Kenyan intellectuals and the political realm: responsibilities and complicities
AbstractIntellectuals have provided many of the concepts through which Kenyans have
come to understand their society. However, the infrastructure that historically made intellectual work possible within the country has, over the years, been eroded by the Kenyan state, international factors and the pressures of political sectarianism. The erosion of the intellectual sphere has, in turn, had a stunting effect on Kenya’s political culture. By examining key moments in the evolution of the relationship between the Kenyan state and the country’s intellectuals – and also the relationship between intellectuals and society – this article refl ects upon models of engagement that may enable Kenya’s intellectuals to regain initiative.