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Title: History, memory and resistance in northern Nigeria : the transformation of Boko Haram
Author: Barkindo, Athanasius Atta
ISNI:       0000 0004 6500 5697
Awarding Body: SOAS University of London
Current Institution: SOAS, University of London
Date of Award: 2017
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Since the violent Boko Haram uprising in 2009, many studies have emphasised the socioeconomic factors that led to the emergence of the group. This thesis is designed to achieve two purposes. The first is to develop a theory that goes beyond 'emergence' to explain Boko Haram's 'transformation'. This also provides empirical material that contributes significantly to the academic debate about the Boko Haram conflict. The second purpose is to use this understanding to suggest ways in which counter terrorism policy may be improved in Nigeria and around the Lake Chad border region. The phases of Boko Haram's transformation include the transition from a local to a national and regional group, with cross-border links. The elements of this transformation comprise the formulation of a central ideology, structural organisation, the evolution of a group identity, and the transformation of its tactical, operational and strategic approaches. Evidence suggests that five factors have facilitated Boko Haram's transformation: the manipulation of memory and the historical narrative of Islam and the Kanem-Borno Empire; the politicisation of the Boko Haram conflict; the consequences of the government's military offensive; the impact of environmental degradation and weak cross-border institutions of law and order around the Lake Chad border region; and the influence of globalisation. Understanding the causes of Boko Haram's transformation is likely to assist the government in thwarting other emerging Islamist sects that retain the capacity for transformation in northern Nigeria.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral