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For this Sunday, you’ll write a 3-5 page, MLA formatted essay that -Centers on a single story about the group of people you’ve been thinking about since Week Five.Defines what a single story is.Explains the single story you are focused on and its consequences.Identifies new or other ideas readers should consider to gain a more accurate understandingUses evidence with MLA in-text citations to support your ideas.Includes a counterargument you found through research.This counterargument can disagree with any aspect of your argument.Responds to that disagreement.After writing your rough draft, revise it so that it reflects the qualities of an effective essay.Introduce and conclude your essay.Focus on a primary issue throughout the essay (your main claim).
Example: “A common misunderstanding about X is that they Y. Instead we should understand Z so that … (a positive outcome can occur).Organize your ideas into paragraphs that each defend a key idea related to the main claim and that build upon each other logically. Include a counterargument from an actual (not made up) source, and respond to it.Write an essay that’s clear, logical, and impactful for the reader.Cite the ideas of outside authors, using MLA in-text citations.Works Cited entries are not required, but include links to your sources on the Works Cited page.To meet the B standard, your essay will – Be written on an MLA-formatted document.For this, use your template that you’ve corrected, as necessary.Be no shorter than 3 full pages long (written to the end of page three), double-spaced.Center on a “single story” as Adichie defines it, about the group of people you’ve been thinking about since Week Five.Define what a “single story” is, naming Adichie as the creator of this idea.Explain this single story you’re focused on and its consequences.Identify new or other key ideas readers should consider to gain a more accurate understanding.Each key idea (subclaim) should be explained and supported in a full body paragraph. Each body paragraph should be related back to the main claim.Use evidence with MLA in-text citations to support your key ideas.Include a counterargument you found through research.Respond to that disagreement.”Make sense,” meaning the essay must follow a clear, natural, and logical line of discussion and reasoning.Be free of grammatical errors that make sentences difficult to understand.
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Millennials
In her article, “leading the charge for change,” Susan looks at how the millennial
generation is a force of change to the underlying challenges facing people in different fields.
Hers is a comparison between the millennials commonly referred to as generation y differ from
their predecessors, generation x. This is a generation that turned into adulthood in the wake of
the 21st century, and as such, they have attributes that make them different from their
predecessors.
The author goes ahead to give detailed examples of how the millennial generation will
bring about change in the world and especially in the way business is conducted. Unlike their
formers, generation y individuals are known to look for solutions to challenges they face rather
than quitting. They believe in working things out as a group and not sitting back as the world
turns against them. There is also the issue of motivation among these individuals towards
success. Theirs is a life filled with expectations about the future and how they would like their
lives to look like. Millennials would not settle for less, and as such, they would be willing to
work around the clock and become successful.
The good thing about the author is that she gives life-related examples about how the Y
generation differs from their parents. These are proven facts considering that they have grown in
an era where radicle innovations are taking place. They have to, therefore, fit into the situation
else their lives would become useless.
Kimberly fries in her article on Forbes magazine in 2018 reviewed the different ways in
which generation x is bringing change to the way leadership is approached. Just like Susan, she
also views this generation as one that is ambitious and full of belief in themselves. As such, they
are willing to lose themselves until such a time when change is realized within their places of
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work. Though not all may indicate the same characteristics, a great percentage proves to be
optimistic about the future giving the current leaders at their organizations a challenging
moment.
Kimberly goes ahead to give examples of how this generation is bringing change to the
way the different people perceive leadership. Theirs is an approach that seeks to build and not to
indicate authority. As such, their preference is a flat leadership approach in the organization they
work for. They would like to be in an organization where they are able to talk to the management
directly. The tedious protocols that were there in the previous generations where one had to
follow a certain communication channel to pass a message are not their liking.
Being a millennial communication and leadership commentator at Forbes magazine,
Kimberly is best suited to talk about leadership with regards to the millennials. Her work focuses
on change that is brought about by this generation in making the corporate world easier to run.
The work is connected to that of Susan as they both look at millennials from the perspective of
the corporate world and how they bring change in a bid to outdo their parent generation.
Chou, on the other hand, seeks to understand the behavior of millennial
generation primarily in the places of work. He goes ahead to look at the different names
given to the generation which is considered to have been born between 1979 and 1994.
This generation according to the author has received considerable attention from various
scholars. Different views of the generation have been given, but chou seeks to define
them from the perspective of their behavior at the place of work.
In his view, managers fall under generation x need to have an understanding of how they
should deal with individuals from generation y. This is as they are the youngest workforce and
they have been brought up in an era where great changes across the different fields of operation
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continue to take place. Understanding them, therefore, gives the leaders of these organization an
easy time in managing them. As sit is, millennials will take up the leadership roles of these
organizations at a time when significant changes shall have been implemented. As such, there is
a need to handle them in a way that would be convenient for them.
This article also relates to the other two in that the author focuses on the millennial
generation and their place of work. The author gives compelling reasons for the need to
understand them to be in a position to adequately handle them. This message is specifically
directed to the managers and leaders of the various organizations who would come into contact
with individuals from the said generation as their employees.
Having grown up with individuals who are mostly from the generation y era gives me
insight into how different they are from the rest. Theirs is a love for what they do, and they
practically are different from their parents who are of generation x. I, therefore, concur with the
authors of the three articles that indeed the millennial generation is set to bring change in the
workplace.
Works Cited
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Chou, Shih Yung. “Millennials in the workplace: A conceptual analysis of millennials’ leadership
and followership styles.” International Journal of Human Resource Studies 2.2 (2012).
Emeagwali, N. Susan. “Millennials: Leading the Charge for Change.” Techniques: Connecting
Education and Careers (J1)86.5 (2011): 22-26.
Kimberly Fries. 7 ways Millennials are changing traditional leadership (2018, Jan) Retrieved
from: https://www.forbes.com/sites/kimberlyfries/2018/01/18/7-ways-millennials-arechanging-traditional-leadership/#45e22dfa7dae
Annotated Video Transcripts
Unit 7
CHIMAMANDA NGOZI ADICHIE
The Danger of a Single Story
Part 1
I’m a storyteller. And I would like to tell you a few personal
stories about what I like to call “the danger of the single story.” I
grew up on a university campus in eastern Nigeria. My mother
says that I started reading at the age of two, although I think
four is probably close to the truth. So I was an early reader,
and what I read were British and American children’s books.
I was also an early writer, and when I began to write, at about
the age of seven, stories in pencil with crayon illustrations
that my poor mother1 was obligated to read, I wrote exactly
the kinds of stories I was reading: All my characters were
white and blue-eyed, they played in the snow, they ate
apples, and they talked a lot about the weather, how lovely2
it was that the sun had come out. Now, this despite the fact
that I lived in Nigeria. I had never been outside Nigeria. We
didn’t have snow, we ate mangoes, and we never talked
about the weather, because there was no need to.
My characters also drank a lot of ginger beer3 because
the characters in the British books I read drank ginger beer.
Never mind that I had no idea what ginger beer was. And for
many years afterwards, I would have a desperate desire to
taste ginger beer. But that is another story.
What this demonstrates, I think, is how impressionable
and vulnerable we are in the face of a story, particularly
as children. Because all I had read were books in which
characters were foreign, I had become convinced that books
by their very nature had to have foreigners in them and had
to be about things with which I could not personally identify.
Now, things changed when I discovered African books. There
weren’t many of them available, and they weren’t quite as
easy to find as the foreign books.
But because of writers like Chinua Achebe and Camara Laye,
I went through a mental shift in my perception of literature.
I realized that people like me, girls with skin the color of
The adjective “poor” is often used to offer someone sympathy in a situation. Adichie is partly making
fun of herself here as she sympathizes with her mother who had to read all her young stories.
1
The adjective “lovely” describes something pleasant. It is more popularly used in British English than
American English.
2
The drink “ginger beer” is usually a non-alcoholic, carbonated, sweet drink. There are also alcoholic
versions. In the U.S., a somewhat similar drink is called “ginger ale.”
3
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chocolate, whose kinky hair could not form ponytails,4
could also exist in literature. I started to write about things I
recognized.
Now, I loved those American and British books I read. They
stirred my imagination. They opened up new worlds for me.
But the unintended consequence5 was that I did not know
that people like me could exist in literature. So what the
discovery of African writers did for me was this: It saved me
from having a single story of what books are.
Part 2
I come from a conventional, middle-class Nigerian family. My
father was a professor. My mother was an administrator. And
so we had, as was the norm, live-in domestic help,6 who
would often come from nearby rural villages. So the year I
turned eight, we got a new houseboy.7 His name was Fide.
