A more extensive list of suggested further reading on Ethiopia and the Horn of Africa

There is immense and continually growing literature on Ethiopia and the Horn of Africa. We have listed here a number of the more interesting books for further reading on history and culture, travel, art, and literature. We have not included articles, many of which are to be found in the publications of the triennial International Conferences of Ethiopian Studies (ICES): the most recent of these have been:

·        Marcus, H. G. (ed.), 1994 New Trends in Ethiopian Studies. Papers of the XII International Conference of Ethiopian Studies, Michigan State University, 5–10 September 1994, 3 vols., Lawrenceville NJ.

·        Katsuyoshi Fukui, Eisei Kurimoto and Masayoshi Shigeta (eds.), 1997 Ethiopia in Broader Perspective.    Papers of the XIIIth International Conference of Ethiopian Studies, Kyoto, 12–17 December 1997, Kyoto.

·        BayeYimam (ed.), Proceedings of the XIVth. International Conference of Ethiopian Studies, Addis Ababa, 6– 11 November 2000. Addis Ababa: Institute of Ethiopian Studies.

·        Uhlig, S. (ed.) 2006.Proceedings of the XVth. International Conference of Ethiopian Studies Hamburg July 20– 25, 2003. Wiesbaden: Harrassowitz Verlag. 

·        Ege, S., Harald Aspen, BirhanuTeferra and ShiferawBekele (eds). Proceedings of the XV1th. International   Conference of Ethiopian Studies, Trondheim, 2-7 July 2007. Proceedings can be accessed through:  


·        The XVIIth. International Conference of Ethiopian Studies was held in November 2009 in Addis Ababa.


History and culture (general)

·        Asmerom  Legesse 2006. Oromo Democracy: An Indigenous African Political System Trenton NJ: Red Sea Press.

·        BahruZewde, 1998 A Short History of Ethiopia and the Horn, Addis Ababa.

·        1991 A History of Modern Ethiopia, 1855-1974. Athens: Ohio University Press.

·        Beckwith, C., Fisher, A. and Hancock, G. 1990 African Ark: People and Ancient Cultures of Ethiopia and The Horn of Africa. Harry N. Abrams.

·        Bender, M. Lionel (ed.). 1981 Peoples and Cultures of the Ethio-Sudan Borderlands. East Lansing: African   Studies Center, Michigan State University.

·        BerhanouAbebe, 1998 Histoire de l'Ethiopied'Axoum a la revolution, Paris: Maison-neuveet Larose.

·        Crummey, Donald, 2000 Land and Society in the Christian Kingdom of Ethiopia: from the Thirteenth to the Twentieth Century, Oxford: Oxford University Press.

·        Dessalegn Rahmato. 1985 Agrarian Reform in Ethiopia. Trenton: Red Sea Press.

·        Doresse, Jean, 1971 Histoire Sommaire de la Corne Orientale de l'Afrique, Paris: Geuthner.

·        Henze, Paul, 2000 Layers of Time: A History of Ethiopia, Hurst, London.

·        Iyob, Ruth. 1995.The Eritrean Struggle For Independence: Domination, Resistance, Nationalism, 1941-1993.   Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

·        Leroy, Jules. 1973 L'Ethiopie – Archeologieet Culture, Bruges: DeschedeBrouwer.

·        Levine, Donald N. 2000 Greater Ethiopia: The Evolution of a Multi-Ethnic Society. 2nd. ed. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.

·        1965 Wax and Gold: Tradition and Innovation in Ethiopian Culture.  Chicago: University of Chicago Press.

·        Lewis, I.M. 1955 Peoples of the Horn of Africa: Somali, Afar, and Saho. (Ethnographic Survey of Africa: North-Eastern Africa, Pt. 1.) London: International African Institute. 1980 A Modern History of Somalia. London: Longmans.

·        Loughran, Katheryne S. and Samatar, Said S. (ed.), 1986 Somalia in Word and Image. Indiana University.

·        Marcus, Harold G. 1994 History of Ethiopia, Berkeley: University of California Press.

·        Markakis, John. 1974 Ethiopia: Anatomy of a Traditional Polity. New York: Oxford University Press.

·        Mathew, David.  1947 Ethiopia: The Study of a Polity, 1540-1935. London: Eyre and Spottiswoode.

·        McCann, James. 1987 From Poverty to Famine in Northeast Ethiopia: A Rural History, 1900-1935.

·        Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press.

·        McCann, James C. 1995 People of the Plow: A History of Ethiopian Agriculture. University of Wisconsin Press.

·        Pankhurst, R. 1967 The Ethiopian Chronicles, Oxford: Oxford University Press.

