Feminism in Americanah

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Feminism in Americanah 4

Feminism in Americanah

“He was no longer sure, he had in fact never been sure, whether he liked his life because he really did or whether he liked it because he was supposed to.” (Adichie, p.21)


There’s a mistaken notion that feminism is entirely about women’s rights. On one hand that is kind of true; but on the other is the often forgotten true goal of feminism: gender equality. Feminists work towards the goal of true gender equality, a goal in where both women and men are freed from the restrictive patriarchal roles society has placed upon them and stand together as equals.

Chimamanda Adichie’s novel, Americanah, is a perfect example of this. Not only does it gives us an example of Ifemelu’s journey to self-empowerment via her rejection of the patriarchal roles society has tried to place upon her, it also shows the very similar struggle that men must also go through in order to stand equal to women through the character of Obinze.

The public image of feminist theory is one that focuses primarily on women. This is understandable in that there is just so much material that any casual observer can access from news articles, viral videos, and magazine articles that all claim the banner of ‘feminism’. This over-saturation of content has led to the misinformed idea that feminists are overly aggressive man-haters. This is rather sad in that the true goal of feminism is gender equality and a ‘true feminist’ is someone who recognizes tha...

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