Only An Ethiopian Uprising can save the Ethiopian Economy By Teodros Kiros
A careful study of world uprisings has convinced George Katsiaficas, the leading expert on social movements, that uprisings empower people and unleash their hitherto untapped passions and energies that fuel dormant economies and revive them in extraordinary ways.
Uprisings create spaces of organized political actions during which time the people develop some distinctly political qualities of leadership. The world has recently witnessed these new qualities in the spectacularly new models of people’s resistance to dictatorships of pharonic Egypt, a polity that was oppressed for 5000 years of successive dominance under its own pharaohs, the Greeks, the Romans, and the Mamluks.
Tahrir square gave us a new model of political action on the enterprising streets of Cairo, Alexandria and many other Egyptian towns.
George Katsiaficas defended this thesis in African Ascent, hosted by Teodros Kiros, and the interview can be viewed in YouTube by March 25th, 2011.
When people’s passions, imaginations and intelligences are freed from the snares of dictatorship; when people discover their powers and abilities on the streets of democracy; when the people learn that their liberation is tied to the liberation of the nation, then they draw from the hidden fountain of their intelligence to revive the economy. The economy can be revived only if they participate, only if they disalienate themselves and becoming the living engine of the economy.
We recently learned from Egypt that new social movements of youth, women, workers and other professionals created new spaces of action for themselves.
It is uprisings, which disclosed the protestors of Tunisia, Egypt and now Libya as actional and erotic beings and not passive and alienated spectators.
So the dormant Ethiopian economy can be energized and revived by peaceful uprisings, which will take power from dictators and their cohorts and give power directly to the people themselves.
A new vibrant Ethiopian economy is the consequence of the people’s activities. The current Ethiopian economic crises, which the Prime Minister refuses to see from the invisible space of the palace, can be saved only by the people themselves if they are freed from political darkness, civil boredom, ethnic narrow-mindedness, skepticism and cultural decadence, and come out in millions to Meskel square and demand regime change.
If and when this happens they will immediately embark on the long road of national development organized by the empowering principle of Ethiopianity. We can for the first time witness what the people can do, when they are trusted and coached to work for the nation-selflessly and intelligently.
Professor of Philosophy and English (Liberal Arts)
Berklee College of Music