·        1968 Economic History of Ethiopia, 1800-1935. Addis Ababa: Haile Selassie I University Press.

·        Reid, Richard 2007. War in Pre-colonial Eastern Africa: The Patterns and meaning of State-level Conflict in the Nineteenth Century. Oxford. James Currey.

·        Rubenson, Sven. 1976 The Survival of Ethiopian Independence. London: Heinemann.

·        Trimingham, J. S. 1952. Islam in Ethiopia. London: Oxford University Press.

·        Wallis-Budge, E.A. 1922 History of Ethiopia, Nubia, and Abyssinia, Methuen, London.

Flora and Fauna

·        Blundell. M. 1999 Wild Flowers of East Africa. Collins Photo Guide. London: HarperCollins Publishers Ltd.

·        Nievergelt, B., T. Good, and R. Güttinger. 1998. A Survey of the Flora and Fauna of the Simen Mountains

·        National Park, Ethiopia. Special Issue of Walia, Journal of the Ethiopian Wildlife and Natural History Society, Addis Abeba, Ethiopia.

·        Pol, Jose Luis Vivero, 2001.The Endemic Birds of Ethiopia and Eritrea.Addis Ababa, Shama books.

·        Sebsebe Demissew, Inger Nordal & Odd E. Stabbetorp, 2003. Flowers of Ethiopia and Eritrea: Aloes and Other Lilies. Addis Ababa, Shama books

·        Tilahun, S., S. Edwards, and T. B. G. Egziabher. editors. 1996. Important Bird Areas of Ethiopia. EthiopianWildlife and Natural History Society. Addis Ababa: Semayata Press.

·        Williams J.G. and Arlott, N. A 1980 A Field Guide to the Birds of East Africa. London: Collins.

Art, Archaeology, Architecture, and Religion

·        Chojnacki, Stanislaw, 1983 Major Themes in Ethiopian Painting: Indigenous Developments, the Influence of Foreign Models, and their Adaptation from the 13th to the 19th Century, Wiesbaden: Franz Steiner.

·        Fasil Giorghis and Denis Gérard, 2007. Addis Ababa 1886-1941: The City and Its Architectural Heritage. Addis Ababa, Shama books

·        Friedlander, María-José and Bob Friedlander, 2007. Ethiopia's Hidden Treasures: A Guide to the Paintings of the Remote Churches of Ethiopia. Addis Ababa, Shama books

·        Gerster, George 1970 Churches in Rock London: Phaidon.

·        Grierson, R. & S. Munro-Hay. 1999 The Ark of the Covenant. London: Weidenfeld and Nicholson.

·        Heldman, M., Munro-Hay S.C., and Grierson, R. 1996 African Zion: The Sacred Art of Ethiopia. New Haven: Yale University Press.

·        Henze, Paul B. (ed) 1993 Aspects of Ethiopian Art from Ancient Axum to the Twentieth Century. London: JED Press.

·        Munro-Hay, Stuart.  1991 Aksum: An African Civilisation of Late Antiquity. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press.

·        Pankhurst, R. and Gerard, G. 2011 Ethiopia Photographed: Historic Photographs of the Country and its People Taken Between 1867 and 1935. London: Routledge.

·        Pankhurst, R. and Ingrams, L.  1988 Ethiopia Engraved: An Illustrated Catalogue of Engravings by Foreign  Travellers from 1681 to 1900. London: Keegan Paul.

·        Phillipson, D. 1998 Ancient Ethiopia. Aksum: Its Antecedents and Successors London: The British Museum Press.

·        2010. Ancient Churches of Ethiopia 4th -14th Centuries. Addis Ababa, Arada Books

·        Plant, Ruth 1985 The architecture of the Tigre, Ethiopia. London: Raven.

·        Raineri, Osvaldo 1996. Warrior Saints, Art and legends of Ethiopia.Ferrari Edizioni.

·        Shelemay, Kay Kaufman 1986 Music, Ritual, and Falasha History. East Lansing: Michigan State University     


·        Battistoni, Milena. 2008. A Guide to Lalibela. Addis Ababa, Arada Books

·        Battistoni, Milena, and Gian Paolo Chiari, 2004. Old Tracks in the New Flower: A Historical Guide to Addis Ababa. Addis Ababa, Arada Books

·        Beckingham C. F. and Huntingford G.W.B. (ed., tr.), 1967 Some Records of Ethiopia, 1593– 1646. Being Extracts from the History of High Ethiopia or Abassia by Manoel de Almeida, together with   Barry's History of the Galla, London 1954 (Hakluyt Society Works, ser. 2, vol. 107); Nendeln, Liechtenstein.

