Questions for Ethiopian Cdes re: EPRP

João Paulo Monteiro jpmonteiro at
Wed Dec 15 12:11:49 MST 1999

Ghebremichael Woldeselassie wrote:

> The Amhara feudalists over the last millennium carved out a huge empire from
> their quite small highland base, so that Tigrigna, Oromo, Afar, Somali and
> many other smaller ethnic/linguistic groups became oppressed to one degree
> or another.  In some respects that created a mosaic akin to the Balkans, but
> not as in the Ottoman and Austro-Hungarian Empires, and it is absurd to
> consider Ethiopia in the same way as the former Yugoslavia.

Dear friends,

Could you be a little more detailed in your account of the formation of the
ethiopian nation, if possible with some historical references? Of course, I
understand that in third-world countries with scarce written record, legend and
historical fact are sometimes very hard to discern.

I am particularly interested in the Oromo/Amhara relationship. Are they really
two different peoples, two ethnic/linguistic entities with a territorial space
of their own? Or is this really more of a social distinction that got hardened
and ossified over time in a caste like structure, like hutu/tutsi in Rwanda and

João Paulo Monteiro

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