Abstract

Slavery remains one of the blind spots in the historiography of the Horn of Africa in general and Ethiopia in particular. This is peculiar in light of the fact that in the territories of the Horn slavery left a significant imprint on the sociocultural fabric, and that the ports along the Horn of Africa coast fed the slave trade to the Arab, Ottoman, and Indian Ocean worlds for many centuries. In this article, we highlight some of the research trends on slavery in Africa and discuss slavery and the slave trade in different Ethiopian regions. We also question the public silence around the legacies of slavery in the country. By means of introducing the articles of this special issue, we point towards new, pending, or unresolved research questions.

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