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Oromia: Qallačča and Bokkuu: Themes in the ancient Qaallu institution and rock paintings of Hararqee— implications for social semiosis and history of Ethiopia July 23, 2017

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Qallačča and Bokkuu: Themes in the ancient Qaallu institution and rock paintings of Hararqee— implications for social semiosis and history of Ethiopia


In Journal of Sociology and Anthropology
Vol. 1(4), pp. xxx – xxx, July 2013 DOWNLOADED

By Dereje Birbirso (PhD)
School of Foreign Language, College of Social Science and Humanities, Haramaya University

 Little or none is known about the social origin and meaning of the ancient rock paintings of Ethiopiaand Horn of Africa. This article critically analyzed some of the ancient rock paintings of Hararqee (Eastern Ethiopia) with the intention to understand the social semiotical and rhetorical structures that underlie beneath these social ‘texts’. It did so through using the ancient Qaallu Institution of the Oromo of East and Horn of Africa as analytical device. Multi-disciplinary approach that combined concepts
from various disciples was adopted as a guiding theoretical framework, while the Eurocentric approach that mystifies and de-Ethiopinizes them was rejected. Field data was collected from various sites besides archival data. Informants expert with the local’s social epistemology or wisdom were selected and used as ‘critical friends’. The results revealed both substantive and methodological insights.
Substantively, it suggests that the Oromo Qaallu Institution and its sub-themes such as the preChristian belief in Black Sky-God, line of descent and identity, kingdomization, pastoral festival, and bovine symbolism crosscutting all of these. Methodologically, the unique Oromo social semiosis which can be referred to as ‘metaplasmic witticism’ appeared as the underlying rhetorical structure.
Key words: Oromo, Qaallu institution, Horn of Africa, Ethiopia, ancient rock paintings, language, social semiosis, Laga Oda.
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