A History of Nigeria by Toyin Falola

A good source of information, if not an exciting narrative, on the largest country in Africa. The story is typically African: colonial exploitation is followed by a brief and heady period of independence, which is followed by a long period of political corruption, ethnic violence, and economic decline. I personally remain as mystified by Africa’s continual failure to thrive as I am by the unparallelled success of the United States. Is Africa under some kind of curse? Nigeria has all of the resources necessary to make it a successful nation, except competent political leadership. I try to remain optimistic, but sub-Saharan Africa has had fifty years of independence in which to get its act together, and its record has not been impressive. Here’s hoping that Nigeria will soon break free of the evil spell it has been under.

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