staunch’ Anambra State people will frown on their children marrying from Enugu, Imo and so on – not to talk of marrying non-Igbos. Now, I’m not saying this has to be the case but it is strange to see that someone who keeps pontificating on culture like she carries on, did not marry within that culture. Her views on marital titles are distorted too. In Igbo culture, people answer Mazi (Mr.), Oriaku or Lolo (Mrs.) and Nwaada (Miss). That a young man is identified as a child of his mother in polygamous settings, does not mean that the same young man is not referred to as ‘son of Okeke’ or whatever. She is picking and choosing facts in order to paint a distorted picture and justify her personal choice. Do what you like but don’t drag our culture in the mud whilst profiting from it. I have nothing against her personally but her hypocrisy has gotten out of hand. The Adichie she is fighting to answer is a man’s name and not her mother’s maiden name.

    • nwanyi na aga aga

      March 4, 2014 at 6:03 pm

      @truthful, your facts about Anambra people marrying themselves to preserve culture is very incorrect and you know it. the main reason Anambra people do this is cos they like their women close to them. My father specifically told myself and my elder sister, than if a ‘foreigner’ marries us and starts to maltreat us in that foreign place it will be hard for us to come home. Now how flawed is this logic? I know clearly that the Anambra discrimination against even other Igbos who share the same culture is not to preserve any culture. I come from the part of Anambra that is closest to Imo state.Just a 15mins drive, what do u think is the difference in my culture and the orlu man’s culture? Nothing, If I married him there is no culture barrier, so getting advice from anyone to marry from Anambra even if its from Awka which is about 45-1:30mins drive from my place depending on the dynamics of the road, with bouts of culture differences does not show any culture preservation, its simple colonial bias. Cos our colonial masters have lumped us into states to make governing easier for them, strangers have become brothers and brothers strangers, if not tell me if the Onicha culture and Asaba culture are not basically the same?
      Chimamanda loves the Igbo tribe, now it wouldn’t blindfold her when it comes to her choice of life partner. Soon you will start asking her to make only Igbo friends.
      I will also like to correct the impression that Maazi means Mr expressly, Maazi was a sort of informal title given to elderly people who had no formal title like ichie,nze, ozo and co. Unlike the prefix Mr. which oyibo ppl use for any grown young man. Maazi was not used for younger men. Also Oriaku is a form of endearment used by Igbo men to their wives, it does not expressly translate to Mrs, Lolo is a formal title that is given to the wife of a titled man just like (Duke and Duchess)and does not mean Mrs. people refer to you as Nwunye so so and so when you are unknown,newly married or without a child. If you are part of any community, you will be called most times mother of *insert the name of your child*e.g Nne Nweke Ogbu Anu (mother of Nweke the butcher) or Nne Emeka nwa Ochiugo (Mother of Emeka, child of Ochiugo) thats the most popular way of referring to married women by Igbo people.
      So in as much as I agree that a man could also be identified as the son of his father, Chimamanda is not Championing any drive for people not to answer their husband’s name if they so choose. She is just saying that she choose to be identified as the daughter of her father instead of the wife of her husband very simple. Its a choice. i dont necessarily agree with Chimamanda but I dont understand why she is getting attacks. Adopting husbands name expressly is and has always been a western culture has never been part of our culture.

    • idoublecrossmyheart

      March 4, 2014 at 5:19 pm

      Wife of so so DOES NOT EQUATE WOMEN OF THIS. I am wife of Chu DOES NOT EQUATE CHU. Igbo culture is MATRILINEAL. Lineal MEANS TRACING ONE’S BLOOD LINE…Not TRACING ONE’S MARITAL line. Two different things. In Igbo culture, a man can marry more than one wife. They will all live in the same compound. The only way to identify the child is THROUGH THE MOTHER not THROUGH the father. Lineal implies LINEAGE.

      Mrs. or Ms are all western colloquials for self-identification. Same thing with gay or bisexual. Westernization focuses HEAVILY on self-identification. That is why you ANSWER BLACK, i.e. i identify as black when you leave Nigeria to go abroad. They need to know where to PLACE you. You answer as Igbo in Nigeria to differentiate you from Yoruba, which was never the case but to make the job easier for the proverbial white man who colonized us.

    • Editrix

      March 4, 2014 at 6:14 pm


      See, I love my tribe but I didn’t marry from my tribe. I married into another tribe because I find said tribe and their culture interesting. Does that mean I love my tribe less? No. Does that mean I don’t find my own tribe interesting? No. What it means this: love has no boundary and secondly, you can still love yourself enough to love others (be that their food, tribe, culture, etc).

