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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Religion and politics in the making of Yoruba nationalism in southwestern Nigeria
Author:Ajala, Aderemi SuleimanISNI
Periodical:Orita: Ibadan Journal of Religious Studies (ISSN 0030-5596)
Geographic term:Nigeria
Abstract:Although the Christian, educated elite has long dominated Yoruba nationalism and the ethno-regional politics of southwestern Nigeria, the past two decades have witnessed a shift in the relationship between the world religions and Yoruba nationalism. The commitment of Muslim Yorubas to nationalist politics, and even to the militant nationalist organization OPC (Oodua Peoples' Congress), has increased. Drawing on and supporting these trends, the OPC has produced many successful nationalist leaders of Muslim and traditional religious backgrounds, with often less formal education than average for their positions. The OPC's revalidation of traditional practice appears to be a potential tool for overcoming the divisions among different Yoruba groups, and could even constitute the ethnic nation as a possible locus of reform of the - religiously and socially divided - State. Yet, while it is possible that the growing commitment of Muslims and the less educated to being Yoruba could generalize Yoruba nationalism for all Yoruba-speakers and successfully voice popular critiques of the State, the rise of a globally-oriented Pentecostalism and the growing reluctance of Christians to engage with the OPC suggest that this kind of nationalism may not appeal to all sections of the emergent nation. Notes, ref., sum. [ASC Leiden abstract]