The Pokot of western Kenya is a tribe of the Kalenjin group belonging to Southern Para-Nilotes, whose territory, lying across the Great Rift Valley, shows wide varieties of natural environment. The author mainly investigated Upland Pokot who inhabit the altitudinal zone of approximately 2000-2500m in the eastern slope of Cherangani Hills (3500m at the highest), from the viewpoint of ecological anthropology for five months in 1978. Lower zone of the slope (ca. 2000-1000m at altitude) constitutes the northern end of Elgeyo Escarpment, eastward of which expands into the plain of dry bush where Pastoral Pokot inhabit. Hill-side Pokot occupy the foot fringe of the escarpment, where they carry on irrigation forming. The habitat of Upland Pokot above the escarpment can be included in the montane forest zone in original flora. Homesteads of families and their fields lie scattered on the slope, and they subsist mainly on agricultural products, however, they also herd livestock on a small scale in their habitat zone except fenced fields. At each small village alongside the road running at the foot of the escarpment, market is held once or twice a week, where the dwellers of Upland, Hill-side and Plain gather with their products, barter them each other, and trade with merchants and wageworkers coming from outside. In this paper, the author describes and analizes the natural environment of Upland Pokot, their ways and means of subsistence, some aspects of social life reflected on the manner of naming and community organization, and mutral relations among them. Further, their relationship will Hill-side and Plain Pokot is analized through the situation of intermarriage and market exchange. Then, it is discussed how the subsistence style of each habitat group is regulated by and adapted to the natural environment, and how social and economic factors, on the other hand, have been related to the divergence of subsistence styles among the Pokot.
The Rendille, numbering some 20, 000 persons, occupy 50, 000km2 in the southern part of Marsabit District in northern Kenya. They are a nomadic pastoral people who subsist almost exclusively on the products of their herds of camels, goats and sheep. A few cattle and donkeys are kept as subsidiary livestock. They do not practise clutivation and only marginally involved in the external economy. Among livestock products such as milk, meat and blood, milk constitutes the most principal part of the Rendille diet. The Rendille classify fresh milk according to both the types of milking animals and their lactation stage and also milk according to both the degree of fermentation and various types of milk products. Milk is treated by two methods. One is indirect fumigation of milk; the Rendille fumigate the inside of milk container with wood-smoke and then pour milk into the container. Fumigation of milk helps not only to heighten the durability of milk container and to add flavor to the milk, but also to restrain a rapid fermentation of milk. These fumigated milk, fresh or sour milk, contributes to the Rendille daily. The other is churning process; the milk is poured into a milk container which is not fumigated and left as it is until it coagulates and then churned. By this churning process, various types of milk products, such as curd, whey, butter-milk, butter and butter-oil, are removed from whole-milk. The Rendille do not use animals' urine as coagulant or antiseptic, nor do they make cheese as the final products by churning process. Even the butter-oil is limited in production because it is mainly from cattle or sheep milk. Thus it is concluded that, in comparison with their neighboring pastoralists, the churning process of the Rendille is less refined in terms of the utility and repertory of milk products and the churning technology. This is inconsistent with the facts that the Rendille elaborate the technology of livestock rearing more than their neighboring pastoralists and that they subsist almost exclusively on the livestock products. This inconsistency results from two factors. The first is that camel milk is less suitable for churning process than cattle, sheep and goats in biochemical reasons. The second is that it is difficult for the Rendille to obtain the surplus milk appropriated to churning process in the reason of ecological characteristics of camels and socio-economical reasons characteristic to the Rendille subsistence.
