Creole Culture is different than American Culture


Creoles of the Dominican Republic...
The Island founded by Christopher Columbus
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Dominican Republic




Where the New World all Begun

It's Early Mulatto Inhabitants


The Dominican Republic

Located on the Island of Hispanola,

The place where Christopher Columbus First landed in the Americas...

Is located next to the Country of Haiti ...Originally a part of the Spanish crown It was was turned over to the French after a Treaty between the two countries ...

After the successful war of independence, fought between Haiti and the French, the Island changed hands once again...In the 1820's.. The Spanish community that occupied the Western half of the Island succeeded in gaining there Independence from Haiti....It, eventually with the help of Spain became a Free and Independent State composing mostly of Mulattos, Spanish and the few remaining Taino Indian Tribes...






A Map of The Dominican republic...Click on map to enlarge


In many ways, Dominican society reflects a social system shared by many other Caribbean islands all experienced the early extermination of native peoples, followed by a repopulation by white European landowners and black African slaves.

In socioeconomic terms Creole societies share a common plantation heritage, along with the subsequent social stratification which continues to divide the population. As in most Caribbean countries, in the Dominican Republic, the possession or nonpossession of various physical attributes determines a person’s stratum, and consequently his/her access to power, wealth, and land.

As a result, even this late in Caribbean history, large segments of every island’s population remain unintegrated and share no common ideology.

The History of the Dominican Republic..... click here




Original Creole culture is consonant with slavery. During the early days, there was a constant inflow of slaves into the Caribbean. For those slaves imported to work on Caribbean sugar plantations, life was even harsher than for slaves on American cotton plantations.

Given the harder, more physical nature of sugar plantation work, Caribbean plantation owners saw no reason to purchase the less-hardy female slaves, who generally produced less work and died earlier than the males. With this sort of policy in effect, islands soon had few women and almost no black women.

Eighteenth-century statistics show most islands with upwards of 75% male populations. At times, the power of imported women proved even stronger than the power of armies, as in the surge of the French in the 16th century toward Haiti.

The French advanced their takeover of the western and of Hispaniola by sending women to the island to turn the buccaneers into farmers and family men. Likewise, the British advanced their colonization of Jamaica when Oliver Cromwell sent 1,000 Irish women to the island (involuntarily, I might add).

With this kind of male/female imbalance, what few dark women there were quickly became an acceptable alternative for white men. Throughout the history of the Caribbean, reports filter out about this activity, which caused concern in the courts of Europe.

But there were simply not enough eligible women in the Caribbean for island residents to quibble about race. Then, especially in Spanish colonies, free blacks began to make up larger and larger portions of the population. Some were former slaves who had accumulated enough capital to buy their freedom in the wills of appreciative masters. Likewise, it was considered good form for a master to free the children of his slave mistress.

As blacks and whites came to share a culture, members of this growing mulatto presence began to live a more normal life, partly because there were more and more mulatto women to go around. White men took mulatto wives because they were readily available.

Mulatto women themselves were usually open to white lovers, thinking that this would lighten their children and thus improve their lives. Black males also wanted mulatto women, to lighten the color of their own children.

Mulattos continued to rise in Caribbean society until about the late 18th century, when whites began to fear their emerging power and numbers. In many countries, including Jamaica and Haiti, whites passed strict racial laws placing limits on what mulattos could inherit and the amount of property or slaves they could own, and even banning mulattos from certain professions.

The most absurd and ridiculous of these racial laws were adopted by the French colonies, especially Haiti, which attempted to categorize people by fractions of blood, down to a dozen subclassifications.

But even British Jamaican law had its racial absurdities, defining class, privilege, and legal entitlement strictly by blood. The Dominican Republic never had strict racial laws on the French model, though its traditions remain distinctly Creole, giving credence to racial categorization in subtle and influential ways.

