Political Science

Muslims Talking Politics

Framing Islam, Democracy, and Law in Northern Nigeria

Author: Brandon Kendhammer

Publisher: University of Chicago Press

ISBN: 022636917X

Category: Political Science

Page: 320

View: 3727

For generations Islamic and Western intellectuals and policymakers have debated Islam’s compatibility with democratic government, usually with few solid conclusions. But where—Brandon Kendhammer asks in this book—have the voices of ordinary, working-class Muslims been in this conversation? Doesn’t the fate of democracy rest in their hands? Visiting with community members in northern Nigeria, he tells the complex story of the stunning return of democracy to a country that has also embraced Shariah law and endured the radical religious terrorism of Boko Haram. Kendhammer argues that despite Nigeria’s struggles with jihadist insurgency, its recent history is really one of tenuous and fragile reconciliation between mass democratic aspirations and concerted popular efforts to preserve Islamic values in government and law. Combining an innovative analysis of Nigeria’s Islamic and political history with visits to the living rooms of working families, he sketches how this reconciliation has been constructed in the conversations, debates, and everyday experiences of Nigerian Muslims. In doing so, he uncovers valuable new lessons—ones rooted in the real politics of ordinary life—for how democracy might work alongside the legal recognition of Islamic values, a question that extends far beyond Nigeria and into the Muslim world at large.
History

Muslims Talking Politics

Framing Islam, Democracy, and Law in Northern Nigeria

Author: Brandon Kendhammer

Publisher: University of Chicago Press

ISBN: 022636903X

Category: History

Page: 302

View: 1727

Sharia implementation and democratic discourse in Northern Nigeria -- What we talk about when we talk about Islam and democracy -- Envisioning sharia, imagining the past -- Democracy, federalism, and the sharia question -- Sharia in a time of transition -- Framing sharia and democracy -- Muslims talking politics -- All sharia is local: islamic law and democracy in practice.
Political Science

Muslims Talking Politics

Framing Islam, Democracy, and Law in Northern Nigeria

Author: Brandon Kendhammer

Publisher: University of Chicago Press

ISBN: 9780226368986

Category: Political Science

Page: 320

View: 6340

For generations Islamic and Western intellectuals and policymakers have debated Islam’s compatibility with democratic government, usually with few solid conclusions. But where—Brandon Kendhammer asks in this book—have the voices of ordinary, working-class Muslims been in this conversation? Doesn’t the fate of democracy rest in their hands? Visiting with community members in northern Nigeria, he tells the complex story of the stunning return of democracy to a country that has also embraced Shariah law and endured the radical religious terrorism of Boko Haram. Kendhammer argues that despite Nigeria’s struggles with jihadist insurgency, its recent history is really one of tenuous and fragile reconciliation between mass democratic aspirations and concerted popular efforts to preserve Islamic values in government and law. Combining an innovative analysis of Nigeria’s Islamic and political history with visits to the living rooms of working families, he sketches how this reconciliation has been constructed in the conversations, debates, and everyday experiences of Nigerian Muslims. In doing so, he uncovers valuable new lessons—ones rooted in the real politics of ordinary life—for how democracy might work alongside the legal recognition of Islamic values, a question that extends far beyond Nigeria and into the Muslim world at large.
Political Science

Salafism in Nigeria

Islam, Preaching, and Politics

Author: Alexander Thurston

Publisher: Cambridge University Press

ISBN: 1316776808

Category: Political Science

Page: N.A

View: 6663

The spectre of Boko Haram and its activities in Nigeria dominates both media and academic analysis of Islam in the region. But, as Alexander Thurston argues here, beyond the sensational headlines this group generates, the dynamics of Muslim life in northern Nigeria remain poorly understood. Drawing on interviews with leading Salafis in Nigeria as well as on a rereading of the history of the global Salafi movement, this volume explores how a canon of classical and contemporary texts defines Salafism. Examining how these texts are interpreted and - crucially - who it is that has the authority to do so, Thurston offers a systematic analysis of curricula taught in Saudi Arabia and how they shape religious scholars' approach to religion and education once they return to Africa. Essential for scholars of religion and politics, this unique text explores how the canon of Salafism has been used and refined, from Nigeria's return to democracy to the jihadist movement Boko Haram.
History

