SOAS Research Online

A Free Database of the Latest Research by SOAS Academics and PhD Students

[skip to content]

Marzagora, Sara and Kebede, Ayele (2019) 'Literary networks in the Horn of Africa: Oromo and Amharic intellectual histories.' In: Adejunmobi, Moradewun and Coetzee, Carli, (eds.), Routledge Handbook of African Literature. London, UK: Taylor and Francis, pp. 429-442.

This is the latest version of this item.

Text - Accepted Version
Download (188kB) | Preview


In his 1971 study on Four African Literatures, Albert Gerard states that ‘no imaginative literature seems to have been produced in any of the non-Amharic vernaculars of Ethiopia’ so that ‘the phrase Amharic literature can legitimately be used as a synonym for Ethiopian literature’. A methodology is focused on networks allow to move beyond the nation as a unit of analysis. While national literary histories have rigidly assumed that state borders coincide with literary borders, an approach based on networks, in Vilashini Cooppan’s words, ‘allows to highlight the principle of circulation, sedimentation, and linkage; distinct objects such as languages, cultures, identities, and aesthetic forms that move rhizomatically’. Ethiopian emperors ruled for centuries over a highland territory that was for the large part Orthodox Christian, but with sizeable Muslim and Jewish minorities. In this area, from the beginning of the Solomonic dynasty in 1270 until the late nineteenth century, education revolved around centres of religious learning.

Item Type: Book Chapters
SOAS Departments & Centres: Departments and Subunits > School of Languages, Cultures & Linguistics
ISBN: 9781138713864
Copyright Statement: This is an Accepted Manuscript of a chapter published by Taylor & Francis in the Routledge Handbook of African Literature, available online:
DOI (Digital Object Identifier):
Date Deposited: 17 May 2019 13:02
Related URLs: ... 781315229546-29 (Publisher URL)
Funders: European Union

Altmetric Data

Available Versions of this Item

  • Literary networks in the Horn of Africa: Oromo and Amharic intellectual histories. (deposited 17 May 2019 13:02) [Currently Displayed]


Download activity - last 12 monthsShow export options
Downloads since deposit
6 month trend
6 month trend
Accesses by country - last 12 monthsShow export options
Accesses by referrer - last 12 monthsShow export options

Repository staff only

Edit Item Edit Item