THE ACACIA CORRALS OF THE MAASAI

LOCATION | Northern Kenya and Southern Tanzania

TYPOLOGY | Desert Farming
SYSTEM | Acacia Corrals
PEOPLE | Maasai

The desert rain is a magnet that moves millions. The Maasai are a semi-nomadic tribe known for their traditional blood red wraps and energetic dancing style, living on the border of Northern Kenya and Southern Tanzania. The Maasai believe that rain is driven by spirits who show their intentions through signs in the landscape, like rainfall patterns and the cycles of the seasons. These spiritual signs direct every aspect of life from the timing of seasonal migrations, to the location of markets and even marriages. In following their Gods and the rain, the migration of the Maasai has developed a unique pastoral system of mobile fencing structures and settlements composed of various sacred spaces. This system provides another example of temporary, moveable and adaptative small-scale infrastructures that abound within the cultures of this book. These small-scale interventions when replicated enmass, create large-scale systems that have incredible influences on their environments. It also indicates the use of migration as an important ecological operation underpinning ecosystem resilience and vitality.

Illustrations by Brittany Roy

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© 2019. Julia Watson Studio

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