In October 2009, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie shared stories about her transition from Nigeria to the United States in a TED talk entitled, “The Danger of a Single Story” (Adichie). In her talk, Adichie comments about the perception that others had of her when she immigrated to the States. This inherent cultural misunderstanding transcends time and ethnicities. Take for instance Brent Staples, a young black man tired of being profiled on the streets of Chicago. His 1968 essay, “Black Men and Public Space” (Staples), paints a bold picture of racial stereotyping at its core. In the essay, Staples remarks that the perception a young lady had of him was enough to send her “…running in earnest” (Staples 1). Staples’ and Adichie’s stories, though different in nature, share one thing in common: they both show the effects of uninformed perception.
William, Rachel’s three year old son is crying standing over her as she is slowly regaining consciousness. Her boyfriend, Daniel, was gone; their bedroom door was left cracked open and Rachel was on the couch in their room. Pained around her neck from where he choked her, she tries to wrap her head around how she got to this point. Why does Daniel hate her? What did she do this time? Can she, should she, just leave with William? Rachel realizes she has to get out of the house before Daniel gets back. When she arrives at her mother’s house, her mom is alarmed. Rachel has bruises around her neck and marks around her hairline. Rachel’s mother tells her “You come here every week and you go back to that monster every week. I see these bruises but you must not feel they are a problem since you keep going back to him.” Rachel’s mom walks out of the room frustrated.
A single stories’ “power is the ability not to just tell the story of another person, but to make it the definitive story of that person” found in the speech “The Danger of a Single Story” by Chimamanda Adichie. Adichie tells of single stories she has witnessed against others and herself throughout her life, being from Nigeria, coming to a university in America, and traveling throughout her life. Brent Staples’ personal essay “Just Walk on By” provide examples from his own personal experience, of single stories that have been raised against him as an African-American male. Both express how believing in only things heard can demolish truths that have not yet been proven. Single stories may cause not only empowerment, but also a negative stigma to a person, group, or a place. There are many possible dangers that come along with a single story pertaining to the start or continuation of a story heard as well as the act of believing in it. Everyone has been in the same place as Adichie and Staples; been a victim or believed in the oppressors
Chimamanda Adichie gives audience examples in order of time. She begins with her impression on British and American literature, compared with that of Nigera together with her experience with Fide’s family. Chimamanda then mentions her interaction with her roommate and university professor, presenting the fact that other people feel sorry for her as she is an African. Those proves the fact that stereotype can rob people’s dignity and hurt their hearts. Though there are great amount of catastrophes, a great many people failed to see the positive side of Africa. In addition, she shows her guilty after she finds that she was deceived by notorious stories about Mexican. Chimamamda reasons that a stereotype is created through consistent repeat on only a single story, which makes people unconsciously generate
Learning to fight for your life was easier than this. Though the life was difficult in itself nothing came close to the difficulty of watching someone you love walk away, it seemed to only get harder even if it was your fault in the end. Pushing people away was a specialty of his and when it actually worked it was earth shattering. The silence pointed out the flaws that he’d managed to go without noticing with her by his side but now they screamed at him yet again. He was back to the self-destructive, sacrificial, self-loathing creature he always was. Though he always knew his family was broken it wasn’t even close to this damaged. He wasn’t the only one that felt the loss, his brother had lost someone as well. It was a feeling in the air
She looked at the child, safely in her arms, breathing steadily. She looked at the man, then turned her head at the semi. The semi woman had no chance. She cared for the child, even when it ended her own life. She cradled the child in her arms, quietly praying that he didn’t what had become of his mother. She didn’t know that the child was hanging onto her arm, sobbing into her sleeve. The warm, wet tears on her shirt had brought something out of her. She broke down in the middle of the road. She cried into the bright blue coat of the little boy. He was tightly holding his Teddy bear when she had grabbed him, but when she looked down, he was no longer in possession of such an innocent creature. He dropped it when she had set him on the ground. She stood up, looked at the burning car and semi, and realized that she had saved a person, but she was mostly proud at the fact that she had saved a child, no older than eight years. The police took her, the man, and the child into custody. She walked to the ambulance with the help of an officer. The girl had been silent from the moment that she had put her earbuds in. She hadn’t spoken a single word. Not a single
Her whole world was crashing down. It what seemed like only a split second, her best friend’s father had been condemned to death. Someone who she considered to be like a father was going to be taken away, ripped away from her.
