Communal Labour and Road Construction in Osun Division of Southwestern Nigeria, 1900-1960

Danford Room, 2nd floor, Arts Building (R16 on the campus map)
Wednesday 22 November 2017 (16:30-18:30)

Communal labour constituted an important aspect of African economy in the pre-colonial and colonial periods. It was the means through which public projects were carried out in Yorubaland and other African societies.

Even when the need for roads arose, the British had to rely on the efforts of kings and chiefs who organised able bodied men for the work. This paper attempts to examine communal labour as an important indigenous institution that facilitated the development of road transportation in Africa, using Osun Division as a case study depends on oral data gathered through interviews and archival materials as well as literature that were considered relevant to the subject matter. The study ascertains the indispensability of communal labour in the colonial economic activities and ipso facto the interdependence of the duo. It no doubt contributes to the stock of the existing knowledge on colonial history of Africa.

Dr Abiodun Ajayi is a Senior Lecturer of Adeyemi College of Education, Ondo. He is currently the Head of the Department of History in the college. He specialises in economic, military, and cultural history of the Yoruba people. Dr. Ajayi bagged his Bachelor’s degree in History/Economics combined honours and Master’s degree in Economic History at Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife. Thereafter, he proceeded to the University of Ibadan where he obtained his Doctor of Philosophy in History in April 2014.  Dr. Ajayi has attended over twenty local and international conferences and his published works which include chapters in books, articles in journals, magazines and national dailies are over twenty. He has co-edited two books: Nigeria’s Crossroads and Crossovers and Reflections on Development in Nigeria with the duo of S.A. Akintunde and O. Akinola. He also co-authored a book title, Economic History of Nigeria: The Travails of the Nation’s Economy from 1960-1999 with C.O. Ayodele.

Speaker: Abiodun Ajayi (Adeyemi College of Education and SOAS, University of London)

Part of the Africa Talks Seminar Series Autumn 2017.

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