Mediating “The Voice of the Spirit”: Musical and religious transformations in Nigeria's oil boom



In this article, I examine a musical recording made by a Yoruba Christian church in the context of Nigeria's oil boom in the 1970s. I focus on the recording as a node of mediation: a site at which multiple forms of mediation converge to bring together institutional orders and individual subjectivities. Those responsible for the recording drew on meaningful cultural forms—in this case, religion, music, and electronic media—to make authoritative claims about morality and experience in the context of profound social change. I seek to understand how religious groups use media to create links between political-economic transformations and individual experience. [Nigeria, Christianity, mediation, music, religious authority, political economy]