An Essay by Neo Musangi

My response to racism is anger. I have lived with that anger, on that anger, beneath that anger, on top of that anger, ignoring that anger, feeding upon that anger, learning to use that anger before it laid my visions to waste, for most of my life. Once I did it in silence, afraid of the weight of that anger. My fear of that anger taught me nothing. Your fear of that anger will teach you nothing, also.




Neo Sinoxolo Musangi

JULY, 2023


My response to racism is anger. I have lived with that anger, on that anger, beneath that anger, on top of that anger, ignoring that anger, feeding upon that anger, learning to use that anger before it laid my visions to waste, for most of my life. Once I did it in silence, afraid of the weight of that anger. My fear of that anger taught me nothing. Your fear of that anger will teach you nothing, also.


In another life I teach university students. In that other life, I practice, albeit less often, as a performance artist. In my other life, I suppose I know how to do research and how to present a cohesive research report and analysis. This essay (if I dare call it that) is not part of my other life; it is this side of my life; the side of my life where I happen to live in a designated wildlife sanctuary and in very close proximity to a national park. In this other side of my life, I also happen to have neighbours, wildlife, domesticated grazers and pets. In this other side of my life, my writing is incoherent, messy and volatile. 


This is an angry piece of writing.


Expect neither objectivity nor academic rigour here. But what does rage do/not do? What does anger make possible in this ‘messy place’?


I suspect that a politics of rage (or of this sort) is what many of you and many of my mentors have applied as a means of making sense of what it means to do research – to investigate social life in this awful, messy place. But what do you do with the actual rage? Unapplied.


I offer here an attempt at organizing rage, or perhaps, making visible a threading of sorts. A weaving, a stitching, a connecting, a joining that does not aim to so much mend as it does to open and lay bare the thing on the table.


  1. The context


First, some basic stuff: 


The Nairobi National Park, famed for being the only park within a city in Kenya, was established in 1946 by a Kenyan-born Scottish chartered accountant, Merryn Cowie. Born in 1909 in what was British Colonial Kenya, Cowie studied at Brighton College and Oxford University from where he returned in 1932. Alarmed by what he saw as a depletion in the number of wildlife in his nine year absence from Kenya, Cowie pushes for the establishment of national parks across British Imperial East African colonies and protectorates. The Nairobi National Park is the first to be established in 1946; Serengeti National Park in what is now Tanzania is gazetted in 1951; and Kazinga National Park in present-day Uganda-- combining the Lake George and Lake Edward Game Reserves-- is not only gazetted in 1952 but also immediately renamed the Queen Elizabeth National Park to commemorate Queen Elizabeth II’s brief stop-over at Entebbe Airport on her way from Kenya, with her husband Prince Philip, The Duke of Edinburgh. Of course, Elizabeth had come to Kenya as a Princess only to leave as a Queen upon her father King George VI’s passing and was at an Entebbe Airport restaurant for approximately three hours and three minutes, where she got both a soft drink and a national park named after her! Most importantly to the British, this latest park twinned with Queen Elizabeth Country Park in England. 


Second, and this is worth stating:


I give this brief context deliberately. I intend to make this fact explicit: the concept of national parks and game reserves is situated within a British colonial imaginary and continues to be an obsession of many white people, British and otherwise; sometimes initially tourists and later conservationists, other times not. I need to be clear here: conserving the environment and maintaining relations with the wild and wildlife is not a foreign concept. Kenyans, like most other African peoples, have always lived with wildlife and continue to. Nonetheless, here is the plot: White person visits Kenya, falls in love with ‘Africa’, goes back home, sells everything, packs whatever is left and permanently moves to their preferred destination, i.e., Kenya. While a handful of these people might have some training in Zoology, Biology, Ecology, or any of a few other academic disciplines that might be remotely concerned with wildlife, a majority of these are often trained in other professions as teachers, accountants, military men (almost always men), businesspersons, clerks, and designers, etc. These newly-minted-upon-arrival conservationists, John Mbaria and Mordecai Ogada continue to remind us, are a part of Kenya’s colonial legacy; a legacy around which conservation efforts in Kenya are not only founded but also reproduced and advanced.


The wildlife conservation narrative in Kenya, as well as much of Africa, is thoroughly intertwined with colonialism, virulent racism, deliberate exclusion of the natives, veiled bribery, unsurpassed deceit, a conservation cult subscribed to by huge numbers of people in the West, and severe exploitation of the same wilderness conservationists have constantly claimed they are out to preserve.


