Notes from An Alien

~ Explorations In Reading, Writing & Publishing ~

Tag Archives: The Danger of A Single Story

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie


The title of this post is a woman’s name… 

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

Image Courtesy of the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation

Back in September of 2011, I wrote about her in the post, The Danger of A Single Story.

Here are a few excerpts:

“One story, about anything, can be extremely dangerous.”

“Most novels relate their theme from many characters’ perspectives—many stories.”

“Most news media cling to Single Stories.”

“What’s the danger?”

“If the Single Story is believed, there may follow certain prejudices or biases.”

I hope that sequence of sentences will peak your interest enough to help you take the link to The Danger of A Single Story and watch the video there.

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie is a remarkable storyteller and author of three novels, Purple Hibiscus (2003),  Half of a Yellow Sun (2006), and Americanah (2013).

However, stories move forward and so will this blog post—toward an article in Publishing Perspectives called Adichie’s Feminism Essay Given to Every 16-Year-Old in Sweden.

Of course, “Adichie” is the last name of the woman to whom I gave the title of this post

And, the essay mentioned might be considered an attempt to get beyond the Single Story of “Human Rights”

A quote from Chimamanda:

“Some people ask: ‘Why the word feminist? Why not just say you are a believer in human rights, or something like that?’ Because that would be dishonest… Feminism is, of course, part of human rights in general — but to choose to use the vague expression human rights is to deny the specific and particular problem of gender. It would be a way of pretending that it was not women who have, for centuries, been excluded.”

To read the essay, put the title “We Should All Be Feminists” into the search box of your country’s version of Amazon—the USA has it for $6.39 in paperback and $1.99 as a Kindle Single

Here is the TED Talk that led to the published essay:

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All Time Top 20 Blog Posts


Top 20 Blog Posts

Image courtesy of Ulrik De Wachter ~ http://www.freeimages.com/profile/ulrik

I’ve published 950 blog posts in the last 3.5 years.

I like to periodically list the top posts.

Because I’m careful when I tag my posts, most of my traffic comes from web searches.

Speaking of tags, if you scroll down a bit in the left side-bar, you can find loads of posts on many topics of interest to Readers, Writers, and Publishers.

The Top Posts widget down there is only for the last week or so of blogging.

What follows is the All Time Top 20 ( the numbers are how many visits that post had…):

Writing Challenge ~ Use The 1200 Most Common Words To Write A Story… 1,849
Free Software for Writers . . . 770
What’s The “Best” Way To Learn “Proper” Grammar? 643
Why Do Certain People Become Writers? 625
Are Fiction Writers Capable of Freelancing? 551
The Danger of A Single Story 538
What’s The Relationship Between A Writer & Their Characters? 345
Diagramming Sentences ~ A Lost Art? 343
Do Creative Writers Have Social “Responsibilities”? 334
Are Writers Doomed To Be Isolated And Lonely? 297
Are You A Fast Study or Slow Learner? ~ It Can Definitely Depend On The Subject And On Your MOOD! 276
Must Writers Suffer Melancholy, Anguish, and Depression? 262
Are These The Most Difficult Books to Read? 260
Fiction and Social Justice ~ Can They Coexist? 242
An “Open Source” Novel ?? 216
The Best Writing Software *Ever* ? 214
How Can An Author Make Their Book Go Viral? 210
My Cure for Social Networking Anxiety 209
What Is A Genre & Should You Try To Write In One? 204
Are Men & Women Writers Being Treated Equally? 197

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The Danger of A Single Story


One story, about anything, can be extremely dangerous. Most novels relate their theme from many characters’ perspectives–many stories. Most news media cling to Single Stories.

What’s the danger?

If the Single Story is believed, there may follow certain prejudices or biases.

Also, a Single Story can have many variations while remaining “Single”.

Tarie Sabido, one of my Google Plus friends, shared a video that explores this Single Story concept.

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, Nigerian author of Purple Hibiscus and Half of a Yellow Sun, has garnered many statements of praise for her writing, such as, “We do not usually associate wisdom with beginners, but here is a new writer endowed with the gift of ancient storytellers.”

Let yourself be drawn in by this storyteller as she reveals the danger of the Single Story…

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