The only thing my mother told us about him was that his
family was very poor. My mother sent yams and rice, and our
old clothes, to his family. And when I didn’t finish my dinner,
my mother would say, “Finish your food! Don’t you know?
People like Fide’s family have nothing.” So I felt enormous pity
for Fide’s family.
Then one Saturday we went to his village to visit, and his
mother showed us a beautifully patterned basket made of
dyed raffia that his brother had made. I was startled. It had
not occurred to me that anybody in his family could actually
make something. All I had heard about them was how poor
they were, so that it had become impossible for me to see
them as anything else but poor. Their poverty was my single
story of them.
Years later, I thought about this when I left Nigeria to go
to university in the United States. I was 19. My American
roommate was shocked by me. She asked where I had
learned to speak English so well, and was confused when
I said that Nigeria happened to have English as its official
language. She asked if she could listen to what she called my
“tribal music,” and was consequently very disappointed when
I produced my tape of Mariah Carey. She assumed that I did
not know how to use a stove.
What struck me was this: She had felt sorry for me even
before she saw me. Her default position toward me, as an
African, was a kind of patronizing, well-meaning pity. My
roommate had a single story of Africa: a single story of
catastrophe.8 In this single story, there was no possibility
The adjective “kinky” is commonly used to describe black or African hair. By pointing out that her
hair cannot go in a “ponytail,” Adichie is illustrating again how different she was from the white
protagonists in the stories she read.
     4
     5
An “unintended consequence” is not a primary one, but secondary.
6&7
dichie uses both the words “domestic help” and “houseboy” to refer to someone who lives in her
A
home to help with cleaning, cooking, and other chores. The former is the more generic, accepted
term to describe such a job. The term “houseboy” was likely a common colloquialism when Adichie
was young.
The “single story of catastrophe” that she describes refers to the problems of poverty, illness, and
famine that are often associated with Africa.
     8
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Annotated Video Transcripts
of Africans being similar to her in any way, no possibility
of feelings more complex than pity, no possibility of a
connection as human equals. . . .
But I must quickly add that I, too, am just as guilty in the
question of the single story. A few years ago, I visited
Mexico from the U.S. The political climate9 in the U.S. at
the time was tense, and there were debates going on about
immigration. And, as often happens in America, immigration
became synonymous with Mexicans. There were endless
stories of Mexicans as people who were fleecing10 the
healthcare system, sneaking across the border, being
arrested at the border, that sort of thing.
I remember walking around on my first day in Guadalajara,
watching the people going to work, rolling up tortillas in the
marketplace, smoking, laughing. I remember first feeling
slight surprise. And then I was overwhelmed with shame. I
realized that I had been so immersed in the media coverage
of Mexicans that they had become one thing in my mind:
the abject immigrant. I had bought into the single story of
Mexicans, and I could not have been more ashamed of
myself. So that is how to create a single story, show a people
as one thing, as only one thing, over and over again, and that
is what they become.
. . . But to insist on only these negative stories is to flatten
my experience11 and to overlook the many other stories
that formed me. The single story creates stereotypes, and
the problem with stereotypes is not that they are untrue, but
that they are incomplete. They make one story become the
only story. . . . I’ve always felt that it is impossible to engage
properly with a place or a person without engaging with all of
the stories of that place and that person. The consequence of
the single story is this: It robs people of dignity. It makes our
recognition of our equal humanity difficult. It emphasizes how
we are different rather than how we are similar.
. . . I teach writing workshops in Lagos every summer, and it
is amazing to me how many people apply, how many people
are eager to write, to tell stories. My Nigerian publisher and I
have just started a non-profit called Farafina12 Trust, and we
have big dreams of building libraries and refurbishing libraries
that already exist and providing books for state schools that
don’t have anything in their libraries, and also of organizing
lots and lots of workshops, in reading and writing, for all the
people who are eager to tell our many stories. Stories matter.
Many stories matter. Stories have been used to dispossess
and to malign, but stories can also be used to empower and
to humanize. Stories can break the dignity of a people, but
stories can also repair that broken dignity. . . .
The term “political climate” is used to describe the populace’s general attitude, and surrounding
tensions, in regards to a certain political topic or social issue at the time.
9
10
To “fleece” someone means to dishonestly take money from them.
Adiche is likely using the word “flatten” here to describe how stereotypes make our experiences
one-dimensional.
11
12
Farafina’s website is farafinatrust.org.
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