The Turkana are pastoralists living in the arid country of north-western Kenya. They lead a highly nomadic life depending on five kinds of livestock, namely, cattle, camels, goats, sheep and donkeys. Their pastoral life must be understood as a symbiotic system of man and livestock. The purpose of this study is to describe and analyse the relationship between the groups of man and stock animals which are the elements of this system. In their pastoral system, we must distinguish two kinds of human groups—“the stock owning group” and “the nomadic unit group”. Socially, the stock owning group functions as the basic unit, and is usually a polygynous extended family composed of a father, his wives and childen including married sons. Certain important aspects of the management of the stock belonging to this group are concentrated to the father, the head of the family. He is the symbol of the independence and integration of the stock owning group. Each stock owning group owns all five kinds of stock, but these are not kept in one camp. The territory of the Turkana shows wide variation with regard to the amount of the rainfall and the vegetation types. And each stock species also shows considerable variation in the adaptability to the lack of water and selectivity to the food plants. It is impossible to keep all of them together in one place. They must be divided into at least two camps according mainly to the species. As a necessity, the members of a stock owning group must break up into sub-groups and live in separate camps. To keep up their subsistence depending on stock, many kinds of work are needed, which are alloted to the different classes of age and sex. Especially, three types of work are fundamental in each camp; that is, supervision of the nomadic movement of the camp by adult men, various domestic works by women, and day-trip stock herding by young boys and girls. Generally, one stock owning group has not sufficient members to fulfill all of these necessary works by itself. A camp, its members comprising what I call the nomadic unit group, is usually organized by the association of two or three sub-groups from the different stock owning group. This association is indispensable to the management of livestock and is maintained stably without changing partners.
It is unfortunately true that many people in Tanzania are still suffering from malnutrition despite of the vast expenditure of time, money and effort in attempts to improve the nutritional status. Today, to eradicate malnutrition is, therefore, recognized as one of major aims to be urgently achieved in the national development plan in Tanzania. Thus it could be worthwhile to review the nutritional status and its influential factors in Tanzania in order to understand the entire problem correctly. Various clinical and dietary survey data clearly show that the nutritional status of Tanzanian people is generally considerably low as compared to that of those in developed countries and that the incidence of various types of malnutrition is high in the country. Among different nutritional disorders existing in Tanzania, Protein-Calorie Malnutrition (PCM) appears to be the most important disorder because of its wide distribution, its vulnerable group which is mainly children who are the future capital, and its complexity of causation. Influential factors on nutrition discussed in this paper are summerized as follows. From the demographic point of view, as commonly seen in developing countries, the rapid increase of population is a considerable problem especially in relation to the demand and supply of food. High dependency ratio in the population undoubtedly affects the nutritional status particularly of children under five years and, pregnant and lactating women owing to their low social status. With regard to dietary factors, it is noticed that Tanzanian diet is not necessarily less nutritive but insufficient in amount. It is, therefore, thought that the nutritional status could be substantially improved by simply increasing the daily food intake of individuals. The dietary improvement not only in quantity but also in quality, is, however, certainly desirable to improve the nutritional status particularly for those whose staple foods are banana and starchy roots. In connection with the population increase, the per capita food production of Tanzania tends to decline in recent years despite of the increase of gross food production. Taking this fact and population increase into consideration, it is obvious that paying more effort to increase the yield per unit area under cultivation of food crops is inevitable in the long run. In addition to raising the food production, the proper conservation of food currently produced is considered to be of great help to increase the amount of food available resulting better nutritional status. Concerning the food production, it should be added that the land tenure system of Tanzania which enable people to obtain farming land readily is acting an important role to increase the food availability of individuals. From the socio-economical point of view, though there is not a remarkable gap between the rich and the poor, the presence of unequal intra-family distribution of income tends to create the malnourishment of dependent group in a family. It is also noticed that with economic development people do not always improve their nutrition. Food habit based on long established cultural patterns is often limiting the food availability of a certain group of the population in Tanzania. As a matter of fact, that socio-economic factors, particularly poverty and ignorance as primary causes of malnutrition, underlie most other causal factors makes the improvement of nutritional status difficult. In view of environmental factors, it is observed that inadequate water supply in quality and quantity is highly related to lowering the nutritional status. The availability of water in Tanzania is actually one of the most important factors to limit agricultural production as well as human life. It is noticed that as a result of “villagisation”, the social environment in rural area has been considerably improved particularly in terms of the access to medical and educational facilities. The