African Journal of
History and Culture

  • Abbreviation: Afr. J. Hist. Cult.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 2141-6672
  • DOI: 10.5897/AJHC
  • Start Year: 2009
  • Published Articles: 187


Re-Africanizing the educational system of Ethiopia

Wuhibegezer Ferede
  • Wuhibegezer Ferede
  • College of Social Sciences and Languages, Mekelle University, Ethiopia
  • Google Scholar
Gezae Haile
  • Gezae Haile
  • College of Social Sciences and Languages, Mekelle University, Ethiopia
  • Google Scholar

  •  Received: 26 August 2014
  •  Accepted: 09 January 2015
  •  Published: 28 February 2015


This paper tries to show the evolutionary development of education in Ethiopia along with its historic dysfunctions on the prospect of social transformation. The historical backdrop that centered on traditional educational system, which was predominantly ecclesiastical, is also briefly outlined for the sake of coherent understanding of the link and the miss-link in the educational system of the country. Ethiopia had started indigenized education in the Pre-Christian Eraatin Aksum as we witnessed it from local tradition. However, systematized ecclesiastical traditional education enshrined following the adoption of Christianity and the rise of Islam. These Educational institutions were not bereft of scientific thinking in their essence as in the usually discourse. But due to this misconception, in late 19thcentury they had given way for the newly inaugurated western school system initiated by missionaries who plan to use it for religious proselytizing. Thus, Ethiopia had imported western education by sidelining its traditional education system instead of creating at least a synthesis. Therefore, the country failed to create a uniquely Ethiopian system of education. Hence, the educational system was de-Ethiopianized or de-Africanized and thereby produced intellectual dependency and mind colonization that triggers many social evils as it has been witnessed since 1960s. Thus, this paper attempts to show how the conviction of being tabula rasa, otherwise called a zero beginning, for the commencement of modern education in Ethiopia served for colonization of the non-colonized state and polarized mindset among its citizens.

Key words: Africanization, colonization, education, Ethiopia, westernization