Politics, ideology and the underprivileged
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What are the origins of Harambee? What is the meaning of Harambee and what is the place of the underprivileged in the context of the Harambee phenomenon, ideology, tradition, or whatever else it may be called. These are the main questions addressed in the present article. The author suggests that in the context of Harambee the place of the underprivileged is perhaps not to be sought in the so-called traditional roots of the phenomenon but rather in its more immediate predecessors whose politics led to the modern Harambee polity. This polity is basically a patron client polity in which Harambee serves as a quasi-ideology aimed at the maintenance of the status quo. Harambee is portrayed as having its roots in the traditional communal societies, however, because this is something with which the peasants can identify. Without the peasants, the patron-client state would be without the majority of its clients.
CitationJournal of Eastern African Research and Development, Vol. 13,150-170
Institute for Development Studies, University of Nairobi