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Language Use for Ethnic and Religious Tolerance: Implication for Social Development in Nigeria

By Institute Of African Studies, University Of Nigeria, Nsukka.

Summary

Abstract
The need for peaceful co-existence and social stability has never been more urgent in Nigeria than it is today. This is why ways of achieving them should be, and in fact they actually are, in the front burner of government agenda at all levels of governance in Nigeria. In line with this concern, this paper takes a look at the ways language can be used to foster, promote and sustain ethno-religious tolerance as a means of ensuring social stability in Nigeria. The task in the paper involves highlighting the features and functions of language as a peculiar human possession, conceptualizing ethnic and religious tolerance to put them in the perspective of this paper, and outlining how language use can help bring about peaceful ethno-religious co-existence. The paper concludes that language use can make or mar social relations and that toleration is indispensable for a healthy co-existence in a multi-ethnic society. Recommendations are given on how to ensure proper exploitation of language features and functions for peaceful co-existence and social stability. The core of the recommendations is that deliberate steps should be taken to promote mutual understanding of one another’s culture, language and religion.
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Institute Of African Studies, University Of Nigeria, Nsukka.

http://www.unn.edu.ng/academics/institute/institute-of-african-studies-2/
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