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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Social, Economic and Political Discontent in Ethiopia as Reflected in Contemporary Amharic Songs (Mid 1950s-mid 1970s)
Author:Lulseged, EyayuISNI
Periodical:Journal of Ethiopian Studies
Notes:biblio. refs.
Geographic terms:Ethiopia
Northeast Africa
Ethiopian-Semitic languages
Peoples of Africa (Ethnic Groups)
Architecture and the Arts
Politics and Government
Art, Architecture, Music, Drama
Economic and social development
political science
External link:https://www.jstor.org/stable/41966036
Abstract:In terms of the development of education, modern art and modern music, the period from the 1950s to the 1970s may be characterized as an era of modernization in the contemporary history of Ethiopia. Nonetheless, this did not prevent a feeling of dissatisfaction among enlightened members of the society; young Ethiopian returnees who had their training in Europe and America were disillusioned as they began to compare their country with the outside world. Social and economic discontent was portrayed in a number of Amharic songs that appeared during this period. Such songs were critical of Ethiopia's backwardness. They articulated the economic alienation of the masses as opposed to the excessive amassing of wealth by the few, and expressed aversion to the diffusion of alien cultural values. Amharic songs were likewise used as a medium to reflect political resentment. Many of the political songs that were produced in the 1950s and 1960s were connected with the abortive coup d'état of 1960. Political predictions were also made through songs. The texts of songs used as illustration were collected by the author from the archives of the Ministry of Information, the National Theatre, and Hagar Fiqir Theatre. Information was also gathered through interviews with authors, singers and other professionals. App. (list of 41 songs with year of production, name of author and singer), notes, ref.