This section is a bibliography of the principal publications on the Okiek and related Dorobo peoples in Kenya. Extensive research and publications have been done by G. W. B. Huntingford based on field work as a colonial administrator in the 1920s and 30s, Roderic H. Blackburn, PhD, from field work in the 1968-70 and 1990-93, and by Corinne A. Kratz, PhD, during the periods 1974-5, 1982-94. Other sources have been colonial explorers, officers and administrators and academics (linguists, historians, archaeologists). This bibliography will be added to as published sources are submitted.
New for 2017, three books. Download a pdf file of each, complete, for FREE now.
Hardbound copies will be available for sale shortly
The Okiek, Kenya Forest Foragers, an ethnography of the Okiek is available now as a 260 page all color book as a pdf ebook. (click here to get a .pdf copy)
Okiek Tribal Artifacts, A comprehensive collection of know artifacts of this Kenya hunter-gatherer tribe. Over 327 artifacts, mostly traditional objects made by or used by the Okiek with data on how they were made, by whom, how used, by whom, when used, where used, material, etc. (click here to get the .pdf book)
Mini Atlas of Kenya, Land use maps comprising natural features and tribal and sub-tribal boundaries. This mini atlas is a product of finding certain Kenya features generally inaccessible, inaccurate or incomplete among the lists and maps published over the last century. Satellite view, Physical map, Gazetted forests, National Parks and Reserves, tribal map, Sub-tribal map, Hunter-gatherer tribes, and Conservancies: maps and lists of all. (click here to get the .pdf book)
Articles by R H Blackburn can be viewed as full text .pdf (below)
1980. “Elmenteitan and other late Pastoral Neolithic adaptations to the central Highlands of East
Africa”, Proceedings of the Eighth Panafrican Congress of Prehistory and Quaternary Studies, pp.
1982. ‘Archaeological and linguistic reconstructions of history in East Africa·’, in: The Archaeo
logical and Linguistic Reconstruction of African History, edited by C. Ehret & M. Posnansky, pp.
1984a. “Holocene Environments and Human Adaptations in the Central Rift Valley, Kenya. Ph.D.
Thesis, Department of Anthropology, University of California, Berkeley.
1984b. ‘The introduction ·of pastoral adaptations to the highlands of East Africa’, in: Hunters and
Farmers: Considerations of the Causes and Consequences of Food Production in Africa, edited by
J.D. Clark & S. Brandt, pp. 212-239. Berkeley.
1984c. ‘Excavations at Deloraine, Rongai, 1978’, Azania 19:79-104.
1985. ‘Excavations at Masai Gorge Rock Shelter, Naivasha, Kenya, Azania 20.
1986 “Hunter-Gatherer Adaptations to Non-Marginal Environments, An Ecological and Archeo-
logical Assessment of the Dorobo Model.” Sprache und Geschichte in Africa 7.23 pp. 11-42.
Blackburn, Roderic H.
1970 “A Preliminary Report of Research among the Ogiek Tribe of Kenya”,
Discussion paper No. 89, Institute of Developmental Studies, University College Nairobi.
1971 “The Honey Complex in Okiek Society, Culture and Personality.” Ph.D. dissertation,
Department of Anthropology, Michigan State University. University of Michigan Microfilm Off
1973 “Okiek Ceramics: Evidence for Central Kenya Prehistory”, Azania, Journal of the British
Institute in Eastern Africa.
1974 “Okiek History” Azania, Journal of the British Institute in Eastern Africa.
1976 “Okiek History”. Revised and expanded edition of (1974, above) in Kenya Before 1900, Eight
Regional Studies (B. A. Ogot, ed), East African Publishing House, Nairobi.
1978 “The Okiek and their neighbors : the ecological distinctions.” Paper presented at the twenty-
first annual meeting of the African Studies Association, Baltimore, Maryland, November 1-4,
1978. Published by ASA, Waltham MA, 1978 9p.
1978 “High altitude forest conservation in relation to the Dorobo in Kenya past present and
future”, Swara Magazine (East African Wildlife Society) August 1978: 23.
1982 “In the Land of Milk and Honey, Okiek adaptations to their forest and neighbors”, in Politics
and History in Band Societies, E. Leacock and R. Lee, editors. Cambridge University Press.
1982 Okiek, (Kenya’s People series), Evans Brothers Limited, London. 1982.
1985 “Okiek Resource Tenure and Territoriality as Mechanisms for Social Control and Allocation
of Resources”, in Sprache und Geschichte in Afrika (Proceedings of the International Confer-
ence: African Hunter-Gatherers. Cologne January 1985), SUGIA, Band 7.1 pp.61-82. Herausgega-
ben an den Universitaten Koln und Bayreuth. Helmut Buske Verlag, Hamburg.
1986 ”The Eastern Africa Hunter-Gatherer Survey” Progress Reports I and II (1986 and 1987).
Distributed to survey participants.
1992 “An anthropological critique of the KIFCON briefing paper and proposals for the settlement
of the Okiek Dorobo of South West Mau” Kenya Indigenous Forest Conservation Programme.
