By Shane Doyle
”This work is a welcome and salutory history of colonial loss and decline that incorporates colonial politics and policy, but goes beyond to focus on demographics, disease, and environment. Summing Up: Highly recommended.”
“Although some might contend that Bunyoro’s experience was atypical for colonial Uganda, it is nevertheless valuable for historians to have access to studies like this as it important to understand the experience of all regions of colonial East Africa.”
“Arguably the most important study of a much-neglected society in more than thirty years.”
The Kingdom of Bunyoro's story demonstrates convincingly that environmental change there was not a uniform, statewide process. In one of the first studies of the political ecology of a major African kingdom, Crisis and Decline in Bunyoro addresses state capacity, ideology, and government legitimacy as crucial issues. Shane Doyle focuses on the interplay between levels of environmental activity within a highly stratified society. Political ecology was as much about the differential impact of conflict on society as about the uneven extraction and distribution of resources.
Shane Doyle is a lecturer in history at Leeds University. More info →
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This history of the political economy of Kenya is the first full length study of the development of the colonial state in Africa. Professor Berman argues that the colonial state was shaped by the contradictions between maintaining effective political control with limited coercive force and ensuring the profitable articulation of metropolitan and settler capitalism with African societies.
Colonial Baringo was largely unnoticed until drought and localized famine in the mid-1920s led to claims that its crisis was brought on by overcrowding and livestock mismanagement. In response to the alarm over erosion, the state embarked on a program for rehabilitation, conservation, and development.
Blessed with fertile and well-watered soil, East Africa's kingdom of Buganda supported a relatively dense population and became a major regional power by the mid-nineteenth century. This complex and fascinating state has also long been in need of a thorough study that cuts through the image of autocracy and military might.