Elite exchanges: the cultural politics of Chinese business in Nigeria

Onomake, Umoloyouvwe Ejiroghene Ovbije (2017) Elite exchanges: the cultural politics of Chinese business in Nigeria. Doctoral thesis (PhD), University of Sussex.

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Since the late 20th century there has been increasing interest in China’s role in Africa, both in academia and popular media. This interest reflects the general curiosity and concerns related to China’s political and business interests. Research into African-Chinese relations is usually on the macro level and rarely provides insight into the lived realities of the people at the heart of these interactions, particularly Africans. As such this thesis examines Nigerian-Chinese elite exchanges by interrogating the stock/conventional narratives constructed in political discourse and popular media (and to a large extent by academic research), in which China appears either as benevolent investor or neo-imperialist; and Africa appears as a passive recipient without agency at the mercy of greedy politicians and elite-pacting. Nigeria is one of China’s most important tradepartners in Africa. In response to this relationship, the Nigerian government has constructed a complex public relations campaign that taps into the aspirations and dreams of Nigerians and links them with Nigerian-Chinese relations. The campaign is centred on three key areas: big business, entrepreneurship and education. Throughout this thesis, I explore the experiences ofaspirational andelite Nigerian actors who attempt to take on the promise of Nigerian-Chinese relations through these three key areas. I argue that although the grand narrative is sold as accessible to all, it is mostly those who have access to capital, both financial and social, that are able to transform the promise of Nigerian-Chinese relations into a reality.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Schools and Departments: School of Global Studies > Anthropology
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HM Sociology > HM1001 Social psychology > HM1176 Social influence. Social pressure > HM1181 Attitude > HM1206 Communication. Mass media > HM1211 Intercultural communication
Depositing User: Library Cataloguing
Date Deposited: 28 Jul 2017 10:53
Last Modified: 05 Dec 2019 10:50
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/69510

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