Lyle, Caroline (2018):
"Afropolitanism for Black Women: Sexual Identity and Coming to Voice in Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s Americanah." Eds. Gordon, Jake William; Herrmann, Sebastian M.; Lieback, Hedwig; Rieger, Theresa; Schmieder, Katja; Schreier, Judith J.; Shoup, David McLean; Theune, Alina; Walther, Eric R.. aspeers 11: 101-123.
Journal Article

In discussing Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s award-winning novel Americanah, this article aims to expand Taiye Selasi’s concept of Afropolitanism. This term holds that Africans of the world “must form an identity along at least three dimensions: national, racial, cultural—with subtle tensions in between,” and my article proposes to include a sexual identity category. Considering the ongoing racist stigmatization of black sexuality in Western societies, I want to suggest that Selasi’s conceptualization of Afropolitanism, while potentially open to expansion, is currently incomplete. It is crucial for female Afropolitans to form a racialized sexual identity as well. Drawing on black sexuality scholarship as well as insights regarding theories of intersectionality, I argue that through the detailed exploration of the protagonist Ifemelu’s sexual identity, Americanah broadens the concept of Afropolitan identity construction for black heterosexual women. Ultimately, the novel insinuates that becoming a full subject is only possible when female racialized sexual experiences are consciously lived through and confronted, so that the voices of female Afropolitans can emerge.