The Danger of a Single Story

Classroom of Many Cultures

PACE360 is a multidisciplinary unit that helps to prepare students for international PACE placements. The aim of the unit is to prepare students to see, think and do differently. One of the first activities we do is to watch this TED talk by the Nigerian novelist, Chimamanda Adichie.

It is a powerful talk in which she shares ‘the danger of a single story’, warning that if we only hear a single story about a person, country or issue we risk great misunderstanding. Adichie says, “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.”

In PACE360 we ask our students to find an example of a ‘single story’ and to reflect on the ways it has impacted their understanding of a particular event; historical or contemporary / personal or public.

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