Primary Data for MA Thesis: Tigrigna Meme

Published: 7 June 2023| Version 1 | DOI: 10.17632/f5r4jgsptx.1
Geleta Tesfaye Berisso


This thesis entitled Tigrigna Memes: Subaltern Satires as Everyday Resistance to Power examines the deployment of internet memes, as an everyday resistance to power by the subaltern groups, in the public Facebook group ትግርኛ Meme—Tigrigna Meme, in the post-cessation of hostilities agreement (CoHA) after the war in northern Ethiopia (hereafter, the war). The group had approximately 130,000 and 165,000 active members as of January and June 2023 correspondingly. I borrowed the title of the study, Tigrigna Memes, directly from the group’s name on Facebook, and pluralized the word ‘meme’ for syntactic purposes. The below folder contains a collection of internet memes collected from a Facebook group Tigrigna Meme (ትግርኛ Meme ( The researcher utilized a Facebook image-searching algorithm to identify relevant memes targeting the frame of the study; primarily based on the Facebook image-search algorithm being a complex system that relies on computer vision and machine learning. The query terms used in the search bar within the group are in both Tigrigna and English languages. These included dominant actors and narratives during the war. In the folder, memes are categorized based of the frame of analysis as follows: 1. The Tigrayan Insiders: a. Tigray People's Liberation Front (TPLF); b. Tigray Traders; c. Tigrayan Traders. 2. "The Others": a. The Ethiopian federal government; b. The Ethiopian National Defense Force (ENDF); c. The para-ENDF forces: Fano and the Amhara Special Forces. Sample search terms for dominant actors and narratives: ህዝባዊ ወያነ ሓርነት ትግራይ (ህወሓት)—a Tigrigna equivalent for the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF); ሓይልታት ምክልኻል ትግራይ (ሓምት)—Tigray Defense Forces (TDF); ነጋዶ ትግራይ—Tigray traders; ሓይልታት ምክልኻል ኤርትራ (ሓምኤ)—Eritrea Defense Forces (EDF); and የኢፌዲሪ መከላከያ ሠራዊት (or መከላከያ) — the Ethiopian National Defense Force (ENDF); ገፈፋ (Forced conscriptions); ትግራይ ትዕስር (Tigray shall prevail); and etcetera. Search terms for major political figures: አብይ አህመድ አሊ (or አብይ፣ አብቹ) — Abiy Ahmed Ali (Abiy, Abichu); ፕሬዝደንት ኢሳይያስ አፈወርቂ (or ኢሳይያስ)—Isayas Afeworki, ጌታቸው ረዳ (or ጌች)—Getachew (Gech)፣ ፕሬዝደንት ደብረጽዮን (ደብረጽዮን)—Debretsion, and etcetera.



Addis Ababa University Institute for Peace and Security Studies


Writing Thesis in English, Peace Study