The day I discovered Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie's work, I was absolutely enthralled. Not only does that woman capture the essence of writing, but she also puts feminism on a very beautiful pedestal.
I learned about feminism through her TEDx speech. She preached about feminism and talked about how we should all be feminists. My thirteen-year-old self was quite excited. I then decided to Google the word "feminism," and I was truly taken aback by what I had googled. I finally understood why I was so pro-woman and pro-equal rights. I was already a feminist; I didn't just know the right label for my activism.
My feminism in my earlier years came with a lot of disregarding the rules of patriarchy, which is very commendable, but I still did not grasp the whole concept of it till I saw her speech. I then decided to write a feminist manifesto, Just as Chimamanda did to her friend with her book "Dear Ijewele, A feminist manifesto in fifteen suggestions." The manifesto I wrote made me understand feminism better. It also made me define the differences between feminism and misandry( which most people mistake it for).
This manifesto is so easy to grasp; that is why I have decided to put it in this article so as to make feminism easier for every woman.
1) Feminism is not the enemy.
We tend to see feminism as that thing that constantly makes women aggressive, loud, and hateful. Feminism doesn't make women into any of those things. While feminism helps women better understand their rights, it doesn't make us foul, loud, mouthed people.
2)Teach yourself to Unlearn Patriarchy.
We have all been there. Unconsciously submitting to patriarchal beliefs. Succumbing to it like a person knocking on death's door. Read, learn and understand the things you do or things people do around you that are the effects of Patriarchy and destroy it. Do not, dear woman, Join them in the frivolous conversations that belittle women, Do not accept the conditional role society has given you. Live life according to Your terms; live life as you wish. Do not let people condition you to a box. Free yourself. The world is yours for the taking.
3) Disregard and Boycott Gender roles.
Who made it a law that Women or men should be confined to particular roles? Why should there be a hierarchy in marriage? Why should women learn how to cook and clean while men just sit on their butts?
Dear woman, it is completely okay If you're in your 30s and unmarried. It is fine if you gravitate toward things that are perceived as masculine. It is well within your right not to have children. You should always question unnecessary gender roles; teach your children to question them too if you ever decide to have them. You don't have to be the meek, gentle-spirited woman they've all conditioned us to be. Break free, be loud, and be unapologetic about it.
4) Teach your children that it is okay to be different.
Like I said earlier, teach your child to question things. Tell them to do things they want that make them happy. Let them know that the societal belief of hierarchy and class does not work with you. Tell them that it is okay to be different, it is okay to be unique. They would be loved regardless. Let them know that traditional gender roles are not meant to be obeyed.
5) Learn about Iconic Feminists.
Ruth Ginsburg, Funmilayo Ransome Kuti, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, Magaret Atwood, Just to mention a few. These women made it their duty to stand against toxic patriarchal and sexist beliefs. These women are unapologetic about their beliefs, and you should be too.
Dear woman, always remembers, Feminism is never the enemy.
In the words of Florence Pugh, "You are either a feminist or sexist. A feminist believes in equal rights. Why would you want to stand for anything other than that?"
Dear woman, I hope this little suggestion or point will make you seriously consider taking up the mantle of feminism.