Boko Haram

Author: Brandon Kendhammer,Carmen McCain

Publisher: Ohio University Press

ISBN: 0821446576

Category: History

Page: 220

View: 6245

From its small-time origins in the early 2000s to its transformation into one of the world’s most-recognized terrorist groups, this remarkable short book tells the story of Boko Haram’s bloody, decade-long war in northeastern Nigeria. Going beyond the headlines, including the group’s 2014 abduction of 276 girls in Chibok and the international outrage it inspired, Boko Haram provides readers new to the conflict with a clearly written and comprehensive history of how the group came to be, the Nigerian government’s failed efforts to end it, and its enormous impact on ordinary citizens. Drawing on years of research, Boko Haram is a timely addition to the acclaimed Ohio Short Histories of Africa. Brandon Kendhammer and Carmen McCain—two leading specialists on northern Nigeria—separate fact from fiction within one of the world’s least-understood conflicts. Most distinctively, it is a social history, one that tells the story of Boko Haram’s violence through the journalism, literature, film, and music made by people close to it.
History

Nigeria

What Everyone Needs to Know®

Author: John Campbell,Matthew T. Page

Publisher: Oxford University Press

ISBN: 0190657979

Category: History

Page: 240

View: 8573

As the "Giant of Africa" Nigeria is home to about twenty percent of the population of Sub-Saharan Africa, serves as Africa's largest producer of oil and natural gas, comprises Africa's largest economy, and represents the cultural center of African literature, film, and music. Yet the country is plagued by problems that keep it from realizing its potential as a world power. Boko Haram, a radical Islamist insurrection centered in the northeast of the country, is an ongoing security challenge, as is the continuous unrest in the Niger Delta, the heartland of Nigeria's petroleum wealth. There is also persistent violence associated with land and water use, ethnicity, and religion. In Nigeria: What Everyone Needs to Know®, John Campbell and Matthew Page provide a rich contemporary overview of this crucial African country. Delving into Nigeria's recent history, politics, and culture, this volume tackles essential questions related to widening inequality, the historic 2015 presidential election, the persistent security threat of Boko Haram, rampant government corruption, human rights concerns, and the continual conflicts that arise in a country that is roughly half Christian and half Muslim. With its continent-wide influence in a host of areas, Nigeria's success as a democracy is in the fundamental interest of its African neighbors, the United States, and the international community. This book will provide interested readers with an accessible, one-of-a-kind overview of the country.
History

The Predicament of Blackness

Postcolonial Ghana and the Politics of Race

Author: Jemima Pierre

Publisher: University of Chicago Press

ISBN: 0226923029

Category: History

Page: 263

View: 8104

What is the meaning of blackness in Africa? While much has been written on Africa’s complex ethnic and tribal relationships, Jemima Pierre’s groundbreaking The Predicament of Blackness is the first book to tackle the question of race in West Africa through its postcolonial manifestations. Challenging the view of the African continent as a nonracialized space—as a fixed historic source for the African diaspora—she envisions Africa, and in particular the nation of Ghana, as a place whose local relationships are deeply informed by global structures of race, economics, and politics. Against the backdrop of Ghana’s history as a major port in the transatlantic slave trade and the subsequent and disruptive forces of colonialism and postcolonialism, Pierre examines key facets of contemporary Ghanaian society, from the pervasive significance of “whiteness” to the practice of chemical skin-bleaching to the government’s active promotion of Pan-African “heritage tourism.” Drawing these and other examples together, she shows that race and racism have not only persisted in Ghana after colonialism, but also that the beliefs and practices of this modern society all occur within a global racial hierarchy. In doing so, she provides a powerful articulation of race on the continent and a new way of understanding contemporary Africa—and the modern African diaspora.
Health & Fitness

Ebola

How a People's Science Helped End an Epidemic

Author: Paul Richards

Publisher: Zed Books Ltd.

