Somali opposition to government education: R.E. Ellison and the Berbera School Affair, 1938-1940

Olden, Tony (2007) Somali opposition to government education: R.E. Ellison and the Berbera School Affair, 1938-1940. History of Education, 37 (1). pp. 71-90. ISSN 0046-760X

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Abstract

British Somaliland, a protectorate from which Christian missionaries were excluded, opened its first government‐run school in 1938. The intention of the new director of education, Randall Ellison, was to use written Somali in preference to Arabic. This drew intense criticism from local religious leaders, and had to be abandoned. Accused of being a missionary in disguise, Ellison’s work led to a riot in the town of Burao in 1939 in which three people were killed. Although the school at Berbera functioned for just two terms, the opposition it aroused forms a link in an anti‐Western chain of events that stretches from the 1899–1920 revolt of Sayyid Muhammad ‘Abdille Hassan up to the Al‐Qaeda‐linked killing of two British teachers in 2003. This paper is based on Ellison’s letters to his family and on official and other sources.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: Education
Depositing User: Rod Pow
Date Deposited: 17 Apr 2012 15:32
Last Modified: 05 Apr 2017 13:17
URI: http://repository.uwl.ac.uk/id/eprint/310

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