Chimamanda Adichie Is Refusing To Become An American Citizen, Here’s Her Reasons
Chimamanda Adichie’s reasons for refusing to become an American citizen will both astound and make you laugh, and it did us.
The author, who’s unarguably the most famous African woman believes that part of the Nigerian experience is all the hassles that come with traveling with the green passport, hence her refusal.
She recently gave an interview to The Africa Report where she spoke about the repetitive problem of terrible leadership that continues to plague Africa, feminism and pop culture, and on becoming an American citizen:
“For a long time, I didn’t want to become a US citizen because I believed that part of the experience of being Nigerian is experiencing the humiliations of traveling on a Nigerian passport.”
However, Chimamanda has reviewed her stance. Her reason is also, very relatable. Her father was kidnapped and it was the US government that showed up to help her family, not Nigeria.
“I changed my mind about US citizenship after my father was kidnapped in 2015 and it was the American embassy in Lagos and not the Nigerian government who helped my family, and even sent a therapist to my father after he was released. I now plan to become an American citizen at some point, but I guess I’m still delaying it.”
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Chimamanda Adichie also shared her thoughts on being a Nigerian, an African ambassador. She says Nigeria is a huge part of her identity but insists she’s only an ambassador for herself.
“I am an ambassador for myself. I don’t represent Nigeria; there are things about Nigeria I don’t like, but at the same time I am very very proud of my Nigerian identity.
I was born and raised in Nigeria, which I didn’t leave until I was 19. I’m proud to be Nigerian, I’m proud to be African, I’m proud to be Igbo. I would not be who I am today if I wasn’t all of those things. So, it’s very important to me.”
On the concept that feminism is not African and as such cannot succeed in Africa, Adichie says otherwise.
“I disagree completely! Yes, I hear that people often say “Feminism is not African”. But who’s saying it? The same people who have the latest cellphones, drive cars and fly. If we’re really going to argue about what is “African” none of those things are either!
We can’t choose to live in the modern world then insist that we hold on to something that’s regressive because it benefits us. Men across this continent want to marry women who bring in an income but at the same time, they want this woman to do all of the domestic work.
We are placing the burden of double work on women and justifying it by saying it’s culture. Maybe it’s culture, but if it’s culture, we need to change it”
Read more as Chimamanda Adichie further explains several issues on colonialism, feminism, and more on The Africa Report.
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