ISBN: 1783608617

Category: Health & Fitness

Page: 192

View: 4531

From December 2013, the largest Ebola outbreak in history swept across West Africa, claiming thousands of lives in Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea. By the middle of 2014, the international community was gripped by hysteria. Experts grimly predicted that millions would be infected within months, and a huge international control effort was mounted to contain the virus. Yet paradoxically, by this point the disease was already going into decline in Africa itself. So why did outside observers get it so wrong? Paul Richards draws on his extensive first-hand experience in Sierra Leone to argue that the international community’s panicky response failed to take account of local expertise and common sense. Crucially, Richards shows that the humanitarian response to the disease was most effective in those areas where it supported these initiatives and that it hampered recovery when it ignored or disregarded local knowledge.
Travel

The Ghana Reader

History, Culture, Politics

Author: Kwasi Konadu,Clifford C. Campbell

Publisher: Duke University Press

ISBN: 082237496X

Category: Travel

Page: 528

View: 1934

Covering 500 years of Ghana's history, The Ghana Reader provides a multitude of historical, political, and cultural perspectives on this iconic African nation. Whether discussing the Asante kingdom and the Gold Coast's importance to European commerce and transatlantic slaving, Ghana's brief period under British colonial rule, or the emergence of its modern democracy, the volume's eighty selections emphasize Ghana's enormous symbolic and pragmatic value to global relations. They also demonstrate that the path to fully understanding Ghana requires acknowledging its ethnic and cultural diversity and listening to its population's varied voices. Readers will encounter selections written by everyone from farmers, traders, and the clergy to intellectuals, politicians, musicians, and foreign travelers. With sources including historical documents, poems, treaties, articles, and fiction, The Ghana Reader conveys the multiple and intersecting histories of Ghana's development as a nation, its key contribution to the formation of the African diaspora, and its increasingly important role in the economy and politics of the twenty-first century.
History

Beyond Timbuktu

Author: Ousmane Oumar Kane

Publisher: Harvard University Press

ISBN: 0674969359

Category: History

Page: 294

View: 6329

Timbuktu is famous as a center of learning from Islam’s Golden Age. Yet it was one among many scholarly centers to exist in precolonial West Africa. Ousmane Kane charts the rise of Muslim learning in West Africa from the beginning of Islam to the present day and corrects lingering misconceptions about Africa’s Muslim heritage and its influence.
Social Science

Unmasking the State

Making Guinea Modern

Author: Mike McGovern

Publisher: University of Chicago Press

ISBN: 0226925110

Category: Social Science

Page: 320

View: 5066

When the Republic of Guinea gained independence in 1958, one of the first policies of the new state was a village-to-village eradication of masks and other ritual objects it deemed “fetishes.” The Demystification Program, as it was called, was so urgent it even preceded the building of a national road system. In Unmasking the State, Mike McGovern attempts to understand why this program was so important to the emerging state and examines the complex role it had in creating a unified national identity. In doing so, he tells a dramatic story of cat and mouse where minority groups cling desperately to their important— and outlawed—customs. Primarily focused on the communities in the country’s southeastern rainforest region—people known as Forestiers—the Demystification Program operated via a paradox. At the same time it banned rituals from Forestiers’ day-to-day lives, it appropriated them into a state-sponsored program of folklorization. McGovern points to an important purpose for this: by objectifying this polytheistic group’s rituals, the state created a viable counterexample against which the Muslim majority could define proper modernity. Describing the intertwined relationship between national and local identity making, McGovern showcases the coercive power and the unintended consequences involved when states attempt to engineer culture.
Religion

