Why We Should All Read ‘We Should All Be Feminists’

we-should-all-be-feministsWe Should All be Feminists by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
Published: 29.07.2014 by Vintage
Genre: Non Fiction
Rating: 5/5 stars – ★★★★★

Summary: What does “feminism” mean today? That is the question at the heart of We Should All Be Feminists, a personal, eloquently-argued essay—adapted from her much-viewed TEDx talk of the same name—by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, the award-winning author of Americanah and Half of a Yellow Sun.

With humor and levity, here Adichie offers readers a unique definition of feminism for the twenty-first century—one rooted in inclusion and awareness. She shines a light not only on blatant discrimination, but also the more insidious, institutional behaviors that marginalize women around the world, in order to help readers of all walks of life better understand the often masked realities of sexual politics. Throughout, she draws extensively on her own experiences—in the U.S., in her native Nigeria, and abroad—offering an artfully nuanced explanation of why the gender divide is harmful for women and men, alike.


As this is only 49 pages, I can’t write a full on review. But I can write about this book, and urge you all to read this if you haven’t already. 

I’ve always been a feminist, even though people still consider that word ‘dirty’. And I think everyone should be. Until they are, we will never achieve true equality. And while I do believe strongly in this, I haven’t read much literature on the topic. I had listened to her Ted Talk ‘The danger of a single story’ which blew my mind. So when #NonFictionNovember2016 came around, I knew I had to read this now. 

Even though this is so short, it was incredible. It made me think about all the little things you just shrug off after a while. I highlighted so many paragraphs, I might as well have highlighted everything.

Here’s the thing: if you aren’t a feminist, or even if you are but haven’t read a lot on it, I would still recommend this to you. It’s 49 pages, so it won’t even take you long. But I guarantee it will change you. Honestly. 

(on the word feminist and its negative baggage)
You hate men, you hate bras, you hate African culture, you think women should all be in charge, you don’t wear makeup, you don’t shave, you’re always angry, you don’t have a sense of humor, you don’t use deodorant.

I love this part because that’s truly what so many people think a feminist is. And it drives me absolutely nuts. You can like things that are labelled ‘girly’ and be a feminist. You can be a man, and be a feminist.

We must raise our daughters differently. We must also raise our sons differently. 

We do a great disservice to boys in how we raise them. We stifle the humanity of boys. We define masculinity in a very narrow way. Masculinity is a hard, small cage, and we put boys inside this cage. 

Culture does not make people. People make culture. If it is true that the full humanity of women is not our culture, then we can and must make it our culture. 

We teach females that in relationships, compromise is what a woman is more likely to do. 

No matter your thoughts on feminism, or your experience in its literature and talks, you can get something out of this. The ebook is so cheap, I urge you to pick it up. Please, read this glorious woman’s thoughts. 

11 thoughts on “Why We Should All Read ‘We Should All Be Feminists’

  1. Yessss at this entire post!!! I was a feminist before I read this, but it was brilliant hearing Chimamanda’s perspective as a Nigerian woman. I feel like /everyone/ needs to read this book even if you are a feminist because it’s super important to make sure you’re being inclusive and to hear every woman’s story. People who aren’t or who are unsure should especially read it though because it clears up so many misconceptions about what feminism actually is.


    1. Thanks! I was also definitely a feminist before reading it, but now I’m just a more informed one 😀 I don’t understand how anyone can not identify as a feminist. Only those with the wrong idea of what feminist means, I think. Everyone hates that word!


  2. I have read all of Adichie’s other books, but I still need to read this one! I have always considered myself a feminist, but more recently, I have acknowledged my perspective of feminism has been very mainstream, focused on the experiences of straight, white women only. As a feminist, I now strive for intersectionality and to stop the exclusion of marginalized groups, such as women of color, and women with different sexual orientations or socioeconomic status. Recognizing that we all experience gender inequality differently will help us all become more inclusive feminists.


  3. I really need to read this book! I really want to read some of her fiction works (they’ve recently been redesigned and reissued in the UK and they’re so gorgeous!) too, so I would love to just marathon her entire collection. It’s seems like such an important book and one that everyone should read, so I thank you for writing this post! If you’re looking to read more on feminism, one of my favourites is Bad Feminist, if you haven’t read it already. Roxane Gay is so smart and funny!

    Denise | The Bibliolater


  4. I first learned about this author and woman from Beyonce actually, because she features her speech in her song Flawless. Since I’ve discovered her as an author and not only a political speaker, I want to read one of her books. I think I will start with Americanah, but now this one is also high up on my list. Feminism is something a lot more people should be considering and acting upon. Many know about it, but let it pass over their heads >.>

    My recent post: http://olivia-savannah.blogspot.nl/2016/11/time-traveling-20.html


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