This Fiction Called Nigeria

This Fiction Called Nigeria:The Struggle for Democracy

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An uncompromising look at Nigeria’s crisis of democracy by a renowned essayist and critic.

In this groundbreaking work the essayist and critic Adewale Maja-Pearce delivers a mordant verdict on Nigeria’s crisis of democracy. A mosaic of ethnic and religious groups, the most populous country in Africa was fabricated by British colonizers at the turn of the twentieth century. When Nigerians went to the polls to vote in the 2023 elections, they had experienced a quarter century of democracy, after a similar period of almost unbroken military dictatorship. Yet the blessings of self-rule are unclear to many, especially among the more than half of the population living in extreme poverty. Buffeted by unemployment, saddled with debt, rent by bandits and Islamic fundamentalists, Nigeria faces the threat of disintegration.

Maja-Pearce shows that recent mobilizations against police brutality, sexism and homophobia reveal a powerful undercurrent of discontent, especially among the country’s youth. If Nigeria has a future, he shows here, it is in the hands of the young, unwilling to go on as before.