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“I don’t want her to think it is normal to have her picture in newspapers” – Chimamanda Adichie on Motherhood, #BlackLivesMatter & More | Watch

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Author Chimamanda Adichie is back in the limelight after taking a couple of months for the birth of her daughter.

In an interview with UK’s Channel 4 News, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie talks about racism in America and the UK, feminism, Black Lives Matter movement, motherhood, the Bring Back Our Girls movement, the American elections, and more.

For the interview she looked gorgeous in a yellow and black dress from Nigerian fashion brand Gozel Green.

Chimamanda Adichie

See excerpts below.

On her next book: I am a very superstitious Igbo woman. I don’t like to say such things.

On her pregnancy being a secret: I wanted my pregnancy to be something I shared with the people I love, with the people who know me. There is a kind of pregnancy as a trendy thing that I find very uncomfortable with, and I deeply dislike expressions like ‘baby bump’. I find it very irritating. It was a very deeply introspective time, thinking about (how) my life is going to change forever and the enormousness of bringing a baby into the world. It was a sacred time for me and I wanted to share it with the people I love.

On keeping her daughter away from the limelight: I want her to be normal and ordinary. I don’t want her to think it is normal to have her picture in newspapers, because it is not. Just because of your mother happens to write and sometimes have her pictures in the newspapers, doesn’t mean you get to.

On racism: When I was promoting Americanah (in the UK), I have people asking me “isn’t racism too much in America, just terrible?” And I want to ask them, “Have you looked in your backyard?” I think racism is a very much a problem in this country.

Watch the interview below.

39 Comments

  1. Manny

    August 10, 2016 at 7:11 pm

    [I deeply dislike expressions like ‘baby bump’. I find it very irritating.]

    Scratching my head here. Is it that serious????????

    • Manny

      August 10, 2016 at 9:17 pm

      It does seem like it’s just her way of expressing things. She seems to “deeply dislike” a lot of things. I linked from this story to her Guardian Chat and she wrote “I deeply dislike the word ‘hysteria’ when it’s used in gender discourse.”
      Still, Chimamanda rocks.

    • Latifa

      August 11, 2016 at 6:37 am

      You are writer Mrs Adichie those words “deeply dislike; very irritating ” are too strong especially coming from a mother…..Yes a lot of women go overboard with showcasing their pregnancy and i understand but still…..she strikes me as someone who is very judgmental. I love her books but just by listening to her I know we can never get along.

    • Engoz

      August 11, 2016 at 3:38 pm

      Huh? What do you mean by ‘especially coming from a mother’? Hehehe, You people, jeez. Even though I don’t find those phrases strong, what’s wrong in it being strong? What’s wrong in it being direct, assertive and honest? Chimamanda speaks for a population of females like myself that do not fit into this single narrative of what being a female, mother, wife should look like or act like. I’m glad she kills this deadly narrative every freaking time she gets. It is unfortunate that we have let certain connotations give a single narrative to what femininity is, at the detriment of those who don’t fit into the stereotypes. Femininity that fits into the script of the usage of flowery words, pretentiousness, not saying what you mean, having some delusions of grandeur of what a wedding proposal/marriage ceremony should look like and last but not least kissing male egos rather than being direct to even your significant others. All these in turn leads to the female’s reliance on passive aggression when they want to act out. You see the female acting out her anger on the step children, housegirl, gateman, or any subordinate rather than facing the source of her anger which is the husband. It is important that young girls see that they don’t have to fit into a scripted story of what a female should do or how to act as far as that female is not doing anything criminal. No, you don’t have to have 10 bridesmaids. No, a man does not need to get down on one knee to propose to you, but instead have an adult discussion about your marital future on why he wants to marry you. No, you don’t have to have a pregnancy shoot, neither do you need to follow any petty trend. Now people have the freedoms in doing what they want, but young girls must understand you do not have to act out this stereotypical script of what a ‘female’ is. With a site like BellaNaija that is so fairytale-centric, it is highly important that ‘realism’ and assertiveness creeps in here more often than not.

    • Naijatalk

      August 11, 2016 at 7:13 pm

      Judgmental because she shared her opinion on a trend that many of us are still struggling to understand? Give me a break please.
      We get taking intimate pictures to preserve the memory of each pregnancy just but publishing them on social media???? To what end bikonu?
      Time will tell where this one would go.
      I deeply dislike the phrase baby bump too.

