Pastoralism and Politics in Northern Kenya and Southern Ethiopia

Günther Schlee and Abdullahi A. Shongolo

Woodbridge: James Currey

Year of publication



This study, based on anthropological field research over a period of thirty-four years, focuses on pastoralism, politics, policies and development in northern Kenya and southern Ethiopia. It attempts a synthesis of historical findings and political anthropology, including studies carried out from a perspective of development intervention. Presenting a detailed ethnographic view of recent events of ethnic violence in Kenya, the authors analyse how local patterns of conflict among pastoralists were influenced by both national and regional politics, which have encouraged an increased tendency of territorialized ethnicity. The authors then discuss ways of getting out of the ethnic trap and revitalizing a mobile livestock economy in a region where other forms of land use are impossible or much less effective.

Go to Editor View