Muslim Civic Cultures and Conflict Resolution

The Challenge of Democratic Federalism in Nigeria

Author: John N. Paden

Publisher: Brookings Institution Press

ISBN: 9780815797876

Category: Religion

Page: 303

View: 5055

The question of whether Islam is compatible with democracy may best be answered not from the classical sources or even from the cauldron of Middle East politics but from the lived experiences of Muslim communities around the world. In large and diverse countries, the varied political values of different cultures can make or break the democratic experiment. Regardless of their cultural context, transitions from military to civilian rule require attention to the grassroots civic cultures that form the foundations of democratic federalism. John Paden, a noted expert on West African and Islamic societies, uses Nigeria as a critical case study of how a diverse country with a significant Muslim population is working to make the transition to a democratic society. Although little-studied, the non-Arab Muslim communities of West Africa are an important indicator as to whether Islamic democracy in a diverse nation is possible. Nigeria's success is vital to regional and global stability. As the largest country in Africa, with a population that is about half Muslim and half Christian or traditional animist, Nigeria is also the seventh largest producer of oil in the world and has gone through a series of political traumas ranging from civil war to military rule. The current democratic government is trying to balance rule-of-law concerns at a time when many communal tensions are coming to the surface. Muslim Civic Cultures and Conflict Resolution in Nigeria takes us inside the complex world of Nigerian politics, with a focus on the ways Muslim civic cultures deal with matters of leadership and conflict resolution. The book provides an essential context to the current international concern with issues ranging from Shari'a law and communal violence, to the broader war on terrorism. It argues that the requirement for regional political cooperation serves as a counterbalance to more extreme forms of political expression. Paden shows that if the Nigerian political model of democratic federalism works, then there is a real world, peaceful alternative to the "clash of civilizations" predicted by the intellectual world and threatened by al Qaeda.
History

Religion and the Making of Nigeria

Author: Olufemi Vaughan

Publisher: Duke University Press

ISBN: 0822373874

Category: History

Page: 336

View: 6435

In Religion and the Making of Nigeria, Olufemi Vaughan examines how Christian, Muslim, and indigenous religious structures have provided the essential social and ideological frameworks for the construction of contemporary Nigeria. Using a wealth of archival sources and extensive Africanist scholarship, Vaughan traces Nigeria’s social, religious, and political history from the early nineteenth century to the present. During the nineteenth century, the historic Sokoto Jihad in today’s northern Nigeria and the Christian missionary movement in what is now southwestern Nigeria provided the frameworks for ethno-religious divisions in colonial society. Following Nigeria’s independence from Britain in 1960, Christian-Muslim tensions became manifest in regional and religious conflicts over the expansion of sharia, in fierce competition among political elites for state power, and in the rise of Boko Haram. These tensions are not simply conflicts over religious beliefs, ethnicity, and regionalism; they represent structural imbalances founded on the religious divisions forged under colonial rule.
History

A Socialist Peace?

Explaining the Absence of War in an African Country

Author: Mike McGovern

Publisher: University of Chicago Press

ISBN: 022645360X

Category: History

Page: 249

View: 7965

For the last twenty years, the West African nation of Guinea has exhibited all the characteristics that have correlated with civil wars in other countries, and Guineans themselves regularly talk about the inevitability of war tearing their country apart. Yet the country has narrowly avoided civil conflict again and again. Mike McGovern asks how this was possible, how a nation could beat the odds and evade civil war. All six of Guinea's neighbors have experienced civil war or separatist insurgency in the past twenty years. Guinea itself has similar makings for it. It is rich in resources, yet its people are some of the poorest in the world. Its political situation is polarized by fiercely competitive ethnic groups. Weapons flow freely through its lands and across its borders. And, finally, it is still recovering from the oppressive regime of Sekou Toure. Yet it is that aspect which McGovern points to: while Toure's reign was hardly peaceful, it was successful often through highly coercive and violent measures at establishing a set of durable national dispositions, which have kept the nation at peace. Exploring the ambivalences of contemporary Guineans toward the afterlife of Tour 's reign as well as their abiding sense of socialist solidarity, McGovern sketches the paradoxes that can undergird political stability.
History