Throughout the Caribbean, the goal of many mulattos was to move their descendants upward through the racial social scale by making white offspring. This constant seeking by many mulatto women for white heirs sank many inheritance laws into a quagmire, because many children were born out of wedlock.

Some colonies like Cuba and Suriname had administrative boards that decided who could marry whom and under what conditions, granting or refusing marriage to interracial couples in the hope that the race would lighten as it went along.

Perhaps the most infamous of all “race whiteners” was Rafael Trujillo, who was notorious for using pancake makeup. He was just a shade too dark for his own taste and in his later years would chase away photographers when his makeup began to crack under hot lights or midday heat.

Nevertheless, despite a number of typical Caribbean characteristics, the Dominican Republic differs from most its island neighbors in several ways. For one thing, blacks do not constitute a majority in the Dominican Republic one of the few Caribbean countries in which this is true. The Dominican population is instead largely mulatto. While this fact has helped make Dominicana a unique Caribbean culture, it has also shaped racial attitudes in unfortunate ways.




See The People of the Dominican Republic...Click for Video


The first thing that Trujillo did in racial terms was turn his attention to the Haitians. For years, Haitians had gone across the border to the Dominican Republic in order to cut cane on plantations. Many stayed on and intermarried with Dominicans.

Haitians were darkening the Dominican people, or at least so Trujillo sent his soldiers to the border regions to “trap a Congo,” as he put it, instructing the soldiers to carry a sprig of parsley, which in Spanish is perejil.

Creole, the language of the Haitian peasant, has no Spanish “j,” which is pronounced hard against the back of the throat, nor any specific “r,” which in Creole is pronounced like “w.” In that year alone, Dominican soldiers killed 20,000 peasants who could not pronounce the word for parsley.


Visitiing the Dominican Republic


The Dominican republic is Truly a Nation of Mulattos..


.I've had the pleasure of visiting the Island several times and indeed it is well worth the trip..It contains some of the Oldest Churches , Museums and buildings in the New World ...

The colonial part of the city is built within the walls of a 16 th century fort and the grave of Christopher Columbus , which cast a beacon of a cross across the City is there for you to visit...The music ( Merengue) is everywhere and good to hear...The cost of living is very reasonable and The palace of Hernand Cortez, which is now a Historic Museum is quite fascinating to see...





The food is very similar to Our Louisiana Food and The Mulatto/Creole people are everywhere....It is truly a Pleasurable place to visit..Not only will you feel quite at home but believe me you will get a chance to visit sites and Historic wonders that few people will ever get see in a lifetime...



Even today, some Dominicans, though surely not all, are slightly obsessed with Haiti and Haitians. The words “Haitiano” and “Negro” have become interchangeable. Many Dominicans, believing that Haitians threaten the national culture, avoid intermarriages and oppose Haitian immigration.

As late as 1983, President Balaguer published a book called La Isla al Reves (The Island in Reverse), in which he produces a paranoid picture of Haiti as bent on cultural conquest.

In the book, he argues that Haiti wants a “pacifistic penetration of Dominican territory” and that Haitians, as blacks, are a threat to Dominican culture because blacks have a “characteristics fecundity.” As if that weren’t enough, Balaguer identifies Haitians as the carriers of many dangerous diseases, such as malaria and syphilis, and presents them as barbarians who are “morally deformed.” The book, reprinted five times, never created a stir in the country or negatively affected Balaguer’s standing whatsoever.

As a practical matter, Dominicans avoid calling themselves mulattos. If they have “white features” and reasonably “good hair,” then they’re white. In fact, “good hair” is one of the most prized natural attributes in the Dominican Republic.

Sometimes, a person will be termed an indio if his hair is a little suspect. If the skin is very dark and the hair very wiry, the term is likely to be indio oscuro, dark Indian. Dominican officials still use these labels sometimes, and there are places on Dominican passports where these denominations still show up. In Haiti, on the other hand, whites are so rare that the word blan means both white and foreign.


