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Video: The Danger Of The Single Story

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Booker Prize winning author, Ben Okri, says of human beings: “we’re homo fabula. We are story telling beings.”  We make meaning of the world around us through stories and it is the stories we tell – as individuals, societies and nations – that shape how we see and how we are seen by the world. It is through stories that we’re tutored in the ways of humanity.

Yet stories can also be defective and so skew our understanding of the world. In a TEDTalk that is a few years old but still inspiring, Nigerian writer Chimanda Ngozi Adichie speaks of the danger of what she calls the single story. “The single story" she says, "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”. Apt words for today’s world.

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Photo Credit: Getty Images

Global Citizen x OkayAfrica: The Impact of Conflict on Children

An estimated 1.4 million children have been hit by schools closing in the Tigray region of Ethiopia amid conflict and crisis. Here's how that's impacting Ethiopia's children.

In times of conflict and war, school-aged children could have their futures defined by whether or not they can access education amid ongoing violence.

Ethiopia's northern region of Tigray is in the midst of a war that has impacted millions of lives and affected neighboring regions, Amhara and Afar. The war — which has forced citizens to flee, has tipped the region into famine, and has barricaded humanitarian aid from reaching the most vulnerable — has now been going on for about 11 months.

As the beginning of the school season draws nearer, safely reopening schools, making education accessible, and protecting children from the impacts of violence in the affected regions is a priority for aid agencies.

"As schools prepare to reopen in early October in most parts of the country, in Tigray and the bordering regions of Afar and Amhara, where the conflict has expanded, education remains at a standstill," Director of Education Cannot Wait, Yasmine Sherif, told Global Citizen.

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