      So Sisi Truthful, have a couple of seats.

    • Truthful

      March 4, 2014 at 7:39 pm

      @ nwanyi na aga aga: Oh, so you actually believe that cock and bull story? Many people from Anambra don’t forbid their children from marrying people from Enugu State etc. only because they want their children close by. Mba. If the distance is only 45 minutes as you said and we now have cars and aeroplanes in modern times, then that excuse is pretty weak. It is mainly about cultural superiority and preservation. Such attitudes were there amongst Africans even before colonial times. I’m not asking Chimamanda to have only Igbo friends but since she is constantly going on and on about Igbo, it seems surprising that she married a non-Igbo. Staunch Igbo crusaders often don’t do that. As for the rest of your comments, you do realise that young boys are rarely referred to as ‘mister’ don’t you? Even in the western culture, the same married women bearing Mrs. are refferred to by their first names and even called ‘John’s Mother’ or ‘Susan’s Mother. Stop defending Chimamanda blindly, please. I did say that she has the right to her choices but should not misrepresent our culture in the process.

      @ idoublecrossmyheart: In the Igbo culture, the family tree, legitimacy, inheritance etc. are determined based on the father. The primary identifier is ‘who is your father?’

      @ Editrix: Marrying from outside your tribe may not mean you love it less however, people who claim to be custodians of their culture and aggressive crusaders for said culture are rarely known to do so. Finish.

    • nwanyi na aga aga

      March 4, 2014 at 8:06 pm

      @truthful Reading and comprehension! Reading and comprehension! Read my bit again on that excuse, I will explain to you again,there is no great difference btw anambra, imo and enugu culture, so if i marry them my culture is still preserved to forcing me not to marry them is not for culture preservation. The state divide is a colonial and western bias! And yes westerners use Mr for young men above 18. Igbo ppl dont use maazi for under 50. In ur bid to antagonize Chimamanda you ve started distorting facts. Westerner’s refer to married women as John’s mother? Chai! SMH. I am not defending her, i am pointing out the inconsistencies in ur argument used in attacking her.

    • Oma

      July 24, 2014 at 1:38 pm

      Does the fact that she loves her tribe mean she cannot also love another tribe or someone from another tribe? shocked at your reasoning

    • Chukumbo

      September 8, 2018 at 4:21 pm

      He’s right and deep inside, you know it.

    • Chukz

      September 8, 2018 at 2:45 pm

      I completely. I just sigh at many of these igbo women like her who claim to be igbo but will go and marry men from other ethnicities and yet they want claim to be part of us. This is part of the reason why the igbo culture is not flourishing like that of other ethnic groups like the Yoruba. i’m being very honest. In Yoruba culture, their men tend to marry outside to other tribes i.e. igbo women and so their ethnic group increases. In igbo culture, however, our women tend to marry outside to other tribes i.e. yoruba men and so our ethnic group decreases.

      Chiimamanda is a hypocrite. She wants to claim igbo when she married a benin man. She’s purely deceiving herself. She is primarily a benin wife and her children will not be considered igbo. If she wanted to claim igbo, she should have practiced what she preached by marrying igbo. Since she didn’t do tha,, she has no right to claim to be a member of the igbo nation

  36. Bella Noire

    March 4, 2014 at 2:43 pm

    Reading some of the comments here, it is amusing and alarming to see how men have so brainwashed women…they’ve placed a noose around our necks and we call it culture or religion…or worse, submission. Go, Chimamanda, jare. You’re not only brilliant, the scales have fallen from your eyes.

    • nomad

      March 4, 2014 at 2:58 pm

      As in. I don tire, I’m reading for amusement now because I’m tired of carrying Panadol for them head. Let them be. Since marriage in Naija is such a bed of roses and perfection, it must never change.

  37. Hi

    March 4, 2014 at 2:58 pm

    Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie is married to Dr Esege and he is from Itigidi? Cross River State. He’s mixed-race. His parents are deceased. His dad was from the old Cross River State and his mom was Scottish – if I’m correct. 🙂

    • whocares

      March 4, 2014 at 3:11 pm

      I hope you are a friend of the family, or family, because this your research and subsequent information ehn. lool. Even the mother’s accent was not excluded.

