Talk:Acholi people

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acholi speakers[edit]

Acholi speakers are also in numbers in Southern Sudan and have been persecuted by Northern Sudansese and also seem to be in conflict with Dinka tribes. Many have sought refuge in Australia since about 2000.

The Joseph Kony Troubles[edit]

There are at least ten rebel Acholi armies that plague the Acholi. Joseph Kony's is just the big one. If he is taken by Tanzanian and Ugandan army forces, then eventually it is possible that another problem could develop.

McDogm -- 08:24, 30 Apr 2005 (UTC)

Improvement Drive[edit]

The article on Acholi language is currently nominated to be improved on Wikipedia:This week's improvement drive. If you can contribute or want it to be improved, you can vote for this article there.--Fenice 16:42, 17 July 2005 (UTC)


This article is contradictory - it says the Acholi number 50,000 - then later on that there are hundreds of thousands displaced. Secretlondon 03:36, 15 August 2006 (UTC)

Fifty thousand seems like a very low figure. I'll try to find some census figures. --Ezeu 04:11, 15 August 2006 (UTC)
I have looked for official census data but found none. I've removed potentially erroneous data in the mean time. --Ezeu 13:26, 17 August 2006 (UTC)
I've added in the numbers from Ethnologue, which claim to be from the 1991 Ugandan census, and then a further 45,000 that I assume must be in Sudan or possibly in the diaspora. On a separate note, the history of this article appears to be split with Acholi people after some old cut-and-paste moves, if a passing admin wants to merge histories. - BT 14:34, 26 August 2006 (UTC)
I updated the numbers with new data from the Ethnologue link, which now cites the 2002 Uganda census, and also explicitly states that the additional 45,000 Acholi mentioned are in Sudan. The number in the infobox was 2 million, which was not consistent and also much too high, even accounting for the diaspora. I also added a reference to the Encyclopædia Britannica.
Long-time user, first-time contributor.—Quick and Dirty User Account (talk) 14:14, 10 March 2011 (UTC)

"related groups" info removed from infobox[edit]

For dedicated editors of this page: The "Related Groups" info was removed from all {{Infobox Ethnic group}} infoboxes. Comments may be left on the Ethnic groups talk page. Ling.Nut 23:14, 18 May 2007 (UTC)

The Acholi as Black Hebrews[edit]

(discussion moved from my talk page) Ngunalik (talk) 20:55, 2 May 2013 (UTC) Hi You (Anonymous44) do not come from Acoli so what makes you think that you know their history better than the very people? Please could you stop removing work based on arrogant arguments. Even if they do not write so called Oxford English that dose not mean their accounts should be devalued. The man listed several journals and books at the end of his writing. Ngunalik (talk) 20:55, 2 May 2013 (UTC)

The man has listed sources, but it doesn't become clear which sources, if any, support each of his specific claims. Even if he had done so, one would still have to access the sources directly rather than trust his text, since he himself is not a reliable source (and no, belonging to "the very people" does not automatically make one a reliable source about that people by Wikipedia's standards - or in the real world, for that matter). What's much worse, the author explicitly admits that his opinions are the "true" history as opposed to the "lies" that have been accepted in Ugandan education so far. On Wikipedia, articles are required observe the so-called neutral point of view by reflecting the range of opinions in proportion to their representation in reliable sources. In other words, Wikipedia expresses the mainstream view/views, not fringe theories. If what you and the author call "lies" is the mainstream view, then Wikipedia must espouse it. The way this may apply here is also explained nicely in WP:RGW (bullet 3: Wikipedia is not the place to "Spread the word about a theory/hypothesis/belief/cure-all herb that has been unfairly neglected and suppressed by the scholarly community"). So far, you haven't shown that experts in the field of African history or religion accept your claim that the Acholi were Black Hebrews. Per the policy of verifiability, the burden of proof is on you to provide them, if you want your claim to stay in the article.
As for me personally being completely unrelated to the Acholi and Uganda, unlike you and/or the author, that is irrelevant. If anything, it suggests that I don't have any nationalistic or political agenda to bias my edits, whereas an Acholi author or editor may have one.--Anonymous44 (talk) 16:35, 3 May 2013 (UTC)

Hi I am glad that you mention range of opinion. You are writing about a people, it is their copyright, their story which is what you have to access in order to verify. I take the trouble to talk to the the people, record interviews from their stand point. There are sources which I have not uploaded, otherwise it is your own opinion to claim that the source by that man is unreliable. Who else has said that the source is unreliable? It is taught in Uganda education from primary to University that Luo people are Nilo Shemites. Nilotic just means people who dwell along the River Nile and there are many tribes who dwell along river Nile, some are called Nilo-Hamites. You could have a political agenda or bias based on your religion. I shall not be engaging anymore with you on this matter. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Ngunalik (talkcontribs) 19:22, 3 May 2013 (UTC)