Morning in South Africa

Author: John Campbell

Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield

ISBN: 1442265906

Category: History

Page: 244

View: 2182

This incisive, deeply informed book introduces post-apartheid South Africa to an international audience. South Africa has a history of racism and white supremacy. This crushing historical burden continues to resonate today. Under President Jacob Zuma, South Africa is treading water. Nevertheless, despite calls to undermine the 1994 political settlement characterized by human rights guarantees and the rule of law, distinguished diplomat John Campbell argues that the country’s future is bright and that its democratic institutions will weather its current lackluster governance. The book opens with an overview to orient readers to South Africa’s historical inheritance. A look back at the presidential inaugurations of Nelson Mandela and Jacob Zuma and Mandela’s funeral illustrates some of the ways South Africa has indeed changed since 1994. Reviewing current demographic trends, Campbell highlights the persistent consequences of apartheid. He goes on to consider education, health, and current political developments, including land reform, with an eye on how South Africa’s democracy is responding to associated thorny challenges. The book ends with an assessment of why prospects are currently poor for closer South African ties with the West. Campbell concludes, though, that South Africa’s democracy has been surprisingly adaptable, and that despite intractable problems, the black majority are no longer strangers in their own country.
Political Science

The Politics of Shari'a Law

Islamist Activists and the State in Democratizing Indonesia

Author: Michael Buehler

Publisher: Cambridge University Press

ISBN: 1316776697

Category: Political Science

Page: N.A

View: 3968

The Islamization of politics in Indonesia after 1998 presents an underexplored puzzle: why has there been a rise in the number of shari'a laws despite the electoral decline of Islamist parties? Michael Buehler presents an analysis of the conditions under which Islamist activists situated outside formal party politics may capture and exert influence in Muslim-majority countries facing democratization. His analysis shows that introducing competitive elections creates new pressures for entrenched elites to mobilize and structure the electorate, thereby opening up new opportunities for Islamist activists to influence politics. Buehler's analysis of changing state-religion relations in formerly authoritarian Islamic countries illuminates broader theoretical debates on Islamization in the context of democratization. This timely text is essential reading for students, scholars, and government analysts.
Social Science

Nostalgia for the Future

West Africa after the Cold War

Author: Charles Piot

Publisher: University of Chicago Press

ISBN: 0226669661

Category: Social Science

Page: 216

View: 8932

Since the end of the cold war, Africa has seen a dramatic rise in new political and religious phenomena, including an eviscerated privatized state, neoliberal NGOs, Pentecostalism, a resurgence in accusations of witchcraft, a culture of scamming and fraud, and, in some countries, a nearly universal wish to emigrate. Drawing on fieldwork in Togo, Charles Piot suggests that a new biopolitics after state sovereignty is remaking the face of one of the world’s poorest regions. In a country where playing the U.S. Department of State’s green card lottery is a national pastime and the preponderance of cybercafés and Western Union branches signals a widespread desire to connect to the rest of the world, Nostalgia for the Future makes clear that the cultural and political terrain that underlies postcolonial theory has shifted. In order to map out this new terrain, Piot enters into critical dialogue with a host of important theorists, including Agamben, Hardt and Negri, Deleuze, and Mbembe. The result is a deft interweaving of rich observations of Togolese life with profound insights into the new, globalized world in which that life takes place.
Political Science

Kill it to Save it

An Autopsy of Capitalism’s Triumph Over Democracy

Author: Corey Dolgon

Publisher: Policy Press

ISBN: 1447317122

Category: Political Science

Page: 320

View: 6243

Kill it to save it lays bare the hypocrisy of US political discourse by documenting the story of capitalism’s triumph over democracy. Dolgon argues that American citizens now accept policies that destroy the public sector and promote political stories that feel right “in the gut”, regardless of science or facts.