A peace journalism approach to understanding the role of the media in the land disputes in Kenya



Abstract. Kenya is generally recognized as one of the most conflict prone countries in Africa, at least amongst those with a stable form of government. Kenya in recent years have been plagued by violence in the form of communal, radical islamists violence, land disputes, ethnic violence, hate speech, amongst others. The government have tried different ways of combating and mitigating this violence that has become a recurring problem in the region, however the disputes and conflicts seems to go on abated. Scholars from all over the world have studied on the role of the media in conflict management and have arrived at different conclusions – some found out that media contributes significantly to violence and can even be the cause of violence while others say the mass media can be a tool to promote peace and peace co-existence. This therefore aims to find out the how the Kenyan press reports conflict. The aim is to find out whether or not they make use of peace journalism approach to reporting on conflict. The findings of this study shows that the Kenyan press is not contributing to peace and is in fact inciting violence judging by the choice of words used in the news stories.

Keywords. Kenya, Land conflicts, Journalism, Peace journalism.

JEL. D71, D72, D74, F51.


Kenya; Land conflict; Peace journalism; Conflict resolution; Journalism.

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1453/jsas.v5i2.1698


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