·        Beckingham C. F. and Huntingford G.W.B. (eds), 1961 The Prester John of The Indies. A True Relation of the Lands of the Prester John, Being the Narrative of the Portuguese Embassy to Ethiopia in 1520, written by Father Francisco Alvarez, tr. by Lord Stanley of Alderly (1881), Cambridge: Hakluyt Society Works, ser. 2, vols. 114, 115).

·        Briggs, P. 2009 (5th ed) Bradt Travel Guide to Ethiopia. Chalfont St. Peter: Bradt Travel Guides

·        Bruce, James. 1790 Travels to Discover the Source of the Nile in the Years 1768, 1769, 1770, 1771, 1772, and 1773.(5 vols.) London: G.G.J. and J. Robinson.

·        Buxton, David 1949 Travels in Ethiopia London: Ernest Benn.

·        Chiari, Gian Paolo, 2009. Guide to Aksum and Yeha. Addis Ababa, Arada Books.

·        Cornwallis Harris, W 1844 The Highlands of Ethiopia, 3 volumes London: Longmans Green.

·        Carillet, J-B 2009 (4th ed) The Lonely Planet Guide to Ethiopia, Eritrea and Djibouti (Country Travel Guide) (Next edition due 2013 – some updates can be found on http://www.lonelyplanet.com).

·        Daniel AboyeAberra. Ethiopian Amharic.Lonely Planet Phrasebooks. 

·        Graham, J. 2001 Ethiopia: off the beaten trail. Addis Ababa: Sharma Books.

·        Henze, Paul 1977 Ethiopian Journeys: Travels in Ethiopia 1969-1972 London: Ernest Benn.

·        Marsden Philip 1990 A Far Country, Travels in Ethiopia. London: Century.

·        2006 The Chains of Heaven: An Ethiopian Romance. London: Harper Perennial.

·        Moorehead, Alan, 1972  The Blue Nile. London: Harper & Row.

·        Nesbitt, L.M 1934 Desert and Forest: Exploration of the Abyssinian Danakil. London: Cape.

·        Pakenham, Thomas (2nd ed.)1998 The Mountains of Rasselas. London: Weidenfeld and Nicolson.

·        Thesiger, Wilfred. The Life of My Choice. New York: Norton, 1987.

·        Vân, David Vô and Mohammed Jami Guleid, 2007, Harar: A Cultural Guide. Addis Ababa, Shama books.

Literature and biography:

·        D'Haem, J. The Last Camel: True Stories of Somalia. Trenton NJ: Red Sea Press.

·        Bereket Habte Selassie, 1993 Ride the Whirlwind: An Ethiopian Story of Love and Revolution. Trenton NJ: Red Sea Press.

·        2007. The Crown and The Pen: The Memoirs of a Lawyer Turned Rebel.Trenton NJ: Red Sea Press. Keneally, Thomas, 1989 To Asmara, New York: Time Warner.

·        Molvaer, Reidulf K. 1997 Black Lions – The Creative Lives of Modern Ethiopian Literary Giants, Trenton NJ: Red Sea Press.

·        Molvaer, Reidulf K. 1975 Tradition and Change in Ethiopia as Reflected in Amharic Fictional Literature, Otto Harrassowitz.

·        Murray, Edmund P. 1973 Kalubi, New York: Crown.

·        Nuruddin Farah,1970. From a Crooked Rib. London: Heinemann.

o   1976 Naked Needle. London: Heinemann.

o   1980 Sweet and Sour Milk. London: Heinemann.

o   2000 Yesterday, Tomorrow: Voices from the Somali Diaspora. London: Cassell.

·        Sahle Selassie, 1966 Shinega's Village. Berkley: University of California Press.

o   1968 The Afersata, London: Heinemann.

o   1968 The Warrior King, London: Heinemann.

o   1979  Firebrands, London: Longman.

·        Wright, D. (ed.) Emerging Perspectives on Nuruddin Farah. Trenton NJ: Red Sea Press.

History to 1896

·        Bates, D. 1979 The Abyssinian Difficulty: The Emperor Theodorus and the Magdala Campaign. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

·        Erlich, Haggai. 1996 Ras Alula and the Scramble for Africa. A Political Biography: Ethiopia and Eritrea 1875-1897. Lawrenceville, NJ: Red Sea Press.

·        Lewis, H.S. 2001 Jimma Abba Jifar, an Oromo Monarchy: Ethiopia 1830-1931 (2nd ed.) Lawrenceville NJ: RedSea Press.

