Belindah Okello

Belindah Okello is a PhD candidate at the African Studies Centre Leiden. Her study area is African History, with a specific emphasis on Kenya’s labour history.

Belindah’s Master research focused on the development of African education in the colonial period, and it was during this study that she came to understand the complex interactions of African and British interests in the development of the British colonial enterprise. Building upon this knowledge, her current study focuses on labour migration and its role in the expansion of the British empire in East Africa and particularly in Kenya. This study is important in understanding migration and its effect on African urban spaces which are witnessing tremendous growth; growths that are often juxtaposed against troubled histories and strenuous experiences of colonialism and later, nation building.  Her study articulates the processes of migration (for the colonialists) as a system of subjugation, control and accumulation; and migration (for Africans) as embodying conquest, and as forms of protests to register freedoms in repressed colonial spaces.