Two Sides of a Coin: Image of Ethiopia in the US until 1935

  • Shimeles Ayele Shimeles Ayele is lecturer of History, Department of History, Bahir Dar University


This study explores the image of Ethiopia in the US until 1935. It is historical research basedon qualitative content analysis. The sources were historical newspapers, books, journalarticles, and websites. Based on these sources, the image of Ethiopia was explored in the USin two periods – before and after Adwa. In each of those periods, Ethiopia had twocontradictory images which appeared at the same time. In the pre-Adwa period Ethiopia wasa redeemer and dignified black nation for African-Americans, but land of black barbariansand savage for the racists. Besides, after Adwa Ethiopia continued as a symbol of freedom forthe African-Americans, but it became a Caucasian civilized nation for the racists. Adwaenhanced Ethiopia’s symbol of freedom for the African-Americans. Conversely, Ethiopia wastransformed from barbaric Negro to civilized Caucasian in the view of racists.