Perspectives on Religion and Ethnic Identity Dynamics
Conditions for Violent Collective Actions in Nigeria
Keywords:Ethnic Identity, Identity Dynamics, Religion, Violent Collective Actions
This paper examined the salient determinants of violent collective actions carefully embedded in religious and ethnic sentiments. It evaluated the politicizations of these identity markers in the framing and advancement of group interests and goals within the context of a divided and underdeveloped setting such as Nigeria. This paper observed that the deep rooted political and economic crises that characterised the contemporary Nigerian state have far reached effects on the well-being of the mass of its marginalised population. The global economic melt-down and the recent COVID-19 pandemic have resulted into severe economic and supplies challenges across major world economies. This has further impacted on access to most basic but scarce resources as well as a spike in the nature and frequency of collective agitations and expressions. These disruptions especially among dependent economies and fragile democracies such as Nigeria have farther impacted negatively on the already underdeveloped and polarized identity groups begging for inclusion, relevance and dominance. This paper concluded that unless the socio-economic and political issues masked in identity enclaves sustaining the exclusion, marginalisation and manipulation of the vast majority especially the vulnerable youth are urgently addressed, youth-driven socio-political and economic violence from several identity platforms will remain a dominant culture of violence with far reaching societal consequences on unity, progress and development.