Some problems of capital and class in Kenya
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In this paper the authors raise some critical issues related to income distribution and class formation in Kenya. The first section focusses attention on the notion of a salariat and the phenomenon of straddling between permanent employment and private accumulation within private enterprise, a feature of colonial and post-colonial state formation in Kenya. The second section deals with a category of workers who are supposed to be privileged because of the relatively high wages received in comparison to other groups of workers. It is shown here that historical changes in the relations of production, as well as the application of wage guidelines and Industrial Court wage awards, have affected this category of workers, eliminating the privilege which they were supposed to enjoy. Two case studies are given in this context - that of estate agricultural supervisors and bank workers. In the third section, the authors focus on household production of commodities (coffee, tea and milk) in Nyeri and Murang'a in Central Province. The intention here is to explore the implications of both domestic and international capital in household production as they affect the relations of production and distribution in smallholding agriculture. The intention in focussing on these issues is not to make conclusive statements, but rather to draw the attention of researchers to the need for further research in these areas.