The Pokot People

Topics: Nilotic languages, Eastern Sudanic languages, Nilo-Saharan languages Pages: 3 (863 words) Published: May 10, 2011
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The Pokot people are an indigenous tribe that lives in the West Pokot and Baringo Districts of Kenya and in eastern Karamoja in Uganda. Their main language is Pökoot and its a language of the Southern Nilotic language family ``The Nilotic languages are a group of Eastern Sudanic languages spoken across a wide area between southern Sudan and Tanzania by the Nilotic peoples, particularly associated with cattle-herding.``(Wikipedia 2011, 1). Based on areal and cultural differences, the Pokot tribe is divided into two groups the Hill Pökoot and the Plains Pokot. The Hill Pökoot lives in the rainy highlands in the west and in the central south area and they are both farmers and pastoralists. The Plains Pokot lives in the dry and infertile plains, herding cows, goats and sheep.  Halfway through the nineteenth century, they seem to have expanded their territory rapidly into the lowlands of the Kenyan Rift Valley due to wars between the Marakwet tribe. In this project, I am going to learn the settlements, economic activities and the social system on this tribe that will help me to analyze the cultural ecology of a traditional African culture. In addition, it will contribute to develop my observational skills as well as my research skills of classification and to understand why there exists economic and cultural diversity in the world.

The Pokot tribe are quite proud of their culture and are conservatives to hold on to it in the future generations. Generally, Pokot women wear colourful necklaces and beaded headgears, brass jewellery and big loop earrings. They also use beaded skirts to distinguish the females who have been initiated from those who haven't. The men wear just a few wrap garments and cowhide capes and shirts that will keep them comfortable. Pokot warriors wear red clay on their hair, special headgears of feathers. Dances are an important aspect of their culture especially during social-cultural events such as dances...
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