Kenya Literature Bureau

The Kenya Literature Bureau (KLB) is a publishing house and state corporation in Kenya founded in 1947. It is located in South-C off Popo Road in Nairobi.

Kenya Literature Bureau
FormerlyEast African Literature Bureau
TypeState owned corporation
IndustryPublishing house
Founded1947; 76 years ago (1947)
FounderBritish High Commission

History edit

The Kenya Literature Bureau was initially established by the "East Africa governments (Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda)"[1] in 1947 as the East African Literature Bureau as an "offshoot" of the missionary-owned Ndia Kuu Press in order to publish books for the general public in Kiswahili, East African vernacular languages and English.[2][3] The Bureau's first director was Charles Granston Richards, who held that post for fifteen years.[4][5]

The regional status continued after independence with the establishment of the East African Community (EAC). In the early 1970s the Bureau published many pioneering anthologies of English-language poetry from East Africa:

It is significant of East African writers' indifference to political boundaries that such anthologies were all compiled, without a single exception, on an inter-territorial basis, with Kenya and Uganda supplying the greater part of the material. They [were] often multiracial as well, incorporating contributions by European and Asian writers.[6]

However, in 1977, the EAC collapsed and the reins of the bureau were transferred to the Kenyan Ministry of Education thereby making it a department under that ministry. In 1980, the KLB Act was passed by the Kenyan Parliament making it a state corporation—a status it holds to this day.[3]

Book series edit

  • Early Travellers in East Africa[7]

References edit

  1. ^ Henry Chakava, "Private enterprise publishing in Kenya: A long struggle for emancipation", in: The Cottage by the Highway and Other Essays on Publishing: 25 Years of Logos, Brill, 2015, p. 32. Retrieved 10 May 2022
  2. ^ Stanley Gazemba, African Publishing Minefields and the Woes of the African Writer, Retrieved 10 May 2022.
  3. ^ a b "The Kenya Literature Bureau Bill, 13th May 1980". Kenya National Assembly Official Record (Hansard). Vol. LII. Republic of Kenya. 1980. pp. 811–14. Retrieved 18 November 2012.
  4. ^ Keith Smith and Charles Richards, "Interview", The African Book Publishing Record, print: Volume 2 Issue 3, Walter de Gruyter, 1976; online: De Gruyter Saur, November 12, 2009. Retrieved 10 May 2010.
  5. ^ Papers of Charles Granston Richards, Retrieved 28 March 2020.
  6. ^ Albert S. Gérard (1986). European-language Writing in Sub-Saharan Africa. John Benjamins Publishing. p. 913. ISBN 978-963-05-3834-3. Retrieved 18 November 2012.
  7. ^ Early Travellers in East Africa (East African Literature Bureau; Kenya Literature Bureau) - Book Series List, Retrieved 28 March 2020.

Further reading edit

  • Shiraz Durrani, Never Be Silent: Publishing and Imperialism 1884-1963, Nairobi: Vita Books, 2006.

External links edit