Adesina's Got it Right!
Professor Adesina's response to Dan Hoyle's piece strikes all the right notes. In a manner reminiscent of V.S. Naipaul's smug and contemptuous attitude to "weak cultures," Hoyle's essay failed to account for the fact that every department of Nigerians' lives is menaced by the callused, supervisory hand of the West. Obasanjo struts in illegitimate power because he has the confidence that his masters in Washington, London and Paris have his back as long as he continues to mortgage Nigeria's interests to Western designs.
I taught as a Fulbright lecturer at the University of Lagos. I witnessed first hand the collapse of values at that important center of learning: students who tried to offer me money or their body in exchange for grades. I heard stories of lecturers who not only fall for the bait but indeed demand such gratification. But guess what? I also saw students who were willing to be intellectually challenged, averse to cutting corners, and many lecturers who maintained their moral poise in the face of egregious temptation.
We must recognize and celebrate the latter even as we excoriate and execrate the former. By that measure, Hoyle's piece was both true--on an anecdotal level--and profoundly false--analytically flawed, untouched by nuance, balance, prudence and judiciousness.
Thanks, Dr. Adesina, for verbalizing the disquiet I felt after reading Hoyle.
Jimi has said it all...It is so galling to read diatribes that appear not to take the complicity of the west and the puppet regimes in the disorientation, confusion and subjugation of the African people.
It is very easy for us academics to be swallowed in the "liberal" mode in which many African Studies Departments in the US are cast. Indeed it is time pan-Africanist African scholars struggle to liberate African studies from the yoke of Americanism.