Society and State in Ethiopia for Quality Education: A Transdisciplinary Critical Discourse Analysis

Society and State in Ethiopia for Quality Education: A Transdisciplinary Critical Discourse Analysis

Alelign Aschale Wudie (Addis Ababa Science and Technology University, Ethiopia)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-9829-9.ch012

Abstract

This paper deciphers how different sociopolitical variables are (re/de)constructed and implemented in education in Ethiopia between 1991 and 2018. A thorough analysis of multi-modal texts and practices in education using Trans-disciplinary Critical Discourse Analysis (TCDA) was done. The analysis revealed that Ethiopian society has been segregated and structurally sorted. Targeted groups have been given identities and positions of power through fallacious discourses in Ethiopia. The gap between the powerful and the powerless becomes mighty, and that of between the rich and the poor is broad. The discursive nature of the politically-menaced education in Ethiopia deliberately constructed a hegemonic struggle between rich and poor teachers, between students and the society in the heretic ethnic politics and cognitive pillars of the rule. The policy and its implementations are the battlegrounds in mortifying, long-established cultures, values, ethics, and power in covert and convertible discourses. Similar menaces are highlighted and remedies are forwarded.
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Introduction

No text is innocent in the world (Stephens & Watson, 1994). Accordingly, every text in Ethiopian education are not innocent. Traceable in the nation’s history with the status of unforgettable but “forgivable” woes onto Ethiopia perpetuated through time. Some were social discourse traumas and others were life losses. We recall them with the term “that generation”. It was a generation that passed Ethiopia to this time and space. That generation produced humiliation, spatting, alleged gossip dissemination, verbal warning, physical confrontations—biting, sexual violence, torture, corruption and discriminatory deeds based on race, clan, color, wealth, posts, language, space, kinship, etc. That generation was a treason. We have seen the naughtiest ideological constructions, as a byproduct of that generation, for state power during the rule of Tigray People Liberation Front (onwards, TPLF). Contemporary are divisions based on the Amara “northerners” and their kinship treads, and the “other centrals, easterners, southerners and southerners”. People may dare to use localizations of a smaller size on river and tributaries. Religious and Mountain names are being used to name people for power operationalization in nominalization enactments of identities and groupings. Colored tagging by politicians and some ethnic affiliates are what we have learnt so far. We have lost our innate intellects and wisdoms, our beautiful cultures and endemic identities, and our indigenous systems of governance. Any Ethiopian can simply recall Queen Yodit who historically being represented as a “pagan superpower and archenemy of Christian Ethiopia” (Sergew, 1972) in the misunderstanding or a lack of records, she has been believed to demolish Ethiopia and her treasures. The “gigantic” forces of Gragn Ahmed (the left-handed medieval worrier) could have miscopied the acts and traits of medieval period barbarisms (and the narration of Queen Yodit carries unforgettable calamities and counterfeit negativities). Pro-and-anti Gragn narratives pronounced the history of his “jihadist warriors” who burnt Churches and their chronicles and butchered and beheaded people of the “north”. Subsequently, the historically established love and peaceful coexistence between Ethiopian Christian and Islamic brothers and sisters, which had been exemplary to the world, has been being hijacked and breached in misuse of historical events.

Ethiopians of a counter power asked military assistance and “technology” training from the Portuguese missionary soldiers and the Turkish affiliates of the time, but they have left their own historical traces on Ethiopia’s sacred soil after they “left” the country. Some were dislocation of the nation, national name change, and attempt to covert the mass into their own religions. Likewise, Nine Saints and many other Missionaries had left their own traces of the Theocultural opportunity or confusion on Ethiopian soil though they are Ethiopians themselves. The frequent ambushes and raid attempts of Sudanese and Egyptian pugilists into Ethiopia had been discourse of “how can I forget it?” history. Collateral damages from Eritrean bandits based on false propaganda and the colonial ambitions of many European countries had left traces of both pride and disgrace in Ethiopian history. But what Ethiopians did to Italy at Adwa (1986) was a message of shame, frustration, and doubt; nevertheless, the coming back of these “foolish” forces in 1936 was for mere “revenge”. Egyptians’ also attempted to shackle Ethiopia through religious interventions using their secret bishops who were spies of politics in the name of religion. They had been simultaneously lobbying the world’s financial and power institutions such as International Monetary Fund (IMF), World Bank (WB), and multiple institutions of the United Nations (UN) which were intended to prevent the building of dams on Abay (Blue Nile River) and other tributaries. Savage civil wars since the beginning of Ethiopia’s history had savagery effects on Ethiopianism. We have lost numerous intellectuals and a mammoth of wealth. There has been deliberate incursions of foreign ideologies and policies which led the nation into distress in their essence-presence until today. Ethiopians were challenged by decades of life claiming poverty and diseases. They have been struggling with many political flaws and deadly wars.

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