    • suneme

      March 4, 2014 at 3:40 pm

      Haha. She is unashamedly igbo and she makes no apologies about it. But I agree. She should consider writing a book which reflects the multiculturalness of us as Nigerians. She comes across as a bit tribalistic. An educated tribalist. In the same vein as Chinua A

    • Emi

      March 4, 2014 at 3:41 pm

      wow whocares you no try o. Did you just type his mother’s accent meaning that your understanding of Hi’s comment is that his mother’s accent is scottish really? well for you information, according to wikipedia, “The Scottish people (Scottish Gaelic: Albannaich), or Scots, are a nation and ethnic group native to Scotland. Historically they emerged from an amalgamation of the Picts and Gaels, incorporating neighbouring Britons to the south as well as Germanic peoples such as the Anglo-Saxons and the Norse. Later the Normans also had some influence.
      In modern use, “Scottish people” or “Scots” is used to refer to anyone whose linguistic, cultural, family ancestral or genetic origins are from within Scotland. The Latin word Scotti[14] originally applied to a particular, 5th century, Goidelic tribe that inhabited Ireland.[15] Though sometimes considered archaic or pejorative,[16] the term Scotch has also been used for the Scottish people, though this usage is current primarily outside Scotland.[17][18]” Being Scottish is not an accent, its an ORIGIN.

    • *Real* Nice Anon

      March 4, 2014 at 4:12 pm


    • whocares

      March 4, 2014 at 4:28 pm

      @ Emi calm down with the history lesson biko. loool. I honestly saw “his mom’s accent is Scottish” hence my comment.. where the accent came from now I will never know.. Unless BN changed the sentence?

  38. Women have serious issues

    March 4, 2014 at 3:37 pm

    Women have serious issues.

    How i wish all these argument, bashing and all can add to your life.

    Where will you find a man deliberating on nonsense issues like these ladies do? When someone is inferior, she feels cheated and wants to fight for right. You will never see a tall man fight for the front roll in a group picture, only the average/short ones fight for space. Inadequacy/inferiority complex is what gives rise to Gender equality, fighting for headship, equality with men….

    Issues of life.

    Jobless people. How come you earn full salary at the end of the month when you leave your work and all you do is blog, facebook, twit….? They should start paying workers based on hours put into work not hours spent on “bellanaijaing.”


    • Iris

      March 4, 2014 at 5:13 pm

      And yet you took the time to read and comment. In your “tall masculine” world (neither of which are attributes you worked for but just happened to have) how will you notice anyone else’s distress or the need to struggle for what they’re entitled to? I suggest that you’re also inferior and filled with inadequacy for being too terrified to make room for other people you deem inferior to shine. And I can talk about quite a few things that can turn men into insecure idiots when they look at other men. Money, power, the ability to pop bottles at a bar. I won’t even go far. I was in a car with a guy and a bigger car driven by an older man with a younger girl overtook him in a clear show of “my car is bigger than yours”. The insecure mofo next to me got angry and started to rant about older men trying to show off and proceeded to try and speed past the other one just to prove a point with me screaming for dear life. He could have had an accident and died (and killed somebody’s child) but he wanted to soothe his ego. At the end of the day, some of you are just boys with toys 2 seconds shy of peeing in a circle to mark territory. So before you come here to open with your mouth and patronise in a failed attempt to display a higher level of grace and understanding, think deeper.

  39. Radiant

    March 4, 2014 at 4:08 pm

    Most of us did not come with a name into this world. We are named by others. We name ourselves. We choose to take on some names or not. #relaxeveryone.

    • Newbie

      March 4, 2014 at 11:37 pm

      Most of us abi all of us? Lol just pulling your legs

  40. Editrix

    March 4, 2014 at 6:08 pm

    @ suneme: A bit tribalistic? Really? How is she going to write about multiculturalism when she doesn’t have a multicultural background. She (as well as Achebe) writes about the ibos because that’s where they are from. How do you expect them to write about other cultures or tribes eloquently when they are from said cultures/tribes? Great writers write what they need and that’s why their works are great. Even yet, a lot of non-Nigerians still relate with her (and Achebe’s) stories and writings.

    Nigeria, forever finding reasons to point out how someone or other is tribalistic.

  41. looters

    March 4, 2014 at 6:42 pm

    The sad truth is that we really don’t know what our culture is. Our history was washed away when the westerners came. You have to dig deep. Read old books. Talk to great grand parents to really see just a glimpse of our ‘culture’. The whole last name thing is so true. I was talking with my dad and he said the same thing (I’m Igbo). Back in the day, children bore their mother’s last name. I have been fortunate to have been exposed to different cultures and it is a pity most African cultures (not just Nigeria) deviate to the European or western ‘norm’. Our culture is so rich and beautiful, if we could only see it. I’m currently doing my postgrad studies abroad and I often speak Igbo (especially during exclamations lol) to my foreign friends. Because of this, they are more interested in where I come from and try to learn my language because it IS a language, just like every other out there.

