Ayobami Adebayo

Nigerian author

Ayobami Adebayo (born January 29, 1988) is a Nigerian writer.


  • I wanted to write about extended family systems. You have people you can fall back on, and it’s good. But what if you don’t fit into what is expected of you? If you’re a man, there’s support. If you’re a woman, like Yejide, there’s the expectation that you marry into a family and after a couple of years you have children, and you have a measure of power. I wanted to look at what would happen if you could choose to be what you’re supposed to be, and how the community, in trying to help you become what you think you should be, turns on you.
  • I wanted to look at the subtle ways that Nigerians interacted with the Nigerian state. One of the ways we survive darkness—and there’s a lot of darkness in this book—is to find reasons to laugh. Laughter in those kinds of situations becomes essential. It’s not a luxury. It’s not just something you do because you feel like laughing. It’s been one of the ways I’ve coped myself. I wanted to bring that to this book because it would be miserable if there was no humor…
  • There is a strong view in Nigeria, as in many other cultures, that a marriage is not complete without children. I don’t agree; I’m wary of the idea that people have to have some particular functionality in order to be full members of society. I think it’s a very dangerous idea. Humans are humans and they are worthy of respect…
  • I am interested in the idea that people should be able to define their own happiness. It’s not just about fertility; we are often told that we need this or that to be happy. We need to be thin, rich or whatever. But maybe we should decide for ourselves what happiness looks like.

External linksEdit

Wikipedia has an article about: