Stella Dimoko Korkus.com: Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie Clarifies Transgender Comments As Backlash Grows

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Tuesday, 14 March 2017

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie Clarifies Transgender Comments As Backlash Grows

Nigerian novelist and feminist Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie has sought to clarify her position after sparking outrage with comments about transgender women that she made in an interview with Channel 4 News. 






The author of Half of a Yellow Sun came under attack after she failed to call transgender women “real women” in response to a question.

In the interview, broadcast on 10 March, Adichie said “I think the whole problem of gender in the world is about our experiences. It’s not about how we wear our hair or whether we have a vagina or a penis. It’s about the way the world treats us, and I think if you’ve lived in the world as a man with the privileges that the world accords to men and then sort of change gender, it’s difficult for me to accept that then we can equate your experience with the experience of a woman who has lived from the beginning as a woman and who has not been accorded those privileges that men are.”


In a lengthy post on Facebook on 12 March, the writer, who has campaigned for LGBTQ rights in Nigeria, said she had been shocked by accusations of transphobia and reiterated her support for the rights of trans people.


Though the claim that transgender women are the same as women born female springs from “a need to make trans issues mainstream”, it feels “disingenuous” to take that stance, Adichie wrote. “The intent is a good one but the strategy feels untrue. Diversity does not have to mean division.”


She had intended, in the Channel 4 interview, to highlight the treatment of women, she explains: “Girls are socialised in ways that are harmful to their sense of self – to reduce themselves, to cater to the egos of men, to think of their bodies as repositories of shame. As adult women, many struggle to overcome, to unlearn, much of that social conditioning.”



Noting that trans women have experienced the privileges of living as a male before transitioning, she added: “Because the truth about societal privilege is that it isn’t about how you feel. (Anti-racist white people still benefit from race privilege in the United States). It is about how the world treats you, about the subtle and not so subtle things that you internalize and absorb.”



Some trans women welcomed Adichie’s clarification. Writing beneath her Facebook post, Marit Stafstrom, who describes herself as transgender, said: “It isn’t transphobic to acknowledge the simple truth that there are differences between women and transwomen. It’s just being sane and real, and I think it’s [a] necessary voice within feminist discourse that shouldn’t be dismissed out-of-hand.”


But the majority of reactions remained hostile. Trans activist Kylie She/her tweeted: “Cis women: Please talk to us trans women, start listening to us and stop speaking for us.” She added: “Well, the world treats all women in varied, often oppressive, ways, because it is believed women are lesser. Applies to trans women too.”


Adichie is the latest feminist to come under fire over definitions of womanhood. Last week Jenni Murray, presenter of Woman’s Hour, was attacked for an article in which she appeared to question the right of transgender women to be considered “real women”. Writing in the Sunday Times magazine, the broadcaster said that she is “not transphobic or anti-trans” and called for respect and protection from bullying and violence equally for “transsexuals, transvestites, gays, lesbians and those of us who hold to the sex and sexual preference assumed at birth”. But the article appeared under the headline: “Jenni Murray: Be trans, be proud – but don’t call yourself a ‘real woman’”.

Campaigns director of Stonewall Rachel Cohen condemned Murray’s views. “Trans women have every right to have their identity and experiences respected, too. They are women – just like you and me – and their sense of their gender is as engrained in their identity as yours or mine,” she wrote. “Being trans is not about ‘sex changes’ and clothes – it’s about an innate sense of self.”

From theguardian

55 comments:

straight shooter(allergic to bullshit*) said...

Kikiki, i laugh in swahili ,at this sexless people called trans!
Chimamanda Adichie my woman crush everyday, i heart you, and you can say or do no wrong in my eye..

Yori Yori Princess Loveme Jeje said...

These people ruling the world. Either you are with them or they throw you under the bus.

Madam try pacify them. They rule the world

ukwu dimond said...

Is alright

Miss Ess said...

She is saying the truth. You are a trans woman you like it or not.