  42. Newbie

    March 4, 2014 at 6:57 pm

    Love me some Chimamanda!

    I am Igbo and yes, in Igbo culture, a woman bears her father’s name in her husband’s home. Christianity and Oyibo man’s culture changed all that for us. My father’s eldest sister whom I met while she was alive, bore her father’s name until she died in her late eighties about to years ago. Loke Chimamanda said, it was a distinguishing factor rather than ‘feminism’-driven. In a compound with many wives, several married to the same man, you would hear things like ‘nwa onye ka I bu? (whose child are you?) bandied about amongst the women, each trying to establish that they came from a more distinguished home than the next. It was a culture that still glorified men, only in a different way. Likewise in a compound with many children, children were distinguished by their mothers. Even that practice indirectly glorified the men because if no one is asking ‘which mother bore you’ , if you are only identified by your father’s name then it means that the man that bore you only has one wife.
    The Ms title like some have said above can be used by any woman, irespective of marital status. Hopefully one day, there shall be only one title for women in use, equivalent to Mr for men. Why is it that a woman has to declare whether or not she is married but a man doesn’t? We will get there. Shebi na oyibo start am, this Mrs/Miss/Ms business? One day dem go tayya sef and we too, follow follow that we are, we will follow dem and tayya too! Only that Nigerians will still have their Prof Chief Dr Mrs Lolo Asiwaju to fall back on, as we too like title. Sigh.

  43. Love me Love me

    March 4, 2014 at 6:58 pm

    What she is saying is true and I am not ogbo. My grandmother never answered mrs anything. I remember escorting her to the doctors once and registering her as Mr …..
    time to see the Dr and she was called mrs…… She didn’t answer. I told her she was being called and whe was quite offended when she realized I had written her husband (my grandpa’s ) name as her own. I had to correct it pronto before the Dr could she her ….
    Now as a married woman, it is a pain to change your name, particularly in the western world and I belive also in Nigeria. lots of papers to to change at some point you will have to go around with a copy of your marriage certificate to ensure a change and lots of places only accept the original copy …. I still have my maiden name floating around and couldn’t be bothered now.

  44. Person

    March 4, 2014 at 9:02 pm

    Bet why? Even Yorubas answered their mother’s name!!!!! REALLY. My grandfather’s surname is his MOTHER’S FIRST NAME! It was in my Dad’s generation they started answering that as their surname. And he’s only in his early 60’s. Really people, of all the great things Chimamanda has done and said, we are going to harp on her preferred form of address and how this is an indication of how happy her marriage is? Y’all slay me sometimes.

  45. genevieve

    March 4, 2014 at 9:11 pm

    why can a man not answer his wife’s surname if they are one? why can the children not answer their father/mothers surname? Shakira Isabel Mebarak Ripoll who we all know as shakira has two surnames (dad-mebarak, mum-ripoll) nothing wrong with it. i don’t plan to change my surname officially in any of my documents when i’m married. i’ll probably hyphenate it. And i want my kids to bear my surname too. lol more reason why i should marry oyinbo. i still want to understand the rationale behind a woman taking her husband’s surname and why he doesn’t take hers? i mean they are one body innit?

    • Onye Ara

      March 5, 2014 at 10:15 am

      In regards to your first question, I know a guy who changed his surname to his wife’s maiden name after they got married. Gregg Bakowski (né Roughley).

  46. NNENNE

    March 5, 2014 at 1:26 am

    My own husband addresses me in my maiden name. I never changed my name. We love and respect each other . That’s all that matters.

  47. Truthful

    March 5, 2014 at 2:05 am

    @ Nwanyi na ga ga: Making a sound argument is not all about repeating ‘reading and comprehension’ – especially when you’re the one who lacks it. Let me repeat to you again that many Anambra people are funny about marrying outside their borders because of perceived cultural superiority and preservation. They are known for utterances belittling other Igbo tribes e.g referring to Enugu indigenes as ‘ndi wawa’. The excuse about wanting their children close by is just a cover up. It’s naive of you to claim that there is no difference in culture between Anambra, Enugu and Imo just because we all bear the tag Igbo. Even in pre-colonial times there were wars and suspicion between neighbouring Igbo villages. In Igboland, young men were also called Nwoke, Dimkpa etc. these are all synonymous with Mr. In western culture, women introduce themselves as mothers too e.g. “Hi, I’m John’s Mom.” Even amongst fellow mothers such expressions are used e.g. “Mama Sandie.” The fact that you’re not aware doesn’t mean someone is ‘distorting facts’ and stating the truth doesn’t mean anyone is antagonizing Chimamanda. Let her do what she wants without twisting Igbo culture to back it up. It’s intellectual dishonesty and exploitation.

