This paper discusses the role of Oromo proverbs in conflict resolution and/or management as a peace-making verbal communication principle in the cultural context. The lesson from proverbs, which contain traditional morsels of wisdom, consists of cultural value and rhetorical effectiveness helping to enforce reality in the context in which they are used. Data for this paper is generated from primary sources. In data gathering, we used interview and focus group discussion. The analysis shows that proverbs have persuasive power to advise, guide and influence conflicting parties to settle their case peacefully. The proverbs tell their truths about conflict situations and devise a resolution and management approach through metaphorical and symbolic representations. Proverbs are also an integral part of Oromo culture, handing down and imparting norms, values, rules and the worldview of the community to guide people to live in customary ways.
If the inline PDF is not rendering correctly, you can download the PDF file here.
Abrahams Roger D. 1972. Proverbs and Proverbial Expressions. – Folklore and Folklife: An Introduction edited by Richard M. Dorson. Chicago IL; London: The University of Chicago Press 117–127.
Achebe Chinua. 1996. Things Fall Apart. Oxford: Heinemann Educational Publishers.
Adegoju Adeyemi. 2009. Rhetoric in Conflict-Related Yoruba Proverbs: Guide to Constructive Conflict Resolution in Africa. – African Study Monographs 30 (2): 55–69.
Adeeko Adeleke. 1998. Proverbs Textuality and Nativism in African Literature. Gainesville FL: University Press of Florida.
Ademowo Adeyemi Johnson and Noah Balogun. 2014. Proverbs and Conflict Management in Africa: A Study of Selected Yoruba Proverbs and Proverbial Expressions. – International Journal of Literature Language and Linguistics 1 (1): 39–44.
Akoto-Abutiate Dorothy Bea. 2014b. Proverbs and the African Tree of Life: Grafting Biblical Proverbs on to Ghanaian Eve Folk Proverbs. Studies in Systematic Theology 16. Atlanta GA: Brill. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1163/9789004274471.
Bohannan Paul. 1967. Introduction. – Law & Warfare: Studies in the Anthropology of Conflict. Austin TX: University of Texas Press xv–xiv.
Brock-Utne Birgit. 2001. Indigenous Conflict Resolution in Africa. A draft presented at the seminar on indigenous solutions to conflicts held at the University of Oslo Institute for Educational Research February 23–24 2001.
Fiseha Assefa; Gebre Yntiso and Fekade Azeze. 2011. The State of Knowledge on Customary Dispute Resolution in Ethiopia. – Customary Dispute Resolution Mechanisms in Ethiopia edited by Gebre Yntiso Fekade Azeze and Assefa Fiseha. Addis Ababa: Ethiopian Arbitration and Conciliation Centre 21–36.
Gebregeorgis Mehari Yimulaw. 2015. Discursive Depiction of Customary Conflict Management Principles in Selected African Proverbs. – Folklore. Electronic Journal of Folklore 62: 225–246. DOI: https://doi.org/10.7592/FEJF2015.62.gebregeorgis.
Gemechu Dejene. 2007. Conflict and Conflict Resolution among Waliso Oromo of Eastern Macha: The Case of Guma. Social Anthropology Dissertation Series 15. Addis Ababa: Addis Ababa University Press.
Gemechu Dejene. 2011. The Customary Courts of the Waliso Oromo. – Customary Dispute Resolution Mechanisms in Ethiopia edited by Gebre Yntiso Fekade Azeze and Assefa Fiseha. Addis Ababa: Ethiopian Arbitration and Conciliation Centre 251–277.
Gemeda Eshete. 2012. African Egalitarian Values and Indigenous Genres: A Comparative Approach to the Functional and Contextual Studies of Oromo National Literature in a Contemporary Perspective. Berlin Zürich: LIT Verlag Muster.
Gonfa Sena. 2008. The Images of Women in the Proverbs and Sayings of the Oromo: The Case of West Arsi Area. A Master Dissertation. Addis Ababa University Department of Foreign Languages and Literature.
Gow Greg. 2002. The Oromo in Exile: From the Horn of Africa to the Suburbs of Australia. Melbourne: Melbourne University Press.
Halliday Michael Alexander Kirkwood and Ruqaiya Hasan. 1985. Language Context and Text: Aspects of Language in a Social-Semiotic Perspective. Victoria: Deakin University Press.
Joireman Sandra F. 2011. Where There is No Government: Enforcing Property Rights in Common Law Africa. New York NY: Oxford University Press.
Kalunta-Crumpton Anita and Biko Agozino. 2004. Pan-African Issues in Crime and Justice. Alder-shot: Ashgate Publishing Ltd.
Legesse Asmarom. 1974. Gada: The Three Approaches to the Study of African Society. New York NY: The Free Press.
Mandova Evans and Wellington Wasosa. 2013. The Role of Proverbs in the Shona Judicial System with Special Reference to Nhango Dzokusuma Nyaya Padare. – International Journal of Asian Social Science 3 (4): 871–877. http://www.aessweb.com/pdf-files/ijass-3(4)-871-877.pdf (accessed September 24 2019).
Mieder Wolfgang. 1985. Popular Views of the Proverb. – Proverbium: Yearbook of International Proverb Scholarship 2: 109–143.
Mieder Wolfgang. 2014. Behold the Proverbs of a People: Proverbial Wisdom in Culture Literature and Politics. Jackson MS: University Press of Mississippi.
Regassa Megersa and Dejene Gemechu. 2015a. Indigenous Mechanism of Conflict Resolution among the Oromo: The Case of Reejjii Institution of Jimma Ethiopia. – The Journal of Oromo Studies 22 (1): 69–89.
Regassa Megersa and Dejene Gemechu. 2015b. Jigaa Institution: The Surviving Gadaa Court among the Jimma Oromo Ethiopia. – Ethiopian Journal of Social Sciences and language Studies 2 (2): 3–23.
Minahan James. 2002. Encyclopedia of the Stateless Nations: Ethnic and National Groups Around the World III L–R. Westport CT; London: Greenwood Press.
Norrick Neal R. 1985. How Proverbs Mean: Semantic Studies in English Proverbs. Trends in Linguistics: Studies in English Proverbs 27. Berlin: Walter de Gruyter. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/9783110881974.
Okpewho Isidore. 1992. African Oral Literature: Backgrounds Character and Continuity. Bloomington IN: Indiana University Press.
Renkema Jan. 2004. Introduction to Discourse Studies. Amsterdam New York NY: John Benjamins Publishing Company.
Samatar Said S. 1992. In the Shadow of Conquest: Islam in Colonial Northeast Africa. Trenton NJ: The Red Sea Press.
Schellenberg James A. 1996. Conflict Resolution: Theory Research and Practice. Albany NY: State University of New York Press.
Shongolo Abdullahi and Günther Schlee. 2007. Borana Proverbs in Their Cultural Context. Verbal Art and Documentary Literature in African Languages 24. Köln: Rüdiger Köppe Verlag.
Taylor Archer. 1931. The Proverb. Cambridge MA: Harvard University Press.
Vestergaard Bjarne; Erik Helvard and Aase Rieck Sørensen. 2011. Conflict Resolution – Working with Conflicts. Frederiksberg: The Danish Centre for Conflict Resolution. https://konfliktloesning.dk/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/ConflictResolution.pdf (accessed September 24 2019).
Westermann Claus. 1995. Roots of Wisdom: The Oldest Proverbs of Israel and Other Peoples. Louisville KY: Westminster John Knox Press.
Zartman Ira William ed. 2000. Traditional Cures for Modern Conflicts: African Conflict ‘Medicine’. Boulder CO: Lynne Rienner Publishers.