Looking back from the Future provides an imagined perspective looking back from an unspecified time in the future, on significant events in the eras that have passed. Onitsha today is a leading Igbo and Nigerian city on the banks of the River Niger. In the envisaged future it is a major city in what has become a ‘World of Homelands.’ The defining feature dividing early and later eras is: ‘rooted ethic.’ In the early eras the ‘Ethic of Darkness’ (with attendant attributes of exclusion/division/acquisition) is dominant. In the later eras the ‘Ethic of Light’ (with attendant attributes of realization/actuation/civil persuasion/inclusion) is dominant. Looking Back explores prospects offered by the ‘transformational’ properties of the computer, the internet and the world of cybernetics. It suggests possibilities for movement out of Darkness, into sustained Light, and on towards establishment of the Civil Commons, throughout what is envisaged as a World of Homelands’—the socio-ethno/political units that have replaced States and most Nations.
Professor Michael Vickers, historian and writer with a range of scholarly, literary and journalistic contributions over the past fifty years, has given much of his mind and heart to the land and folk of Nigeria; and in more recent years to projecting their path, along with all Africa folk, to what he perceives as the Horizon Future. Recipient of the Distinguished Academic Award (2012) from the University of Ibadan, he has taught and conducted research at the University of Ife (now Obafemi Awolowo University) Nigeria, and other universities in America, Canada and UK. He is author of several acclaimed books, including most recently, On Wings of Light (2015), and Bright Beams in Dark Shadow (2017); the principal themes of which derived from this current work, Looking Back from the Future, in its original (2011) form. He holds a doctorate in Political Science and West African Studies from the University of Birmingham, UK, and is Emeritus Director of Parliamentary and Public Affairs, The Hillfield Agency (UK).