What Does “Modernity” and “Postmodernity” Mean to Northern Nigerians?

The concepts of “postmodernity” and “postcoloniality” are often used interchangeably in the study of nonwestern cultures. These terms are both temporal markers and signifiers of a set of affects and values. This contribution to the roundtable argues that the slippage in the multivalent meanings of t...

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Bibliographic Details
Published in:Journal of the American Academy of Religion
Subtitles:Roundtable on normativity in islamic studies
Main Author: Eltantawi, Sarah 1976-
Format: Electronic Article
Language:English
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Published: [2016]
In:Journal of the American Academy of Religion
Year: 2016, Volume: 84, Issue: 1, Pages: 60-73
Standardized Subjects / Keyword chains:B Nigeria (Nord) / Colonialism / Interreligiosity / The Postmodern / Islam / Wholeness / Rule / Certitude
Online Access: Volltext (Verlag)
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Summary:The concepts of “postmodernity” and “postcoloniality” are often used interchangeably in the study of nonwestern cultures. These terms are both temporal markers and signifiers of a set of affects and values. This contribution to the roundtable argues that the slippage in the multivalent meanings of these terms ends up misrepresenting the empirical ethos that animates contemporary Northern Nigeria. The disjuncture, fracture, and violence experienced in the Nigerian colonial period produces a contemporary society that values wholeness, absolutes, and fixed truths, a set of values quite different from what is typically associated with postmodernity. The evidence for contemporary Nigeria's drive to wholeness is found through the ethnographic data I recount here: a reflection of how the stoning punishment in Islam is expressed in the Nigerian present, and in the form taken by the trial of Amina Lawal, a peasant woman from the north of Nigeria.
ISSN:1477-4585
Contains:Enthalten in: American Academy of Religion, Journal of the American Academy of Religion
Persistent identifiers:DOI: 10.1093/jaarel/lfv096