The Scent of Eucalyptus: A Missionary Childhood in Ethiopia

Overview

As the blond child of Canadian missionary parents, Daniel Coleman grew up with an ambivalent relationship to Ethiopia. He was obviously different from his playmates, but Ethiopia was his birthplace; he knew no other home. Like the eucalyptus, a tree imported to Ethiopia from Australia in the late nineteenth century to solve a firewood shortage, he and his missionary family were naturalized transplants. As ferenjie, they endlessly negotiated between the culture they brought with ...

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Overview

As the blond child of Canadian missionary parents, Daniel Coleman grew up with an ambivalent relationship to Ethiopia. He was obviously different from his playmates, but Ethiopia was his birthplace; he knew no other home. Like the eucalyptus, a tree imported to Ethiopia from Australia in the late nineteenth century to solve a firewood shortage, he and his missionary family were naturalized transplants. As ferenjie, they endlessly negotiated between the culture they brought with them and the culture in which they lived.

Coleman's richly textured picture of missionary life transcends either-or analysis. His perceptive chapters touch on everything from the riot drills at his Addis Ababa boarding school to the paradoxical taste for luxury he acquired as a result of international famine relief. Interwoven with accounts of Ethiopia's political and religious turbulence, this intelligent and finely crafted memoir throws a transformative light on relations between races, cultures, and faiths.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Engaging and thought-provoking." — Globe and Mail

"An intelligent and nuanced look at the missionary experience, layered with sharp insight and poignant reflection . . . frank commentary on cultural dynamics." — Edmonton Journal

"Daniel Coleman's vivid memoir of Ethiopia has relevance for today's NGOs . . . Fascinating . . . Coleman vividly relives emotions as well as sensations and reveals his own spiritual struggles." — FFWD (Calgary)

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780864923745
  • Publisher: Goose Lane Editions
  • Publication date: 10/28/2003
  • Edition description: First edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 300
  • Product dimensions: 5.96 (w) x 8.92 (h) x 0.62 (d)

Meet the Author

After finishing high school in Ethiopia, Daniel Coleman earned university degrees at the University of Regina and the University of Alberta. He now holds the Canada Research Chair in Critical Ethnicity and Race Study in the English department of McMaster University.Daniel Coleman is a leading researcher in the depiction of immigrant men in Canadian literature. He has won theJohn Charles Polanyi Prizefor his study of how literary texts produce and reinforce categories of cultural identificatio
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