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Surafel Wondimu Abebe

Surafel Wondimu Abebe is a public-intellectual who uses academia, performance, and media as sites of cultural politics from which to interrogate representational practices. He has worked with the National Theatre in Addis Ababa and other cultural institutions in Ethiopia as an actor, playwright and director, and recently co-founded a new local television station called ASHAM. He obtained a degree in English Literature minoring in Political Science and International Relations from Addis Ababa University, and received his MA in Cultural Studies at the same university, where he served as a lecturer and Assistant Dean in Humanities. He completed his Ph.D in Performance Historiography at The University of Minnesota, minoring in Comparative Literature.

Abebe works as a researcher at the Institute of Ethiopian Studies, Addis Ababa University, where he also serves as an Assistant Professor at the Centre for African Studies and College of Performing and Visual Arts. He is a board member of a multi-genre online journal, AGITATE, at the University of Minnesota. Questioning the inadequacy of Ethiopian exceptionalism, which valorises the country's ‘uncolonized’ position, Abebe engages with sedimented and embodied historiographies in order to understand what it means to be human in the here-and-now. His current book project considers how performing Ethiopian female bodies engage with spaces, and manoeuvre within progressive, imperial (local and colonial), socialist, and neoliberal temporalities of the 20th and 21st centuries.