“Fine,” she looked up as a man with a scar running down his cheek smiled sinisterly. She didn’t trust him, she moved to try to get out of his reach but he pulled his arm out. Her eyes widened in horror as his fist came forward, she had stopped crying, watching the fist as if it was coming at her slowly. When it hit her face she barely registered it, it didn’t hurt, only stung and sent a shock through her body. Another fist came, then another. Her vision was going blurry, she heard them say something but she couldn’t make out what it was as her body fell limp against the seat and her eyes shut, unable to handle the pain in her
Stay away from me.” Yells Aaron as he ran into the arms of Jasmine, squeezing her tight and not letting her go. Sophie is speechless. Does Aaron know the truth of Katrina’s death,? Sophie wondered. Jasmine looked away and looked around the house that had once been a bright happy family home, all the experiences are now faded memories. “Why don’t we go get some fresh air,” Sophie asked Aaron. They both walk outside and sit down the lushes green grass. Sophie still holding Jasmine’s diary holded it tight in her hands staring deeply into thick brown cover, but she wasn’t just captivated by the book she was overtaken by the red blood finger prints that laid on the bottom left hand corner of the diary. Aaron looks at Sophie, then at the house and then back at Sophie. He grabbed the diary from Sophie and opened it. He flicked through a few pages till he reached the exact page that Sophie had read earlier, grabed a pen out of his pocket, took a deep breath and started to write something “I know you killed my
It had been twelve days since the accident, and with every minute that had passes Jordan thinks he’s getting closer to losing his mind. His chest had constricted when he had seen her limp, doll-like form stretched out on the operating table, the beep of the machine the only thing giving any sign of her still living. The doctors’ faces had been grim, telling him that she had a chance, but it was a slim
Some of the injuries he’d witnessed were so horrific they made his blood run cold and his legs turn to jelly. But this, hearing his beloved’s child pained shrieks all but undid him. To stand at the boy’s head muttering vague reassurances was inadequate. He needed to do something.
was “viciously attacked” on the street, how “his eye socket was shattered and hemorrhaging”, and how “his ear canal was lacerated internally from a tremendous blow to the side of his head”. These few examples prove how her word choice was so specific in the sense that it really makes the reader visualize the horrendous pain that her son underwent and gives them a sense of fear.
“It is a shame that her father left her...this happened because her mother failed her job as a wife...she is so young...what was her father thinking?”, my relatives whispered as they sipped their tea. My cousin’s face turned pale like the white blanket of snow falling outside the lodge at the camp in Lake Tahoe. Her expression held so many emotions as if it was a canvas of a painting to be gazed upon. I could see that she felt frustrated and tired of these rude remarks, and all I did was just stand there and caressed the back side of her hands, so I could comfort her. Suddenly, it felt like the air had thickened so much that even a hammer could not slash it into tiny bits. My cousin had not yet known why her father left the house yesterday.
Her mother was tied across a bloody table, whimpering and begging. The table was covered in deep crevices created by the swinging of an axe. Her father kept repeating, “ You knew the consequences” to Eva. Allie searched for a way to escape the ropes she was held down by, but she soon came to realize that there was no way out. On the walls of the basements, there were countless knives, scythes, and machetes, all dark red in color. Eva muttered something that infuriated the man that Allie once called her father. Tears streamed down Allie’s face as her mother squirmed on the table in the center of the room. He grabbed the axe and faced Allie, the man yelled, “This is for you!” He raised the axe above his head and swung.
First of all I would like to say how much I loved each and every discussion board I got to participate every week as we learned more about the issues faced with women of color in the US. This class truly makes you open your eyes to the world and view differently how we interact and judge.