Friday, June 05, 2009

London International Oromo c u l t u r e & H i s t o r y Wo r k s h o p

London International Oromo c u l t u r e & H i s t o r y Wo r k s h o p
4thJuly 2009

Exploring Oromo Cultural History: Critical Multi-disciplinary

Session III: Gada: Past, Present and Future Significance in Oromo History

We are pleased to announce that the 3rd London International Oromo Culture and History Workshop is planned to be held on 4th July 2009. The Workshop will be of interest to those interested in understanding their cultural heritage, scholars and students of Oromo studies.

Gada is a highly complex system of constitutional government based on indigenous African democratic principles whereby officials are elected every eight years. At its pinnacle Gada was a fully functional complete system of governance; arguable even superior, in some aspect, to the modern democratic systems around the globe. For instance, the Gada government has separate legislative (Yaa’a) and executive (Gumii) branches as well as independent judiciary.

The Gada system has been the basis of Oromo culture and civilisation which helped the Oromo nation maintain political, economic, social and religious institutions for thousands of years. Unfortunately, the Gada system, as a national institution, has been seriously weakened since the Oromo nation lost its sovereignty around the end ofthe 19thcentury. Nonetheless, it remains dynamic and in continuous existence. In fact, Gada heritage has a great deal of influence on the Oromo identity, collective consciousness, values and tradition and world outlook at all levels.

Gada is not only an Oromo cultural heritage but also a significant World Heritage with huge potential for contribution to the whole of humanity. It should be part of
the school curriculum in Oromia not only as part of history lesson but to broaden the minds of the young generation. Further scholarly studies are also required to fully uncover the Gada system itself.

This Workshop will attempt to take a holistic view of Gada. It will address the role Gada played and is still playing in the life and development of the Oromo society, its contribution to the world’s history of democracy and the potential role it can play in the future.

09:00—09:30 Registration
09:30—09:40 Welcome & Introduction
Dr Feyisa Demie

09:40—10:15 Keynote Speech
Dr Tesema Taye

Chair: Immiru Itana
10:15—11:15 The Militarization of the Gadaa Institution in the 16th& 17thCenturies: Critical Reflections on the Historical Location of the Centre of Oromo Expansion and Direction of their Movement"

Professor Mekuria Bulcha, Malardalen University, Sweden
11:1 5—1 1:30 Refreshments
11:30—12:30 “The Current Oromo National Movement: role of Gada?”
Dr Alemayehu Kumsa, Prague University, Czech Republic

12:30—13:30 LUNCH

Chair: Gosye Fida
13:30—14:30 “Gada Practice in Bokku Chitu”
Professor Girma Gebresembet, Swedish University of
Agricultural Sciences, Sweden

14:30—1 5:30 Gada and modernity: Some thoughts on principles and practice across governance domains
Dr Marco Bassi, University of Oxford, UK

15:30—1 5:45 Refreshments
Chair: Addise Dheressa
15:45—16:15 “Should the effect of cyclical famine be investigated?” Wendy Spencer, University of Glamorgan, UK
16:15—16:30 Close
Teferi Degneh

VENUE: Room UG02, City University London,
Northampton Square, London EC1V 0HB
TRAVEL: Bus: 4, 56 & 153; Underground: Angel Station on Northern Line Forfurther

information:- e-mail the Organizing Committee

Workshop Organizing Committee


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