Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie is at the top of the literary heap. She’s won a MacArthur “Genius” Grant and countless writer accolades. Her influence among her readers is powerful and profound. Adichie is using her star power, such as it is, to bring attention to the plight of Nigerians caught up in the Nigerian government’s “disastrous economic policy” that hurts its citizens. She’s started a “Wear Nigerian” campaign.
Adichie, a native Nigerian, says she will wear mostly Nigerian clothes in her public appearances, especially clothes produced by what she calls “‘inward-looking’ brands, those for whom dressing Nigerian women is as important as other goals.” Adichie’s nieces, Chisom and Amakaare, are managing an Instagram account that documents the author in Nigerian garb. But for the “Wear Nigerian” movement to gain momentum and really push the Nigerian design industry globally, Adichie will have to entice a film, TV or music star to join her. (There is a precedent with books — they sell a lot better after Hollywood adapts them.) Adichie has 833K followers on Facebook — that’s impressive. But TV and singing star Selena Gomez, who might be up to support a good cause, has 120 million followers on Instagram. That’s a lot of Nigerian fashion support to be tapped.