From Audre Lorde, I learn to start with examples: 


  1. In June 2002, Frodo, a male chimpanzee in Tanzania’s Gombe Stream National Park, the site of jane Goodall’s world-famous research, killed a child. Spokespeople for the Jane Goodall Institute (JGI) through the US-based president, described Frodo’s behaviour as ‘natural’. He said, “Our hearts go out to the family, but this is a natural part of chimpanzee behaviour. Frodo’s actions were not inconsistent with those of other alpha males”. When asked whether action could be taken against Frodo to ensure that lives of the people living within and around the park were not endangered, JGI Executive Director replied from Britain, “The Tanzanian authorities have decided not to punish Frodo for behaving like a chimp in his own territory. The child’s family have said that they do not blame Frodo…it appears that all concerned have been very understanding.”


Please note: The family did not blame Frodo but instead blamed the mother of the child for not being careful enough. That is to say: She failed her child, her family, the conservationists, the government, and the chimpanzees. She had failed morally as a mother; she was a bad mother.


  1. Between 2017 and 2021, Italian-Kenyan conservationist and owner of 100,000 acred Laikipia Nature Conservancy, Kuki Gallmann has been shot twice with the August 14, 2021 shooting through the door of her car putting her in hospital for over 3 months. Two suspects were killed by security agents after the 2017 attack on Gallmann—the famous author of I dreamt of Africa. Speaking on behalf of Laikipia Farmers’ Association, Martin Evans said, “For months, these criminals [local Samburu herders] have been rampaging around with their illegal weapons; destroying lives and livelihoods…” Evans called the attack on Gallmann, “a vicious assault against an elderly and defenseless woman.


Gallmann was 78 years-old at the time and had ONLY 25 employees on her “farm”.


  1. Ol Pejeta Conservancy: “From a working cattle ranch in colonial Kenya to a trailblazer of conservation innovation - the story of Ol Pejeta is as enchanting as it is inspirational. Today, Ol Pejeta is the largest black rhino sanctuary in East Africa, and home to two of the world’s last remaining northern white rhinos. It is the only place in Kenya to see chimpanzees, in a sanctuary established to rehabilitate animals rescued from the black market. […] In 2004, the ranch was purchased by the U.K.-based conservation organisation, Fauna &Flora International (FFI), with the financial backing of the Arcus Foundation, a private international philanthropic organisation. The land purchase was wholly funded by a $15 million donation from the Arcus Foundation, which worked in tandem with FFI and the Lewa Wildlife Conservancy to secure the 90,000 acres of open Savannah grassland and convert it to a national land trust.”


Kenya’s Laikipia region has some of the largest white-owned conservancies, ranches and farms and as such has a long history of violence and exclusion. These conservancies, including the (in)famous Ol Pejeta (including Lewa Conservancy); among others, are all located in what was designated by the Queen of England as “Crown Land” colonial-era farms or wildlife sanctuaries. 


I choose to not indulge that history here. 


  1. The contest


This is the story of an email thread; part drama; part violence.


On a Wednesday evening, an email arrives in my inbox. It is a message from one of my concerned neighbours about what she calls “Dogs Hunting in the Park” (email subject). I am sitting at an apartment in Amsterdam, it is 4:03 PM Amsterdam time, and 5:03 PM in Kenya. 


Wednesday, September 20, 2017 at 5:03 PM


Dear Friends,


We have been seeing 2 sets of 3 dogs consistently hunting in the Park around us.  They look well fed and not shenzis.  I wanted to ask if you know who they belong to as KWS [Kenya Wildlife Service] will shoot them if this goes on [original emphasis] and I would like to alert people when they are out.


The first pack is 3 dogs of beige/rust color (like the color of an eland’s back.  They look like they are from the same litter and full grown but not old.  They walk/run with their tails up.  The second pack is 3 dogs, again in excellent condition.  This pack has 2 black dogs and 1 beige dog.  We have seen them coming in both directions around us, from […] direction and returning to the […] direction.


If you have any idea who they belong to, please let me and them know and let me know how to contact them.


Thanks for your help.




This is a typical email by my neighbourhood standards. It is about dogs straying and letting neighbours know, first because dogs could be attacked and killed by big cats or, as the initial email claims, dogs could be ‘hunting’ wildlife. My initial reaction is to make sure that this pack of dogs does not include mine so I need to respond. But before I do, people are already writing, mostly with similar concerns about their dogs because either, like me, they are away or have entrusted someone else with their dogs’ care, or because they have contributions to make to the conversation.


