Patriarchy, Cheating, Suicide: Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie Touches On A Number of Interesting Issues In Her Speech At Inbound Conference

Renowned Nigerian writer/feminist, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, 41, recently gave a speech at the Hubspot’s 2018 Inbound Conference.

In her very expository talk which touched on so many issues, the mom of a 3-year-old girl and an advocate for gender equality, Adichie gave a convincing reason why men are prone to dying by their own making than women.

The author popularly known for her novel, Purple Hibiscus was given a warm welcome upon her mounting the Inbound stage, and she started off with an anecdotal experience about her childhood and how she got to be the published award-winning author she’s become.

However, that was not to be the highlight of her speech; rather, her several intense revelations won the day. One of which was her revealed fact that men had a higher chance of committing suicide than women.

In her words, the reason for this is because of the patriarchal mentality that is commonly embraced in the society. This patriarchy mentality which is particularly prevalent in African settings had both the good and the bad side to it.

ALSO READ: Chimamanda Adichie Reveals She Didn’t Think She Would Be a Good Mom, Raising Children Amidst Other Issues

One of its disadvantages was that men were not allowed to express emotions in the full sense, as women were. This repressed emotions and inability to convey hurt feelings to those around made them more susceptible to taking their own lives, as it becomes almost impossible to ask for help with psychological ailments and other associated problems.

Adichie expressed her opinion about this controversial topic in these words:

“Both men and women suffer from the illnesses that lead to suicide but it is men that have a much higher rate of dying by suicide. Why? Because men are socialized to suppress so many human parts of themselves, men are socialized not to ask for help, men are socialized to be afraid of fear, men are socialized not to show vulnerability.

From the moment we tell a little boy that ‘boys don’t cry’ or we tell a hurting teenager to ‘man up’ we are creating an adult man who will be cheated of the full range of his emotions. So, while men benefit from patriarchy, they also suffer from it.”

Even more, Adichie highlighted other issues she considered important like gender equality, identity crisis and the reception of African people in the countries she had visited and the ones she’s lived in.

READ ALSO: Feminist Marriage, Pregnancy, Depression & Teaching Her Daughter Feminism: Chimamanda Adichie Is All Shades of Interesting In New Feature

For the Orange Prize winner, identity as a matter of discussion is not just about one particular people or nation, it is about everyone as it shapes the way everyone interacts with the world.

About females and humanity as a whole, the proud feminist who said she had learned that the world works in a very complex way had this to say:

“There is nothing a woman should be because she is a woman, and there is nothing a man should be because he is a man. Women are not special, women are human, women are flawed just like men… If we keep saying women are special, then we judge them at a higher and unfair standard.”

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