Markets and Social Networks in Nigeria


African Humanities Program Postdoctoral Fellowships




A lot has been written on the economic value of social networks in Informal economies yet so little emphasis is laid on its functionality in the organization of social existence outside the framework of the state. This work examines the evolution and dynamics of diverse associations and their intersecting interactions in Ladipo market. It analyses the plethora of rural cultures imported into the urban and how they have shaped social life in Ladipo. Its focus is on the way in which social networks have acted as essential social ingredients that facilitates the success of market relations and in the larger context foster harmonious intergroup relations among Nigerians. These developments are explored from the perspective of the traders and artisans whose motives and goals are grossly understudied and misrepresented. In Nigeria, these networks have acted as platforms for building bridges across ethnic divides in the fragile and deeply fractured Nigerian state.