Distinction, Exclusivity and Whiteness

Elite Nigerian Parents and the International Education Market

  • Pere Ayling

Table of contents

About this book


This book offers unique insights into elite Nigerian parents’ engagement with, and use of, the international secondary education market as they attempt to retain their social standing - via their children - under today’s shifting global conditions.

Throughout, the book tackles two important, albeit uncomfortable questions: Why does whiteness hold the highest possible value in postcolonial societies such as Nigeria? And, more importantly, why do black people accept the hegemonic discourse that West/white is best?

Combining the theoretical frameworks of Pierre Bourdieu and Frantz Fanon, the book reveals ‘Whiteness’ as a highly valuable form of cultural and symbolic capital that plays a crucial role in the formation of, and struggle for, elite status and distinction in modern-day Nigeria. Drawing on rare qualitative data sets along with postcolonial literatures, the book reveals how British whiteness is used by those working at and for British private schools in Nigeria (BPS-NIG) as an informal but powerful mechanism of ‘quality’ control, and in constructing the image of ‘world-class’ educational establishments.


Bourdieu Fanon Whiteness in education Elite reproduction International schooling Elite Education Nigerian expatriate elite parents International Secondary Education Market Elite Identity in Nigeria overseas schooling

Authors and affiliations

  • Pere Ayling
    • 1
  1. 1.University of SuffolkIpswichUK

Bibliographic information

  • DOI
  • Copyright Information Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2019
  • Publisher Name Springer, Singapore
  • eBook Packages Education
  • Print ISBN 978-981-13-5780-0
  • Online ISBN 978-981-13-5781-7
  • Buy this book on publisher's site