Natural Resources Institute.
1993 “Okiek of Kenya” in State of the Peoples, A Global Human Rights Report on Societies in Danger.
Cultural Survival by Beacon Press, Boston. 1993.
1993 Human Uses of the Ol Pusimoru/Maasai Mau Forests. Kenya Indigenous Forest Conserva
tion Programme. KIFCON, Karura Forest Station, Nairobi. 1993.
1996 “Dorobo-Maasai bone, ivory and horn objects: the discovery of a previously unknown ritual
assemblage”, in African Art, pp.12-15, Winter 1996 Vol. XXIX No.1. The University of California,
Los Angeles, 1993.
1996 “Fission, Fusion and Foragers in East Africa: Macro and micro analysis of the processes of
diversity and integration”, in Cultural Diversity Among Twentieth-Century Foragers: An African
Perspective. Susan Kent, editor. Cambridge University Press,
1911 King of the Kikuyu. London: Methuen.
Brenzinger, M. (ed.)
1992 Language Death: Factual and Theoretical Explorations with Special Reference to East Africa.
Berlin; New York: Mouton de Gruyer, 1992.
Chanler, W. A.
1896 Through Jungle and Desert: Travels in East Africa. London: MacMillan.
Dundas, K. R.
1908 Notes on the Origin and History of the Kikuyu and Dorobo Tribes. Man 8, 76:136-9.
1968 “Cushites and the Highland and Plains Nilotes.” In Zamani. B. A. Ogot and J. A. Keran, eds.
Nairobi: East African Publishing House and Longmans, Green & Co., Ltd.
1971 Southern Nilotic History: Linguistic Approachesto the Study of the Past. Evanston: Northwest
ern University Press
1974 Ethiopians and East Africans. East African Publishing House: Nairobi
Fleming, H. C.
1969 “Asa and Aramanik: Cushitic Hunters in Maasailand.” Ethnology, 8, No. 1.
1986 “East African Hunters and Pastoralists in a Regional Perspective: An ‘Ethnoanthropological’
Approach.” in Franz Rottland - Reiner Vossen (eds) 105-131. Proceedings of the International
Symposium on African Hunter-Gatherers. Sankt Augustin, 3-5/1/1985 in Sprache und Gerschichte
1963 “Languages of Africa.” Publications of the Indiana University Research Center in Anthropol
ogy, Folklore and Linguistics 25:1-171.
1973 Vokabuläre Ostafrikanischer Restsprachen: Teil II: Sogoo und Omotik. Afrika und Übersee
1980 The Non-Bantu Languages of Kenya. With Wilhelm J. G. Mohlig. Dietrch Reimer.
Hobley, C. W.
1903 “Notes Concerning the Eldorobo of Mau,” Br. E. Africa. Man 3 .17 : 33-3h .
1905 “Further Notes on the Eldorobo or Oggiek.” Man 5,21:39-44.
1906 “Notes on the Dorobo People and Other Tribes.” Man 6,78:119-120.
Hollis, A. C.
1909 “Some Dorobo Beliefs.” Man 91101:177.
Honea, K. H.
1958 A Contribution to the History of the Hamitic Peoples of Africa. Vienna, publisher unavailable).
Huntingford, G. W. B.
1928 “A Hunting Tribe of Kenya Colony.” Discovery IX. 250-252.
1929 “Modern Hunters.” Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute 59:333-378.
1931a “The Taturu, Mosiro, and Aramanik Dialects of Dorobo.” Man 31:261-266.
1931b Free hunters, serf-tribes and submerged classes in East Africa. Man: a record of anthropo
logical science 31. 262-266.
1951 “The Social Institutions of the Dorobo.” Anthropos 46:1-48.
1954 “The Political Organization of the Dorobo.” Anthropos 49:123-148.
1955 “The Economic Life of the Dorobo.” Anthropos 50:602-634.
Ingold, Riches and Woodburn
1988 Hunters and Gatherers, Vol. 1 History Evolution and Social Change. Vol. 2 Property, Power
and Ideology. Berg Publishers Ltd.: Oxford
1972 Comparative Studies of Site Locations in East Africa. Man, Settlement and Urbanism:
Proceedings of a Meeting of the Research Seminar in Archaeology and Related Subjects Held at
the Institute of Archaeology, London University, ed. By P. J. Ucko, R.Tringham and G. W. Dimb
leyby, pp. 165-76. London: Duckworth.
1978 “The food-sharing behavior of protohuman hominids.” Scientific American 311-325
Jacobs, J. H.
1965 The Traditional Political Organization of the Pastoral Maasai. Unpublished Dphil. disserta
tion. Oxford: Oxford University.
Kenya Land Commission
1933 Reports. Nairobi: Government Printers.
Krapf, J. L.
1954 Vocabulary of the Engutuk Eloikop. Tubingen, printed by Lud. Fried. Fues.
Kratz, C. A.
