Current Ethiopian Crisis Inquiries into Fundaments
(In-person participation is by invitation only)
The Institute for Peace and Security Studies and the College of Social Sciences, Addis Ababa University, in collaboration with Makerere Institute of Social Research, Makerere University, Uganda, are organizing a two days conference on the theme “Current Ethiopian Crisis: Inquiries into Fundaments”. The conference focuses on the historical roots of the war that has been going on in northern Ethiopia and the widespread ethnic-based violence throughout the country since 2018. This crisis and a good deal of the conversations about it are in some ways based on and continuations of what have been going on in the country since, it is conceived, the adoption of ethnic federalism in the mid-1990s. Three major limitations seem to inform these conversations: (i) spatio-temporal confinement, (ii) dichotomous theorizing and practice, and (iii) the spell of finding solutions.
Working in narrow spatio-temporal vistas, a great majority of the reflections on the current situation would tend to caricature it. In terms of time framework, the fact that the majority of the analyses go back only as far as the 1990s is problematic since the roots of the problem could be traced to many decades before the 1974-Revolution. As a matter of course, the spatial aspect cannot be separated from the temporal and hence the conceptual strains that would follow from singling out the Ethiopian political geography. The conference is assumed to engage the debate between those who see peculiarity of the Ethiopian situation vis-à-vis those that explain it in terms of the coloniality/modernity scheme.