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The foreign policy of Kenya 1963-1978

Wright, Stephen John (1980) The foreign policy of Kenya 1963-1978. PhD thesis, London School of Economics and Political Science.

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This thesis analyses Kenyan foreign policy between I963 and 1978 and provides a case-study of foreign policy-making in a developing state. It shows how the colonial heritage influenced the orientation of foreign policy through political, economic and cultural means. An examination of the domestic political structure shows that an elite group around Jomo Kenyatta controlled the policy-making process and gave little opportunity to competing elites to alter the country's foreign policy and development goals. These goals were pursued within the framework of the former colony's dominant aid and trading patterns and thus raised questions concerning neo-colonialist control and the dependence of Kenya upon the West. In East Africa, Kenya sought peaceful relations to maximise economic benefits. The country capitalised upon its predominance caused by colonial and settler policies and formalised its position in the East African Community. Its relative strength, however, combined with political differences unsettled its neighbours and contributed to the Community's demise. The unresolved territorial dispute with the Somali Republic, added to the difficulties with Tanzania and Uganda, presented major problems for Kenya's foreign policy in the region. In international organisations, the government aligned with Third World countries on many issues, but the political and economic constraints emanating from the neo-colonial nature of the state made sure that policies were pragmatic ones. In the final chapter, a theoretical approach is utilised to explain foreign policy behaviour and this draws together the major factors which made this period the 'Kenyatta Era'.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Additional Information: © 1980 Stephen John Wright
Library of Congress subject classification: H Social Sciences > HC Economic History and Conditions
J Political Science > JA Political science (General)

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