Amhara-Somali Relations in Jigjiga and its Surroundings from the 1890s to 1990s: A Historical Survey

Amhara-Somali Relations in Jigjiga and its Surroundings from the 1890s to 1990s: A Historical Survey

Show full item record

Title: Amhara-Somali Relations in Jigjiga and its Surroundings from the 1890s to 1990s: A Historical Survey
Author: Zerihun, Girma; Belete, Bizuneh
Abstract: The study focuses on the relation between Amhara and Somali peoples in the Jigjiga town and its surroundings from 1890s to 1990s. It highlights the nature of their relationships after the control of the area by Emperor Minîlik, during colonial powers, and after the restoration of Ethiopian rule in 1941. It investigates by dividing into three main themes: economic, cultural, and political interactions. The study used both primary and secondary sources, but since it is hard to find the former the researcher heavily relied on the latter. The study finds that, although at the beginning the Amhara and Somali were different in economic activities, through time good relationship and cooperation developed. The Somali exchanged their pastoral products with the Amhara farmers and traders. There were also cultural and religious differences, and both groups were strict and did not want to compromise, especially with regard to the latter. However, gradually there were some cultural interactions among some Amhara and Somali. The government promoted the Somali to adopt Amhara culture, which was not successful. Nevertheless, on the mass level the Somali and Amhara settlers developed many common cultural areas which facilitated their peaceful coexistence. The colonial powers, which were in competition with the Amhara governors of the area and in much desire to control Jigjiga and its surroundings, made lots of efforts to distort the relation between Amhara and Somali peoples. As a result, most of the political relationships between the two groups were characterized by conflicts. Besides, the local governors made so many gaffes that aggravated the conflict between the two peoples. It was clearly observed that there was a direct relationship between politics and ethnic relations. Above all, the emergence of Somali nationalism and the birth of different political groups like SYL, WSLF and ONLF affected the relationships between Amhara and Somali peoples. This thesis argues that the relationship between Amhara and Somali people in Jigjiga was not only conflictual, but also cooperative and peaceful in economic, cultural, and political areas. And it stresses how the existing conflict in the area was caused by external factors: rooted by colonial powers, backed by Somali nationalism, grown by local political developments and the result was harvested by the Amhara and Somali peoples of Jigjiga and its environs.
Description: 142p.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/123456789/3266
Date: 2013


Files in this item

Files Size Format View
Zerihun Girma.pdf 3.445Mb PDF View/Open

This item appears in the following Collection(s)

Show full item record