    • Brown

      August 11, 2016 at 7:25 pm

      Don’t you have pet peeves?

  2. Engoz

    August 10, 2016 at 7:13 pm

    ‘There is a kind of pregnancy as a trendy thing that I find very uncomfortable with, and I deeply dislike expressions like ‘baby bump’. I find it very irritating.’

    Buhahahaha!!!!! This woman is a party pooper. And I love it!!!!!!! I’ve been denying it but I can now finally say we are kindred spirits!!! Lmao.

    Nevertheless people should live in their own truths. If you want to splatter the internet with pregnancy shoots go ahead if that will make you happy. Still can’t get Tonto’s pregnancy shoot image out of my head….tehehehehe!!! God forgive me!

    • Duchess of Isolo

      August 10, 2016 at 7:34 pm

      Why were you denying it. I was also denying it too but I want to know if it’s the same reason as per the kindred spirit ish? Tonto’s shoot killed me too. I personally dislike pregnancy display but I also hate the over secretiveness some Nigerians tend to go with, like you are witch hunting their foetus. There are much more important things BN could have made headline though. I hate how their headline always focuses on marriage or motherhood when Infact that’s the least thing Ms Adiche talked about. Even the excerpts are weak and you know people don’t have mb to actually watch the video. People almost always depend on the excerpts to comment. Please bring out more useful excerpts Biko, at least we can start meaningful discussion and exchange knowledge.

    • nene+

      August 10, 2016 at 10:02 pm

      The more I know about this lady the more I find her very interesting!
      The baby bump show thing in my mind in Nigeria has become a competition littered with the act of wanna be and I can’t be left out!
      It doesn’t take away the fact that I can’t have a private picture of my bump for my family and self! I need to see the complete interview….

    • Weezy

      August 10, 2016 at 11:47 pm

      I swear Chimamanda and me hate the same words.

      Anytime I see a post on Bellanaija with the words “baby bump” I roll my eyes and refuse to click. The other word I dislike is bae. And I hate “hubby”. Bellanaija doesn’t use this, but in American blogs, people add -y to words a lot. Like “cucumber-y” Instead of saying, the water tastes like cucumber, they say cucumber-y taste.

      I don’t like cute words.

    • Miss Ghana

      August 11, 2016 at 6:10 am

      hihihi. That was a shoot to end all shoots. We have to be able to tell someone when a picture is not nice at allll even if it’s pregnancy. really some need to cover up. Tonto’s pictures gave me jitters.

    • Sisi

      August 12, 2016 at 10:21 am

      ‘All these in turn leads to the female’s reliance on passive aggression when they want to act out. You see the female acting out her anger on the step children, housegirl, gateman, or any subordinate rather than facing the source of her anger which is the husband.’ You nailed it!

  3. Fleur

    August 10, 2016 at 7:31 pm

    Just when she was about to hit the nail on the head, the video ended. Yes, talk about htose who were once immigrants without permission who are now absolutely against any form of immigration. You go Chimamanda!

  4. bruno

    August 10, 2016 at 7:35 pm

    “I deeply dislike expressions like ‘baby bump’. find it very irritating”

    the first thing that came to my mind was bellanaija style ur bump. LOOOOOOL.

    she looks divine in that dress. and her hair is on fleek.

  5. UNCLE GWE GWE GWE

    August 10, 2016 at 7:52 pm

    Thank you chimamanda Adichie, I really don’t know how these pregnancy/ baby bump became a trend. That is how sister carol became permanent baby mama bcos she wanted to join the trend.

  6. Naijatalk

    August 10, 2016 at 8:02 pm

    This woman simply slays every TIME. She is a beauty. Her daughter will undoubtedly be a STUNNER!

  7. Mz_danielz

    August 10, 2016 at 8:09 pm

    ‘Just because of your mother happens to write’

    Did Chi b’anyi say that or it is it a BN typo?

    • Grammar Police

      August 10, 2016 at 9:46 pm

      i read and re-read that.

  8. dami

    August 10, 2016 at 8:28 pm

    @Manny. I erroneously liked your comment becos I actually do find that word…baby bump beyond irritating.Worse still are posts on how to style your baby bump. As with most things, we’ve lost the sacredness of alot of things.

