The Role of Christianity in Socio-economic and Political Development in Southern Nigeria, 1854-1960

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Chridamel Publishing House, Ilorin


Christianity was a stimulator for far reaching changes in the area that later became Nigeria. However, prevalent literatures on Christian missionary activities in Nigeria have focused more on the religious impacts, giving little attention to its socio-economic impacts. Thus, this study was aimed at the examining the place of Christianity in the Socio-political development of Southern Nigeria from the eve of colonisation up to the creation of the Nigerian state down to the independence of Nigeria. Adopting historical methodology, consisting of primary and secondary sources, this study found that commercial interests was the primary factor that drew European interests to Nigeria, making Christian missionary activities a means to an end, rather than an end in itself. The study found that the introduction of Christianity contributed to socio-economic development of Southern Nigeria in the areas of human capital development, new cultural identity, social mobility and modernisation. The study concludes that Christianity did not only impact the peoples relationship with God, it had far reaching impacts on the peoples day to day activities.



Christianity, Christian Missionaries, Southern Nigeria, Socio-Economic developments, Political developments