Pa bliye 1804, Jean Casimir (2004)
Could Haitians have produced a better result in the past 200 years?
Haitian history far more successful than the scholars acknowledge
Haitian history has progress in it even if the elites [neg anwo yo] have not yet realized it
When Haiti was a "wealthy Nation" and was called "Saint-Domingue" its workers were as
"poor as Job and more miserable than dogs" (17)
When the Revolution ended in 1804, the nation was formed of a population of moun vini, -
first generation people, or the children of first generation people. (24)
Conflict between farmers abitan and the elite gwo zouzoun
Forced labor in a plantation gives rise to a desire to destroy the plantation; there is never a
desire to improve the plantation (29)
Captive workers are like "tools that speak" (30)
The indigenous army [lame natifnatal] joined forces with the rebel runaways rebel mawon
yo to make 1804 possible (32).
mawon ~ maroon, escaped slave...
mawonnaj n. fleeing, hiding out; custom of forming community of escaped
mawonnen ~ to thieve, pilfer
bal mawon ~ stray bullet
mawony ~- n. looter, marauder; fugitive, runaway (Freeman/Laguerre
No economic system had ever grouped 200, 300 or 500 people together to produce
merchandise prior to the slave trading of African peoples.
The sale of Africans lavant NMg nwe is preceded and followed by the
brasewo [Panama Canal; Cuban sugar industry; today the Dominican
Republic, Florida citrus industry...]
Trans-frontier human traffic continues with the boat-people bMtpip6l
In the slavery period a highly diverse group of slaves lived isolated on plantations in rural
This hell was foreseen in the Code noir of Louis XIV in 1685
For the captives of Saint-Domingue Louis XIV is eternally "lagrandyab"
For the Blan the person taken into slavery is like an "envelope of the real merchandise."
Strength is the merchandise (39-40).
The creature the colonist was trying to create was something like a robot. Violence and
abuse were deemed the most efficient and economical means of control (41)
The planters produced legal and religious books to justify the power they seized in society.
The creolization of the NMg nwe was a necessity to the Colonial system of domination...
Milat and NMg nwe struggled with each other to attain degrees [degre] that France defined
for them (46).
Oje and Chavan, who fought for the rights of the Milat, never realized that "freedmen"
[afranchi] were like slaves on vacation. Their freedom is like "a station of the Cross" on
the Calvary of their lives (48)
The NMg natifor NMg kreyol is the most skilled individual with regard to the rules and the
economy of the plantation.
NMg kreyol versus NMg bosal
Since the 18t century [1700s] the knowledge of all the captive nations on the plantations
wound together to find a way to get out of the kraze brize total sa a.
A new knowledge was an essential ingredient.
The influence of the captives who were born in Africa was essential since they had
experience of a society other than the plantation society. The African-born population had
no difficulty imaging a different society and formulations for life (63).
1681 European colonialists outnumber African slaves 3 to 1.
1781 1 to 11.3
- A few issues with Herskovits 1971
"both gives, and each takes" (32) = highly idealized
"Negroes retained much of their African culture, they also freely took over and adapted
the customs and behavior of the Europeans among who they lived." (32)
What was freely accepted?
The "Corps of Adventurers" in 1632:
buccaneers boukan > boukanye > boukannen > mayi boukannen > Boukan Ginen
farmers abitan > bitasyon
blan mannan blan mannan mouri anba lakal batiman an
the poor white dies down in the hull of the boat
Ex-convicts, escaped criminals, discharged soldiers and deserters (33)
In the earliest times the Spaniards sold Black and White slaves (34)
Nobles established the plantations ~
The masonic lodges [interesting paper topic]
The letter of Vassiere
"...our life is so closely identified with that of these unfortunates that, in the end, it is
the same as theirs" (39).
INSERT PAGE 38
What was the life of a white planter's wife? Who was she?
"concubine...cooked his food...shared his confidences, and reported to him any
disaffection on the part of the Negro slaves" (38).
Why does Herskovits not mention whether the slaves could marry or not?
Absentee ownership characterized Santo Domingo
krep kreyol ~ pancake dipped in salt water and rolled with peanuts and watercress (384)
zam kreyol ~ hand-made revolver
Reproduce Freeman Laguerre page 384
Representation of women in Herskovits
"like their men, they were creatures of passion" (41).
