Oromo Proverbs and Proverbial Expressions in the Customary Judicial System in Ethiopia


  • Megersa Regassa Tolasa College of Social Sciences and Humanities, Jimma University
  • Dejene Gemechu Chala Jimma University


This paper discusses the role of Oromo proverbs in conflict resolution and/or management as a peace-making verbal communication principle in the cultural context. The lesson from proverbs, which contain traditional morsels of wisdom, consists of cultural value and rhetorical effectiveness helping to enforce reality in the context in which they are used. Data for this paper is generated from primary sources. In data gathering, we used interview and focus group discussion. The analysis shows that proverbs have persuasive power to advise, guide and influence conflicting parties to settle their case peacefully. The proverbs tell their truths about conflict situations and devise a resolution and management approach through metaphorical and symbolic representations. Proverbs are also an integral part of Oromo culture, handing down and imparting norms, values, rules and the worldview of the community to guide people to live in customary ways.


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Author Biographies

Megersa Regassa Tolasa, College of Social Sciences and Humanities, Jimma University

Lecturer at the Department of Oromo Folklore and Literature

Dejene Gemechu Chala, Jimma University

Assistant professor (PhD) of Social Anthropology






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