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Colonial Inscriptions Race Sex and Class in Kenya Carolyn Martin Shaw In Kenyan colonialist imagery the Kikuyu were vilified as deceitful servants while the Maasai were romanticized as noble savages in a fashion similar to American representation of the Black slave and the wild Indian Carolyn Martin Shaw examines this imagery in the works of historians and ethnographers as well as in novels and films Through the works of Louis Leakey Jomo Kenyatta Elspeth Huxley and Isak Dinesen along with her own ethnographic research Martin Shaw investigates the discourses that shaped inequalities rivalries and fantasies in colonial Kenya She explores narratives of domination and subordination arguing that Europeans brought to Africa long-established ideas of difference that influenced racial inequalities in the colonial situation Including discussion of the controversial practice of female genital mutilation Colonial Inscriptions presents an African American womans views of how images of African colonialism have been influenced by European and American racism and sexual fantasies Anyone interested in Kenyan colonial history or issues of race and stereotyping in Africa as a whole will find valuable material in Colonial Inscriptions African Studies Review This is an excellent study of the social construction of race sexual politics and inequality in the crucible that was colonial Kenya Carolyn Shaws book remains an excellent study of how the coloniser and the colonised engaged in discourses baring their diverse experiences and producing intergral values and enduring images of self and of others in colonial Kenya Modern African Studies It is interesting clearly written and an erudite examination of writing on Kenya by Kenyans by birth and by residence In order to develop an argument or provide illustration Martin also roams farther afield to look at novels films and print media coverage of the Mau Mau in the USA during the 50s This is a treatise on discourses of colonialism which is as clear as it is thoughtful
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