The GENESIS of this book can be traced back to 2012 when I was taking a course in the major debate on the study of Africa at the Makerere Institute of Social Research (MISR). Anchored on the state and political subject formation on the continent, the course covers thematic issues such as the state and state formation, slavery, colonialism, nationalism, and development. Reading interdisciplinary literature, we raised critical questions. Getting the question right was the holy grail of the scholarship of political knowledge at the MISR.
Migration and its resultant remittance have become the two powerful forces of peasant transformation in Eritrea in the last decade. If the former is responsible for uprooting labor from land, the latter is a replacement value to what the labor would have produced from the land.
This paper discusses how the capital town of Eritrea, Asmara, is depicted alternately as Italian, Eritrean and Ethiopian thus showing the competing claims of ‘ownership’ that traverses its colonial and postcolonial histories and a multifaceted identity. It focuses specifically on how the Italian architecture of Asmara is depicted both as a sign of modernization and oppression.