How might we begin to “reject the single stor[ies]” in our lives?


It goes without saying that ignorance is one the most important issues facing us today. There are those who argue that when we do not enjoy or like something, it is only because we do have yet to delve in deeper into the topic. In our lives, it is practically impossible to avoid single stories. It is unfortunate yet the complete truth of one’s story could only be held in a person’s mind only when experienced. As Ms Adichie mentioned in her TED talk, single stories are so powerful as they create an image of a person or concept in one’s mind with only some limited truth, otherwise known as a stereotype. I think it’s quite intimidating to have to think that I must be rejecting and encouraging others to reject a single story in our lives; it’s inevitable. Take death, for instance. We all have to come to a death at one point, yet we try everything we can to stay healthy and delay that point as much as we can. I think of a single story – based mind as the same idea; to fix a mind on one aspect of a story and refusing to look from other perspectives is like refusing to be cured of an illness.

Every human holds different values and beliefs. What values and beliefs they are, is up to the individual. What I think should be essential is that making sure that every human has access to view a story told from multiple sources. Society controls this to a great extent – so I think educating young adults to look into a wider range of sources, view news from different political spectrums, promote empathy, and teaching to view the world in different lenses is a good way to start.

All things considered, what beliefs and values an individual develops the information into is completely up to them, but the important thing is to make sure a diverse source of resources are easily accessible and available is the best step to take at the moment to rejecting a single story.