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Language and Class Resistance in Nigeria: A Foucauldian Perspective.
Okorie, Mitterand M.; Bamidele, Oluwaseun
Twentieth century philosopher--Michel Foucault was known to have introduced the concept of discourse theory, in a bid to offer contextual analyses on how people think and talk about a subject which influenced how they acted in relation to that subject. The basic premise of discourse theory is that, through the manipulation of words, discourses had the power to inculcate specific forms of behavior through regulated communication and power processes. In this paper, we draw from discourse theory in analyzing how class resistance, through the use of subversive language(s), manifests within the Nigerian socio-political landscape. Through an inferential reading and contextual analysis of the literature on discourse theory, we discover a nexus between the use of Nigerian Pidgin English (and slang language) among the dominated class and a circumvention of social norms. Further, the work recommends that, beyond the overt forms of protest (rallies and revolts), more deserving of attention is the subtle and pacifist forms of protest within Nigerian civil society; the essence that discourse theory persuasively captures.
Journal of Pan African Studies, 2016, Vol 9, Issue 6, p4
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