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“While men benefit from patriarchy, they also suffer from it” – WATCH Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie talk about Patriarchy, Anger & the Black Woman



Bestselling Nigerian author, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie gave a speech at Hubspot’s annual Inbound Conference where she was one of the keynote speakers for 2018.

Click here if you missed the scoop.

The award-winning author traced her early days in Nigeria and how she discovered she was ‘black’ in America. She touched on everything from racism and identity to patriarchy and its effects on both women and men and her belief that stories can change the world.

Read excerpts below:

On the effects of patriarchy: Both men and women suffer from the illnesses that lead to suicide but it is men that have a much higher rate of dying by suicide. Why? Because men are socialized to suppress so many human parts of themselves, men are socialized not to ask for help, men are socialized to be afraid of fear, men are socialized not to show vulnerability. From the moment we tell a little boy that ‘boys don’t cry’ or we tell a hurting teenager to ‘man up’ we are creating an adult man who will be cheated of the full range of his emotions. So, while men benefit from patriarchy, they also suffer from it.

On gender roles: There is nothing a woman should be because she is a woman, and there is nothing a man should be because he is a man…Women are not special, women are human, women are flawed just like men… If we keep saying women are special, then we judge them at a higher and unfair standard.”

On anger and the black woman: Anger is a valid human emotion and women are judged very harshly about showing anger. In this country, it is terrible for women to show anger and it is catastrophic for black women to show anger because the stereotype of the angry black woman is one that is impossible to shrug off once it has been pinned on you. It will follow you for the rest of your life; it will prevent you from getting opportunities that you deserve. I know many accomplished women of all races who have held themselves back in many situations because they don’t want to be considered angry or difficult; they don’t want to be called a b***h.



  1. Chichi

    September 12, 2018 at 2:32 pm

    Kai I just love this woman. Look there are many things we don’t always express and can’t especially for the last point she made about the angry black woman. This point doesn’t matter so much in Africa but you better believe it does in the West. I have also seen not just myself but so many black woman shy away from saying more or being tougher for that fear. White woman will be called a bitch but demand respect anyway. Black woman will be labelled angry black woman and will get no respect. Of course some woman are just not nice full stop but the line is very thin as people rarely stop to think about that. And the point about men is so true also. I have seen men in my own family not know how to express their emotions and all it’s lead to is them keeping things inside and no my asking for help till the damage is done, worse is when you bring that damage into a relationship. I know many people talk about being sick of Chimamanda but the reality is she is reaching audiences that actually now start to think of what it might be like for some black woman and getting us to re-evaluate how we look at and treat men. I think to some people she already has the angry black woman label but to me she is a hero of our times.

    • Cocoa

      September 13, 2018 at 12:03 pm

      “Be angry but do not sin” that’s what God says, Anger is a valid emotion. However anger is no license to behave anyhow you like. You can feel the still control how you express it. Dont let your emotions control you. You are the boss of it.

  2. Jennietobbie

    September 12, 2018 at 5:58 pm

    Ayeeeeee ??????????????my baby.

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