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Reading Lists

Know Your Lagos Vol 1


By C.S. Lozie

A list of books to quench your thirst for Lagos histories


Know Your Lagos Vol 1


1. Slavery and the Birth of an African City: Lagos, 1760–1900

As the slave trade entered its last, illegal phase in the 19th century, the town of Lagos on West Africa's Bight of Benin became one of the most important port cities north of the equator. Slavery and the Birth of an African City explore the reasons for Lagos's sudden rise to power. By linking the histories of international slave markets to those of the regional suppliers and slave traders, Kristin Mann shows how the African slave trade forever altered the destiny of the tiny kingdom of Lagos. This magisterial work uncovers the relationship between African slavery and the growth of one of Africa's most vibrant cities.

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2. London Life, Lagos Living (A Collection of Short Lagos-life Observations Turned 'Stories')

Kilon Sparkles! London Life, Lagos Living is an exciting new book by columnist Bobo Omotayo. Better known under the nom de plume ‘The Renaissance Man’, Bobo Omotayo has compiled a collection of short stories including some previously published in his column on BellaNaija titled “The Friday Track”. The book also includes new material laced with the same wit and honesty as his once-controversial postings. The stories are inherently Nigerian, capturing certain nuances of every day “Naija” life, and presenting it, through Bobo’s eyes for anyone, anywhere. The author’s style can be described as easy reading, colloquial, comical, and satirical.

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3. Possessed: A History of Law and Justice in the Crown Colony of Lagos (1861 - 1906)

Lagos was already POSSESSED by Britain when in 1862 Henry Pelham–Clinton, Duke of Newcastle, and Secretary of State for Colonies agonised; he worried that “the original sin of taking possession of Lagos” would lead to meddling by force of arms by the British government. He couldn’t have realised how prophetic his concerns would be. From 1851 up till 1906, the British Imperial Navy and its collaborators would use force and random justice to achieve this possession and more – it would ultimately lead to a forced amalgamation of Lagos Colony, firstly to a Niger coast (Southern) protectorate and then with the Northern protectorate in 1914. Along the way, the story of brave individual and collective struggle against imperial control reveals heroism, courage, and defiance of the Lagos Africans in order to resist domination at first and then to survive its consequences-The Crown Colony of Lagos. This is a new and revealing view of hidden accounts, court evidence, testimony, and papers of enquiry showing how colonisation employed “law and justice” to achieve its pernicious objectives – changing the course and African society. THE AUTHOR Olasupo Shasore, SAN, is of the Nigerian inner bar, a leading Senior Advocate of Nigeria. Between 2007 and 2011, he served as the Attorney-General of Lagos State, Nigeria. During his time in public service, he led reforms in Public Law and the Magistracy with a focus on the improved delivery of services in the legal and judicial sectors. He facilitated the introduction of a new Criminal Law and issued the first guidelines in the state for Prosecutors and Mediators. He serves as the Chairman of the Lagos State Law Reform Commission and is also elected the President of the Lagos Court of Arbitration. His other books include Jurisdiction and Sovereign Immunity (Nigerian Institute of International Affairs, 2007) and Commercial Arbitration Law and International Practice in Nigeria (LexisNexis, 2012). This is his first book on history.

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