“Guilt is born in the same hour with pleasure, like anything in this universe and its enemy.”
At first i thought it was going to be a love story that brought changes to it but nada! The book focuses on 3 women Esi, Opokuya and Fusena and their spouses Oko, Kubi and Ali respectively. Esi is a career oriented woman who has no time for her hubby nor her daughter. Due to her busy schedule she hates been married, been a wife where a woman submits and the only way out is when Oko “rapes”her that she files for a divorce. Freedom, maybe! She falls in love with Ali who on the other hand doesn’t value the Muslim norms (marry a virgin who is a muslim) but introduces her to the family as his second wife but still isn’t getting enough from this marriage too. Fusena, does not get the opportunity to advance her career (children and hubby disagrees since he is rich) while Ali has his way to his education desires. However, Fusena’s shop business is the talk of town as she manages it quit well. Opokuya, a nurse by profession has 4 children, manages her home well enough but Kubi cheats on her frequently (add Esi to his list).
The overall review is that Ama brings out elements of motherhood, marriage, friendship, independence, money and culture in the female autonomy where CHANGE bypasses the old traditions. “It is a record of changing circumstances of women’s lives in contemporary Africa…..constructs a psychological blueprint for female portraiture.” The conversations between women in this book shows a lot of social change and from it, can truly say it is what happens in today’s era. Quite an interesting read that leaves one with lots of questions
News across the world have been making me worried of what is happening in nations. For instances: Mosul has been under attack as ISIL has replaced hundred thousands of its residents mercilessly killing thousands. The thing about watching CNN,BBC and Al-Jazeera (i rarely watch local news) is that they bring the action close to you and hearing children narrate ordeals and loved ones cry for their dead family members makes you want to join the Holy order. Marawi in the Philippines under the ISIS attack has seen people stay indoors as rescuers take their risk and go around homes to rescue survivors; then martial law is taking over! Syria has been on the forefront of war since I can remember, 6 years, yes you heard me and still ongoing (take a break!) Iran and Afghanistan are other nations that bombs are not a vocabulary and peace is the jargon. London has also had its fair share of terror attacks especially the van attacks and after Ariana’s concert. North Korea and its missiles, dammit! What are they launching that never ceases? 100+ days under the Trump administration in the USA where deals and agreements make me go like “who voted you in?” It is so covfefe in there but hey Happy Independence Day.
Back to Mama Africa and we are greeted by the despair in Mali. What happened to it having been the first African Nation to have the best university in Timbuktu? Did you know people from all the world used to come to Mali to study? What then happened to it been like a desert where war never fades? Libya; you caught my eyes during Gaddafi’s tenure but after his death I thought you could cool off but to the surprise of many war mode is still on. So many migrants are crossing over to Europe states and soon the Westerners shall not accommodate you all. Boko Haram in Nigeria showcased they can make over 200 girls disappear but seems they are surrendering to the Nigerian Army and I smell a win. In South Sudan it seems the peace agreement was used to light someone’s stove even before it could be digested in as the 2 horses can never put their grudges behind. Now I hear there is a humanitarian catastrophe. Al-shabab in Somalia and also partly in my country continue to terrorize nations that have known conciliation since time in memorial. Civil wars in DRC Congo and Central African Republic; border wars between Eritrea and Djibouti yet so small states but with the ongoing African Union Summit let me wait and see how they address conflict. The recent disturbance is how Saudi Arabia, UAE, Egypt, Bahrain could cut ties with Qatar. Those 13 demands are hysterical to say the least but come on, do not shut down Al-Jazeera and end this Gulf crisis! We (Kenya) head for the polls on August 8th and we pray amity shall prevail and no past shall haunt us. In fact on August 4th Rwanda votes and anticipate we shall emulate them.
All this and much more reminds me of a comparison of society to a traditional stool in the UNBOWED book
. It has 3 legs that represent three critical pillars of just and stable societies. The 1st leg stands for democratic space, where rights are respected, whether they are human rights, women rights, children rights or environmental rights. The 2nd represent sustainable and equitable management of resources. And the 3rd stands for cultures of peace that are deliberately cultivated with communities and nations. The seat represents society and its prospects for development. Unless all three legs are in place, supporting the seat, no society can thrive. Neither can its citizens develop their skills and creativity. When one leg is missing, the seat is unstable; when two are missing it is impossible to keep any state alive; and when no legs are available, the state is as good as a failed state. No development can take place in such a state either. Instead, conflict ensues.
You can clearly see that in some nations they are either missing one leg, two or three legs. How well we thrive and bring back the stool to its stability depends on all our efforts but how far can we go for firmness?
We all have what we came to learn as we interacted with our societies and much of it we were born into it. Lately, I have been thinking of what happens when you don’t want to be associated with your culture. There are these rituals that are done and we often told of the consequences of not adhering to them. This is Africa and I bet each country, each tribe out there got their thing. Does the same apply to continents like Asia, North America, Antarctica? Well due to different deities of course Muslims, Hindus got their way of things and this even cuts across to ceremonies like marriages, death of loved ones and so on. Maybe, rebels have been there in the past and were they cursed? Can you be a rebel of your culture? Which custom would you want to change?
Feminist: a person who believes in the social, political and economic equality of the sexes
What is your definition of feminism? Can men be feminists? One of them told me no because it’s just the way life is. Like what gender has conformed each man and woman to do cannot be reversed. Don’t you agree that it is the high time we raised both boys and girls differently? That indeed there is a problem with gender? Who agrees with me? Or more so Ngozi?
In this short vintage book Chimamanda was first ridiculed as a child to be a feminist but she bragged it off till she wrote the purple hibiscus book where shades of feminism revolved her. She takes a reader through a unique setting of why we should be feminists. So, she thought?
She couldn’t become a class monitor back in school since the teacher told her that role was preserved for the boys
The parking assistant thanked the man she was with when she gave him money instead of thanking her all because he thought the man must have been the provider
The waiters in hotels did not say hi to her but to the man who had accompanied her
In bars and clubs she was denied access since she was alone and she needed to be with the company of a man for her to be checked in
Back in the day a woman and man would do the same task but the man got the higher pay
Most of the positions of power and prestige were occupied by men
Flash forward, she takes us through today’s society on how our upbringings can diminish oneself. For instances:
women are taught on how to be likable, to attract men and they should worry about how men think of them but who teaches the boy child on been likable and how to please girls?
We teach men of masculinity and put them in the hard cage but on the other hand the girl is taught she cannot be aggressive, angry and tough!
We teach the girls to shrink herself and if she is the breadwinner she should pretend not to be one since she will emasculate the man
at a certain age in life if am not married and am a girl that is one deep personal failure but the boy can take his time since it is said he hasn’t found his pick yet
if we have sons we don’t want to know who their girlfriends are but we sure want to know who your daughters are dating since they are alerted not to be sexual beings
We praise girls for virginity but we don’t praise boys for keeping their virginity
Gender prescribes how we should be rather than recognizing how we are. True or false? Today things have changed due to laws and policies in place but what really matters is our mindset and attitude. Our ideas have evolved but not that of gender. We must do it differently, much better and all of us.
Ps: I laughed about this part where she kept telling her friends who she is “i am a happy African Feminist who does not hate men and who likes to wear lip gloss and high heels for herself and not for men.”
We live in a world where nothing comes easy and if it does lady luck must be on your case. Some of us have never had the savior fair of linkages to accessing opportunities in this demanding life. So what do you do? The devil is a liar and he comes knocking at our door steps so hungry to devour the little left in us.
One moment you looking at a “too good to be true” deal that takes you to a Disney fantasy. Of course there is an organization by that name, the data spelled out is so accurate but how coining takes place to be a hoax only cons know best. Then word goes out that it is a SCAM!!!
So how did one get duped? It is easy…fraudsters like psychologists know the demands of frustrated people who have hustled office to office, who need capital to jump-start a venture without any collateral on their name, the likes who are stressed up and ready to grab whatever comes their way and those who like having an easy way out.
There was this chat on a Whats App group and everyone was too keen to share their swindled experiences and the last comment was “if you haven’t been deceived, your turn is coming.” That sounded more of horror than a warning and since I’ve never been in the hands of con-men I pray the angels shall continuously watch over me.
I assessed the game con-men like playing on us and only an alert mind can save you. First of all, how do they ask for an application fee let’s say for volunteering in an organization? Secondly, how do they send the same message over and over again using the same lame number? Thirdly, how do they sell the most expensive gadgets like a give-away toy? Fourthly, as the fooled how do you even leave your belongings to strangers? Lastly, why do you believe everything you told or see? You got to trust your instincts-they never let anyone down.
Having looked at that plot used man, I got to say their game is so down low! The bottom line is, no matter how desperate you can be never ever rush to actions that might cost your life big time. We all want to make it but it starts from scratch going to the top. Let the hunger in you burn for the appropriate measures and not for silly excitements that last for hours. BEWARE OF SCAMS.