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Gebrehiwot Baykedagn, Eurocentrism, and the Decentering of Ethiopia

Gebrehiwot Baykedagn, Eurocentrism, and the Decentering of Ethiopia

Abstract

The article critically evaluates the analysis that Gebrehiwot Baykedagn, a prominent intellectual among the early Ethiopians who were exposed to Western education, gives of Ethiopia's social and technological lag behind European countries. It shows how the Eurocentric conception of history prevented Baykedagn from developing any positive view about Ethiopian history and culture and how this failure led him to prescribe wrong remedies despite his remarkable insights into the dangers of economic dependency. The need to get out of Eurocentrism is strengthened by an attempt to approach Ethiopian history from the viewpoint of Ethiopians themselves rather than from European norms.
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