Haiti Culture

in History

Haitian culture is one of the appealing cultures in the world. It is a blend of traditional western, Latin American, and spiced up with African culture. The name Haiti is used to refer to "mountainous country" and is derived from Taino Indians who were living in this island before Europeans established their authority. The name was adopted after independence in 1804 by military generals who had won the independence and majority of who were formers slaves. A recent population survey showed that about 95 percent were of African descent while the remaining 5 percent were mullato and whites. This means that Haitian culture has transcended racial influence moving from predominantly Indian culture before colonization to French during colonization, and currently African after colonization.

The predominant language is Creole. This language has developed from a blend of African, French, and indigenous Indians language. Although majority of Haitians speak Creole, French is used as the official language. Haitians have a recognized national dance, Meringue (cousin to Dominican version). Although there are people who do juba or Crabienne, Creole is the most dominant form of dance in Haiti. Haitian Music is a blend of Cuban style, American Jazz, and African traditional music spiced with a French touch.

Religiously, Haitian can be considered as a blend of different religions. The country has strong followers of Catholic Church but at the same traditional languages like Voodoo are also practices. Voodoo, a traditional African religion, has influence on most people. Voodoo spirit is believed to play critical role in curing diseases, stress, and mental stress, among Haitians. About 80% of Haitians are Catholics while 20% are Protestants.

Among Haitians, family members, both immediate and extended, have strong ties and it is quite common for different individuals to experience direct effects on their life. Haitians value marriage and other practices that are associated to families. The family is considered a major player in individual's milestone of life including baptism, birthday parties, and others. Haitians are known to be socially bound together and very generous. Visitors are treated well and they are not expected to leave the home empty handed.

The predominant language is Creole. This language has developed from a blend of African, French, and indigenous Indians language. Although majority of Haitians speak Creole, French is used as the official language. Haitians have a recognized national dance, Meringue (cousin to Dominican version). Although there are people who do juba or Crabienne, Creole is the most dominant form of dance in Haiti. Haitian Music is a blend of Cuban style, American Jazz, and African traditional music spiced with a French touch.

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This article was published on 2012/03/22
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