“This volume provides lucid commentary on situations which defy simple description…It is impossible to do justice to all the contributors. The essays are uniformly interesting and the volume is a contribution both to the ethnography of the Horn of Africa and the wider literature on ethnicity and warfare.”
“Ethnicity and Conflict in the Horn of Africa is a timely contribution both to the understanding of the puzzling conflicts that seem to abound in the postcolonial experience of this region and to the growing re-examination of ethnic identities, groups, conflicts, and concepts. These case studies present a wealth of cultural, historical, and political information…The authors clearly show the fluidity and contingency of a variety of ethnic identities and attempt to reconceptualize the processes that have come to define their conflicts as ethnic.”
Jay O'Brien, International Review of African Historical Studies
“The detailed insights and understanding of ethnic motivation described here should be of interest to a wider audience than anthropologists, in fact to all those involved in the fields of aid, development or conflict solution.”
Patrick Gilkes, African Affairs
Composed of eleven studies on the Horn of Africa, the book is based on primary research by David Turton, Hiroshi Matsuda, John Lamphear, Eisei Kurimoro, Wendy James, P.T.W. Baxter, Tim Allen and others.
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“These two volumes clearly demonstrate the efforts by a wide range of African scholars to explain the roots, routes, regimes and resolution of African conflicts and how to re-build post-conflict societies. They offer sober and serious analyses, eschewing the sensationalism of the western media and the sophistry of some of the scholars in the global North for whom African conflicts are at worst a distraction and at best a confirmation of their pet racist and petty universalist theories.”
The outbreak of numerous and simultaneous violent conflicts around the globe in the past decade resulted in immense human suffering and countless lost lives. In part, both results were aided by inactivity or by belated and often misplaced responses by the international community to the embattled groups.
The politics of identity and ethnicity will remain a fundamental characteristic of African modernity. For this reason, historians and anthropologists have joined political scientists in a discussion about the ways in which democracy can develop in multicultural societies.