George Mason University
George Mason University Mason
George Mason University

The Puzzle of Ethiopian Politics

by Terrence Lyons

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  • Language: English
  • Published Date: July 19, 2019
  • Publisher: Lynne Rienner Publishers
  • ISBN: 978-1626377981


How did a group with its origins in a small Marxist-Leninist insurgency in northern Ethiopia transform itself into a party (the EPRDF) with eight million members and a hierarchy that links even the smallest Ethiopian village to the center? How do the legacies of protracted civil war and rebel victory over the brutal Derg regime continue to shape contemporary Ethiopian politics? And can the EPRDF, after widespread protests and a state of emergency, transform itself under new leadership to meet popular demands?

Answering these questions in his comprehensive study of nearly three decades of Ethiopian politics, Terrence Lyons argues that the very structures that enabled the ruling party to overcome the challenges of a war-to-peace transition are the source of the challenges that it faces now. While the new political leadership has promised dramatic reforms, Lyons observes, the powerful authoritarian ruling party remains in place, unreconstructed.


The Puzzle of Ethiopian Politics
Legacies of War
New Rules of the Game
The EPRDF in Power
Diverse Opposition
Elections and the Closing of Political Space
The Developmental State
Popular Uprising
The Ethiopian Transformation?
Continuity and Change