MAHEDER HAILESELASSIE

Between yesterday and tomorrow 

Over decades, the unknown and impossible of Shoa’s complex past has been presented and represented with different figures taking different forms in the course of its history.

What was known was not enough to bring us together and what was unknown was far more too dangerous for it had the power of keeping us apart. As time goes by, what was considered to be known was rewritten, rethought, rediscovered, hidden or overshadowed.

After my trip to Ankober, Shoa did not exist in my mind maintaining a tangible form. I now imagine it as a still center of argument and I’m sure for many people, it’s also considered to be a birthplace of a present time nostalgia.

I didn’t find Shoa in Addis Ababa or for that matter even in Ankober. The cityscape of the former and the landscape of the latter were indeed visually appealing but the Shoa I understood was beyond these known shapes and landmarks. It was broader; It was vague. It was not the past; It was not the Future. But it was definitely something intertwined in between, still being made. 

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