    • nwanyi na aga aga

      March 5, 2014 at 8:54 am

      I refuse to give up on you, I will keep teaching you till you learn the Igbo culture very well. But before you do it kindly drop your bias for Chimamanda and learn.
      1. Nwoke is not Mr. it means male human being (oke -male hence you have oke ehi/efi (male cow)
      2.Dimkpa means strong and fit man and again does not mean Mr.
      Like I told you before the utterance and superiority that you so refer to was imbibed in them by the colonial masters. Prior to this time, the Igbo community had no kings they had Obi’s and their war were mere tiny disputes that always rose due to boundary encroachment. No serious civil war was ever fought in the Igboland prior to colonisation. Again the Igbo culture is basically the same, variants exist within and outside state boundaries, I will refer you to Otuejina et al on the Federalism and the Igbo people. You can ask secondary students in the east to buy you that book. As for twisting hi ‘I’m John’s mum’ thats deliberate distortion of facts. there is no place in the western world that I ve stayed where married women are formally introduced as John’s mom without adding Mrs so and so. The only place you see John brought up as a reference is usually in schools where John is the subject of interest. On the contrary I will advise you to take out your time and visit your village then attend the village meeting 2types 1. for Umuada/umuokpu (native women), 2. for Umunwanyi anutalu anuta (married women) observe their formal introduction then you will be able to draw adequate conclusions. Dont twist facts cos you don’t like Chimamanda, a lot of ppl garner information that they are not privy to via the internet. Chimamanda is not twisting the Igbo culture, what she is saying is the absolute truth. you are the one that have been twisting Igbo expressions to mean Mr. but unfortunately it will not fly cos some of us took out time to study the dynamics of our culture. From the corrections I ve given you, you should know you re the one twisting the Igbo culture to suit your desires. You can answer your husband’s name. I dont think anyone will notice. But do it as a choice dont twist the meaning of Igbo words or culture and try to distort issues, cos some of us have also resided in the western world to be properly informed on their way of living, to justify your choice. Say its your choice simple that’s honesty for you that is accusing someone of dishonesty.

    • Truthful

      March 5, 2014 at 4:01 pm

      I will not give up on you either, Madam ’45 minutes’! Lol. You know so much about Igbo culture that is why you claim that people don’t marry out of their states in these modern times only because the journey is too far. You see? All in a bid to blindly defend Chimamanda and ‘correct dishonesty’. Abeg, drop your hero worshipping then perhaps you can master reading and comprehension properly on this matter.

      First of all, what does Mr. actually mean? I think I need to ask because it seems you don’t know. In that case, please go to the dictionary and check it out for free ( My dear sister, it is a way that men are formally AND informally addressed. Mr. simply means ‘a male man’. Same as dimkpa, nwoke, okolobia and so forth. Don’t disregard that because it’s local expression. Again I repeat, in Igbo culture women are referred to as ‘Nwuye Okeke’, ‘Nwuye Amuche’ etc. Was it the colonial master that taught us that one? Some people want to credit colonial masters for everything including wars. I’m glad you said that ‘No serious civil war was ever fought in the Igboland prior to colonisation’. Lol. You see yourself? Must it be a serious civil war before it is termed a war? Go and ask a secondary school student to get you a copy of Things Fall Apart. Did the Igbos in that book not fight their local wars? Go and research history even. Were all Igbo hamlets and villages at peace until the white man came? You took out time to study the dynamics of your culture and you are spewing this level of ignorance? Chai!

      As for the western women, I hope you are not going by what you see on the TV shows or ‘what you saw in the western world that you’ve stayed’ because western culture was once as primitive as they come. In the western culture, women were also identified by the names of their children. Even till date, you will hear western women refer to each other as ‘Peter’s Mom’, ‘Susan’s Mom’ etc. They say this in their social lives not just at school or whatever else you claim. They even use words like ‘Mama’. Go and do your research properly.

      Again, I have nothing personal against Chimamanda but it’s about time someone call her out on her crap to avoid misleading others. If she had simply made her choice nobody would notice or even care but she had to claim that her choice is the authentic African way. Did the Nwoye Omeni she mentioned not grow up, marry a wife and have people call her Nwuye Nwoye (i.e. wife of Nwoye)? Well, that is the principle upon which married women bearing surnames are based. The practice is as old as mankind as even the Jews in the bible followed that tradition. I understand that Muslims don’t and that’s okay with me but not all Africans are Muslims. If she wants to reference Igbo culture, the responsible thing is to paint a holistic picture not pick and choose what she wants and give the impression that women were never identified by their husbands names. That’s dishonesty and some of us have had enough of it. Thank you.

