Happy Birthday, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, born 15 September 1977
- I think you travel to search and you come back home to find yourself there.
- I have been writing since I was old enough to spell. I have never considered not writing.
- The single story creates stereotypes, and the problem with stereotypes is not that they are untrue, but that they are incomplete. They make one story become the only story.
- Of course I am not worried about intimidating men. The type of man who will be intimidated by me is exactly the type of man I have no interest in.
- Racism should never have happened and so you don’t get a cookie for reducing it.
- Stories have been used to dispossess and to malign. But stories can also be used to empower, and to humanise. Stories can break the dignity of a people. But stories can also repair that broken dignity.
- If you don’t understand, ask questions. If you’re uncomfortable about asking questions, say you are uncomfortable about asking questions and then ask anyway.
- Because of writers like Chinua Achebe and Camara Laye … I realised that people like me, girls with skin the colour of chocolate, whose kinky hair could not form ponytails, could also exist in literature.
- You can’t write a script in your mind and then force yourself to follow it. You have to let yourself be.
- The best novels are those that are important without being like medicine; they have something to say, are expansive and intelligent but never forget to be entertaining and to have character and emotion at their centre.
- I write from real life. I am an unrepentant eavesdropper and a collector of stories. I record bits of overheard dialogue.
- Our histories cling to us. We are shaped by where we come from.
Adichie is a Nigerian writer. Her best known novels are Purple Hibiscus, Half of a Yellow Sun, and Americanah.
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