201203 - Competitive Fanaticism: How Performances of Loyalty in Patronage Networks Fuel Deadly Riots in Urban Nigeria
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Thursday 3 December 2020, 5.30 – 7 pm, Sciences Po, Webinar (Compulsory registration)
The common framing of ethnic violence as series of actions and counteractions between rivaling groups captures intergroup interactions but understates intra-group dynamics. Emphasizing crucial processes within groups, this presentation sets out to explicate how structures and reward systems of ethnicized patronage networks instigate interpersonal competition in performances of loyalty and, in so doing, fuel deadly ethnic riots. The presentation introduces the concept of competitive fanaticism to illustrate how individuals resort to violence not only to undermine the out-group, but also to demonstrate in-group fanaticism. When violence erupts, individuals compete to outperform co-ethnics in fighting the out-group. In support of this theoretical argument ethnographic evidence shows how this tendency flourishes in poor, polarized urban settings in central Nigeria where loyalty is assessed according to one’s capacity to attack members of the out-group and antagonistic acts are rewarded with money, favors, and elevation in the social hierarchy.
Speaker: Kingsley Madueke, University of Jos, Centre for Conflict Management & Peace Studies
Dr. Kingsley L. Madueke earned his PhD in Political Science at the University of Amsterdam, the Netherlands. He is a lecturer at the Centre for Conflict Management & Peace Studies, University of Jos, Nigeria. His research interests center on conflict, ethnic riots, urban violence, violent extremism, peacebuilding and security in fragile societies. He was a Marie Sklodowska-Curie Fellow (2014) and an Urban Studies Foundation Visiting Fellow in the department of Urban Planning and Public Policy, University of California, Irvine (2020). Dr. Madueke’s article on armed rioters in Jos won the David and Helen Kimble Prize for best academic article published in Journal of Modern African Studies in 2018.
Discussion: Laurent Fourchard, Sciences Po, CERI and Laurent Gayer, Sciences Po, CERI, CNRS
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