    • Manny

      August 10, 2016 at 9:02 pm

      Take your like back abeg

    • Cocolette

      August 10, 2016 at 11:15 pm

      Loool…no chill @Manny

  9. Idomagirl

    August 10, 2016 at 9:16 pm

    Biko where’s the rest of the interview?

  10. Tiana

    August 10, 2016 at 9:19 pm

    She just seems fustrated…. to much kokoko for me….. relax

    • Anonymous

      August 10, 2016 at 9:44 pm

      You read that (or anything she’s written) and saw frustration? I’ve never even seen her raise her voice. That being said, I’m guessing you’re a “typical” Nigerian woman… She’s married, are you? If you’re not, do we assume that YOU are frustrated? (Seeing as we want to use that conservative yardstick to judge her)??

  11. Solomon Akinboyewa Olawale

    August 10, 2016 at 10:14 pm

    Hian this is serious.

  12. Sebastian

    August 10, 2016 at 10:19 pm

    Sometimes, I feel some people get mad or angry at other people, simply because they wish they have the life others have. Chimamanda is one lady that has shown sure rare prowess with her works that you can’t but applaud her.

    @Tiana, you need to calm down and know that Adichie has NEVER for one minute shown to us on camera that she is frustrated. And I’m pretty sure her family would complain that she is frustrated. The one who is frustrated is you. Adichie is a writer, an accomplished one at that. What have you accomplished? Have you met her to say she is frustrated? Really? Frustrated? I don’t know who is more frustrated, you or that person that liked your comment.

  13. De Duchess

    August 10, 2016 at 10:39 pm

    Whats wrong with women displaying their baby bumps and just being happy about their pregnancy?
    You like privacy fine, does everyone have to be you?

    ****
    Chimamanda, I love you dear. I felt rejected reading that you wanted to share your pregnancy with those you love. I was here randomly feeling, we are good friends and you love me too. But its fine! You will love me soon.
    My dreams are still valid. I will feature in Americanah!

    • Wanderlust _Trekeffect?

      August 11, 2016 at 5:46 am

      That’s why it’s her opinion, you don’t have to agree with her. She isn’t compelling anyone to do as she does. Do you and she will do her, not that complicated. ?

  14. De Duchess

    August 10, 2016 at 10:42 pm

    The first part is to all the women that are freely passing around their rule books to other women.

  15. lala

    August 10, 2016 at 11:19 pm

    “She might not be charismatic in the way that her husband was, but you know, she’s not running for…” and she should just have said President of the United States 😀

  16. Oluwatoyin Ayobami Olufunke

    August 11, 2016 at 12:53 am

    Hope you ain’t frustrated?

  17. Miss Ghana

    August 11, 2016 at 6:14 am

    Calling smart , opinionated women frustrated seems to be an african thing. a way of putting down what doesn’t conform to your type. whether that difference is better than you or not, people thing that’s just the way to shut excellence up. sad people.

  18. Nelo

    August 11, 2016 at 7:20 am

    I love how authentic chimamanda is. We need to tell it like it is and stop worrying about people not liking you for it.
    As for Tiana, many accomplished Nigerian women who have something to say are too often labelled, frustrated. I’m sure she’s used to it. But I really think it’s your shallow-ness to understand what she’s saying that makes you call her names.

  19. When

    August 11, 2016 at 7:24 am

    Wow. She is so sure of herself and one thing I really admire about her is her ability to share her thoughts and beliefs without any concern for what people will say or think. Very interesting interview I must say.

  20. Munachimso

    August 11, 2016 at 9:10 am

    I don’t get.. Amanda said she fines it very irritating.

    She hasn’t forced anyone to dislike it too, dear Lord!

  21. Mg

    August 11, 2016 at 1:09 pm

    This woman is simply awesome… I really admire her works and personality. Lovely interview too

  22. Oma

    August 11, 2016 at 1:58 pm

    Chimamanda you know i loh you. and for someone who just gave birth, you have definitely ‘got your body back!’ but i am sure you would not like that expression either :))
    Beauty + brains + confidence = awesomeness!

  23. lil

    August 11, 2016 at 2:40 pm

    I still have plans (super creative ones) for my baby bump. Then, I love Chimamanda.

  24. Tosin

    August 12, 2016 at 1:24 am

    so funny, i’m far more a Bill Clinton person. not a hardwork person. funny, laughing about it.

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