Emegiro y’Abagusii ba Kenya (Taboos of Abagusii of Kenya) documents taboos of the Abagusii and the role the taboos played, and continue to play, in that society. Authors assert that the taboos regulated society in all dimensions. A person breaking a taboo would face censure and/or punishment unless s/he was cleansed.
Taboos have a substantial effect on a society’s conduct. They regulate relations and determine how society utilizes its resources, among other things. They also protect society from dangerous persons such as criminals.
Taboos demand obedience and are associated with rituals; they impose specific or restrictive behaviour, usually directed at avoiding danger, be it imminent or long-term.
As captured in this book, taboos are social constitutions for, together with cultural laws, they regulate community conduct.
Some taboos documented here may not be relevant today. However, they capture the context and hence the society of the time. They are of historical significance, many threads of which exist today.
What others say
“Aside from enumerating the taboos of Abagusii, this book underscores the importance of cultural values and the family set up which are the foundations of a civilized society.” — Prof. Sorobea Nyachieo Bogonko, Kisii University, June 2019.
“This book has valuable cultural wisdom. Read it to appreciate the culture, constitution, and heritage of Abagusii. — Mama Claire Omanga, Leader, Senior Citizen, former Mayor (Kisii Town), former Director of KTDA.
“This is an excellent piece of work. It is an appreciation of the culture and constitution of Abagusii.” — Mzee Samuel Bosire Angwenyi. Secretary of Abagusii Culture and Elders Council.
“This book is a genuine reminder of the practices of yesteryears. Whilst some of the taboos have been bypassed by time, and hence valuable for historical purposes, others remain relevant. The latter can find application in such issues as mediation and conciliation.” — Mzee John King’oina Onyiego. Chairman, Abagusii Mediators Association.