acknowl edgments
I have accumulated considerable debt to many friends and colleagues during
the years this book was in the making. I am grateful to these wonderful people
for their support and kindness. Zach Warner and I had many interactions on
conceptual and contextual questions that undergird the entangled histories
of Chris tianity, Islam, indigenous religious beliefs, and the Nigerian state. A
generous and excellent scholar, Zach provided insightful critiques and ideas
that enhanced the overall quality of the book. I am grateful to Zach for his un-
flinching commitment to the objectives of this book. During the initial stages
of the book’s research, I benefited from the support of several young friends
who worked as my research assistants. Rory Brinkman, Suraiya Zubair Banu,
Tony Perry, Tyler Silver, Renee Velkoff, and Sarah Watts worked with me to
analyze extensive archival materials, many documents of religious institutions,
and piles of newspaper reports. I am grateful to Rory, Tony, Tyler, Renee,
Suraiya, and Sarah for their assistance and support. Discussions with many
friends in several humanistic social science disciplines informed an essential
cross- disciplinary perspective that, I believe, gave this book greater scope and
depth. Some of these friends read the finished work and offered insightful cri-
tiques: my special thanks to Wale Adebanwi, Niyi Afolabi, Okon Akiba, A. B.
Assensoh, Peniel Joseph, Insa Nolte, Ebenezer Obadare, Deji Ogunnike, Funke
Okome, Joel Rosenthal, Samuel Zalanga, and Nimi Wariboko. I am grateful
to Patty McCarthy for providing excellent editorial assistance. Patty is a pa-
tient and thoughtful editor who reminded me that a book of this nature must
not only speak to scholars in the field, but must also be accessible to students,
policy makers, and intelligent lay learners who are willing to wade through the
muddled waters of religion and state making in Nigeria. And to Eileen John-
son, I express my gratitude for the excellent maps contained in this book. 
The scholarship on religion and society in Nigeria is authoritative in African
studies. As a student of Nigerian history and politics, I benefited enormously
from the stellar works of many scholars in this impor tant field. While my cita-
tion will show the extent of my intellectual debts, I would like to acknowledge
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