Culture and Customs of the Dominican Republic

Culture and Customs of the Dominican Republic

Culture and Customs of the Dominican Republic

Culture and Customs of the Dominican Republic

Synopsis

The Dominican Republic, which shares the island of Hispaniola with Haiti, has a rich history beginning with the first inhabitants, the Taino indians, to the Spanish conquistadors, African slaves, and numerous waves of immigrants. Culture and Customs of the Dominican Republic is the first book to encompass the vibrancy of the land, its people, and their cultures and customs. It surveys the daily lives of average Dominicans and also the unusual folk practices of the rural populace. Attention is also given to the thriving Dominican community in New York City, the "Dominacanyors."

Excerpt

The Dominican Republic, best known for its beautiful beaches, lavish resorts, and for being the first place that Christopher Columbus and his men settled in the New World, is an island nation in the Caribbean. There is much more to this country, beginning with its people whose optimistic, energetic, and cheerful character is immediately engaging and endearing. Dominicans are a proud people who have withstood innumerable setbacks due to an unstable political history and to physical devastation occasioned by hurricanes and earthquakes. It has been an independent republic since 1844.

To introduce Dominican culture and customs it is important to have a sense of the country's physical geography, its history, and its people. Dominican geography is rich in mountains, valleys, virtually unexplored and unexploited coves and bays, and natural habitats of rare species of flora and fauna. Dominican history is different from that of any other country in Latin America because this is the only country to receive independence not from Spain, but rather from a neighboring Latin American country. The explanation of how Haiti came to rule the whole island is fascinating as is the history of the Taíno Indians who occupied the island at the time of Columbus' arrival. The history of the Dominican Republic is also tragically unique because of the brutality of the long dictatorship of Rafael Leonidas Trujillo. Other countries in Latin America have suffered tyrannical dictatorships, but Trujillo's rule is considered among the most savage. At the end of the twentieth century, the Dominican Republic has a democratically elected president who was born and raised in New York City. As a people, Dominicans are generally described as gregarious, kind, and generous. These admirable qual-

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.