Ethnic Religion Identity Politics Nigeria Essay

Download this Essay in word format (.doc)

Note: Sample below may appear distorted but all corresponding word document files contain proper formatting

Excerpt from Essay:

This of course is easier said than done as currently most ethnic and sub-ethnic groups are simply seeking recognition and voice of their own identity, one that was subverted by the British colonial dictates of an organized and orderly nation, able to be easily run from just a few regional seats.

Higazi notes that in central Nigeria another example of an age old social and political tradition previously serving to ensure the safety of the people from crime, especially in rural areas has now shifted its focus to ethnic and religious difference as a source of vigilante and militia behavior. Though the vigilante and militia forces in central Nigeria have historically served a fundamentally useful purpose of keeping people safe they are now seen to be factionalizing (since about 2001) to deal with issues traditionally not in their area of interest.

In some places, forms of surveillance changed as vigilante groups expanded their objectives in relation to growing tension and violence. There was generally a shift or extension from vigilance against criminality to vigilance against attacks by opposing groups or militias defining themselves in religious or ethnic terms. The emphasis on social control within religious or cultural groups was also prominent in some areas. Hence, vigilantism in this context appears not only to have increased but also to have been transformed.

So, an ad hoc entity that previously served an important social and community role is now intensified and serving as an example for the growth of conflict based upon ethnic and religious ideation.

There are countless examples of the conflict in Nigeria, despite its nature as definitively the most progressed of all the political states in Africa, following its independence from Britain. The fact that Nigeria seems to be devolving in revolution resulting from the development of new and old ways of expressing its cultural diversity is not really surprising, given its historical underpinnings as one of the jewels of the colonial body. The colonial experience inserted into a relatively peaceful society ideation of "otherness" and acceptance of social and political abject control and elitism by a singular and even foreign governing body.

This fact is not to be taken lightly as the nation undergoes what would seem insurmountable conflict associated with the reinvigoration of the rights and identities of both old and new ethnic and religious identities. Social, economic, political, ethnic, religious and other disparities will likely continue to influence street level, regional and national conflict for some time to come as the nation tries over and over to shirk the legacy of colonial division.

It is impossible to say if and when Nigeria would have developed into a cohesive democratically ideal state, ascribed by the western ideal, without the influx of the colonial body, but this is the situation that modern Nigerians are left with and their ability to create a state where most of the people are represented will likely continue to be a struggle because of it.

Reference List

Aihiokhai, Simonmary Asese. 2010. "Penticostalism and Poltical Empowerment: The Nigerian Phenomenon." Journal of Ecumenical Studies 45, no. 2: 249-264. Academic Search Premier, EBSCOhost (accessed March 23, 2011).

Akanji, Olajide O. 2009. "Group Rights and Conflicts in Africa: A Critical Reflection on Ife-Modakeke, Nigeria." International Journal on Minority & Group Rights 16, no. 1: 31-51. Academic Search Premier, EBSCOhost (accessed March 23, 2011).

Casey, Conerly. 2008. "Marginal Muslims": Politics and the Perceptual Bounds of Islamic Authenticity in Northern Nigeria." Africa Today 54, no. 3: 67. MasterFILE Premier, EBSCOhost (accessed March 23, 2011).

Higazi, Adam. 2008. "Social Mobilization and Collective Violence: Vigilantes and Militias in the Lowlands of Plateau State, Central Nigeria." Africa 78, no. 1: 107-135. Academic Search Premier, EBSCOhost (accessed March 23, 2011).

John, Ime a., Aminu Z. Mohammed, Andrew D. Pinto, and Celestine a. Nkanta. 2007. "Gun Violence in Nigeria: A Focus on Ethno-Religious Conflict in Kano." Journal of Public Health Policy 28, no. 4: 420-431. Academic Search Premier, EBSCOhost (accessed March 23, 2011).

Kieh Jr., George Klay. 2009. "Reconstituting the Neo-Colonial State in Africa." Journal of Third World Studies 26, no. 1: 41-55. Academic Search Premier, EBSCOhost (accessed March 23, 2011).