    • Newbie

      March 5, 2014 at 8:42 pm

      ‘Nuff respect to you, Nwanyi na-aga aga. You nailed it with this your response. Every single point, valid. About present-day Anambra state indigenes not being reluctant for their children to marry outside their boundaries, one has to ask – which boundaries? Anambra state was created in 1976, and the borders were further redefined in 1991 when Enugu state was carved out. So which state boundary are they supposed to be discriminating based on? And oh, before 1976, when all of Igboland was known as East Central state, how were the discrimination borders defined? The truth is that it’s not peculiar to any group of people- this not wanting children to marry ‘far’, far, being subjective in each case. Some people would object to a marriage from the next village, town or L.G.A. In general, the farther away, the less enthusiastic parents are. This is most likely due to the fact that people prefer the familiar to the unfamiliar. Human beings are hard wired like that. The same Uli parents turning up their noses at an Mgbidi suitor for their daughter (neighbouring Imo and Anambra towns), will run and beg the man if they hear their daughter has now set her sights on a Bini man. Then there are those that don’t mind as well. It’s all relative.

    • nwanyi na aga aga

      March 6, 2014 at 2:03 pm

      @truthful you see why I told you to go and get a reading and comprehension class. Its because you really need it unless you are deliberately being dishonest. Come off your high horse and quit being dishonest.
      You try to twist everything but unfortunately it will not work. I will keep correcting you till bellanaija stops posting my comments. I do not argue with your definition of Mr. I only corrected the Igbo comparisons you attached to it cos they were wrong very wrong. I can also see that when u quoted the free dictionary you gladly omitted the 1st definition of the said Mr. Why did u do that? but I will not go into that. It does not mean Nwoke and the rest you mentioned cos they are not titles they are nouns they also have counterparts in English eg nwoke means boy/man in English. I wonder where you learnt your English language that you cannot differentiate the jargon you are yacking. For your information I am not even a Chimamanda fan. i came out to correct you because you were distorting Igbo culture. And I will not stand and allow people distort my already receding culture so that they will fight their internet wars hence spreading wrong information. You should learn how to read and understand.Even when it hurts you, you should. The childish gibberish you yarned about learning the western culture by watching movies, is too childish for me to reply. Cos I am too old to begin to yack, i read this in that place and did that in that place in order to convince your incomprehensible self. So my dear the truth is staring at you cos apart from the aspersions you were casting you were far from being coherent on that point. I will still refer you to the book pick it up and read. while you are at it, take time and Google the modalities that make up wars and their classifications. Maybe if you understand then you can be able to comprehend why I made that statement on ‘civil wars’. I will repeat Mr. does not mean ‘male man’ or whatever you conjured to fit the figment of ur imagination.
      @Newbie nwannem thank God someone understood the point I made with that claim. If not that we were segmented into states tell me how an Uli person will be calling an Amawbia person bro instead of the Mgbidi person that share almost everything including language with him? How can an Uli person say marrying an Awka person instead of Mgbidi person is for culture preservation where the greater similarities in terms of culture lies btw Uli and Mgbidi? And someone is arguing it twisting a lame example I gave to be the real example. Looool! @ ur ”The same Uli parents turning up their noses at an Mgbidi suitor for their daughter (neighbouring Imo and Anambra towns), will run and beg the man if they hear their daughter has now set her sights on a Bini man’

    • Truthful

      March 7, 2014 at 3:44 am

      Kai. Some people are seriously in denial. Even before the 1990s, people from the Anambra region, Onitsha etc. were referring to people from Enugu state and environs as ‘ndi wawa’ and making derogatory remarks. Carving Anambra out as a state was just a formality. The people from that region have for long perceived themselves to be ‘different’ – superior perhaps because they are traders as compared to Enugu people who are mainly office workers. Prior to 1976, are you trying to tell me that all Igbos got along and never had their tribal wars? Honestly? You say, ‘The truth is that it’s not peculiar to any group of people- this not wanting children to marry ‘far’. Well, I never said that it is peculiar to any race but let’s not pretend that Igbos are one big happy family. ‘Distance’ is no valid excuse in an age where we have cars, aeroplanes and the same Anambra people residing in Lagos and overseas.

