C an’t contain the excitement I feel thinking about how cool it is that Beyonce and Chimamanda get to work together and that both women are drawn to each other’s passion for feminism.
Not to make too much of it, but it’s got to count for something, in the contemporary African literary scene, that Adichie and Beyonce are in conversation about such significant matters like feminism.
[Verse 2 – Chimamanda Ngozi Adiche]
We teach girls to shrink themselves
To make themselves smaller
We say to girls
“You can have ambition
But not too much
You should aim to be successful
But not too successful
Otherwise you will threaten the man”
Because I am female
I am expected to aspire to marriage
I am expected to make my life choices
Always keeping in mind that
Marriage is the most important
Now marriage can be a source of
Joy and love and mutual support
But why do we teach to aspire to marriage
And we don’t teach boys the same?
We raise girls to see each other as competitors
Not for jobs or for accomplishments
But for the attention of men
We teach girls that they cannot be sexual beings
In the way that boys are
Feminist – the person who believes in the social
Political, and economic equality of the sexes. — read complete lyrics
The inspiration for Adichie’s part in the song comes from her Ted Talk on Feminism, excerpts of which she incorporates. But the entire thing seems like it was written and recorded for the collaboration.