Thomson, Alex. An Introduction to African Politics 3rd edition. New York, NY: Routledge (2010).

Alex Thomson, an introduction to African Politics 3rd edition. (New York, NY: Routledge 2010), 75.

George Klay Kieh Jr., "Reconstituting the Neo-Colonial State in Africa." Journal of Third World Studies 26, no. 1 (2009), 41.

Keih, 41.

Thomson, 76.

Keih, 42.

Akanji, 31.


Conerly Casey. "Marginal Muslims": Politics and the Perceptual Bounds of Islamic Authenticity in Northern Nigeria." Africa Today 54 no.1 (2008) 67.

Casey, 68.

Casey, 68.

Simonmary Asese Aihiokhai. "Penticostalism and Poltical Empowerment: The Nigerian Phenomenon." Journal of Ecumenical Studies 45, no. 2: (2010) 250.


Cite This Essay:

"Ethnic Religion Identity Politics Nigeria" (2011, March 23) Retrieved December 10, 2016, from

"Ethnic Religion Identity Politics Nigeria" 23 March 2011. Web.10 December. 2016. <>

"Ethnic Religion Identity Politics Nigeria", 23 March 2011, Accessed.10 December. 2016,

Other Documents Pertaining To This Topic

  • Nigeria the Most Populous Country

    Traditional social hierarchy, which was practiced in pre-colonial times, survived in the form of ethical norms. Nigerians are very respectful to the holders of traditional titles such as chief, emir, Oba or Eze; as in ancient times chiefs' role was semi-divine as they were considered to be appointed by supreme powers. Holders of these titles take high positions in modern community hierarchy, especially in rural areas. Inner tribe relations based

  • Ethnic Cleansing Among African Tribes Ethnic Cleansing

    Ethnic Cleansing Among African Tribes Ethnic Cleansing Can past and present campaigns for ethnic cleansing among some African tribes be attributed to illiteracy? While empirical evidence exists supporting some evidence that illiteracy may contribute a small amount to ethnic cleansing, it is not the primary impetus behind mass genocide. Research shows that campaigns for ethnic cleansing among certain African tribes cannot be entirely prevented with only the eradication of illiteracy because of

  • Healing Rituals Across Islam I Was Just

    Healing Rituals Across Islam I was just 15 years old, and one day my grandmother found me. Left by a rebel at the side of the road my, grandmother knew. She knew by the fear in my eyes that I had just been raped. When she saw me she cried, and took me inside for no one to see me. She then went to the bush to find country medicine, and

  • City Diplomacy The Increasing Role

    The goals at which this process is aimed can concentrate on creating benefits primarily for one party or on creating benefits for both parties.' (van der Pluijm and Melissen, 2007, p.1) Multiple-sided city diplomacy is a "diplomatic process in which more than two parties are involved, representing various cities." (van der Pluijm and Melissen, 2007, p.1) van der Pluijm and Melissen state that associations of municipalities "such as United Cities

  • Rise of the Secular Turkish Republic it

    Rise of the Secular Turkish Republic It was in 1923 that the Republic of Turkey appeared on the face of the globe. The Turks consider the preceding years i.e. 1919-1922 as the years of their struggle for independence. The Turkish state that was formed as a consequence of this struggle was a completely new republic despite the fact that various partition schemes were proposed by the triumphant Allies during and after

  • Sports World Cup Unifying the

    It's well-known that soccer, like religion, can provoke violence like hooliganism and tramplings at overcrowded, large stadiums, and this is what many Americans assume it is all about. "But soccer has also proved unique in its ability to bridge differences and overturn national prejudices. The fact that the World Cup could even take place in South Korea and in Japan, as it did in 2002, was a victory for tolerance

  • Predominantly Latino Gangs Mara Salvatrucha

    Government Since gang-related crimes fall within the jurisdiction of state, this research will give an insight on the need to find solutions that increasingly include all levels of government. Congress needs to pass legislation that will change immigration enforcement laws and make more aliens deportable. In addition, the federal government should take a more active participation in helping local and state jurisdictions develop anti-gang responses. The local, state and federal governments

Read Full Essay
Copyright 2016 . All Rights Reserved