Tsehai Publishers

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Tsehai Publishers is an independent, academic press based at Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles, California.[1] The press focuses primarily on indigenous African knowledge production, and in particular subjects relating to Ethiopia. It has various imprints, and is run by its founder, exiled Ethiopian journalist and publisher Elias Wondimu.[1]

History[edit]

Wondimu founded Tsehai Publishers in 1998.[2] From 1998 to 2001, he ran the company while also working full-time, as managing editor of the Ethiopian Review and for UCLA-based Chicano journal Aztlán.[2]

In 2008, Tsehai moved its headquarters to Marymount Institute, at Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles, California. Together, Wondimu and Marymount Institute Director Dr. Theresia de Vroom founded Marymount Institute Press, an imprint dedicated to upholding the tenets of the Marian tradition.[3]

In August 2013, Tsehai Publishers launched a new venture, Tsehai Films, a production company through which it plans to release documentary films exploring subjects such as media bias and perception of Africa.[4] Tsehai Films released two short films on Vimeo in 2013, one exploring photographer Robert Radin’s philosophies on art and life, the other looking at the way in which English scholars Richard and Rita Pankhurst made Ethiopia their home.[5]

Mengistu Hailemariam Scandal[edit]

In January 2012, the website Debteraw.com posted an unlicensed copy of Ethiopian politician Mengistu Haile Mariam’s memoir, which was slated for release by Tsehai that same winter.[6] The UK-based site is affiliated with the Ethiopian People's Revolutionary Party, a Marxist group.

The electronic distribution of the book was an act of protest against Tsehai’s decision to publish the volume.[7]

Publications[edit]

Tsehai publishers new books and re-publishes rare, out-of-print, and hard-to-find volumes of some importance.

New books[edit]

Tsehai publishes several new volumes each year, ranging in nature from biographies (Soaring on Winged Verse: The Life of Ethiopian Poet Playwright Tsegaye Gabre-Medhin) to history (Haile Selassie’s Government), political volumes (A Political History of the Tigray People's Liberation Front Revolt, Ideology, and Mobilization in Ethiopia), and memoirs (Ethiopian Reminiscences).[8][9][10][11]

As of 2013, the company is prepping the publication of its first two coffee table books, Flowers of Today, Seeds of Tomorrow and Uniting a Continent: The OAU at 50.[12] The former is a book of profiles of prominent Ethiopians of the diaspora, those who left their home country and found professional and personal success in their new adopted homes. The book exists as a means of combating media bias against Ethiopia while also inspiring a young generation of Ethiopians the world over.[13][14]

Uniting a Continent is a celebration of the Organisation for African Unity (Now simply the African Union AU) on its 50th anniversary. The book highlights the positive aspects of the Organization, and contains profiles of the attendees of the first session of the OAU in 1963, newly commissioned portraits of those profiled, information in each member country, historical photographs, and text of speeches given at the first session.[12]

Republished volumes[edit]

Tsehai has republished numerous out-of-print or hard-to-find books of some importance to Ethiopian or African studies, including Richard Pankhurst's canonical Economic History of Ethiopia (1800 – 1935) and Donald N. Levine's Wax & Gold: Tradition and Innovation in Ethiopian Culture.[15][16]

International Journal of Ethiopian Studies[edit]

Tsehai Publishers’ International Journal of Ethiopian Studies (IJES)is a bi-annual publication containing scholarship on Ethiopian history, culture, politics, and more. The journal contains new scholarship in English and Amharic, as well as newly translated pieces, poetry, important government documents, and other relevant pieces.[17][18]

The December 2012 issue of IJES contained recently declassified documents written by Henry Kissinger for then president Richard Nixon in anticipation of Ethiopian emperor Halie Selassie’s arrival in Washington DC on a diplomatic mission.[19]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "Tsehai Publishers: History". Marymount Institute Official Site. Retrieved 5 September 2013. 
  2. ^ a b Miller, Anthony. "Ethiopian Dreams". LA Weekly. Retrieved 5 September 2013. 
  3. ^ "About the Marymount Institute Press". Marymount Institute Official Site. Retrieved 5 September 2013. 
  4. ^ "Tsehai Films Official Facebook Page". Retrieved 5 September 2013. 
  5. ^ "Tsehai Films". Official Tsehai Films Vimeo. Retrieved 5 September 2013. 
  6. ^ Levine, Donald N. "Illegal PDF of Mengistu Haile Mariam’s Memoir". Tadias Magazine. Retrieved 5 September 2013. 
  7. ^ "Q&A with Elias Wondimu of Tsehai Publishers". Tadias Magazine. Retrieved 5 September 2013. 
  8. ^ "Soaring on Winged Verse". Tsehai Publishers Webstore. Retrieved 5 September 2013. 
  9. ^ "Haile Selassie's Government". Tsehai Publishers Webstore. 
  10. ^ "A Political History of the Tigray People's Liberation Front". Tsehai Publishers Webstore. Retrieved 5 September 2013. 
  11. ^ "Ethiopian Reminiscenes". Tsehai Publishers Webstore. 
  12. ^ a b "Tsehai Publishers: Upcoming & Recent Books". Marymount Institute Official Site. Retrieved 5 September 2013. 
  13. ^ "Flowers of Today, Seeds of Tomorrow Campaign". Kickstarter. Retrieved 5 September 2013. 
  14. ^ Wondimu, Elias. "7 Ethiopian Women to Watch". Ms. Afropolitan. Retrieved 5 September 2013. 
  15. ^ "Economic History of Ethiopia (1800 - 1935)". Tsehai Publishers Webstore. Retrieved 5 September 2013. 
  16. ^ "Wax & Gold". Tsehai Publishers Webstore. Retrieved 5 September 2013. 
  17. ^ "International Journal of Ethiopian Studies". Tsehai Publishers Webstore. Retrieved 5 September 2013. 
  18. ^ "International Journal of Ethiopian Studies". JSTOR. Retrieved 5 September 2013. 
  19. ^ "IJES: VI; 1&2 - Content". Tsehai Publishers Webstore. Retrieved 5 September 2013.