Sep 20, 2017, 5:12 PM


Dear […], 


We too have seen them on the ridge in front of us and I think they maybe […’s] ?  I have called her in the past as it worries us as well as they look like lovely dogs and as you say KWS will not hesitate to shoot them!!! [my emphasis] 






I do not respond. No one else does but the repetition about shooting is not only getting me worried but also getting annoying. Local Maasai shepherds come around with dogs quite often; I have never heard of KWS shooting them because they are not on leash or because they are close to wildlife and might be ‘hunting’. Nonetheless, an emphasis; almost a demand:


“KWS will shoot them if this goes on.”

“[…] as you say KWS will not hesitate to shoot them!!!”


Later that night, I call the person with whom I have left my dogs to almost plead with him to ensure that my dogs do not leave the compound and to make sure that they are leashed for walks. I am worried and angry about the possibility of my dogs getting killed by KWS rangers or whoever else thinks this is what should happen to “dogs hunting in the park”.


The morning after:


A response:


Sep 21, 2017, 8:58 AM


They belong to Michael the artist next to […]'s & have chased away
the resident impala herd on your place, […].
They are left to wander as they like....

There are also huge numbers of dogs at what was […] Leakey's nowadays.


And another:


Sep 21, 2017, 9:32 AM


Shoot 'em 


Again, a repetition. An emphasis. A directive. A simple articulation, a word and a short form misunderstood as a contraction: shoot ‘em.


I continue to worry about this. A collection of phrases:


“KWS will shoot them if this goes on.”


“[…] as you say KWS will not hesitate to shoot them!!!”


“Shoot ‘em”


A concern; almost a confession from another neighbour:


Sep 21, 2017, 9:49 AM


Dear […],


I think 3 of the dogs are mine and [...’s]. 2 brown ones and 1 black one. I haven't seen 2 of them since yesterday so they are most likely the culprits. 

I'm traveling tonight so […] will deal with them. 


So sorry for the inconvenience.





While this neighbour’s email is acknowledged by the initiator of the thread and it is confirmed that the ‘hunting’ pack does not fit the description of her dogs, the latter then writes a follow-up response, thus:


Could someone give me the contact of Michael the artist.  Are his dogs the all beige group?  Is he on this list?  Thank you […] for the information.  We noticed a lack of wildlife on our land and you confirm that the dogs are a problem to us as well. 


I know the Leakey’s dogs—they belong to […]---and the mixed color group doesn’t look like them although they have bitten [husband] recently while we were walking so please look out if you see them.  They are a sweet Rottweiler, a small dog and 2 hybrid puppies who have not been trained at all. The hybrids have mixed coloring. These sometimes go into the Park but not seen recently.  […] doesn’t seem to care that they often run wild or that they bit […] and he had to go through the rabies shots since she refused to provide the vaccination certificates.





PS.  While they will be shot, they do look like they belong to someone who should be sad to lose them but who should take more responsibility.  If he doesn’t, then they will face their fate.[emphasis mine]


Again, shooting; a weaving; a demanding; a persuasion; a threat:


“KWS will shoot them if this goes on.”


I am bothered and angry. 

“[…] as you say KWS will not hesitate to shoot them!!!”

I want to respond.

“Shoot ‘em”

Surely, I must respond.


“[…] they will be shot … they will face their fate.”






spe·​cies·​ism ˈspē-shēz-ˌi-zəm  



: prejudice or discrimination based on species

especially : discrimination against animals


: the assumption of human superiority on which speciesism is based





speciesist views/thinking

speciesist noun

plural speciesists


I continue to wonder about what it would mean to kill a dog to save an impala. What makes it moral to shoot a dog on suspicions of a possible catching of a serval cat or even a lion (to extend the breadth of imagination)? I respond:


Sep 21, 2017, 12:06 PM


Dear […], […] and all, 


Perhaps I should introduce myself. I'm Neo and I recently moved into […]'s ([…] Leakey property, if you prefer). I live right next to […] and I need to confirm that although […] has 4 dogs, two of us on the same property do have dogs too ([…] and I).  I have been away for the last two months and I have received reports about our dogs having been spotted by […] on the stretch between us and […], a few times but accompanied nevertheless.  I do not have the details of why and how this is happening and I've spoken to the person under whom I left my dogs (a brown boy and a sable/grayish girl) to make sure that doesn't happen.  


I will try to keep a close watch remotely and ensure that they stay within the compound. Please do not shoot my dogs (this is almost a plea), if shooting must happen wait till I'm back and shoot me, not the poor little things for which I should be responsible. 


