Caribbean Culture and the Way it Formed Essay

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Caribbean Culture and the Way it Formed

One of the greatest debates that exists today about the Caribbean is the condition of the socio-culture of the people. Sidney Mintz, Antonio Benitz-Rojo, and Michelle Cliff are three authors that comment on this problem in their writings. They discuss whether there is a lack of identify, unity and culture in the lives of Caribbean people. They examine a culture which was created out of the chaos of slavery, colonialism and the integration of cultures that span from Africa to India.

Exploration by the authors is taken from two different views, one by Mintz and Rojo where they are looking on the culture from outside and the other by Cliff who depicts the situation from inside. Sidney Mintz is
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Mintz and Rojo both see the effects of the Plantations and the slave labor as a positive on the region while Mintz sees the effects of the Plantations as a negative on the people of the region.

The existence of the plantations is what caused the present state of the Caribbean, "I think that the arrival and proliferation of the plantations is the most important historical phenomenon to have come about in the Caribbean, to the extent that if it had not occurred the islands of the region might today perhaps be miniature replicas-at least in demographic and ethnological terms-of the European nations that colonized them."(Rojo 39) With the need of slave labor, the European owners needed to bring in people to fill these needs. People were brought in from Africa, India and other parts of Asia, this caused the diverse integration’s of cultures that is present in the Caribbean.

Since the Caribbean was colonies of England, Spain, France and Netherlands the ruling nations of the islands were constantly changing hands. "-European conquest, the native people's disappearance or retreat, African slavery, plantation economics, Asian immigration, rigid and prolonged colonial domination-there are other obvious factor that would keep the area from being coherent."(Rojo 34) This caused the vast influence of culture on the colonies also. Only the wealthy colonists from these countries had the money to purchase and
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