Amanda Poole of the Anthropology Department was invited to be one of six experts on Eritrea to participate in an executive analytic exchange on Eritrean socio-political and foreign affairs issues.
Poole gave a talk titled “Out-Migration, National Service, and Militarization: Ethnographic Perspectives from the Lowlands” at the Analytic Exchange on Eritrea, held on August 16, 2012, at the Meridian International Center in Washington, D.C.
The Meridian International Center serves as a location for conferences organized by the State Department’s Bureau of Intelligence and Research. These conferences are designed to solicit the views of nongovernmental specialists and facilitate the exchange of views between these specialists and government officials. The Analytic Exchange on Eritrea was chaired by Don Yamamoto, Bureau of African Affairs, U.S. Department of State, and facilitated by Bernadette Graves, Bureau of Intelligence and Research, U.S. Department of State.
This exchange focused on current socio-political dynamics in Eritrea, including the large outmigration of people fleeing economic hardship and political repression.
Poole’s talk focused on Eritrean identity as impacted by militarization and out-migration from the perspectives of people living in Hagaz, an ethnically and religiously diverse town in the Eritrean Western Lowlands. Poole’s talk was designed to contribute an anthropological perspective to conversations on Eritrea among policy makers and analysts.