Do have a great day and sorry for the inconvenience this has caused you all. 


Best wishes, 




“KWS will shoot them if this goes on.”


“[…] as you say KWS will not hesitate to shoot them!!!”


“Shoot ‘em”


“[…] they will be shot … they will face their fate.”


“Please do not shoot my dogs.”


“[…] if shooting must happen […] shoot me.”


A half an hour later, a response:


Sep 21, 2017, 12:40 PM


Thanks Neo for the information.  These 2 dogs don’t fit the description of the 2 packs of dogs.


I am writing so that someone’s pets don’t get shot as the packs look like well-fed and cared for dogs most likely because they belong to someone.


I hope that you will ensure that your dogs don’t roam alone and they will be safe.


Thanks for replying.


“KWS will shoot them if this goes on.”


“[…] as you say KWS will not hesitate to shoot them!!!”


“Shoot ‘em”


“[…] they will be shot … they will face their fate.”


“Please do not shoot my dogs.”


“[…] if shooting must happen […] shoot me.”


“I am writing so that someone’s pets don’t get shot…”


I am so obsessed with counting the number of times the word ‘shoot/ing’ is mentioned that I miss a text message from my immediate neighbour whom, in the previous email, has been accused of not caring for her dogs. My neighbour, with whom I do not necessarily have good relations, messages me to go back to the email thread because she is about to respond. This drama is a welcome disruption and a good excuse to procrastinate, I think to myself. Perhaps there is something to be said about the gossipy nature of this exchange but still, “shoot ‘em”. I find nothing.


Then, after what feels like many days later:


Oct 5, 2017, 8:41 PM




I'm guessing this statement was intended to provoke a response


[…] doesn’t seem to care that they often run wild or that they bit [husband] and he had to go through the rabies shots since she refused to provide the vaccination certificates. [original emphasis]


To suggest that I don't care about my dogs or that […] was bitten is untrue and I'm sorry you feel that way.  I don't have any gripe with you. Nor do my dogs. To put the record straight perhaps I can jog your memory. […] was bitten over a year ago - not recently.


All of my dogs are vaccinated and are always up to date. I told you this at the time. If you recall I was out of the country and you contacted me by email. I asked you to call Dr. [vet] as he is the one who could verify that he had vaccinated my dogs. I don't recall if you called him or not. Anyway, if you or […] are still upset and want me to pay for the rabies jab, just let me know. Maybe you forgot that I apologised at the time, but if you need to hear it again, then I am sorry, Again. Really really sorry.  I honestly hope that […] is ok - it was a very young puppy so I hope he didn't cause serious injury. And, for your information and to reassure you, he's no longer here, hasn't been for over a year, so you don't need to worry or warn people.   


Secondly, I don't think my dogs are going into the park but just in case, I will check and make sure that they are not. 


Regards to you all and apologies for any distress that my dogs are causing (real or imagined).  


After a long back-and-forth between the two neighbours about the alleged biting, finally the local veterinarian joins in, ensuring that he refers everyone by their Doctorate titles:


Oct 10, 2017, 10:49 AM


Dear Dr. […]

Since am in the group please allow me to clarify on behalf of Dr. […] that […] VETCLINIC has for the last 4 yrs attended to her dogs. They are up to date DHLP Rabies vaccination wise. Dr. […] being busy and most of the time out of the country has always gave us a buzz whenever one of her fur-babies is unwell or needs a check up. Her pets annual vaccinations are up to date. Dr. […] truly cares and loves her pets. […] who handles her pets is the alpha of the pack, he is passionate and gives those dogs great support like his own children. We are always in touch unless he is on leave.


This first paragraph is followed by paragraphs of the usual veterinarian advice about care for pets, to which the initiator of the thread responds in detail:


Oct 10, 2017, 11:34 AM


Dear Dr. […],

Thank you for this. Kenyans need to be educated on pet care. I think you are already speaking to the converted as most people on this mailing list already take excellent care of their pets.  (The same can't be said for those poor dogs wandering around the […] Road end of […] Road. It would be great to do something to help them at that end.) However, my initial post on dogs hunting in the Park was because I thought that by the dogs' appearance, they were someone's pets and I didn't want them killed by KWS. Since the alert, several people have commented that their dogs got loose and they will take extra care. This is great. Most people in the area love their pets. 

