Chikwado Analysis

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In Adichie’s story, the women are meant to be the embodiment of societal ideals, expected to follow the rules that society has set. Comparing Chikwado and the narrator, it becomes evident that Chikwado is the foil. She sees the narrator as “an irresponsible, vaguely foreign teen-ager.” The narrator, on the other hand, sees her as “full of simplified certainties” (Adichie). The narrator is the oddity, behaviorally and inwardly. She wears her hair in a low-cut, smokes in front of everyone, refuses to join in the prayer sessions, and holds the long relationships with the lover. Chikwado represents the perfect woman – religious, obedient and moral. Without question, she does everything that is deemed normal: attends the prayer sessions, serves…show more content…
There was a car crash where the taxi driver yelled at the narrator. “‘If you were wearing a wedding ring, he would not have shouted at you like that’” (Adichie 6). In this society, having a man is equal to having a sense of power but without it the narrator is utterly powerless. A man is considered superior to women because of the their accessibility to power. A women is expected to be submissive and not question the man. “The first time we quarreled, he said to me accusingly, ‘You don’t cry.’ I realized that his wife cried, that he could handle tears but not my cold defiance” (Adichie 4). Even as a mistress, which is not seen as moral and is not deemed how a woman should act, women are expected to be subservient to men. When she raises her voice and calls him a bastard, she is openly defying her expectations. She insults him when she calls him a bastard but even more she is insulting this power that he has over her. He believes that he takes his power back when he calls her back and says that if she “had cried […] he would have behaved better.” The wrongly placed blame marks this shift of power, ultimately making her feel powerless yet
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