STUDENT WORK SAMPLES & STUDENT COMMENTS
Can anyone summarize for me the lecture notes from last nights class. I wasn't feeling well and was unable to attend the class. Any assistance would be appreciated.
Peace Dr. Baloubi,
In class we discussed 'discipline' and 'multidisciplinary study'. 'Discipline' being the study of an academic subject and 'multidisciplinary study' being the study of more than one subject. I really enjoyed listening to everyone define how they would use their two disciplines to help with the war in Iraq.
Lastly, I really enjoyed the discussion of the question (Are 'educating' and 'informing' the same?). I too believe that education and information are different. Your explanation of the two made a lot of sense. Thanks to you and my classmates for a wonderful first class. Peace to everyone.
Attached are notes used for presentation on chapter 1 [Also see text below]
In the first chapter the author presents an historical Vignette, which provides a critical and thorough look at the birth of the Nigerian state. Nigeria was a colony of Britain for a mere 60 years; yet, the consequences of British rule have left an indelible mark on every facet of Nigerian society, culturally, politically, and socially. This Colonial interference would be the source of ethnic and Political chaos well into twenty first century.
Like most European nations Britain has long been fascinated with Africa's seemingly infinite supply of natural resources. It seemed whatever was desired could be found in abundance in Africa. British interest in Nigeria particularly emerged during the mid nineteenth century and was translated in to action with the annexation of Lagos in 1861. This was accomplished largely by military intimidation and coercion. The subsequent territories of Yorubaland, Itserkiriland, Benin, and Igboland were absorbed into the British Empire by the end of the century. The dawning of the twentieth century witnessed the conquest of the northern Muslim states along with the capitulation of the South. The British Colonial objective was complete. The governance of these newly acquired territories fell under the auspices of Lord Frederick Lugard in 1912. As a result of economic and administrative interests, Lugard initiated the policy of amalgamation in 1914 establishing a central authority in Lagos. The central administration was an executive council made up of colonial officials who were primarily responsible for the infrastructure. The remaining two regions were divided and subdivided ultimately employing a system called indirect rule, which was a concept devised by Lord Lugard. This system utilized local traditional rulers to carry out colonial directories ensuring social cohesion. Indirect rule enjoyed success in the Islamic Northern States, because the local populace was accustomed to a more autocratic rule. In Yorubaland; however, existing checks and balances made absolute rule problematic. In Eastern Nigeria among the Igbo who lived in more fragmented communities indirect rule was ineffective. As a result, "warrant chiefs" were appointed by Lugard, which infuriated the elders by disrespecting local tradition ensuring utter failure of indirect rule among the Igbo in the East.
The economic system was transformed by the British and was designed to exploit the resources of the region and transfer the wealth to Britain, while some Nigerians prospered they were more the exception to the rule. The emphasis on export crops neglected crops normally grown to feed the nation.
Perhaps the biggest impact on the social and cultural consciousness was made by Western education, which was largely facilitated by Christian missionaries. The educational system was found wanting in terms of quality because it focused on creating a small elite that would enhance the colonial bureaucracy. In an effort to attain a better education many Nigerians went to other countries. Western education did not fare so well in the Muslim North, because of its Christian ties. In time many Nigerians would aspire to become more western and seek out the modern comforts of city life. This resulted in a mass exodus from the rural areas to the urban centers creating overcrowding.
While there had always existed defiance by the natives toward colonials, opposition gained momentum following World War I. During this period the goal was not to dismantle colonialism, but to gain more opportunity. The biggest catalyst toward ending colonialism was the depression, and World War II. The colonial powers were weakened by the war, which shattered the myth of white supremacy. Independence would soon be achieved in 1960.
Hello to all of my classmates...sorry I have been sick and unable to attend class per doctor's orders. I would like for everyone to read my paper and respond with constructive criticism to help me complete my paper. [Also see text below]
Seminar 418/ Dr. Baloubi
March 14, 2005
Transportation: Pillar of Nigerian Economy
In the history of Nigeria's economy, there was a core infrastructure needed to establish a thriving economy. The organization of the infrastructure focused on the ability of commerce to manage the ebb and flow of products. For Nigeria, particularly during its colonial period, the country's ebb and flow of products and natural resources became heavily dependent upon its transportation system to support its products.
In Chapter 19, the author quotes a British official saying, " without good roads, it is impossible for [the] interior native to bring his product to the European market." This is perhaps a definitive statement of Nigeria's economic history as well as its present day and future fate.
Apart from Nigeria's rich and abundant resources and its centralized and favorable geographical location, transportation is perhaps the most affective factor contributing to Nigeria's economic rise and decline. Even more so, transportation affected and dictated many socio-economic variants. One, transportation controlled the amount of produce and goods for import and export. Two, transportation determined the type of trade, whether goods could be imported or exported efficiently and reliably. Three, the transportation system was inclusive. Everyone did not have access its benefits. Nigerian transportation was well routed in order to benefit most importantly, its government.
