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Gracha Kachiloch ( The Gray Bells) March 28, 2008

Posted by habeshaviews in Art Reviews.
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Gracha Kachiloch, that literally translates to the ”Gray Bells” is one of the greatest books written in contemporary Ethiopian literature.

The Amharic book narrates the story of a young boy growing up in northern part of Ethiopia. It is not the usual mainstream kind of book saying;

wededechiw wededat

yizuat geba belelit.

Through the life experiences of the main character, Mezgebu, the writer criticizes Societal beliefs , customs ,religion and tradition. As the story takes us through the life cycle of the character we see society being looked at in the eyes of a child, a young boy , a young man and a grown up.

The writer, Adam Retta, is well known amongst Ethiopians for his Chekov like short stories and specially the compiled book ,Mahlet.

Reading Adam’s new book,Gracha Kachiloch, reminded me of the book ”One Hundred Years of Solitude” By the Latin American writer Garcia Marquez. Similar style and criticism.

It definitly deserves a chance in to your list of ‘to be read’ books !


How others think of you …huummm March 26, 2008

Posted by habeshaviews in Uncategorized.
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How others think of you How others look at you


‘’I have never been racially discriminated and I always look at people beyond colors ‘.

That was a comment I wrote, with full reliance, as part of a summary I was doing for one of my courses in prejudice and discrimination.

What was more interesting was the response from my professor who wrote back

‘’What matters in these things is not how you see yourself but how others look at you ‘’.

I took that as a superficial response and didn’t even think about it afterwards.

A couple of weeks later, I was in one of the student parties. A typical girls group discussing, of course, men .We joked around a little about the men Vs women proportion in campus. One of the students threw out a comment, jokingly

 ’ I wonder if I could date one of the African Guys .You know, with all the HIV prevalence and everything.’’

 We laughed about it, added one or two remarks for a moment and moved on to the next topic. But my mind got stuck with that specific comment. A while back I have heard a similar statement from one of the African guys about dating local girls. Fast rewind to the party comment, I was still thinking,

 ‘Should I say something about it, Can I take that as a racial slur?’’.

And yet I know the girl very well and she is such a nice person who loves to giggle about everything. I don’t think she would say something like that consciously.

What is wrong about whatever was said?  Men or women, black or white, Muslim or Christian or Atheist, we all seem to have assumptions about others .Even amongst us who claim to be against these things and make the world a better place, there is a circle of prejudice and assumption. Africans think Europeans are immoral, Europeans feel Japanese are traditional, Americans believe the Brits are conservatives, religious people consider atheists doomed, and atheists think religious people are uncivilized.

The Webster dictionary defines prejudice as an attitude that always favors one way of feeling or acting especially without considering any other possibilities. Discrimination on the bases of assumptions is only the next level.

We just seem to lock our minds in this image of a racist who is relatively less educated, probably white and old fashioned. We don’t seem to look in to our selves and see the prejudices we have towards others.

It goes all the way from the ‘genius’ who thinks others around him/her do not have a same level of understanding to the Nobel prize winner who gives scientific explanation  on how some races are better than other .

We just seem to wrap ourselves in our own thinking and do not even look around to see how others think of us .Yet, what matters in these things is not how we see ourselves but how others see us.

Tizita Be email March 24, 2008

Posted by habeshaviews in My Friends.

Sira Sifeta, I love going through my old emails from friends. It’s a chance to look back and get  some inspiration ,memories and smiles at times.  Here, I will  share some of the mails I recieved from friends. No editing except names. The following is from a very good friend sent in 2004. Enjoy  !

Hi Happy New Year to you….hope you enjoyed it even if u have
ur own calendar..anyway…how r you doing right there in Uganda…..Right now am in  Nairobi Kenya..i”ve made it finally..am here since friday last and things is going on pretty well here with a good furnish apartments and the weird
thing is that they gave me a huge radio cd player to add flavour to life…olala  just imagine that…thanks God for this and …anyway i’ve started work yesterday ..and things a going on smoothly ..yoou
remeber Celia and Peter ..they are here along with me and we stay in the same
flat compound…Celia says hi to you and complain that she sent you a mail
but you never reply back………..
So how’s your job there….is it your first time staying alone in a foreign country……?not feeling homesick…..anything of that sort …hope not….even if the dust is killing you…just think about the good
thing and forget the remain or put some music loud loud and loud and had some wine with coke…..you’ll see that’s life is bautiful wherevere you are …believe..or otherwise go for some good joints(weed) I’ve heard they
are good there….lol but don’t go paranoia…..advice from a friend….
So just squeeze the day over there
C ya
Take Care

Okey another one, The following is from another friend who loves to joke about my Conflict Studies ,Here we go:
I think the Romans are going to charge you extra for electricity…bewnet…Good to see that you have the decipiline…
But i am still trying to figure out excatly how you can write a 60 page doc about conflict…
Then I said to him, i am tired of this, and he said why are you tired, this has been this way for many many years ( smoke break)…what? what do you mean it has been going on for years and i am tired of it….( talk about the smallness of my classmate’s appartment)….that’s it I am leaving…

Double space it and there is the summary of your 60 page doc…ahahaha

BTW, when you get back to Ethiopia, what will you be? Like a judge?

All rise! The honerable Nigist has just entered the chamber and will resume her conflict resolution process…


Give me my money, now!…No, I am not going to, you still owe me for the shirt i bought you…what?…let’s go to Nigist and resolve our conflict


On a late night TV commerical you would come on and say…”Are you unable to resolve your problems. The law firm of 35-pound-colon will see to it that you no longer suffer from it. Our counselor is trained at the University of Peace in Suicide colon, KOOSTARIKA and will know how to handle you matter no matter what!”

Okey ,talk to you later
  …lol…As you can see I put up with a lot…lol..But still, I love my friends!!!

Share if you have interesting mails