Categories
Opinion Sociology World Mission

Sickness and Immigration, Revenge and Xenophobia

Based on 2 real people I have had contact with, but with names changed. Have a read and a think. Comment if you like below.   Joseph was suffering from some leg pain without any particularly obvious cause. Clearly someone with a grudge against him or envious of him in some way must have caused […]

Categories
Sociology

“Are you OK?” — Sudden Suffering at Christmas

Sometimes the words “We’re OK” are a little unsettling, in particular when the message comes out of the blue and you didn’t realise anything was wrong or that your loved ones might not have been OK. We sometimes end up sending such messages but a few days ago were on the receiving end. Having had a twin bomb […]

Categories
Language Sociology

More or less: thoughts on the spread of education in Nigeria

Here are a collection of my observations and insights gleaned from friends and colleagues Nigerian and foreign, regarding the history and the result of the spread of education in Nigeria. It is frequently observed that there is greater access to education than ever before in Nigeria. Sometimes people claim then that Nigerians are better educated […]

Categories
Sociology

You’re preaching!

At a consultant training seminar recently I made an observation in passing that may be an intriguing cultural insight or may be not worth considering. I share here with the hope that Nigerian friends may help refine my observation, and for the potential benefit of non-Nigerians. So here was the situation: we were in the […]

Categories
Sociology

Talking signs & Written assistants

Travelling around you always notice some differences markedly. “How do you know where to go without any signs on the road?” my friend Richard asked our driver on the way to Abuja airport. The answer was that he’s lived around Abuja and travelled the road a lot so he’s seen it change and has been […]

Categories
Language Sociology

Where there is no Desktop

Is the Desktop metaphor dead? The linked article suggests that touchy-feely tablets and phones are starting to sweep the desktop metaphor away. That’s certainly happening in part, but my own perspective is that in some parts of the world it’s never really been alive or helpful. The point of the desktop metaphor, popularised by Apple and […]

Categories
Sociology World Mission

The Highland Clearances Revisited

Growing up in 1990s post-industrial Scotland, the harrowing narrative of the Highland clearances was evoked time and again as a metanarrative to explain (or excuse?) the pitiful state of the nation. I remember the none-too-subtle play The Cheviot, The Stag and the Black Black Oil being performed (rather well) at the High School of Glasgow. […]

Categories
Sociology

Scottish Small-mindedness Syndrome

Abstract / Executive Summary Scotland has suffered a catastrophic loss of influence over the last century which seems to have led to a wide-spread cultural phenomenon of small-mindedness which promises to drag this formerly-proud nation ever downward. It corrupts family life, education, society at large and the ‘national church’.