    • Truthful

      March 7, 2014 at 4:42 am

      @ nwanyi na aga aga, please be my guest if you want to stay here commenting until 2045. You are the one being deliberately dishonest and in need of a reading and comprehension class. Several in fact. You talk of twisting? Lol. Don’t make me laugh. Clearly, Nwoke, Okolobia, Mazi etc. are all ways in which males are described in the Igbo culture both in formal ‘and informal’ settings. Yet you reject each one seeking for some special match for the English Mister. Nwuye is also equivalent to ‘Mrs’ but where is Ms in the Igbo culture? A title that a woman can bear in order to disguise or distract people from her marital status or lack of it. I am all ears, Madam ‘Igbo expert’ who is honest and seeking to defend her diminishing culture. If you were that keen, you should have been busy pointing that out to others rather than blindly defending your Chimamanda.

      Did you expect me to list and repeat every definition of Mr. on the website? That’s why I attached a web link and told you that Mr. is a term used to refer to males both formally and informally. You say it doesn’t mean male man? Well, does it mean a woman? Mister is used to represent men. It symbolises men. It is something used to show that someone is a man. I’m not sure how else to break it down so that you will finally comprehend. Look at the big picture and stop being so petty, please. Nwoke is a noun and therefore it cannot be used to refer to a male informally? Wow. Is the word mister not used informally in the English language? E.g. ‘watch your step, mister.’ as opposed to ‘Mr. Brown is at the door’? Did you not see all the different examples on the website I pointed you to? Have you never heard Igbos say ‘bia, nwoke, mind yourself.’? That ‘nwoke’ is an informal reference to a man. So simple.

      You can’t blame me for wondering if what you know about western culture wasn’t gleaned from TV shows cos it’s strange to me that you don’t realise that ‘John’s Mom’ is the same thing as an Igbo woman being called ‘Nne Emeka’ or Mama Emeka. You don’t realise that Nwuye Emeka means Emeka’s wife which is the same thing as Mrs. Emeka? The only reason women are changing names formally now is because we have taken on more roles in corporate society. The ancient women answered Nwuye i.e. Mrs. but didn’t have to put it on a credit card or driver’s license. Modern women claim that changing names is so stressful but don’t find organising a lavish white wedding plus a traditional wedding followed by a honeymoon stressful? Kai. We really know how to play the feminist card when it suits us.

      My dear, you are the one that needs to befriend Google and educate yourself since you are trying to claim that a war has to be a ‘serious civil war’ before it is considered a war. The fact remains that as far back as pre-colonial times, Igbos had their petty inter-tribal wars. Get Things Fall Apart and read if history is too complex for your brain. Lol. Later, dear.

  48. TS

    March 5, 2014 at 3:50 am

    My response is quite long so I decided to blog about it. In summary, I don’t think there is anything wrong in what she has said. To each his/her own.

  49. Mrs Nwosu

    March 5, 2014 at 8:39 am

    The lady stated her prefernce of title and some of us here are taking it to heart? Like seriously? She’s entitled to what she believes is ok for her. Free the babe pls. And for the record she’s one intelligent mama.

  50. kaydeechay

    March 5, 2014 at 10:31 am

    I see no problem if she wants to go by her maiden name. However, I think the way she expressed her displeasure was without class. Come to think of it, in my village somewhere near Nsukka in Enugu State, Eastern Nigeria, women are addressed and identified by their father’s names. For instance if Ada Okeke got married to Obi Okoye, even though she had changed her name to Ada Okoye, if she ever came back to her ancestral home, she was known as Ada (daughter of) Okeke. She would be called Ada nwa Okeke. This is not an old time thing, it is happening currently. As a married woman I am addressed that way, my mother and aunties too. At the end of it all, the choice is ours to make, as long as our spouses have no problems with that.

    • Truthful

      March 7, 2014 at 5:00 am

      Yes, it’s all about context. When a married woman visits her father’s house it is normal for her to be identified as a daughter. However, this doesn’t mean that she cannot be generally known as Mrs. so and so. We are not trying to be draconian here. People are free to pay groom price on their husband’s heads and give their children maiden names for surnames. They can act as they wish and people will also reserve their right to talk as they wish. I bet Chimamanda has been married for several years and answering her father’s name professionally ever since and frankly hardly anyone cared. This controversy has arisen because she tried to manipulate African culture to backup her choices – telling a single story about Igbo culture as it were. How ironic.

  51. aseye

    March 5, 2014 at 1:54 pm

    clearly am not an authority on names and marriages in Africa or anywhere else, but seriously, i believed there isnt much in a name especially ur husband’s names. it doesnt earn you free lunch or bus rides or stop u from sleeping around if u want to so why all this wahala about husbands names?