LUCILE COCONUT OIL ABUJA 07059605320 Pin- 2BC6235E said...

Chim ama nda!!!!!

Anonymous said...

Chimamandaaaaaaaaaa! Luv you to the moon and back. You can do no wrong to me!💕💕💕💕💕

Anonymous said...

Silly girl. I stopped loving Ngozi after the arrogance came to the surface, she can be so rude it's alarming.

Anonymous said...

My everyday crush! When wil twinkas start merging and loosing my faith in them.. Any news from loopers club.

Youjy Young said...

Just imagine!!!!! Uwa emebiela. This world don spoil funish. My bags are packed, waiting for rapture to take place. May God Almighty give me the grace to live according to his will till that wonderful hour comes. Amen

Blackberry said...

A trans woman is never a real woman!
You have a penis for petesake!
Just cos u got implants doesn't make u woman!
Ya got no VAGINA....

becky naka said...

I so love this woman, she can do no wrong in my eye.

Francdol said...

True talk

Adeniji Bisi said...

Well said Adichie..



Mc pinky

Anonymous said...

Bla bla bla bla!

Love your novels but don't actually don't approve of your views on women feminist stuff.
More of your novels less talk.

BLUNT said...

I am unabashedly and unrepentantly homophobic.

DON™ said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
DON™ said...

Trans women are not real women, they are not even women at all. They are not worthy to be called women !


Science projects want to force* themselves on us.

EkaTre said...

But she said the actual truth, they are not women.

Anonymous said...

Why are men so obsessed with women and women matters. Why can't they just leave women alone. Women have enough on their plates already and they don't need men who decide they want to become women aka transgenders to complicate life for them further simply because these transgender people believe they are now women.
They can never truly be a woman if they were not born as a female. They are still men, they were born as a male and once lived as a male. They should stay on their lane and stay out of the issues of real women that were born as female.
Trans women are trans women period and should not compare themselves to women born as females, they can never feel the pains and joy that comes with being born a female.

Kwikwi said...

She merely stated a fact based on well formed observations; I wonder why all the backlash. A lot of people cannot engage in a reasonable debate without raging emotions.

Anonymous said...

Men are just never satisfied. Until they destroy this world they will not be happy or satisfied.

CHI EXOTIC said...

She's very right
As a transwoman, I would never think of you as complete woman or accord you the respect I would give to a woman that was born female.

Transgenders should not whining

If you were created a man and you change gender to a woman, sorry boo,but you're and will always be a man to me.
Their thick voices don't even help matters
LOL.

tush baby said...

Na only brilliant people like me fit understand this essay

Bee10 said...

So trans women believe they are women too?

To me all trans will remain trans not minding the gender

Anonymous said...

And the flip side nko? Women becoming men? Should we punch them silly when we have a quarrel? I assure you, a portion of society will call it men abusing women despite the appellation of trans. Biko, wetin no good no good, period!

MISSFIT said...

SUPPORTED

Anonymous said...

These days people cant have their own different opinion you must go with the prevailing mind set or they will tear you apart. The moment I heard her comments I knew she would be in deep trouble

Candid! said...

I don't understand the whole back lash. Everything chimmamanda said is absolutely true. How can u have lived half of ur life or even most of ur life as a man( Bruce Jenner for instance) and feel that u can say uve been through exactly the same discriminations a real woman has experienced?

Starting with nature, nature dealt women a big blow with menstruation and transwomen can never experience what that feels like. The discrimination against a girl child starts from infancy ,so Wearing heels and getting surgery to remove ur penis doesn't make u a woman, and u can never equate ur experiences to those of us who grew up as women.

That's not to say that trans women don't experience discriminations and all sorts of ills thrown at them, but for heaven's sake its different. I genuinely don't even feel she needed to explain herself.

The LGBT community need to chill, noone placed the burden of confusion upon them, they chose that life,and so their anger should be directed at themselves please.

Sunkanmi Shogbesan said...

