Analyses Muslim-Muslim divisions within northern Nigeria, which are as important for understanding the violence in the region as those between Muslim and Christian (for which, see the companion volume, Creed and Grievance),with consequences for long-term peacemaking.
Nigerian society has long been perceived as divided along religious lines, between Muslims and Christians, but alongside this there is an equally important polarization within the Muslim population in beliefs, rituals and sectarian allegiance. This book highlights the crucial issue of intra-Muslim pluralism and conflict in Nigeria.
Conflicting interpretations of texts and contexts have led to fragmentation within northern Nigerian Islam, and differentIslamic sects have often resorted to violence against each other in pursuit of ‘the right path’. The doctrinal justification of violence was first perfected against other Muslim groups, before being extended to non-Muslims: conflict between Muslim groups therefore preceded the violence between Muslims and Christians. It will be impossible to manage the relationship between the latter, without addressing the schisms within the Muslim community itself.
Nigeria: Premium Times Books
Abdul Raufu Mustapha is Associate Professor in African Politics, University of Oxford. His publications include (co-edited with Lindsey Whitfield) Turning Points in African Democracy (James Currey, 2009).
Forthcoming: Creed & Grievance: Muslims, Christians & Society in Northern Nigeria edited by Abdul Raufu Mustapha and David Ehrhardt.