Dear Ijeawele started life as a series of letters to a friend of author Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, after she was asked for advice on how to raise their new baby girl as a feminist.
When a couple of years ago a friend of mine from childhood, who’d grown into a brilliant, strong, kind woman, asked me to tell her how to raise her baby girl a feminist, my first thought was that I did not know.
It felt like too huge a task.
Adichie writes with wit and gentleness but with a commanding voice that draws attention, as with her fiction novels. While this book is only small, it covers a wide range of topics including instilling a love of reading, toy choice, conversations about sexuality, competition and changing oneself in order to promote your child’s feminist learnings.
This small book packs a punch, and is an essential for any feminist starter kit, along with Adichie’s previous feminist essay We Should All Be Feminists (and there is certainly a relevant overlap in content between the two). These two books are great primers for any person interested in finding out more about feminism and why we need it, leading readers into more adventurous in depth works by writers such as Audre Lorde, Angela C Davies and bell hooks.
I think it would also make a great present to any new mothers, as was its original use.
Interested? Get it here.
What to read next:
- Nasty Women, an essay collection by 404 Ink
- I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings by Maya Angelou
- Bad Feminist by Roxane Gay
Thank you kindly to the team at 4th Estate and Harper Collins for sharing this important book with me.