As for what caused the attack, I've studied animal behavior for 45 years and one of my students wrote a best-selling book about dogs so I am aware of the do's and don'ts.  The attack was without provocation. We had passed the dogs in the same manner many times before. Unless I see some change in their behavior, I still recommend that people passing at 5pm be cautious because I later witnessed an unprovoked attack on some young teens at the end of the driveway (they were on […] Road). Fortunately, no one got hurt.

We are acquainted with the old mzee over many years and are on good terms with him.   However, he does little to keep the dogs under control when he walks them. He actually laughed when […] was bitten, not a good sign. Both attacks that I witnessed were unprovoked so the question what caused the attacks remains open. The behavior of those targeted didn't elicit the attack. It didn't look like rough play. There is an explanation but it is not obvious. An owner may love their pets but the pets can still misbehave. 

Our dogs are trained, say within our fence, never go out on their own and are under control when they are out. I assume most dog owners follow the same routine.  Despite that, we often see dogs on the loose when we walk every afternoon.  My hope was that people make certain their loved pets don't roam as it could be dangerous for them. Of course it is instinctive for dogs to "hunt" but we live next to a Protected Area and dogs are not permitted to hunt wildlife here. That is why KWS shoots stray dogs found hunting wildlife.  We have trained our dogs not to chase the wildlife on our land.  It is hard work but it can be done, as you know.


In between the exchanges about pet training, people laughing at others being attacked by dogs, others defending their love for their pets and yet others demonstrating their extensive knowledge on animals (wildlife and pets alike), another neighbour writes:


Oct 10, 2017, 7:53 PM


This  >>>>>>> Kenyans need to be educated on pet care.  I think you are already speaking to the converted…. the converted<<< This statement, is not only condescending but offensive and repulsive and right now am not feeling particularly open to discussions and neighbourly.


Carry on. 


[original emphasis]


A response from another neighbour:


Oct 10, 2017, 8:42 PM


Well for what it is worth, the late Mzee […] set up […] Sanctuary as a WILDLIFE sanctuary, so dogs don't really fit in...

What started as a concern for someone’s lost dogs spirals into an exchange of words between what is clearly white vs black neighbours. I continue to be angry. I want to respond. I must respond. I respond:


Dear […] and all, 


This conversation could happen differently but it's not. 


I find it deeply offensive that you say Kenyans (read: black Kenyans) need to be educated on how to  take care of pets (and I guess, by extension wildlife).  I speak here as someone who has pretty well-behaved dogs and who has grown up with both pets and wildlife (like many other black Kenyans who grew up outside cities).  


If, as […] says, this Sanctuary was meant only for wildlife, perhaps we should all pack our bags and leave because we are not wildlife, even as Great Apes. 


It's the subliminal messaging that's annoying, not the issue at hand. 


Let's deal with how we solve the problem of dogs "hunting" in the park not supposedly "problem people".


Have a great day, y'all. 


Best wishes, 




This is exhausting.


I cannot hide my anger to spare you guilt, nor hurt feelings, nor answering anger; for to do so insults and trivializes all our efforts. Guilt is not a response to anger; it is a response to one’s own actions or lack of action. If it leads to change then it can be useful, since it is then no longer guilt but the beginning of knowledge. Yet all too often, guilt is just another name for impotence, for defensiveness destructive of communication; it becomes a device to protect ignorance and the continuation of things the way they are, the ultimate protection for changelessness.


In response, I receive an essay by way of email (which I quote here in its entirety):


Oct 11, 2017, 11:06 AM


Dear Neo,


The problem is in your head and not in my intent. Some white people use dogs as guards only and lock them up and treat them badly. Most of the people who now live in this area … are black Kenyans and so they are included in my discussion of people who treat their pets well. It is about class and culture, not about color.  Have a look at the recent article in the paper about how middle class (black) Kenyans are opting for “pets”. This has happened over the world and over the last 1000 years in different cultures at different times. The English were known for their horrid treatment of animals until the last few hundred years (read Ritvo, The animal estate).


So, on the other topic. Yes there is a cultural legacy in this area, one that […] supported in his will which left the 300 acres for wildlife and not for development. We have lived here for 33 years when there was only […], […] and less than 3 other houses. People came because of the scenery and the wildlife.  Recently, people purchased because it was close to Nairobi and relatively cheap land compared to town. Hence walls, fences and conflict with wildlife. Therefore there is no longer a common sense of the area although everyone has benefited from the value added to their land and houses from its location and from wildlife.  Many houses go up 3 floors just to get a view of the Park. What people do on their own property is their business although it would be wonderful if we could share a concern for the wildlife at our doorstep.  But what they and their pets do in the Park, on […] Sanctuary and on our land (which is a haven for wildlife from the park), puts wildlife at the fore.  Human/wildlife conflict, a growing concern all over Kenya, is always a “people” problem as the animals, whether pets or wildlife, only do what they know to do without consciousness of it. It is humans who should be aware that we have taken “their” land without “their” permission. There are many reasons to conserve wildlife particularly living on the edge of a National Park.


