Arho – The Afar Salt Trade of Northeastern Ethiopia


  • Till Jakob Frederik Trojer PhD candidate School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), University of London



Ethiopia, Camels, Caravan trade, Salt, Afar


“Arho – The Afar Salt Trade of North-eastern Ethiopia” follows the journey of a camel caravan to the salt plains of the Afar Depression. Traditionally the caravans moved from Afar Depression to other parts of Ethiopia and to the Red Sea coastal regions of modern-day Eritrea and Djibouti. For centuries the control, trade and distribution of salt was of primary importance in the articulation of economic, social, and political life of the nomadic communities living along the caravan trails. Since 2010, trucks have slowly replaced the camel caravans. This has led to a steady decline in the trade. The film, relying on strong visual imagery and traditional Afar music, selected by the participant of this project, documents how the decline of this trade affects the daily life of the communities in Berahle district of North-eastern Ethiopia. The documentary is part of PhD project at the Department of Anthropology and Sociology at the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), University London. It is based on 13 months ethnographic research (2017-2018) that combines anthropological theory with ethnographic filmmaking to explore new and creative ways of collaborative research.




How to Cite

Trojer, T. J. F. (2021). Arho – The Afar Salt Trade of Northeastern Ethiopia. Journal of Anthropological Films, 5(01).