Please take a look at Wikipedia policy WP:NOR. You can't add things that only you personally have recorded in interviews, the material has to be published in Reliable Sources. The reason I'm saying that your source is not reliable is because of Wikipedia's criteria for reliable sources: in particular, self-published sources (please click the link) by authors who are not established experts are not reliable sources. In this case, the site that hosts the article explicitly provides no guarantee for the accuracy of its content, and the author has no listed academic credentials (nor does searching for his name on Google return anything that suggests that he has expertise in the field in question). If the opinions of the ethnic group are different from those of experts, then one may mention both, but the difference should be made clear. More generally, nations, religions and other human groups don't have a "copyright" on what is written about them in Wikipedia; they aren't entitled to their own truth about themselves. I am not allowed to write that my nation is the greatest nation on Earth and was founded by angels, and neither are you.
Note, again, that you are not allowed to keep content in the article without sourcing it (see WP:BURDEN); you aren't supposed to keep reverting to your version of the page.
About Nilo-Shemitic: I can neither verify nor explain your impressions from your education in Uganda, but this is not an up-to-date English term for anything (note that there is no article about it). If it's really taught currently, then there should be a (reliable) source: please cite one (you are required to per WP:V). "Nilotic peoples" doesn't refer to anyone who lives along the river Nile, but to people who speak Nilotic languages. And no Nilotic peoples are Semites (speakers of Semitic languages) - that's quite apart from the issue of Judaism as a religion.--Anonymous44 (talk) 21:04, 3 May 2013 (UTC)
In terms of WP policy on sources, I agree with Anonymous44: the following ('s 'true' religious history after 1200) is not a Reliable Source - it is not published in a peer-review journal, mainstream publication, nor by a recognized expert. There has been an increasing amount written by scholars about Black Jews or African Hebrews, and editors may find other sources in the article on Wikipedia or through a Google search, but the material included in Wikipedia articles is supposed to be based on RS, with citations to trace statements to specific, published sources.Parkwells (talk) 00:21, 4 May 2013 (UTC)
Looking more carefully, it is clear the Nilo-Shemite reference comes from an 1894 reference used on Infoplease - if editors had included complete info in the cite to begin with, this would have been obvious. I noted it was an 1894 work, but it would be better to take out this misleading classification altogether. At the time, apparently Sudanic languages were included with others in a category of "SHEMITE", but this is not in general use today among expert linguists. So we should use the terms of linguists - their articles on Wikipedia are usually pretty good.Parkwells (talk) 01:53, 4 May 2013 (UTC)
There is a relatively recent book on African Jews: Edith Bruder, The Black Jews of Africa. History, Religion, Identity (Oxford University Press, New York 2008), which appears to be comprehensive. It has no entry on Acholi/Acoli, although it includes discussions of many other groups which have claimed historic ties to Hebrews. I'll add it as a source to this and the Uganda article.Parkwells (talk) 01:53, 4 May 2013 (UTC)
Your argument is that Acholi (and by the way the people were not called Acholi or Acoli before colonial period), so you claim they were classed as Nilo-Shemite because of language category rather than the fact that the definition states clearly, 'descendant of Shem'? And you say because it is an old work done in 1894 so that makes it unreliable source -not done by experts? Where did African Sudanese live before Arab invasion of the upper Africa?
While Acholi may not have been used before, it appears to be a term in use now.Parkwells (talk) 13:18, 4 May 2013 (UTC)
Another point I want to make is that we are writing about 'history' which is not just contemporary history but we mentioned the colonial missionaries and so on which means we have to visit the old work of other researchers. These are written in journals published in Uganda and UK which although you have not read any of them, you have deleted them. Finally I want to say that Acoli are also called Luos or Lwo so there are books and one with title Luo, the black Jews of Africa by G.W. Alenyo. Ngunalik (talk) —Preceding undated comment added 02:44, 4 May 2013 (UTC)
I think you are misreading the 1894 source, as the first statements are about language. My point was that the statement in this article needs to be qualified by its date and shown where it originated; learning about languages and peoples did not stop in 1894, nor did research and learning about colonial history. The classification was based on the associated languages of the people, based on an idea at the time. That term is not in current use. There is better, more current information by linguists, and Wikipedia wants to represent the state of the field and academic consensus. The second article I deleted because it was on a personal website, not published in a journal. While the author had a list of sources supposedly used, he did not have any footnotes, so a reader cannot follow what source he used for what statement. We can pull out those sources and post them for Further reading in this article, if you think that would be useful. But footnotes and citations are necessary in Wikipedia; Wikipedia wants that trail to be obvious to other readers. Thanks for adding Alenyo's book. It would have been helpful if you had included the publisher and publication date, for a complete source, per WP guidelines. Have you read reviews of the book? Do you know what other scholars said about his work? Parkwells (talk) 13:15, 4 May 2013 (UTC)
Daniel Bwanika's personal article, loosely based on sources only according to his statement, as he does not use footnotes, does not qualify as an RS, as his work has not been peer-reviewed by people in his field; it has not been published. Readers can't tell how he is interpreting those works. I am removing it. You are welcome to use those sources yourself and provide footnotes to statements.Parkwells (talk) 14:05, 4 May 2013 (UTC)
I cannot find a record of George W. Alenyo's book on the Luo being pubished at all on the Internet, except for Facebook. If it was published, there should be publication data. If you can't provide publication data, and a page source in the book for the assertion about Luos as black Hebrews, it can't be used as a reference. Please get familiar with the Wikipedia editing and reference/citation guidelines. Parkwells (talk) 14:05, 4 May 2013 (UTC)
I think what you are doing is completely out of order especially when one is still editing a page and gathering facts, you just come and remove edits in a hurry. Wikipedia allows what is called attribution, if there are lists of sources provided, we are to use these references especially published journals. Note that I did not quote a single statement from Daniel Bwanika's article. There are not many African writers available to meet all our Wikipedia requirements, in fact many in Africa do not even use or write on Wikipedia. Things that we take for granted in the Western world is a lot different in Africa. The rules are different as well. I do not appreciate you trying to intimidate me here even if you are such an expert on Wikipedia. And I do not wish to engage with you any longer on this matter.Ngunalik (talk) 14:33, 4 May 2013 (UTC)
I was simply saying that it is not clear that the sources Bwanika lists support his theory, which he claims to be the "true" story. Different sources can disagree. I was asking you to follow the WP rules, not trying to intimidate. I have tried to help as well, looking up sources and checking them to find other works.Parkwells (talk) 16:29, 4 May 2013 (UTC)
It's not true that sources for African history can't be expected to be as qualitative as ones for European history. There is a lot of decent mainstream up-to-date scholarship within African studies. For example, the very well-researched and detailed 1999 UNESCO General History of Africa, which is available online and mentions the Luo and the Acholi several times in volumes VI and VII - significantly, without any reference to their being adherents of Judaism. But if there are no reliable sources about the topic, then we just can't include information about it, so as not to deceive our readers with biased information. --Anonymous44 (talk) 19:43, 4 May 2013 (UTC)


