86 Pages
English

Statism, Youth and Civic Imagination

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Description

This study explores the service-citizenship nexus in Nigeria, using the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) programme as an empirical backdrop. It attempts to understand the relationship between civic service and citizenship on the one hand, and it examines the question as to whether youth service promotes a sense of citizenship and patriotism on the other. In the relevant studies on service and sociology, the assumption that service is antecedent to, and impacts positively on citizenship, is taken for granted. However, conclusions from this study call for an urgent rethinking of this wisdom. Using data from open-ended interviews, questionnaires and focus group discussions, the study traces the ways in which political dynamics in Nigeria have affected the implementation of the NYSC programme. The study articulates allegiance to national ideals as an essential foundation for creating and nurturing citizenship. Although it upholds the potential of national service as a tool for national integration, this research cautions against unalloyed faith in its presumed agency, arguing that the limitations imposed by the prevailing socio-political ecology should not be ignored.

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Published by
Published 01 June 2010
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EAN13 9782869784208
Language English
Document size 2 MB

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Statism, Youth and Civic Imagination
About the Author
Ebenezer Obadare is an Assistant Professor of Sociology at the University of Kansas, Lawrence, USA. He holds a PhD in Social Policy from the London School of Economics and Political Science, where he received the Richard Titmuss Best PhD Thesis Prize (2005). A MacArthur Foundation Research and Writing Grant awardee, Dr. Obadare’s articles on civil society, religiosity, youth, civic service, and the state in Africa have appeared in leading journals, includingAfrican Affairs,The Journal of Modern African Studies,Politique Africaine,Africa Develop-ment, andReview of African Political Economy. In 2008, Dr. Obadare was hon-oured as the year’s Virginia and Derrick Sherman Emerging Scholar by the De-partment of History at the University of North Carolina, Wilmington. He is the author ofAfrica Between the Old and the New: The Strange Persistence of the Postcolonial State (UNCW, 2008) and co-editor (with Wale Adebanwi) ofEncountering the Nigerian State: Excess and Abjection2010). (Palgrave,
Monograph Series
The CODESRIA Monograph Series is published to stimulate debate, comments, and further research on the subjects covered. The series serves as a forum for works based on the findings of original research. Such works are usually case studies, theoretical debates or both, but they also incorporate significant findings, analyses and critical evaluations of the current literature on the subjects covered.
Statism, Youth and
Civic Imagination
A Critical Study of the National Youth Service
Corps Programme in Nigeria
Ebenezer Obadare
Council for the Development of Social Science Research in Africa