1986. “Ethnic Interaction, Economic Diversification and Language Use: A Report on Research
with Kaplelach and Kipchornwonek Okiek.” Sprache und Geschichte in Afrika 7. 189-226.
1988 “The Unending Ceremony and a Warm House: Representation of a Patriarchal Ideal and the
Silent Complementarity in Okiek Blessings.” In Property, Power and Ideology in Hunting and
Gathering Societies. Edited by J.Woodburn, T. Ingold and D. Riches. Oxford: Berg Publishers,
1989 “Genres of Power: A Comparative Analysis of Okiek Blessings, Curses and Oaths.” Man
1990a “Sexual Solidarity and the Secrets of Sight and Sound: Shifting Gender Relations and their
Ceremonial Constitution.” American Ethnologist 17(3):31-51.
1990b “Persuasive Suggestions and Reassuring Promises: Emergent Parallelism and Dialogic
Encouragement in Song.” Journal of American Folklore 103:42-66.
1991 “Amusement and Absolution: Transforming Narratives during Confession of Social Debts.”
American Anthropologist 93(4):826-851.
1993 “We’ve Always Done It Like This...Except for a Few Details: “Tradition” and “Innovation” in
Okiek Ceremonies.” Comparative Studies in Society and History 35(1):30-65.
1994 Affecting Performance: Meaning, Movement and Experience in Okiek Women’s Initiation.
Smithsonian Institution Press: Washington.
2000 “Forging Unions and Negotiating Ambivalence: Personhood and Complex Agency in Okiek
Marriage Arrangement.” In African Philosophy and Cultural Inquiry. Edited by Dismas Masolo
and Ivan Karp. International African Institute Monograph. Bloomington: Indiana University
Press, pp. 136-171.
2002 The Ones That Are Wanted: Communication and the Politics of Representation in a Photogra
phic Exhibition. Berkeley: University of California Press.
2009 “Communicative Resonance across Settings: Marriage Arrangement, Initiation and Political
Meetings in Kenya.” Wenner-Gren Foundation volume on Ritual Communication. Edited by Ellen
Basso and Gunter Senft. Oxford: Berg Publishers.
In review “Uncertainties and Transformations in Okiek Marriage Arrangement.” American Ethnolo
Maguire, R. A. J.
1928a “Il-Torobo: Part I: Being Some Notes on the Various Types of “Dorobo” Found
in the Masai reserve of Tanganyika Territory and Contiguous Districts.” Journal of the Royal Afri
can Society, Vol. 27 No. 106 (Jan. 1928).
1928a “Il-Torobo” Part II, Journal of the Royal African Society, Vol. 27 No. 106 pp. 127-141.
1910 Die Masai, Ethnographische Monographie eines ostaafrikanischen Semitenvolkes. Berlin: Diet
rich Reimer Verlagsbuchhandlung, Translated for the HRAF (Human Relations Area Files, Yale
University) files by Frieda Schütze.
Murdock, G. P.
1959 Africa, its Peoples and Their Culture. New York: McGraw Hill
Narok District Records
1910-1952. Narok District Records. National Archives of Kenya: Nairobi. Microfilm copies at
Syracuse University Library: Syracuse.
Neumann A .
1898 Elephant Hunting in East Equatorial Africa. Rowland Ward Ltd, London.
1910 African Game Trails. Charles Scribner’s Sons: New York
1982. Die Südnilotischen Sprachen. (Kölner Beiträge zur Afrikanistik, 7.) Berlin: Dietrich Reimer.
1983. Southern Nilotic (with an outline of Datooga). In Bender, M. L. (ed.), Nilo-Saharan language
Studies, 208-238. East Lansing: African Studies Center, Michigan State University.
2006 “Okiek Languages in a Historical Perspective,” Historical Linguistics and Hunter- Gatherer
Populations in Global Perspective. MPI-EVA: Leipzig
Rottland, Franz, and R. Vossen
1977 “Grundlagen fur eine Klarung des Dorobo-Problems.” In Zur Sprachgeschichte und Ethnohis
torie in Afrika, edited by W. J. G. Mohlig, F. Rottland, and B. Heine. Berlin: Dietrich Verlagen.
1965 The Samburu. Los Angeles: Univ. of California Press.
1973 Nomads in Alliance, Symbiosis and growth among the Rendille and Samburu of Kenya. Oxford
University Press, London.
Sutton, J. E. G.
1968 “The Settlement of East Africa.” In Zamani. B. A. Ogot and J. A. Kieran, eds. Nairobi: East
African Publishing House and Longmans, Green & Co., Ltd.
1994 “The Sirikwa and the Okiek in the history of the Kenya Highlands”. Kenya Past and Present
1885 Through Masai Land. London: Sampson, Low, Marston, Searle & Rivington.
Wayland, E. J.
1929. Preliminary studies of the tribes of Karamoja (the Labwor, the Wanderobo, the Dodotho,
and the Jie). Journal of the Royal Anthropological Inst. of Great Britain and Ireland 61. 187-230.
1993 High altitude forest conservation in relation to the Dorobo people. Kenya Past and Present