In This Article Expand or collapse the "in this article" section Nigeria

  • Introduction
  • Bibliographies
  • Reference Works
  • Data Sources
  • Journals
  • Autobiographies, Biographies, and Memoirs

African Studies Nigeria
Ebiegberi Joe Alagoa, Atei Mark Okorobia
  • LAST REVIEWED: 25 October 2012
  • LAST MODIFIED: 25 October 2012
  • DOI: 10.1093/obo/9780199846733-0072


Nigeria, with its oil, gas, and a variety of solid mineral and agricultural resources, is one of the economies with enormous potential in the 21st century, especially with the government’s continued commitment to maintaining democratic stability to attract foreign investments through its policies of liberalization, privatization, and deregulation. With over 150 million people, it is the most populous nation in Africa, as well as one of the continent’s largest countries, stretching across 923,768.64 square kilometers. It is located within the tropics on the west coast of Africa, bordering Benin, Niger, Chad, Cameroon, and the Atlantic Ocean. Its 800-kilometer coastline contains natural harbors and sandy beaches. According to estimates, one in every five Africans is a Nigerian, with a population comprising more than 250 ethnic groups, of which the Hausa/Fulani in the North, the Yoruba in the Southwest, Igbo in the Southeast, the Ijo in the South-South/Niger Delta region, and the Kanuri in the Northeast are the largest. There are also some very influential minorities in the Middle Belt/Central Nigerian and the South-South regions. A former British colony, Nigeria gained her independence in 1960. Barely six years after independence, Nigeria experienced a succession of military coups, which meant that many critical long-term projects were never started, or that those that were started were abandoned. Consequently, the country’s infrastructure has suffered from underdevelopment. Since the return to civilian democracy in 1999, however, Nigeria has established robust democratic structures and begun a series of economic and social reforms that are beginning to bear fruit. Under the administration of President Goodluck Jonathan, who took office in May 2010, Nigeria is undergoing some transformation, and it stands on the brink of achieving more substantial and sustainable political, social, and economic growth.


A number of bibliographical works have been published that cover different aspects of Nigeria. Ezeji 1985 provides the abstracts of 512 postgraduate theses and dissertations of Ahmadu Bello University. Nigerian Field Society 1989 is an index to Volumes 1–50 (1930–1985) of the Nigerian Field, with generous cross-referencing. Osiobe 1989 brings under one cover all the theses and dissertations undertaken in Nigerian universities from 1960 to 1975. Fage 1987 is a guide to the published original sources on precolonial Western Africa, while Journal of African History 1990 lists the articles and reviews published in the journal from 1980 to 1989.

  • Ezeji, Joe, comp. Ahmadu Bello University Thesis and Dissertation Abstracts, 1962–1978. Zaria, Nigeria: Kashim Ibrahim Library, Ahmadu Bello University 1985.

    This bibliography is a compilation of abstracts of 512 postgraduate theses and dissertations of Ahmadu Bello University, from its inception in 1962 to June 1978, though it excludes theses submitted for postgraduate diploma courses.

  • Fage, J. D. A Guide to Original Sources for Precolonial Western Africa Published in European Languages. Madison: African Studies Program, University of Wisconsin, 1987.

    This is a guide to the published original sources that described precolonial Western African societies and were published in European languages.

  • Journal of African History, Cumulative Index, Vol. 21–30 (1980–1989). New York: Cambridge University Press, 1990.

    This index lists authors of articles published in the journal and authors of books reviewed in the journal. A relevant reference for scholars and researchers generally.

  • Nigerian Field Society. The Nigerian Field: Index to Volumes 1–50 (1930–1985). Ibadan, Nigeria: Nigerian Field Society, 1989.

    The Nigerian Field Society was founded in 1930 to encourage interest in Nigerian environment, history, and culture. Volume 1 of the Nigerian Field appeared in 1931, and Volume 50 came out in 1985, by which time well over 1,300 articles had been published. This index is drawn up under author and subject, with generous cross-referencing for easy utilization.

  • Osiobe, Stephen Achavwuko, ed. Nigerian University Dissertation Abstracts (NUDA): A Comprehensive Listing of Dissertations and Theses Undertaken at the Universities of Nigeria. Vol. 1, 1960–1975. Port Harcourt, Nigeria: University of Port Harcourt Press, 1989.

    Helps in bringing under one cover all the theses and dissertations undertaken in Nigerian universities, and making same easily accessible to researchers. These volumes indicate that Nigerian universities have made immense contributions to knowledge generally, and to national development in particular.

back to top

Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content on this page. Please subscribe or login.

How to Subscribe

Oxford Bibliographies Online is available by subscription and perpetual access to institutions. For more information or to contact an Oxford Sales Representative click here.