BlackBerry u mean de gat no vagina? I taught d do, de do surgical ops to remove der p and replaced wt a V. Init?

Suwa Nen said...

Kinda agree with her

Swiss Raphino said...

Trans are artificial. A mockery of God's own creation. Trans will never be a real lady. E.g they don't feel the pains of labor or menstruation so why would you want to be treated as a lady.

Anonymous said...

She is intelligent and confident. These combination is often seen as rude from pea brains.

Swiss Raphino said...

When they start menstruating and going through labor pains they should let me know but for now..You are just a sick guy that Satan uses to provoke God.

Vivilicious said...

Ruling the world you say? Really???
Anyways IMO, a transwoman is a transwoman. If they Weren't born with a vagina,can't experience menstrual cramps, ovulation, PMS and co, then they have no right to call themselves women.
A woman is a woman and a trans is a trans.

Vivilicious said...

CIA women kor. They even turn the thing to organic chemistry.

Vivilicious said...

*cis*

Omotola Brianna said...

Eka tre, u dey mind them. Wannabes. Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie....... I love you dear.

Omotola Brianna said...

Rule the world??????? Which of the world????????

Omotola Brianna said...

Really??????? Tell us more

Omotola Brianna said...

Amen.

crownwonder said...

Just join elithel/com ....it is working and paying people.

Anonymous said...

Lobatan

DON™ said...

😯

DON™ said...

Hey !.. Sorry she's confident.

DON™ said...

Same here.

Blackberry said...

Lol, replace kini? The female anatomy is different, a vagina can't be fixed on a male. They simply put their penis in-between their thighs n wear a tight undie. So leave those trans confused wannabes.

Navaisha said...

Chimamanda has been so "Oyibonised" it's alarming. Please do what you are good at (writing) and stop you gay rights activism. Ever since I read her views trying to force homosexuality down Africa's throat, I went "BLEH" I am homophobic and proud. Ain't nobody got time for their shit. Since it's their right to be gay, then it's my right to be anti-gay

CharisMAtic DIVA said...

...so Rude???
How @ anon?


Anonymous said...

Blackberry, you just fall hand sha! I transgender female is different from a cross-dresser.

Kiks said...

Confidence can be mistaken for arrogance.

Etsako Pearl said...

Amen

Anonymous said...

I am afraid that we live in a world where contrary opinions are automatically shut down, however valid and reasonable. How hard can it be to understand that being a woman is different from wanting to be or feeling like a woman? Adiche makes the point that I have always pondered about. How can a man tell me his transition to a woman makes him a woman just as much I am? I feel this undermines what it means to be a woman. It reduces womanhood to certain defined features that can be acquired. Being a woman is much much more than having certain biological features, wearing makeup or living in a certain way.
Indeed, I wondered why Bruce Jenner got the woman of the year award. Just for daring to say he wants to live as a woman? So amongst the millions of 'women' in the US or even the world none was more deserving to be celebrated as a woman than the man Jenner? Its hard enough being recognised and appreciated as woman, a man is now celebrated for being a woman, its like saying here is a man whose ideals and standards you should live up to, emulate and desire, afterall, he has done you a favour by choosing to be one of you. How many women have received awards for simply being or living as they were created? We may as well start giving awards with birth certificates and late joiners can thereafter recieve theirs. Can we really say that a trans man can achieve a similar feat, being a man of the year!
How many men were disqualified from inheriting their late father's properties on the basis of gender? Told to shut up, shove your ideas, tone your expression to behave like a woman etc?. Women have lived in a patriarchal world that defined the roles, expectations, experiences, values and hopes of being female. You cant equate that with a man who makes the choice to live as a woman.

Anonymous said...

It is inappropriate to categorise Transgendereds as either men or women biko. They are TRANSgender! But wait o, does this now imply that humans now have 3 sex gender categories as opposed to 2 created by God??

missylynn said...

Adichie always making wave all over the world

Babesarise said...

For once I agree with you

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