Development and Diffusionism: Looking Beyond by Jeremiah I. Dibua (auth.)

By Jeremiah I. Dibua (auth.)

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Additional info for Development and Diffusionism: Looking Beyond Neopatrimonialism in Nigeria, 1962–1985

Sample text

By encouraging the forceful implementation of SAP, the IFIs and its other proponents promoted authoritarianism and, therefore, the attempts at personalizing power by Babangida and Abacha. 57 A number of statist analysts have characterized the Nigerian state as patrimonial or neopatrimonial. These statist works usually adopt reductionist, evolutionary, diffusionist, and modernist methods suffused with extreme Afro-pessimism, “anecdotal deployment of facts,” and derogated and inflated “epithets and catch phrases”58 in describing the Nigerian state.

Also, as demonstrated by Peter Ekeh and Mahmood Mamdani, colonialism created a bifurcated society in Nigeria: the civic public, which consisted of colonial officials and a few assimilated Nigerians, and the primordial public, which comprised the majority of the deprived, marginalized, and unassimilated Nigerians. 63 This therefore made the colonial state disconnected from the primordial public. Furthermore, colonial economic development policies discouraged industrialization and only promoted the production of raw materials, which perpetuated the economic dependence of Nigeria and its peripheral location in the global capitalist system.

The post World War II period and the movement toward political decolonization by African and other Third World countries resulted in the reformulation of Eurocentric diffusionism. The emergence of the United States as the leading capitalist power in the world, Cold War politics, and the desire of the United States and other Western countries to maintain their influence and hold over the economies of African countries after they attain political independence provided the impetus for the revision.

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