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The History and Legacy of the Asaba, Nigeria, Massacres

S. Elizabeth Bird and Fraser Ottanelli
African Studies Review
Vol. 54, No. 3 (DECEMBER 2011), pp. 1-26
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/41304792
Page Count: 26
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Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
The History and Legacy of the Asaba, Nigeria, Massacres
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Abstract

In early October 1967, four months into the Nigerian Civil War, federal troops massacred hundreds in Asaba, a town in southeast Nigeria on the west bank of the Niger. While ethnically Igbo, Asaba was not part of Igbo-dominated Biafra. Through the reconstruction of this event, the article fills a significant gap in the historical record and contributes to the discussion on the impact of traumatic memory at the local and national levels. It also suggests that the Asaba massacres speak to larger issues of potential reconciliation that extend beyond Asaba and Nigeria. Au début du mois d'Octobre 1967, quatre mois après le commencement de la guerre civile au Niger, les troupes fédérales ont massacré des centaines de personnes à Asaba, un bourg au sud est du Nigeria sur la rive ouest du Niger. Bien qu'ayant une majorité ethnique Igbo, Asaba n'appartient pas géographiquement au Biafra, dominé par les Igbos. Avec la reconstruction de ce massacre, cet article comble un vide significatif dans les archives historiques et contribue à la discussion sur l'impact de la mémoire traumatique au niveaux local et national. Il indique également que le massacre d'Asaba recouvre des questions plus larges de réconciliation potentielle s'étendant au-delà d'Asaba et du Nigeria.

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