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Kenya, republic in East Africa, a member of the Commonwealth of Nations. Kenya has a varied landscape of plateaus and high mountains and is home to many different ethnic groups. Formerly a British colony, Kenya gained independence in 1963 and has been a republic since 1964. It is bounded on the north by Sudan and Ethiopia, on the east by Somalia and the Indian Ocean, on the south by Tanzania, and on the west by Lake Victoria and Uganda. Nairobi is the country’s capital and largest city.


For younger readers

Broberg, Catherine. Kenya in Pictures. Lerner, 2002. For readers in grades 6 to 10.

McNair, Sylvia. Kenya. Scholastic, , 2001. For readers in grades 5 to 9.

Pateman, Robert. Kenya. 2nd ed. Marshall Cavendish, 1995. For readers in grades 5 to 10.


Bailey, Donna, and Anna Sproule. Kenya. Raintree Steck-Vaughn, 1990. Solid overview of the nation since independence; for younger readers.

Berman, Bruce. Control and Crisis in Colonial Kenya. Ohio University Press, 1990. History of the British bureaucracy in its African colony.

Bockhoff, Esther I., and Nancy Fleming. Tribal Traditions of Kenya. Cleveland Museum of Natural History, 1986. Kenya's material culture displayed and explained.

Fratkin, Elliot. Ariaal Pastoralists of Kenya: Surviving Drought and Development in Africa's Arid Lands. Allyn & Bacon, 1998. Portrait of the migratory herders of northeastern Kenya, whose economically and ecologically sound lifestyle defies stereotypes of starvation and destitution among Africa's traditional peoples.

Miller, Norman N. Kenya: The Quest for Prosperity. Westview, 1984. Evolution of the entrepreneurial and aggressive way of life of modern Kenya.

Magor, Thomasin. African Warriors: The Samburu. Abrams, 1994. Portrait of one of the last surviving warrior peoples of Africa, the Samburu of northern Kenya.

Ridgeway, Rick. The Shadow of Kilimanjaro: On Foot Across East Africa. Holt, 1998. Natural history of Kenya, presented in the context of a trek from the peak of Mount Kilimanjaro to the Indian Ocean.


Maxon, Robert M., B.A., Ph.D. Professor of History, West Virginia University. Author of East Africa: An Introductory History and other books.

Microsoft ® Encarta ® 2009. © 1993-2008 Microsoft Corporation.

Article key phrases:

Lake Victoria, different ethnic groups, British colony, high mountains, largest city, East Africa, Indian Ocean, Somalia, capital, Ethiopia, Kenya, Sudan, Uganda, Tanzania, republic, independence, west, country, member

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