Tagged: Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

Michelle’s “Master Class.”

This is a can’t-miss speech.

Courtesy C-SPAN

First Lady Michelle Obama spoke in Manchester, New Hampshire last week at a presidential campaign event on behalf of Secretary Hillary Clinton. But this speech was no mere campaign stump speech. It was a speech that Washington Post columnist Jena McGregor described as a “master class” that “…should be required viewing for every leader.”

Her speech named the disrespect so often aimed at women and rebuked it. And in so doing, the First Lady elevated our discourse, reminding us to remember the dignity and worth of every human being, young and old.

Her speech demands our attention. Make time to watch and listen to her important words.

Speaking of the First Lady, make sure you read To the First Lady, With Love. Its lead essay was written by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie.

Success Can Wear Lip Gloss, Too: Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

Courtesy of Ted Talks/TEDxEuston

The second of today’s blog posts features the famous speech, We Should All Be Feminists, delivered by novelist Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie. The talk, delivered in 2013, encourages us to think and talk about gender issues. And of course, the speech garnered one of the world’s biggest name checks by Beyoncé, who used a sample of it in her song, “Flawless.”

We teach girls to shrink themselves, to make themselves smaller. We say to girls, ‘You can have ambition, but not too much. You should aim to be successful, but not too successful. Otherwise you will threaten the man.’ Because I am female, I am expected to aspire to marriage. I am expected to make my life choices always keeping in mind that marriage is the most important.

Now marriage can be a source of joy and love and mutual support. But why do we teach girls to aspire to marriage and we don’t teach boys the same? We raise girls to see each other as competitors – not for jobs or for accomplishments, which I think can be a good thing, but for the attention of men. We teach girls that they cannot be sexual beings in the way that boys are. Feminist: the person who believes in the social, political and economic equality of the sexes.

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