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African Social Science Review

Abstract

An unapologetic perspective in the study of colonialism in Africa is currently reasserting itself forcefully. It sees the colonial experience as a mere sporadic change initiated by the need to use traditional institutions in the administration of the natives. It assumes that the responses of the natives had imposed some restrictions on the creative disposition of the colonial overlords. With evidence from some Stateless societies of Nigeria this article shows that colonialism had been occasioned by currents that denaturalized the social order to the extent that traditional institutions used lost their traditionalness hence ushering changes that were decisive in nature and far reaching in consequence. Furthermore, colonialism altered the direction of history in a manner that laid the basis for the sprouting of dividing walls around different cultural clusters thereby calcifying flexible identities with negative consequences on contemporary political developments.

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