Another reason that the Dominican Republic is not typically Caribbean is Rafael Trujillo himself. Before Trujillo, the country was just another traditional, segmented Caribbean society; class lines had fixed boundaries. Then Trujillo came on the scene, bringing his mulatto heritage with him. During his long dictatorship he conducted, in effect, a controlled social experiment in which the political structure did not change but the underlying social and economic elements were shuffled about willy-nilly (all to serve Trujillo, of course).

A mulatto middle class of businessmen, industrialists, and military officers was created, and both the church and the notion of the extended family were challenged. It was a cruel irony that while the society itself was mixing, political control was not. When Trujillo, then, was finally assassinated, it left the Dominican Republic in turmoil-with a society and culture profoundly mulatto but a power structure that was entirely elitist. It was a formula for confusion.

Perhaps the most important way in which the Dominican Republic differs from its Caribbean neighbors is that Dominicans boast the purest Spanish traditions in the Western Hemisphere-far purer than those found in, say, Mexico. Almost all Dominicans are practicing Roman Catholics, and Dominican family structure and values further reflect Spanish culture. Consequently, no matter where you go in the Dominican Republic, save for those areas characterized by what I’ll call “international tourist culture,” the predominant feeling is of being in provincial Spain.

Taken from:
"Dominican Republic Handbook"
by Gaylord Dold





The population of Dominican Republic in 2007 was estimated by the United Nations at 9,760,000, which placed it as number 82 inpopulation among the 193 nations of the world.




Ethnic composition

According to the CIA World Fact Book, the ethnic composition of the Dominican population is,

73% mixed,............ 16% white............11% black.

The mixed population is mostly mulatto.

Indigenous Taino descent has survived in some Dominicans.Other ethnic groups in the Dominican Republic include Haitians, Germans, Italians, French, Jews, Spaniards, and Americans. A smaller presence of East Asians (primarily ethnic Chinese and Japanese) and Middle Easterners (primarily Lebanese) can be found throughout the population.




Racial issues


As elsewhere in the Spanish Empire, the original Spanish colony of Hispaniola employed a social system known as casta, wherein Peninsulares (Spaniards born in Spain) occupied the highest echelon. These were followed, in descending order of status, by: criollos, castizos, mestizos, mulattoes, Indians, zambos, and lastly, black slaves.]The stigma of these social strata persisted for many years, reaching its culmination in the Trujillo regime, as the dictator used racial persecution and nationalistic fervor against Haitians.

According to a study by the CUNY Dominican Studies Institute, about 90% of the contemporary Dominican population has some African ancestry. However, most Dominicans self-identify as being of mixed-race rather than "black" in contrast to African identity movements in the United States. A variety of terms are used to represent a range of skintones; these include "morena" (brown), "india" (Indian), "blanca oscura" (dark white), and "trigueño" (wheat colored), among others.

Many have claimed that this represents a reluctance to self-identify with African descent and the culture of the freed slaves. According to Dr. Miguel Anibal Perdomo, professor of Dominican Identity and Literature at Hunter College in New York City, "There was a sense of 'deculturación' among the African slaves of Hispaniola. [There was] an attempt to erase any vestiges of African culture from the Dominican Republic. We were, in some way, brainwashed and we've become westernized."

However, this view is not universal, as many also claim that Dominican culture is simply different and rejects the racial categorizations of other regions. Ramona Hernández, director of the Dominican Studies Institute at City College of New York asserts that the terms were originally an act of defiance in a time when being mulatto was stigmatized.

"During the Trujillo regime, people who were dark skinned were rejected, so they created their own mechanism to fight it" She went on to explain "When you ask, 'What are you?' they don't give you the answer you want . . . saying we don't want to deal with our blackness is simply what you want to hear." The Dominican Republic is not unique in this respect either. In a 1976 census survey conducted in Brazil, respondents described their skin color in 136 distinct terms.




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