Geographically, the Nigerian transportation system included focal points to target specific regional and world markets. Accessible to Nigeria were the harbors and ports, which opened into the gulf; and of course, there were the neighboring countries that would share in Nigeria's commerce via railway and roadway transportation. Because of its location, Nigeria's economy seemed more than prepared to succeed in a regional and global trade industry.
As the trade industry began to develop, new considerations for the purpose and intent for roadway transportation emerged. For the government, transportation was thought to encourage the following: (1) export produce, (2) import European manufactured goods, (3) boost production of old crops and introduce new crops, and (4) establish more reliable and expeditious methods of transporting.
Agriculturally rich and diverse, Nigeria produced cocoa, cotton, palm oil, corn, peanuts and a host of other "food stuff." The transportation system functioned to transport Nigeria's agriculture to other parts of the country continent, and world. Initially, the British government realizing the wealth in Nigeria's agriculture, planned for building a roadway system. Building and using road transportation accommodated the transport of heaps of produce. The focus on exporting produce created an inverse relationship—increase in demand—
increase in supply. Therefore, exporting produce bolstered the Nigerian economy, making its agriculture as good as gold. Nigerian produce was enhanced because of availability and accessibility of distant markets via transport.
As seen, the traditional transportation system was inadequate and inefficient in meeting the demands of the trade industry, ". . . the construction of roads was necessary ..." (The Foundations of Nigeria, 394).
Therefore, not only did transportation emerge as the single most way to establish Nigeria as an economic force in Africa, but consequentially, it also created a manufacturing industry in the regions. The transportation system eventually needed vehicles and equipment to operate. At one point in time, Nigeria solely relied on its agriculture and natural resources; however, it was now able to establish a manufacturing industry to accommodate its growing transportation needs.
For instance, W.A. Dawodu, an early figure in the transport industry,
"... had vehicles which he used for transport services and he also imported vehicles for sale. By 1920, his firm was not only the largest vehicle importer in Nigeria but also the builder of motor lorries in the country. Dawodu had extended his workshop from Lagos to Osogbo where he employed fifty men and had a service of eight two-ton trucks. He was involved in all facets of motor transport business, including the selling and hiring of vehicles, "(The Foundations of Nigeria, 395). This single turn in innovation and technology began a new era
for Nigeria; it opened the doors to forge a new industry and develop a thriving economy based on its transportation system.
Looking ahead, the government perceived that just a mere roadway system was limited in its ability to circulate products and goods throughout the interior of the country. This being so, railway transportation seemed a more efficient way to import and export. This idea paved the way for the introduction of new and expansion of existing crops. The view that "... the construction of railway feeder roads coupled with the security provided by the administration would induce the indigenous population to cultivate the valuable products for which the soil of their country was well-suited," (The Foundations of Nigeria, 392) established yet another facet of the transport industry. Furthermore, and of greater importance, it helped to accomplish "one of the main objectives of colonial expansion ... to find markets for British manufactured goods," (The Foundations of Nigeria, 392).
With railway transportation, Nigeria's economy was established.
It became the "basic infrastructure" for the colonial economy. According to Foundations of Nigeria, this infrastructure added new dimensions in the
economic development of Nigeria. The Nigerian Railway developed a motor service that one, attracted traffic to the area, and two, modeled and encouraged
private owners to trade as carriers. However, most private enterprises and already begun creating their own motor transport services.
As evidenced, road transportation allowed traders to move from market to market easier than ever before. There was an increase in exports and imports within the interior as well as abroad. This being so, Nigeria's economy thrived. Due to the expansion of its markets, via the development of a major motor transport service, Nigeria "... ushered in a new phase in the history of road transportation and the economy ...,"(The Foundations of Nigeria, 399).
I really enjoyed listening to everyone present their paper tonight. I would like to thank everyone who provided feedback concerning my paper. I really feel that this process was helpful. It is always nice to get constructive criticism from your peers and the professor. Judging by what I heard it looks like everyone is going to have a well researched paper. I am really eager to hear them after their completion. Have a wonderful week. See you all on Monday.
This semester has been very productive. I have learned how to put together a portfolio map for a five year plan, and how to create the best resume possible. Now those things are just common everyday stuff, however I've also learned how important it is to read and understand other cultures and their history in order to better pursue goals in life. The Foundations of Nigeria was an interesting book, one that I will keep until I find someone who is interested in learning such as I was about the struggles of all people. Thank you classmates, and Dr. Baloubi for a wonderful, productive senior year. I believe I will forever take these things that I have learned with me throughout the rest of my life..