Is the family a principle of the nation in the Kenyan constitution if examined from an Aristotelian perspective?
The current constitution (2010 Chapter) defines family as a natural and fundamental unit of society and the necessary basis of social order. The Marriage Act (2014), Matrimonial Property Act (2013), the Children Act (2002) and the Sessional Paper on National Values (2012) provide principles of the family in relation to marriage, matrimonial property, children and how national values emerge from the family. Despite having various studies on the family, there have been few scholarly inquiries on how to assess the core principles of the family from a sound theoretical analysis. The study investigates Aristotle’s principles on the family as illustrated in his book Politics and examine other foundational principles related to the family from his other books – Nichomachean Ethics and Metaphysics. The study’s objective is to demonstrate how the principles expressed in the different family governing laws of Kenya are informed or not by the principles of the family as illustrated by Aristotle in his book Politics. This study uses the qualitative method, involving desktop and documentary analysis. The findings can inform and establish sound principles for Kenya’s Family Policies and Laws and other African countries’ laws and policies as the results reveal sound and Aristotelian principles based on a very logical theoretical framework of the four causes that has been utilized in philosophy to affirm principles about things. The three causes utilized in the study include material, formal and final causes. The fourth case, the efficient cause was not interrogated due to the tendency of research moving towards the philosophy of God.