nigeria

16 articles
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Inside the Vigilante Fight Against Boko Haram

On Nigeria’s citizen vigilantes who’ve banded together to fight Islamist terrorists.

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“If We Run and They Kill Us, So Be It. But We Have to Run Now.”

The Nigerian schoolgirls who escaped Boko Haram.

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The Hunt for Boko Haram

How divisions between Nigeria’s Muslim North and Christian South resulted in the birth of terror’s most ruthless movement.

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Boko Haram: Sons of Anarchy

In northern Nigeria, radical Islamic terrorist group Boko Haram is facing a vigilante backlash from armed teenagers with nothing to lose.

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The War for Nigeria

How sectarian violence has made life in northern Nigeria “incomprehensibly frightful.”

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Modern Girls

Mystical, unsettling rumors surround a student at an all-girls school in Nigeria.

"We shuddered when we heard her invoke Allah. All but begging her not to unleash her powers on us, we recounted, in turns, how we had heard from someone who had heard from someone of the pencil case in the gym. Pencil case in the gym? What pencil case in what gym? We said that we had heard stories, too, about the blotting paper. Naturally, we made no mention of her Islamic faith. The word ‘witch’ remained unsaid. We said only that, whatever she had done, we were certain she had done for a good reason. And that her adversary, whomever it was, probably deserved it. Nuratu, as the full implication of our story dawned on her, looked as if she had been stabbed. She slowly sank to the floor, and began to weep and shake her head.

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A Mind Dismembered

On the history of Nigerian penis theft.

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'Perplexed ... Perplexed': On Mob Justice in Nigeria

“When I’m in Nigeria, I find myself looking at the passive, placid faces of the people standing at the bus stops. They are tired after a day’s work, and thinking perhaps of the long commute back home, or of what to make for dinner. I wonder to myself how these people, who surely love life, who surely love their own families, their own children, could be ready in an instant to exact a fatal violence on strangers.”

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A Wild Week in Lagos

A trip to a modern African megacity.

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A Scorsese in Lagos

On the difficult challenges faced by an auteur in Nigeria’s burgeoning Nollywood film economy.

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The Shadow Superpower

The world’s fastest growing economy isn’t China; it’s the “unheralded alternative economic universe of System D” aka the $10 trillion global black market.

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My Father Is an African Immigrant and My Mother Is a White Girl from Kansas and I Am Not the President of the United States

 The writer speaks with his father for the first and last time.

My father moved back to Nigeria one month after I was born. Neither I nor my sister Ijeoma, who is a year and a half my elder, have any recollection of him. Over the course of the next 16 years, we did not receive so much as a phone call from him, until one day in the spring of 1999, when a crinkled envelope bearing unfamiliar postage stamps showed up in the mailbox of Ijeoma's first apartment. Enclosed was a brief letter from our father in which he explained the strange coincidence that had led to him "finding" us.* It was a convoluted story involving his niece marrying the brother of one of our mother's close friends from years ago. As a postscript to the letter, he expressed his desire to speak to us and included his telephone number.

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In Which We Are Back In Nigeria Now

On returning to Lagos after years abroad.

It is always understood when you leave Nigeria as a Nigerian that you will return at some point.

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The Chilling Story of Genius in a Land of Chronic Unemployment

On the ground in Nigeria with the nation’s notorious scam artists, who share a remarkable number of qualities with America’s top entrepreneurs.

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Nollywood: Lights, Camera, Africa

On the evolution of Nigeria’s booming film industry, which produces 50 full-length features a week.

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The Convict and the Congressman

How did a Kentucky entrepreneur, a Louisiana politician, and the vice president of Nigeria end up in one of the biggest scandals to hit America’s black elite in decades?