This book depicts the Ethiopian state as a product of “negotiation” processes and a multitude of “intersections” between the state an “various identity groups” both in critical historical periods and in the present time – where formations and reformations of the nature of the state are still ongoing. It, therefore, narrates the intentional and, as far as this book has found, the rational actions of identity groups in lowland Ethiopia, clearly countering singular narratives of victimhood and subjugation. The book started out as an interrogation of the role of arms among the Nyangatom pastoralists in the lower Omo Valley of Ethiopia. Arms are common phenomenon in most lowland borderlands in Africa including the Ethiopian south-western borderland studied in this book. However, an investigation into the role of arms has unravelled several nuances that go beyond the function of arms as an instrument of violence. The study of the role of arms in intra-communal relations has brought to light subtle trends, beliefs, and insecurities that reinforce intractable conflicts. Communities in borderlands are presented with social and economic challenges that call for creative solutions. The borders present options despite underdeveloped infrastructure and often-harsh environmental conditions.
This book only covers the period up to 2017 thus the political and policy changes in Ethiopia after the premiership of Dr Abiy Ahmed are not covered.
This book depicts the Ethiopian state as a product of “negotiation” processes and a multitude of “intersections” between the state an “various identity groups” both in critical historical