Subscribe to Newsletter
Monthly Newsletter: Join more than 3,000 African literature enthusiasts!
Subscribe for African literature news, and receive a free copy of our "Guide to African Novels."

17535800426_1f44ea4468_k

Chimamanda Adichie’s lecture at the Pen World Voices Festival came and went, leaving a trail of thoughtful quotes and lovely photos.

I hope you find inspiration in these quotes and enjoy all the fun photos that comes right after.

******************

1. “It’s important to me that African stories be told by African people.”

2. “To choose to write is to reject silence.”

3. “Every novel has a worldview. Every novel believes something.”

4. “The ability to admit to ignorance is a wonderful thing.”

5. “It is censorship to tell half a story. It is censorship to neglect context.”

6. “The fear of causing offense, the fear of ruffling the careful layers of comfort, becomes a fetish.”

7. “I have often been told that I cannot speak on certain issues because I am young, and female, or, to use the disparaging Nigerian speak, because I am a ‘small girl’ … I have also been told that I should not speak because I am a fiction writer … But I am as much a citizen as I am a writer,”

8. “There are many reasons why I read. I read to be consoled.”

9. “I would not want to live if I were not able to have the consolation that stories give me…and for this reason I will stand and I will speak for the right of everyone, everyone, to tell his or her story.”

10. “How are we ever going to really understand one another if we’re not being told stories in a way that is full and fully done?”

11. “I’ve actually found that the older I get, the less interested I am in how the West sees Africa, and the more interested I am in how Africa sees itself.”

12. I have many problems in my life, but I don’t think that identity is one of them.”

13. “I think of myself as a writer, I think of myself as a dreamer…and I think what’s interesting … is that when you’re sitting there in front of your computer, hoping to write a good sentence, you really don’t remember that you’re black and African, you know, you just think, I want to write a damn good sentence.”

[All images by PEN American Center via Flickr.) 

16941679373_a903d39be2_z

17559860212_46c844a54d_z17562200775_06f14b564f_z17374446570_1542e6bfe2_z17374217008_362f00d16c_k17561971151_16236259f8_z16941662353_3d5b426d08_z17559842982_71df846a3e_k16939467974_9b3e74cd3a_z17561962341_0a83f618cb_z16939471524_71fbeb9ab9_z17374460960_e5d4c7e9fc_z17562048985_9d54f00897_z16941800403_8fc4cb61b5_k

Tags: , , , , , , , ,

I hold a doctorate in English from Duke University and recently joined the Marquette University English faculty as an Assistant Professor. I love teaching African fiction and contemporary British novels. Brittle Paper is the virtual space/station where I play and experiment with ideas on how to reinvent African fiction and literary culture.

8 Responses to “I Read to be Consoled | 13 Best Quotes from Adichie’s Pen Festival Lecture + Gorgeous Photos” Subscribe

  1. rebecca 2015/05/14 at 12:53 #

    #13 Yes exactly!

  2. Basit 2015/05/14 at 16:29 #

    She is amazing. Full of composure and dazzling smiles. She is fully made.

  3. Amaka 2015/05/14 at 17:05 #

    Gorgeous Adichie.
    http://www.dnbstories.com/

  4. Oyin Oludipe 2015/05/16 at 03:49 #

    Her eyes are full of wisdom.

  5. Gail Johnson 2015/05/22 at 09:47 #

    One of the greatest writers of this generation.

  6. Sarah 2015/05/28 at 15:54 #

    Inspirational! Wish I could find the complete lecture online, or at least the complete text.

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Reading African authors from across the continent | readafricanwriters - 2015/05/14

    […] “It’s important to me that African stories be told by African people.” -Chimamanda Adichie (here) […]

  2. 13 Quotes from Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s Arthur Miller Freedom to Write Lecture (Plus: Photographs) | Jonathan Ball - 2015/08/19

    […] Complete article: Brittle Paper […]

Leave a Reply

I hold a doctorate in English from Duke University and recently joined the Marquette University English faculty as an Assistant Professor. I love teaching African fiction and contemporary British novels. Brittle Paper is the virtual space/station where I play and experiment with ideas on how to reinvent African fiction and literary culture.

Monthly Newsletter!

Subscribe for African literature news, and receive a free copy of our
"Guide to African Novels."

Archives

Angels and Muse | Artsy Co-working Space Opens in Lagos

Ehikhamenor angels and muse (1)

Award-winning artist and writer Victor Ehikhamenor has always given us the gift of beautiful art. But his latest project, Angels […]

WATCH | Nnedi Okorafor in HBO’s Afro-Futurism Documentary

nnedi okorafor afrofuturism black panther

For the past few months, fans have been connecting the dots between Afro-futurism and the Black Panther superhero movie. So […]

Adichie’s New Nigerian Publisher, Narrative Landscape Press, Is Releasing Box Sets of Wax-Print Cover Designs of Her Books

The Thing Around Your Neck

Dear Nigeria-based Adichie fans, this news is for you! Your favorite Adichie books are being reissued in iconic Ankara (wax-print) […]

“What Keeps Girls from Knowing the Power in Them?”: Mona Eltahawy on the Importance of Female Rage

Mona ELTAHAWY

Egyptian writer and outspoken feminist Mona Eltahawy is asking important questions about the necessity and possibilities of female anger. In […]

Watch | Safia Elhillo’s Poem Featured in Under Armour’s Olympics Campaign

Screen Shot 2018-02-20 at 1.38.55 PM

American sports and footwear company Under Armour is using a poem by Sudanese Safia Elhillo, titled “Kintsugi,” for its “Unlike […]

Fundraising in Progress for Onyeka Nwelue’s $27,000 Spine and Hip Dislocation Treatment Following Vehicle Accident

27867091_10155878379480937_8977074959532754883_n

Nigerian writer Onyeka Nwelue is currently hospitalised following spine and hip dislocations in a vehicle accident. It happened in Abuja on […]

Thanks for signing up!

Never miss out on new posts. Subscribe to a digest, too:

No thanks, I only want the monthly newsletter.