Jomo Kenyatta Quotes
11 Sourced Quotes
Originally, the Africans had the land and the English had the Bible. Then the missionaries came to Africa and got the Africans to close their eyes and fold their hands and pray. And when they opened their eyes, the English had the land and the Africans had the Bible.
Variant (sometimes attributed to Desmond Tutu): When the European missionaries came, the Africans had the land and the Europeans had the Bible. The Europeans asked the Africans to close their eyes in prayer. When they said amen and opened their eyes, the Europeans had the land and the Africans had the Bible.
Nearly a quarter of a century has passed since this short book was first published. So much has happened in this time. In 1942, the book involved presentation that I described as 'history shading into legend'. Today, we in Kenya are making our own history, as an independent Republic. In the dark years of the war, when this work was written, social studies might have seemed absurdly academic, were it not for the living faith of a Christian society. A generation later, we find a new perspective, a greater and more universal enlightenment, brought about by swifter communications and mass media which probe into and make familiar all the social patterns of our human family.
The African is conditioned, by the cultural and social institutions of centuries, to a freedom of which Europe has little conception, and it is not in his nature to accept serfdom forever. He realizes that he must fight unceasingly for his own complete emancipation; for without this he is doomed to remain the prey of rival imperialisms.
Where there has been racial hatred, it must be ended. Where there has been tribal animosity, it will be finished. Let us not dwell upon the bitterness of the past. I would rather look to the future, to the good new Kenya, not to the bad old days. If we can create this sense of national direction and identity, we shall have gone a long way to solving our economic problems.