We are always on the lookout for great storytellers who bring their specific experiences to the work that they do. Listed below are 10 global storytellers whose work we admire. Each person is skilled at connecting their unique experience to universal themes through storytelling. Moving, emotional, and powerful work can be found by any of the creators below.
Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie (Nigeria/USA) is the author of short stories and novels like Half a Yellow Sun. She speaks about the importance of representation in storytelling in a TED Talk called “The Danger of a Single Story,” which has been viewed over 26 million times.
Yoseph Ayele (Ethiopia/New Zealand) is the co-founder of the Edmund Hillary Fellowship, a community of entrepreneurs, investors, and change makers in New Zealand. Ayele speaks about his experience as an immigrant and about the way political borders affect human beings (“The way we think about immigration is flawed”).
Connie Walker (Okanese First Nation) is an investigative reporter and host of the podcasts Finding Cleo and Stolen: The Search for Jermain. Walker writes and speaks about the responsibility she feels to represent her community and the need for Indigenous people to be able to tell their own stories.
Katlego K Kolanyane-Kesupile (Botswana) calls herself an ARTivist – as she combines art and activism in her work as a development consultant, cultural architect and scholar. Kolanyane-Kesupile speaks about identity, personhood, and belonging in a TED Talk titled “How I’m bringing queer pride to my rural village.”
Ken Honda (Japan) is a prolific writer and podcaster, with over 50 books published in Japanese. Honda’s first English book, Happy Money, deals with emotional intelligence and the finance industry. He champions a zen approach to work/life balance.
Lee Lawrence (UK) wrote a memoir in 2020 called The Louder I Will Sing, which tells the story of his life. Lawrence’s mother, Dorothy “Cherry” Groce, was shot by the police in their home in 1985. This event was one catalyst for the 1985 Brixton uprising. He speaks about healing from trauma and honoring the work of activists who came before him.
Aminatou Sow (Guinea/USA) is a writer and host of the popular podcast Call Your Girlfriend, and co-founded Tech LadyMafia, a network for women working in the tech industry. Sow speaks about the intersection of feminism, pop culture, and politics.
Nontombi Naomi Tutu (South Africa/USA) is an educator, human rights activist and speaker. The daughter of Archbishop Desmond Tutu and Leah Nomalizo Tutu, she speaks about the influence of both of her parents on her activism and life.
Priya Krishna (USA) is a food writer and author of Indian-ish: Recipes and Antics From a Modern American Family. She writes and speaks about trends in the food and restaurant world, and about the intersection of cultures within those worlds. She has a large following of fans on her NYT Cooking show on YouTube.
Jasmine Guillory (USA) is the author of five novels, including The Wedding Date. Guillory writes about Black protagonists in a genre of writing (romance fiction) that has been dominated by white authors and stories.
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