  52. RealkTalk

    March 5, 2014 at 4:34 pm

    I don’t see a problem with her doing whatever she likes in her “marriage”.
    In fact, when her husbands starts loving another woman who knows how to be a wife, that is fine too.

  53. lalaroses

    March 5, 2014 at 6:21 pm

    As if this is a guarantee to heaven..what’s in a title? everyone leave her alone pls.. and fulfill your own dreams on earth

  54. Nwamaka

    March 5, 2014 at 7:46 pm

    Handsome Hubby she’s got, while we are at it. He is eye catching and really good-looking. Please is he a Nigerian or bi-racial? Lets allow her opinion rule her world. We cannot all think alike. #Justsaying#

  55. Nikky7

    March 6, 2014 at 1:12 pm

    Una get time!

    • Miz Imani

      March 7, 2014 at 7:17 pm

      Reason is in most Latin American countries, children take both father and mother’s surnames …..

    • Nani

      May 4, 2016 at 3:36 pm

      That is Latin America. That is their culture over there. It’s always Africans copying other people’s cultures instead of upholding theirs. The only time a lady gets to keep her father’s name in the Igbo culture is when her father has no male kids to keep the family name and she agrees as well as her husband to bear the lady’s family name and have kids with it. For a lady to do what she did, she’ll have to have zero respect for her husbands family or she’s the one calling all the shots…while the husband sheepishly follows. The least you can do for a man you’re married to is take his last name.

  56. Miz Imani

    March 7, 2014 at 7:20 pm

    “What’s in a name? You can call a rose by any other and it would still smell as sweet” -Shakespeare

    • Radiant

      March 8, 2014 at 12:59 pm

      Like you already.

  57. T.I.

    March 11, 2014 at 4:44 pm

    Nigerians can argue for the world kai!! Feminism, Igbo culture & history, Christianity, African history, Colonial history, Current history/perceptions, English language usage…… But my question/thought…. isn’t matrilineal a false notion since everyone descended from Adam (unless u don’t believe the Bible and think man evolved from some animal somewhere sometime ago). I mean unless you want to carry major panadol on ur head, whatever name you bear is someway a man’s name. If u want go all the way back to Adam and carry his name.

  58. Seyi

    April 11, 2014 at 10:56 pm

    Hey people

    The Sun News Online has apologised. The interview was uploaded incorrectly and contained ’embarrassing factual and grammatical errors, both in the print and online editions’.

    Read their apology here;

    I hope everyone can breathe now

  59. whatever

    May 28, 2014 at 10:39 am

    did u dumb asses hear ‘DAYO’ call y’all dumb people, dumb nation and u all went on as if dat didnt matter…….thats complete disrespect……i think you all should get a life.

  60. Adanna

    January 8, 2015 at 10:05 pm

    I really don’t understand her reasons, but she have some. But apart from that I think she is crazy talented. she’s a source of inspiration to us aspiring writers. As for her being a feminist, I think its necessary if women are to thrive peacefully in a word permeated by male chauvinists

  61. Feminist

    September 20, 2015 at 8:06 pm

    I also thought Chimamanda and Ifemelu alot alike too. I think much of Chimamanda was channeled in Ifemelu’s character and i dislike Ifemelu alot too. Strange that Chimamanda remains my love and one of the best things that’s happened to this country in decades, if you read between the lines and subtract the bias.

  62. vivian

    October 26, 2015 at 1:29 am

    Being a feminist is never a devilish think. Chimamanda ngozi adichie has stayed here fact and you guys are here killing yourselves over nothing. Whether you like it or not, feminism has come to be and nothing Can change that fact. Carry on, Ms. Chimamanda Adichie. You are indeed, my role model.

  63. vivian

    October 26, 2015 at 1:33 am

    Being a feminist is never a devilish think. Chimamanda ngozi adichie has stated her fact and you guys are here killing yourselves over nothing. Whether you like it or not, feminism has come to be and nothing Can change that fact. Carry on, Ms. Chimamanda Adichie. You are indeed, my role model.

  64. Sef

    August 17, 2016 at 2:21 am

    Been married for 12 years and didn’t change my last name because it was what I wanted. We love and respect each other as husband and wife. There’s a lot more to marriage than being labelled “MRS”. So many Mrs in loveless marriages, so many Mrs insulting their husbands one way or the other. Mrs is not cultural, its not religious, its just european mentality. So stop putting too much importance to it like it validates your marriage…MBA! Love you Chimamanda kiss kiss. Im not Igbo by the way.

  65. j.amazing

    October 7, 2016 at 9:15 pm

    wow…very interesting. I read everything, everything! thank you all…you guys really know how to keep one alive and interested. ride on!

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