Non-Nigerian writers have been apt to refer to the inhabitants of Southern Nigeria as a mere conglomeration of groups whose associations before the advent of the British were artificial. Professor Anene demonstrates the extent to which this traditional view ignores the cultural and other unities which were pervasive.
1. The traditional structure of the indigenous society; 2. The empire of informal sway: before 1885; 3. A paper protectorate: 1885–90; 4. Southern Nigeria at the crossroads; 5. The overthrow of indigenous authority: first phase 1891–5; 6. The overthrow of indigenous authority: second phase 1896–1906; 7. The ’native’ court system and the consolidation of British rule: 1901–6; 8. The foundations of economic and social change; 9. Conclusions; Appendices; Bibliography; Index.