I fell in love with a lady on my iPad. She was speaking to me; in words that were pure, true and timeless.
I have mentioned her before. And, she has wowed me again.
I adore Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie. I love that she exists. I found in her a suitable role model.
In an interview with Chiagozie Fred Nwonwu for Olisa.tv, she laid down gems that she has used to decorate her awesome life. Vices to avoid. Values to cherish. Virtues to live by.
This post is a collection of quotes she made from the interview that I cannot part with:
On African Culture:
[…] A lot of what we call ancient African cultural practices are really Victorian Christian practices. Christianity and colonialism created a lot of what we now call ‘authentic culture’.
[…] My point is that since cultures evolve and since what we do today in the name of culture is not at all what happened a hundred years ago, then everything is open for negotiation. Everything is changeable. The basis for the change should then be: how do we evolve in a way to ensure the least discrimination and the most dignity for everyone?
On Ethic and Religion:
[…] We now have a culture of everything being explained by the ‘spiritual.’ So you don’t study and you pass your exams because you prayed. It reduces the ethic of serious and sustained hard work, the ethic of critical thinking and the ethic of delayed gratification.
“Show don’t tell’ is a classic rule of fiction writing and I think it should equally apply to Nigerian religiosity. Imagine a Two Week Challenge where people do not say the word ‘God’ but they show “God’ through their actions. If you viciously gossip about other people, forget that your driver is human, cheat at business, steal, plot somebody’s downfall and then turn around and say ‘We Thank God,’ then no, you are not showing, you are merely telling.
On her philosophy for life:
[…] Life is short. I really do try to live by this. I don’t mean short in the Hobbesian and brutish sense, but short in the sense that it is precious and fragile, and none of us know how long we are here for. So it’s important to make choices in your life keeping that in mind.
[…] Why do we respond with antagonism to what we do not entirely understand? Why can’t we say ‘okay this person loves in a way that is different from how I love and I may not entirely understand it but I do not believe it is a crime?’ It’s really that simple. And it’s very sad when people use ‘African culture’ to justify anti-gay discrimination.
Many African cultures are traditionally tolerant. In fact I think it’s the fundamental tolerance in the cultures of Africa that made colonialism so successful. We need to live and let live. We need to make space to accommodate what is different. Diversity is human. Throughout our history as human beings, there has never been a time when we were all the same.
Even if I did not have the good fortune of being widely-read, I would still be somewhere writing, because writing is my life’s passion. […]
[…] I do not gauge what I say or do based on how somebody will respond. I gauge it based on what I truly think and feel. My only responsibility is to speak truthfully. I never set out to offend anybody but I also never censor myself because of the fear of causing offence. I like to be honest and open with people and I like them to be the same with me. […]
On reviews and criticism of her work:
I don’t read reviews. Just because it’s important to preserve a certain kind of head space. The good reviews can be just as distracting as the bad. I also don’t read articles about myself, because there is a certain kind of self-consciousness I want to try and avoid. […]
On her favorite quote:
[…] What will survive of us is love. […]
Go ahead and read the two part interview. We both know you want to.
Enjoy my Blog.
P.S: The article is quite interesting and engaging. It also addresses all the messy drama that has been surrounding her life (for those of us that like bettah amebo) .
You are Awesome.