Who is Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie?
She is a writer, she is the author of three novels, Purple Hibiscus(2003), Half of a Yellow Sun (2006), and Americanah(2013), of a short story collection, The Thing around Your Neck (2009).
She has received numerous awards and distinctions, including the Orange Broadband Prize for Fiction (2007) and a MacArthur Foundation Fellowship (2008).
Some interesting facts about her life
Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie was born September 15, 1977 in Enugu, Nigeria. She was raised in Nsukka near the University of Nigeria. Her father, James Nwoye Adichie, was a professor of statistics and later became the Deputy Vice-Chancellor of the University. Her mother, Ifeoma Aidichie, became the first female registrar at the University. Adichie is the fifth child in a family of six children. She is of Igbo descent and her ancestral home is in Abba.
Adichie was an A student who often butted heads with her teachers. Despite her reputation, she received several academic awards. Adichie enrolled in medical school at the behest of her father. She soon dropped out to pursue her dream of becoming a writer. When she was 19, she left Nigeria on a scholarship to Drexel University in Philadelphia. She studied communication at Drexel and earned a degree in communication and political science at Eastern Connecticut State University. She graduated summa cum laude in 2001. Later that year, she began MFA courses in literature at Johns Hopkins University.
Adichie credits Chinua Achebe, Igbo author of Nigerian masterwork “Things Fall Apart”, with her literary success. She once lived in Achebe’s house and believes his halo surrounded her. After reading his book at 10 years old, she realized that people who looked like her could exist in books. Her desire to write was sparked by his work.
In 2003, “Purple Hibiscus” was published to wide acclaim. It was shortlisted for the Orange Prize and awarded the Commonwealth Writers’ Prize for Best First Book. She was awarded with the Orange Prize in 2007 for her second novel, “Half of a Yellow Sun”, about the Biafran War. In 2008, she received a MacArthur Fellowship. A collection of short stories, The Thing Around Your Neck, was published in 2009.
Adichie tries to combat the image of Africans as portrayed by Western media. Choosing to write first from her experience as an affluent and educated Nigerian, she was often criticized for shying away from the “real” Africa. But she struggled to write characters who were not “starving, or begin bullied by [Zimbabwean dictator] Mugabe, or dying of AIDS.” As reflected in her writing voice, Adichie is a staunch feminist and uses her work as a way to work through the misogyny and condescension she has faced as an African woman in the global literary community.
She splits her time between the Unites States and Nigeria, married to a Maryland-based doctor. Her next novel will chronicle the Nigerian immigrant experience in America.
Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie's quotations
“To be humans is to want to be valued”
“Books are immensely powerful. A power that often transcends the creator of the book himself.”
“Logic can convince us but it is in fact emotions that lead us to act. We are emotional beings.”
“I write because I have to.”
“I love creating characters who sometimes speak to me.”
“I love the possibility of touching another human being with my work.”
“I think my writing is magical, it is a whispering of the spirits, it is an inexplicable gift I had been blessed with.”
“Literature is not just words.”
“We should read human stories not only to be delighted but also to remain ourselves that we are not alone, that we, in the words of Pablo Neruda, belong to this great mass of humanity, not to the few, but to the many.”
It is an interesting intervew, in which Chimamanda talks about her books.
Here, there is another interview, in which she talks about her country and her feelings for it.
To visit her official website, please, click here.
I also found this site which provides interesting information about her life.
Gradesaver, Biography of Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie. Available at: http://www.gradesaver.com/author/chimamanda-ngozi-adichie/. Retrieved: May 15, 2013
Nairaland Forum, Chimamanda Adichie: 16 Things You Did Not Know About Her.
Available at: http://www.nairaland.com/1154513/chimamanda-adichie-16-things-did. Retrieved: May 15, 2013
Youtube, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie: Commonwealth lecture 2012. Available at: http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=vmsYJDP8g2U. Retrieved: May 15, 2013
My paragraphs summarizing her arguments: paragraphs by listing and by examples
Chimamada Ngozi Adichie is a famous writer born in Nigeria, she not only loves writing but also reading others writers’ books. For example, as a child, she read ‘The Dark Child’ by Camara Laye, a book of startling beauty, defiant optimism, and the most layered nostalgia. As another example, she also enjoyed Chinua Achebe’s novels “Things Fall Apart” and “Arrow of God,” it was those kinds of novels that made her realize that while she may very well know the facts, she did not really know the truths. As still another instance, she fell in love with Sri Lanka after she read Romesh Gunesekera’s beautiful novel, “Reef”, with its evocation of friendship, love and politics in a country about to be torn apart by war. Clearly, this writer takes pleasure in reading her colleagues’ works as well as in expressing herself in her own books.
Chimamanda Adichie, a Nigerian writer, confesses the fact that she wrote different kinds of writings throughout her experience as a writer. Firstly, she affirms that when she was a child, at the age of seven, she wrote the kind of stories that she had read. This meant that she wrote stories about blue-eyed white children who played in the snow and ate apples. Then, Adichie started believing that she had no place in books since they did not represent her at all. This changed when she discovered African writers such as Chinua Achebe and Camara Laye. She realized that books could also tell the stories of people like her. Finally, she started writing “realist literature” which, to her mind, transmits sensibility, both for the reader and the writer. This kind of art represents real people in real situations, in real places. Clearly, some particular facts in her personal life made her change her style of writing.