On Freedom and Complexity in the (Captive) Nation

MURPHY, Laura T (2018). On Freedom and Complexity in the (Captive) Nation. JALA: Journal of the African Literature Association, 12 (1), 60-71.

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Official URL: https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/21674...
Link to published version:: https://doi.org/10.1080/21674736.2018.1433753


In Biodun Jeyifo's readings of the Chibok girl's captivity in The Nation magazine (Nigeria), he reveals his desperately optimistic insistence on collective substantive freedoms. Jeyifo's response to the situation is one of doubling complexity, pointing to the systemic violence that not only made the girls vulnerable, but also produces the young male perpetrator/victims who hold the girls captive and that holds the nation captive as well. In this paper, Murphy argues that Jeyifo's complex reading of denied substantive freedoms in (what he might now call) a captive era in Nigerian history also provides a lens for removing the “familiar mask of the righteous judge” represented by the Western iteration of the #BringBackOurGirls movement. The paper interrogates the way in which Boko Haram tapped into the exaggerated post-9/11 fears that Islamic militants were a threat to Western values and freedom and provided evidence for Christian fundamentalist mythologies of a clash of civilizations. The paper suggests that the fervent discourse regarding the Boko Haram kidnappings point to a contest of fundamentalist ideologies, two opposing but tactically similar movements that ignore the structural lack of substantive freedoms that bring members into their fold.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Nigerian literature; English language literature; 1900-1999; Jeyifo, Biodun; prose; journalism; Boko Haram; terrorism; Islamic fundamentalism; abduction; schoolgirls
Identification Number: https://doi.org/10.1080/21674736.2018.1433753
Page Range: 60-71
SWORD Depositor: Symplectic Elements
Depositing User: Symplectic Elements
Date Deposited: 18 May 2021 15:09
Last Modified: 28 Sep 2021 11:00
URI: https://shura.shu.ac.uk/id/eprint/27866

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