Thanks for adding NYPL reference that gives publication data for the Alenyo book. Wikipedia prefers that cites from books (this and other ones) include page references, so that readers can learn more. Have been trying to improve the wording of this section - includes correcting spelling of Bwanika's article title - as "religious" seems referred to; will note it differently. The Bwanika article does not qualify as an RS, as it has not been published in a mainstream or peer-reviewed journal. Also, the expression is "by and large", not "by enlarge", so have changed that. Other changes were to improve the English - did not change the substance. All book references should have page cites for these assertions. As the Bruder book has a different conclusion, and is cited, it should also be included; will add it back.Parkwells (talk) 18:02, 4 May 2013 (UTC)

The most important issue is whether the Alenyo book is a reliable source; that is, whether the author is some kind of expert (historian or scholar of religion). Anyone can publish a book and write anything in it. The author's name does not appear when I google it, apart from a few mentions of the book. The fact that the publishing house is named "Shalom books" does not inspire confidence; it can be that its publication is merely a vehicle for proselytism by a particular group of Ugandans embracing a Jewish identity.--Anonymous44 (talk) 19:34, 4 May 2013 (UTC)
To recapitulate, so far I haven't seen a demonstrably reliable source that says the Acholi or the Luo in general were adherents of Judaism before the missionaries came. In my opinion, there is no justification for the article's claiming this. A very strong claim such as this needs very strong sourcing, and so far it doesn't have such sourcing. --Anonymous44 (talk) 20:08, 4 May 2013 (UTC)
Fundamentally, I agree. Have tried to follow up on other sources to see what they say, and also wanted to address recent issues related to religion and reconciliation that seemed more significant. I intend to restore the Bruder book - which does not mention Acholi at all as Black Hebrews, as I noted above - it's one source, but a recent one, which a review described as a "comprehensive" work. (Some other Luo may have traditions of being Hebrew; can't remember. The Bruder book can be previewed online - search for Acholi/Acholi yields 0.) Perhaps the two sources (Alenyo and Bwankai) should be taken to the RS board.Parkwells (talk) 02:57, 5 May 2013 (UTC)

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