Østebø’s study of a major insurrection in Ethiopia during the 1960s presents a significant example of contemporary trends in the study of religious and ethnic movements. This book is an in-depth study of an important movement in modern Ethiopian history. It is also a clearly presented argument, reflecting important current trends in scholarship, for utilizing inclusive analytical frameworks to study religious and ethnic movements.

The ambitious goal of this study is to provide an “understanding of the intertwined roles of religion and ethnicity in fomenting identity, demarcating boundaries, and causing conflict” (1). Østebø’s approach goes beyond redefining terms; it reshapes the modes of analysis. Much of the current study of movements is shaped by sets of binary conceptualizations, like traditional vs. modern or religious vs. ethnic. Østebø argues that the “either-or” perspective involved in such binary approaches hinders an in-depth understanding of the dynamics of group and communal identity.


You do not currently have access to this content.