History of the Culture
The first known human remains within the Nigerian region was found to be dated within the Last Stone Age (around 10000 BCE and 2000 BCE); they were called the Iron Age-Nok people. Between the pass of time, many different groups of people have migrated into and immigrated out of this land. The early societies that had settled down within this area were decentralized and focused on small villages or village groups. However, by the end of the first millennium CE, through social interactions and trade with their neighboring groups, societies began to develop more centralized state structures based on kingship.
By the 11th century, powerful empires were built in the northern and southern regions of Nigeria. Although the Nigerian region had built up powerful kingdoms, they were not able to protect themselves from British colonization in the late 19th and 20th centuries. Empires had fallen, villages had separated, and the Europeans began to alter the lives of the native people. They had negotiated new boundaries within the country and their country was given a new name. According to the book Nigeria: A Bradt Travel Guide (2005), the British colonial officer’s wife, had put together the words “Niger.” meaning black and ‘area’ together, making Nigeria. Despite the British colonization, Nigerian people today still have many different languages, cultures, and traditions with roots reaching into their ancestors.
Uniqueness of the Culture
According to the book, A History of Nigeria (2008), Nigeria is historically unique for three different reasons. First, it was found that there had been a high level of migration from the Northern part of Nigeria to the Southern part due to the Savanna. Second, humans within the region had been found to be using stone tools like arrowheads and stone axes before any other country around the world. Lastly, the use of agriculture had created permanent settlements and strengthened the centralization of power and resources. Another unique thing about Nigeria is that is it Africa’s most populous country, it also contains the second largest city in the world, Lagos. Nigeria is also the 7th biggest supplier of crude oil on earth, and is considered Africa’s economic giant.
Geography, climate, and political conditions are all interconnected with influencing the Nigerian culture. All three factors had affected different parts of the region and have created the history of both strong empires and weak villages. During the early periods, the open plains had allowed communication between different villages in the north and expand into an empire. The climate there also gave an advantage for hunting and gathering, and through many interactions with others, helped spread the main religion of the north, Islam. The Muslim religion is deeply incorporated into both political and cultural aspects of the Northern Nigerian lifestyle. The strong influence of Islam still strongly remains within the Northern area of Nigeria....