The Danger of a Single Story According to Adichie Essay
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1. According to Adichie, how is Africa often described?
According to her, Africa is often described as a place of beautiful landscapes and animals with incomprehensible people fighting senseless wars, dying of poverty and aids. It is a continent of catastrophes where people are pitiful illiterate aborigines who have no possibility of being human equals. They are unable to speak for themselves and are waiting for foreigners to save them. All in all, Africa is a lowly continent with nothing more but scenic places with starving people.
2. Did it affect Africa? How?
Yes, it affected Africa so much because it only showed all the negative sides of Africa and did not illustrate the beauty of the continent. It shows that Africa is a poor continent with even poorer people who does nothing to improve their lives. It does not indicate all the magnificence of the continent and the attributes of the people in it. Africa is degraded because of these inadequate and unfitting descriptions.
3. What is a single story? What is the power of single story?
A single story is a view of something, somewhere or of someone that only shows one side of the coin. It is incomplete. It may have different versions but they all have the same view. For example, what if I tell you that Boracay is a dirty place where people have no regard for nature? The beach is filled with moss and there are plastics everywhere? What if all the things you have heard about Boracay is something like this? It doesn’t sound inviting, does it? But what if I tell you that those who disregard nature are punished and that they clean up all the rubbish they find.
That Boracay is a paradise? Now that is a pleasing sight isn’t it? That is an example of what a single story is. It shows only one point of view. And from that point of view builds another story and so on that will not convey the whole truth about the topic. A single story can be very powerful indeed because it blinds people from a great deal of things. It shows things, places or people as one thing only and emphasizes on the differences and not the similarities. It can not only make a story but it can also make it the only story of that particular topic.