The president of
Red Sea and World Press Publishing talked to Minia of the Tigrigna service about
the political influence of the career of Dr. Jordan Gebre-Medhin, a member of
the African studies faculty of Northwestern University, who died in early
Jordan was the
author of the 1989 book, "Peasants and Nationalism: Critique of
Ethiopian Studies," which many believe fueled the struggle for Eritrea’s
independence. The book was the first major challenge to claims casting Eritrea as a subsidiary of
Ethiopia, its neighbor in northeast Africa. The book provoked heated debate
among political factions and drew favorable reviews from other scholars.
Eritrea won independence from Ethiopia in 1993.
his publisher and longtime friend of Jordan, called him an intellectual
powerhouse, a committed nationalist and a dedicated pan-Africanist. The Boston Globe published an article on its
web site calling him “a towering teacher and the first faculty member in
Northeastern's University African-American studies department to earn
tenure.” Dr. Tseggai Isaac, a political
scientist at the University of Missouri, also praised Jordan’s contributions to
Eritrea and to political science. "He was a gentle giant, an affable personality with
dignity, yet kind and gracious," said Dr.Tseggai.
Jordan passed away in
the first week of December at his home in Cambridge, Massachusetts. He was 64.