·        Marsden, Phillip. 2008 The Barefoot Emperor: An Ethiopian Tragedy. London: Harper Perennial.

·        Mohamed Hassan. 1990 The Oromo of Ethiopia: A History, 1570-1860. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

·        Reid, Richard. 2011 Frontiers of Violence in North-East Africa: Genealogies of  Conflict since c. 1800. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

·        Robson, Eric. 2007, In a search of Punt: Queen Hatshepsut's Land of Marvels, Addis Ababa, Shama books

·        Sergew HableSellassie. 1972. Ancient and Medieval Ethiopian History to 1270 Addis Ababa: United Printers.

·        Taddesse Tamrat.  1972 Church and State in Ethiopia, 1270-1527. Oxford: Clarendon Press.

·        Zewde Gabre-Sellassie. 1975 Yohannes IV of Ethiopia: A Political Biography.  London: Oxford University Press.

History 1896 – 1991

·        Aberra Jembere, 2005, Agony in the Grand Palace 1974-1982. Addis Ababa, Shama books Andargachew Tiruneh.  1993 The Ethiopian Revolution, 1974-87: A Transformation from an Aristocratic to a Totalitarian Autocracy. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

·        Babile Tola. 1989 To Kill a Generation: The Red Terror in Ethiopia. Washington: Free Ethiopia Press.

·        Balsvik, Randi Ronning. 1985 Haile Selassie's Students: The Intellectual and Social Background to Revolution 1952-1977. East Lansing: Michigan State University.

·        Clapham, Christopher S. 1969 Haile Selassie's Government. New York: Praeger.

·        1988 Transformation and Continuity in Revolutionary Ethiopia.  Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

·        Cliffe, Lionel, Basil Davidson, and BereketHabte Selassie (eds.). 1980 Behind the War in Eritrea. Nottingham, United Kingdom: Spokesman Books.

·        Connell, Dan. 1993 Against All Odds: A Chronicle of the Eritrean Revolution. Trenton NJ: Red Sea Press.

·        Crummey, D.C. 1972 Priests and Politicians, Protestant and Catholic Missions in Orthodox Ethiopia,1830-1868.Oxford: Clarendon Press.

·        Dawit WoldeGiorgis. 1989 Red Tears: War, Famine, and Revolution in Ethiopia. Trenton: Red Sea Press.

·        Donham, Donald L., and W. James. (eds) 1986 The Southern Marches of Imperial Ethiopia: Essays in History and Social Anthropology. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

·        Ege, Svein, Class, State, and Power in Africa. A Case Study of the Kingdom of  Shäwa (Ethiopia) about 1840, Wiesbaden 1996.

·        Eide, O.M.2000 Revolution and Religion in Ethiopia: the Growth and Persecution of the MekaneYesus Church,1974-86. Oxford: James Currey.

·        EPRDF. 1997-2000 The Generation That Shook Mountains (Amharic). 4 volumes. Addis Ababa: Mega Printers.

·        Gaim Kebreab. 2008 Critical Reflections on the Eritrean War of Independence. Trenton NJ: Red Sea Press.

·        Gebru Tareke. 1991 Ethiopia: Power and Protest. Peasant Revolts in the Twentieth Century. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

·        Gebru Tareke. 2009 The Ethiopian Revolution: War in the Horn of Africa. New Haven: Yale University Press.

·        Gill, Peter. 1986 A Year in the Death of Africa. London: Paladin Grafton Books.

·        Greenfield, Richard. 1965 Ethiopia: A New Political History. London: Pall Mall Press.

·        Haile Selassie. 1976 My Life and Ethiopia's Progress, 1892-1937. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

·        Halliday, Fred, and Maxine Molyneux1981.The Ethiopian Revolution.  London: Verso.

·        Hammond, J. 1990 Sweeter than Honey.Ethiopian Women and Revolution.Testimony of Tigrayan Women. Trenton NJ: Red Sea Press.

·        1999 Fire from the Ashes. A Chronicle of the Revolution of Tigray, Ethiopia 1975-1991.Lawrenceville NJ: Red Sea Press.

·        Jordan Gebre-Medhin. 1989 Peasants and Nationalism in Eritrea. Trenton: Red Sea Press.

·        Kaplan, Robert D. 2003 Surrender or Starve: The Wars Behind the Famine. Vintage

·        Kapuscinski, Ryszard. 1989. The Emperor. New York: Random House.

·        Kiflu Tadesse. 1991-1993 The Generation (Amharic) 3 volumes. Addis Ababa: Bole Printing Press.

