Fundamental Problems Facing Modern Society In General And The Nigerian Society

Project and Seminar Material for Political Science

Project and Seminar Material for Political Science


Violence can be seen as the intentional use of physical force, threatened or actual, against oneself, another person, or against a group or community, which results in injury, death, psychological harm, mal-development, or deprivation. “No one concerned with history and politics can remain unaware of the enormous role violence has always played in human affairs”. In Nigeria, it is a fact known by experience and authenticated by history that the quest for political power through violence is prevalent. People no longer know the difference between violence and power, and they tend to resolve issues with violence, and violence is repressive. Philosophers and social theorists over the decades have tackled the problem of political violence; Charles Wright Mills, states that “All politics is a struggle for power, the ultimate kind of power is violence”, Frantz Fanon, who advocates justified violence by colonized people against the foreign colonizers, Festus Iyayi, conveys violence in society as a result of frustration and division between the down-trodden masses and the government, Jean Paul Satre, in the preface to Frantz Fanon’s Wretched of the earth, glorified violence, saying that only violence pays a necessary response to the violence of colonialism, and so on. Hannah Arendt, a German born Jewish, American political theorist, tackles the problem of political violence through her redefinition and distinction of the related concepts power and violence, as well as terror. According to her, it is insufficient to say that power and violence are not the same. Power and violence are opposites; where the one rules absolutely, the other is absent. Violence has overridden politics in Nigeria and people tend to use violence to secure power, like the Boko haram, Niger-Delta militants, the Arewa youths, and so on through violent actions like bombing, assassinations, political riots, denial of electioneering rights, ethnic and religious crises, and so on.

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