From Rationalization to Attribution: A Meta- Analysis of Existing Explanations of Reaction to Marginalization and Inequality in Nigeria

K.D. Ige


The theoretical and empirical weaknesses in the inequality-conflict arguments have stimulated scholars to seek better reasoning and approaches. Often, scholars had reported a spurious correlation between inequality and conflict because interaction is governed by an “invisible hand’, which produces ‘unintended consequences’. It has therefore been concluded that inequality does not directly affect conflict. Thus despite hopelessness and disenfranchisement, inequality or deprivation has not caused violence because of mediating factors, notably justification. The viability of various mediators has been of major interest to scholars of rebellion. This article takes a look at various explanations within the collective action literature, using Nigeria as an example. The review showed that explanations have transited from rationalizations to justification and from efficacy to attributions. It showed that the emergence of an urban citizenship with informed political agenda has the potential to challenge the state or influence politics to demand basic services.

DOI: 10.5901/mjss.2014.v5n20p2179

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Mediterranean Journal of Social Sciences ISSN 2039-9340(Print) ISSN 2039-2117(Online)

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