I Didn’t Do It for You : How the World Betrayed a Small African Nation
by Michela Wrong
this is a great book on Eritrea — its colonialism, its struggle for independence from Ethiopia, and its disheartening collapse afterwards. Wrong is a great author — mixing in some personal anecdotes with her fluid history.
summation: for a good book on east africa, try this one. it was very enjoyable.
Glorifying Italian Colonialism
“Rather than illuminating any hidden transcripts, Ms. Wrong brings her own to the table. She wrote a book, chastising the Eritreans for not erecting a statue to the first Italian governor of Eritrea, Martini, who she unabashedly declared to be “the father of modern Eritrea.”
“For Ms. Wrong, Eritrean nationalism represents the fruit of Italian colonialism; a vindication of the efforts of her ancestors. Thus she writes without shame “Eritreans were proud of their 1890 colonization by Italy.”
“Ms. Wrong is continuing the project begun by the Italian colonialists to denigrate Ethiopia and portray Eritreans subject to Italian rule as more advanced. Tekeste Negash refers to
“…the growing racist ideology which began to draw a distinction between the Eritreans who were fortunate enough to be under the civilizing umbrella of Italy and the inhabitants of the Ethiopian empire. This policy, though devised to bolster Italian imperial or colonial ego, appeared to have trickled down to the Eritrean literati. The language of many Eritrean politicians in the 1940s betrays the pervasiveness of the colonial racist ideology of the 1930s.
– Eritrea and Ethiopia, The Federal Experience.1997.
“Thus we can see the roots of the silly stories that Michela Wrong relies on to frame her view of the Eritrea-Ethiopia conflict.
To read the entire commentary, click http://www.geocities.com/~dagmawi/Zebenya/06/Bile_Michela_Wrong.html