·        Lewis, I.M. (ed.) 1983 Nationalism and Self-determination in the Horn of Africa. London: Ithaca Press.

·        Marcus, Harold G. 1987 Haile Selassie I: The Formative Years, 1892-1936. Berkeley: University of California Press.

·        1974 The Life and Times of Menelik II. Oxford: Clarendon Press.

·        1983 Ethiopia, Great Britain and the United States in 1941-1974. Berkeley: University of California Press.

·        Mockler, Anthony.  1984 Haile Selassie's War: The Italian-Ethiopian Campaign, 1935-1941. New York: Oxford University Press.

·        Ottaway, Marina, and David Ottaway.  1978  Ethiopia: Empire in Revolution. New York: Africana.

·        Perham, Margery F. 1969 The Government of Ethiopia. Evanston: Northwestern University Press.

·        Pool, David. 2000 From Guerrillas to Government: The Eritrean People's Liberation Front. Oxford: James Currey.

·        Samatar, Said S. 1982  Oral Poetry and Somali Nationalism: The Case of Sayyid  Mahammad ‘AbdilleHasan. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

·        Spencer, John H.  1984 Ethiopia at Bay: A Personal Account of the Haile Sellassie Years. Algonac, Michigan:

Reference Publications.

·        Tekeste Negash. 1987 Italian Colonialism in Eritrea, 1882-1941: Policies, Praxis, and Impact. Stockholm: Almqvist and Wiksell International.

·        1987 No Medicine for the Bite of a White Snake: Notes on Nationalism and Resistance in Eritrea,1890-1940. Uppsala: Uppsala University Press

·        1997 Eritrea and Ethiopia: The Federal Experience. New Brunswick NJ: Transaction Publishers.

·        Testfatsion Medhanie. 1986 Eritrea: Dynamics of a National Question. Amsterdam: Gruner.

·        Trevaskis, G.K.N. 1960 Eritrea: A Colony in Transition, 1941-52. Oxford, Oxford University Press.

·        Waal, Alex de.1991 Evil Days. 30 years of War and Famine in Ethiopia. New York: Human Rights Watch.

·        Young, John. 1997 Peasant Revolution in Ethiopia: The Tigray People's Liberation Front 1975-1991.Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Current Affairs: Post-1991

·        Connell, Dan. 2005 Conversations with Eritrean Political Prisoners. Trenton NJ: Red Sea Press.

·        Gill, Peter. 2010 Famine and Foreigners: Ethiopia since Live Aid. Oxford: Oxford University Press

·        Jacuin-Berfdal, Dominique and Plaut, Martin (eds) 2005 Unfinished Business, Ethiopia and Eritrea at War. Lawrenceville NJ: Red Sea Press

·        James, Wendy; Donham, Donald; Eisei Kurimoto; Triulzi, Alessandro (eds) 2002 Remapping Ethiopia. Socialism and After. Oxford: James Currey

·        Kidane Mengisteab and Okbazghi Yohannes. 2005 Anatomy of an African Tragedy: Political, Economic and Foreign Policy Crisis in Post-Independence Eritrea. Trenton NJ: Red Sea Press,

·        Kinfe Abraham. 1994 Ethiopia: From Bullets to the Ballot Box, the Bumpy Road to Democracy and the Political Economy of Transition. Trenton NJ: Red Sea Press

·        Plaut, Martin, and Gilkes, Patrick. 1999. War in the Horn: The Conflict Between Eritrea and Ethiopia. London: RIIA, Discussion Paper 82

·        Tekeste Negash and KjetilTronvoll. 2000 Brothers at War: Making Sense of the Eritrean-Ethiopian War. Athens: Ohio University Press.

·        Tesfatsion Medhanie 1994 Eritrean and its Neighbours in the ‘New World Order': Geopolitics, Democracy, and ‘Islamic Fundamentalism'. Hamburg: Bremer AfrikaStudien 15

·        Tronvoll, K. 2009 War and the Politics of Identity in Ethiopia: The Making of Enemies and Allies in The Horn of Africa. Oxford: James Currey.

·        Turton, David (ed) 2006 Ethnic Federalism: The Ethiopian Experience in Comparative Perspective. Oxford: James Currey.

·        Waal, Alex de.(ed.) 2004.Islamism and its Enemies in the Horn of Africa. London: Hurst.


Back to Home

THIS YEAR:   809
TOTAL:    39989
      * Visa Service
      * Document Authentication
      * For Diplomatic Community
      * For Bussiness Community
      * Government E-Services
      * Week in the Horn
      * Press Release
      * Speech
      * Articles

Subscribe Our News Posts