We have tried to build a community as the number of houses have increased. This is mostly a failure as evidenced by the struggle to keep the barrier financially solvent, because newcomers don’t want/have a sense of community and are happy to benefit from good security or nice view without taking any responsibility.  I would be delighted if you stepped up to help build this community as I am tired of the struggle after so many decades.




This is exhausting. I am tired. I can no longer respond. I am still angry.


  1. The con


I love lists. Here is a list of some preliminary thoughts, a provocation:


  1. Conservation. The Merriam-Webster defines as: a careful preservation and protection of something. To conserve is to prevent exploitation, destruction or neglect.
  2. To preserve: One has to manufacture the danger of extinction or damage. Whether real or imagined, loss must be exaggerated. 
  3. Conservation is the remaining white colonial frontier in Kenya. It is where new cartographers erect new boundaries and/or re-establish old ones on god’s behalf--- nature’s deputies.
  4. Conservation is reliant on the creation of binaries but also paradoxically the image of a universal family of humankind at once shared but hierarchical--- with exclusionary zones for the degenerates: the bestial native at once baboon and at the same time a threat to the baboon.
  5. Conservation is also not only about the categories of the human but a more concrete distinction between animal and human and further along more sub-categories under the animal: domestic vs wild; endangered vs safe; superior (rhino) vs inferior (dikdik).
  6. Conservation efforts in Kenya, and most of Africa, are racialized and part of a capitalist enterprise from which white people can earn a livelihood or secure a retirement plan after ‘life at home’ becomes unattainable or uninteresting.
  7. By considering itself a science rather than as a discipline of the humanities, conservation in Kenya and across the world, naturalizes not just itself but also inherently actively participates in the logics of Social Darwinism as its justification for itself.
  8. To be black and Kenyan in proximity to what is considered ‘nature reserves’ or parks is to be a threat (poacher or hunter; trespasser; intruder; destruction). A threat that refuses to acknowledge the fact that conservation has never been necessary to us. Nature and the human are only separate in the colonial imagination and its obsession with borders and surveillance.
  9. The distinct categories created by colonial language and its adoption of ‘the natural’ into territory denaturalizes that which cannot be immediately exploited under capitalism---people are not natural; the dog is not natural; the cow is not natural. The wild is natural, the domestic is not.
  10. Conservation logic is a colonial obsession that continues to reproduce violence. There is historical continuity in its ‘discovery’; evictions; legislation; militarization; safari solidarities; occupation with cartography; surveillance and the capitalist nature of private property.


I make these broad statements as an invitation to think through not only the drama of my neighbourhood but to also take seriously the work of political anger in this messy place (Mupotsa, 2008).



1.  Lorde, Audre. “The uses of anger”. Women’s Studies Quarterly. (1981).

2.  Mupotsa, Danai S., and Lennon Mhishi. "This little rage of poetry/researching gender and sexuality." Feminist Africa 11 (2008): 97-108.

3.  Mbaria John & Mordecai Ogada. The Big conservation Lie: The Untold Story of Wildlife Conservation in Kenya. Lens & Lens Publishing. 2017


5.  A term used by most White people in Kenya [mzungus] to refer to what is seen as Kenya’s local dog breed. In other circles, this dog breed is either known as a Kenyan Shepherd (KSD) or Indigenous Breed. Jokingly, most other Kenyans might call this dog a mũtina or Bosco. Shenzi is Kiswahili for stupid.

6.  I know the person being referred to as Michael here but his name is not Michael, not even close.

7.  I deliberately leave this name here. A quick Google search will explain why this name matters in this context.

8.  I address by name all the neighbours proposing a shooting of dogs.

9.  I insist on keeping the name Leakey here, and elsewhere, not only for the historical significance of the Leakey family in Kenya but also because in spite of the property’s ownership having been bought and transferred to a black Kenyan family, most of the older neighbours insist on referring to the property as Leakey’s. I want to insist on the political value of pettiness but not here.

10.  Mzee is Kiswahili for an elderly person. It is, in fact, quite redundant to say old mzee!

11.  Lorde (1981)

12.  Thinking with Anne McClintock’s Imperial Leather work here.