If you haven’t watched Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s talk on feminism, you should watch it now.

Seriously. I love this woman. I love her books, I love her articles, I love her presence in the world. I want her to narrate my brain. I love her clarity, her analysis, her compassion, her fire, her precision, her poise. If you have thirty minutes, give this a listen. I did so yesterday, while doing Very Womanly Tasks, like cleaning my oven and making soup and running after children and folding laundry. You know what makes folding laundry WAY more interesting? Listening to TED talks. On feminism, for example.

Specifically, as a mother of both girls and a boy, and a loving grown-up in relationship with lots and lots of boys, I particularly resonated with this: “Gender as it exists today is a grave injustice….I would like today to ask that we begin to dream about and plan for a different world, a fairer world. A world of happier men and happier women who are truer to themselves. And this is how to start: 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 becomes this hard, small cage, and we put boys inside that cage. We teach boys to be afraid of fear, weakness and vulnerability.  We teach boys to mask themselves. . . We teach girls to shrink themselves, to make themselves smaller.”

Seriously, it’s great. And worth the time out of your day.

It is still very cold in Minnesota, and I had the kids home for two days after the Governor closed down the schools due to extreme windchills. We are stir crazy. Cabin feverish. If you are living in a warm place, please tell me a warm story so that my bones may thaw and my eyeballs may un-crystallize and my soul may creep out of the freezer and bloom again.


8 thoughts on “If you haven’t watched Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s talk on feminism, you should watch it now.

  1. I’ve seen her speak in another part, but this is really astounding. I can’t thank you enough because we were just beginning to discuss feminism in class today. Thanks so much!

  2. I live in a moderate climate, the Pacific Northwest. These days, I am uncharacteristically grateful for our gray, overcast, dreary, drippy days. Watching the weather across the Midwest, I’m vividly reminded of growing up in Maine. I love to tell my kids, “I walked a mile to school in 20 below.” I did. It was cold. The snow was deep. There’s a segment on the news today about 24″ snow fall. I don’t remember that being newsworthy when I was in grade school. It just meant a day of no school, building snowmen, sledding… But today, I’m glad to be living near Seattle with temps in the 30-40’s. In a few months, you can send back a lifeline for seeing the sun. I recommend you bake something with your kids. Great group project for multi-ages, and everybody gets a fun snack.

  3. I’m definitely going to check out this talk, thanks for sharing it. Maybe the temp here in LA will drop below 70 this weekend and I’ll need to hide away inside with my iPad for awhile…

  4. Its so warm here that I’m thinking of taking the flannel sheets off the bed and going back to cotton. But that’s not a warm story, that’s just a description of the weather. My warm story goes like this: Today on the bus coming home I happened to sit next to a gentleman who obviously had a tickle in his throat, and was manfully trying not to cough. I opened up the front pocket on my backpack, pulled out the Thermonuclear Strength cough drops I always keep handy, and asked if he wanted one. He was so gracious in his response that I gave him another. After a bit the Amazingly Powerful cough drops started to open up his abused sinuses, for which he was even more grateful. Then he said, “There needs to be more people like you in the world.” I’m 50 years old, and I don’t know that I’ll ever top that compliment.

    Haven’t seen the video yet, but will probably catch it tomorrow during my lunch hour.

  5. My gardening buddy came to me all excited yesterday saying that I needed to come outside and see the blooms on the paperwhites. They smell divine! The grape hyacinth are coming up, and the last of the tomatoes are wonderful. My neighbor’s roses are blooming and the local university’s Botanical Garden’s head gardener will be teaching a free class on rose pruning this weekend. I have to confess, I do wish it would rain; fresh rain is so inspiring in the garden. Time to put on some shorts and a light cotton top and go work on my latest yard project.

  6. Pingback: Weekly roundup of YA, children’s literature, and other book-related links – Cite Something!

  7. Thank you for sharing the video about feminist. I went to youtube and found it to share on my Facebook page. I really enjoy your blogs and look forward to reading more of what you have to write. Thank you for answering me about your book so quikly. I will be sure to let my Librarian know it is a middle grade book.

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