Afri 101 paper

Afri 101 paper - Ethiopia is a country on the eastern...

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Ethiopia is a country on the eastern portion of African. It is renowned for its rich history of being home to some of the earliest and well celebrated societies in the world. At the pinnacle of Ethiopia’s prominence, it was widely regarded as a one of the richest countries in Africa and was governed by an elongated line of monarchs. As a world renowned power, it was celebrated for its advanced society. Ethiopia today however, is but a dusty shell of its former glory. The lineage of monarchs that once governed has since lost power and this African nation is now among the poorest in the world; and has been the victim of famine, war and many tragedies. The idea of Ethiopia and its history has piqued the interest of many. However, very few have engaged enough with the continent; and specifically Ethiopia to see past the storied history of the once great nation. The common visage given to Ethiopia is of devastating images broadcasted world wide of Ethiopia as a barren waste land. The novel Notes from the Hyena’s Belly: Memories of My Ethiopian Boyhood written by Nega Mezlakia, gives an insight into the daily lives of the common people of Ethiopia during arguably the country’s most defining period. The novel Notes from the Hyena’s Belly: Memories of My Ethiopian Boyhood is an entertaining and passionate account of the author’s early years and presents the events that shook Ethiopia and shaped the author’s life. (Mezlekia) Through his memories, the author presents a view of Ethiopians as very diverse in their beliefs and cultures and also successfully puts faces on the commonly generalized image of what a third-world society resembles. Through the eyes of a young Nega, the reader is exposed to the damnable era of the feudal order in relation to Ethiopia, the effects of the Marxist-Leninist regime and the growth and trials endured by the Ethiopian women. The reader accompanies the author on a journey to find meaning to life’s many questions and along the way analyzes and displays the human agency of not only Africans on a macro scale; he also analyzes people, in this case Ethiopians, on a more micro scale. (Mezlekia) (Furtak) (Gilkes) (Kassahun)
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The novel begins with the author’s birth and an illustration of the journey to understand the mysteries of the unknown. The author introduces himself to the reader from his earliest memories, the womb. The author explains his birth in a very fantastic fashion and describes the arrival into earth as a journey into another universe, one filled with not only tremendous fear but also overwhelming curiosity. The author also alludes, in the memory of his birth that every child is born with a form of royal crown on their head; this symbolizes the importance of every child as not only an individual, but as a being with worth and equally so. (Mezlekia) This memory is significant because it denounces Hegelian beliefs that complexion or skin color is a determinant of ones worth. The famous Hegelian ideals contend that African’s unlike Europeans are
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This note was uploaded on 09/19/2011 for the course AFRI 101 taught by Professor Cooke during the Spring '08 term at UNC.

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Afri 101 paper - Ethiopia is a country on the eastern...

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