Essay: ON TRIBALISM AS THE BLACK MAN'S BURDEN

THE bitter war in Biafra (see THE WORLD) is a symbol of the continent's divided soul, and the most discouraging example so far of a profound impasse that is crippling many of Black Africa's 30 newly independent states. It is an impasse between tribe and nation, which is also a clash between tradition and change, fact and aspiration.

On one side is tribalism: the tenacious loyalty of 140 million Africans to primitive subgroups that represent certainty amid bewildering social and economic upheavals. On the other side is nationalism: the...

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