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Title: A new model village?: Nairobi development and the Somali question in Kenya, c. 1915-1917
Authors: Whittaker, H
Keywords: Somali;Kenya;Nairobi;Urban;Development
Issue Date: 2015
Citation: Northeast African Studies, 15 (2), pp. 117 - 140 (2015)
Abstract: Kenya has a problem with its urban ethnic Somali population. Many that reside in suburbs of Nairobi are assumed to have entered the country illegally from Somalia, or to have migrated from the large refugee camps located in Dadaab and Kakuma in the north of the country. As such many perceive the Somali to be temporarily encamped in the city. This is despite the fact that Somali claims in Nairobi can be traced back to the first establishment of the British East Africa Protectorate. By outlining the history of a proposed new model village for the Somali, and the ways in which urban Somalis negotiated early British development of the city, this article emphasizes the longevity of Somali claims for rights and recognition from the state. Even though the British perceived them as nomads and livestock traders, and therefore not part of the city’s future, they actively negotiated their resettlement. The article argues that this was not simply and expression of political demands, but also a manifestation of an urban aspiration that is also reflected in more recent Somali migration to urban areas.
ISSN: 1535-6574
Appears in Collections:Dept of Politics, History and Law Research Papers

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