Behavioural Approach to Political Protest: an Analysis of Fela Anikulapo Kuti, 1970-1997

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Eesuola, O.S
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Most studies in political protest lack behavioral content. They focus on group actions such as industrial strikes, street demonstrations, riots and sit-ins; without explaining the behaviour of the individuals who partake in them. They also lack perspectives on the dynamics of factors that influence the behaviour of individual protesters as well as the forms that their protests take. Consequently, scholarly understanding of political protest appears narrow, and most theories that evolve from them are bedeviled with limited explanatory frameworks. This study is an exploration of the one man, self-styled political protest of Fela Anikulapo Kuti of Nigeria between 1970 and 1997. The study sought to understand the origin, nature and character of Fela’s protest, the actual socio-political contradictions that provoked his protest, the dimensions his protest took, as well as the impacts that his protest has on the Nigerian socio political milieu. Using concept mapping and evidence-strategy techniques to analyze Fela’s protest songs and key informants’ responses, the study asserted that protest behaviour in individuals is often inculcated through socialization, and it transforms to protest actions when individuals react to certain socio- political contradictions around them. The explorative study of the Fela phenomenon generates the conclusion that music and deviant behaviour are possible forms of political protest actions, but the aspect of deviance may deny the protest mass supports, prevent it from transforming to social movement, render it misinterpreted, or even completely counterproductive. The study recommended that governments need to create effective institutions of grievances expression in order to prevent violent political protests in their political systems. In like manner, individuals who wish to champion socio- political protests should desist from such behaviour or activities that their societies consider deviant.
A Thesis Submitted to the School of Postgraduate Studies, University of Lagos
Protest , Deviance , Music , Political Behaviour , Research Subject Categories::SOCIAL SCIENCES::Social sciences::Political science
Eesuola, O.S (2011). Behavioural Approach to Political Protest: an Analysis of Fela Anikulapo Kuti, 1970-1997. A Thesis Submitted to University of Lagos School of Postgraduate Studies Phd Thesis and Dissertation, 250pp.