Herskovits, all humans are "creatures of passion"
"the supreme achievement for a European being to have himself served" (41)
More bare foot domestic slaves that diners on big plantations
Meat, French wine... "whiteness of domestic's clothing, and the beautiful kerchiefs in the
Creole manner elegantly arranged about the heads of the women"
Churches were used as threshing floors as well as places of worship; earthen walls and
floors, thatch roofs (43).
Letters and books written at the time of the colony attest to widespread corruption (45)
Overall Herskovits seems pessimistic about Haiti and overly interested in the European
populations (possibly due to sources).
He does recognize that the French colonialists were from the "extremes" of French
society... but... is a prostitute or an ex-convict really extreme or just downtrodden?
Herskovits oddly entertains the thought that French "civilization" might be "partially"
responsible for the "graciousness, the hospitality, and the generosity of the Haitian of
today" (46). Pure wishful thinking.
Jean-Bertrand Aristide asked France for 21 billion dollars in 2003
In late 2004 Bonniface/Alexandre are getting ready to send France a bust of Toussaint
Irony of ironies: both Toussaint Louverture and Jean-Bertrand Aristide were forced
into exile. And France was involved on both occasions.
The State in Haiti Ann Greene 1993
for Wednesday read Greene 27-55 from the U.S. Occupation
"Haitian history since independence has continued to resemble the colonial experience"
In 1492 between 60,000 and 600,000 native Americans
Treaty of Ryswick 1697: Spain cedes the Western third of Hispaniola
Prostitutes and the mentally ill: insane asylum La Salpetriere
African slaves replaced angaje because they had "more stamina" (22)
indigo / sugar / coffee / tobacco
In 1789 Haiti responsible for 40% of French trade
Lesklizif- "The Exclusive (Law)"
Between 1783 and 1789 production doubled on the island "creating more wealth than the
rest of the Caribbean islands combined or the thirteen North American colonies" (23).
1681 = 2,312 slaves
1789 = 620,999 slaves
"...there was a complete turnover of slaves every 20 years" (23)
According to Greene, the Code noir was about providing a measure of protection to slaves,
but the Code was ignored (24).
Lotorite ~ Gouvene; Entandan Finans; fonksyone (Fombrun 1989)
Gwo blan ~ planters ; industrialists ; leaders of commerce, business community
Ti blan ~ shop keepers, blacksmiths, shoe makers, sellers...
Esklav domestic domestic slaves... butlers, cooks, handmaids...
Esklav metye skilled slaves...
Esklav kiltivate farming slave
The French Revolution 1789:
Lanobl&s = Nobility and Royalty
Gwo Legliz = Catholic elite
Tyezeta = mercantile classes, poor priests, the
masses (Fombrun 1989: 48))
Afranchi VERSUS Whites
Early 1791: Oje and Chavan took up arms to fight for expanding the rights of the mulatto
in accord with the principles of the FRENCH REVOLUTIONS 1789
After winning their first battle, they were killed in their second battle in 1
Seremoni Bwa Kayiman
Boukmann August 14th 1791.
1,000 whites and 10,000 slaves killed
1,200 coffee estates and 200 sugar plantations destroyed (Greene 24)
Approximately 12 years of war that culminated in Le Clerc's 1802 "expedition" to re-
establish slavery under Napoleon's orders. 20,000 French troops.
Kidnapping of Toussaint Louverture. Died in France.
Jean-Jacques Dessalines 1804-06
Henri Cristophe 1807-1820 (North)
Alexandre P6tion 1807-1818 (South)
The 19th century in Casimir's work
19th century developments:
Large standing army
Legal limits on the ability of whites and foreigners to own
Switched to a subsistence economy
These developments "deprived the new nation of valuable foreign economic
expertise and entrepreneurship" (27). [Sounds like a late 20th century assessment!]
Organization and hierarchy in the Haitian army
January 1, 1801
Boisrond-Tonnerre: To write the Act of Independence we need the skin of a
white, his skull for an ink well, his blood for ink and a
bayonet for a pen (115)
Dessalines and Boisrond Tonnerre and Juste Chanlatte order the execution of the
remaining whites in Haiti (119)
The nation needed to avenge itself
Seize the wealth of whites
Protect itself since certain French citizens had declared the army would return
France was still practicing slavery
The massacre stretched from les Cayes to Port-au-Prince and was led by
Re-establishment of the importer/exporter industries (who was Haiti trading with in
the 19th century?)
Formation of the Lakou family culture in rural Haiti
Development and establishment of Vodou in rural Haiti
Emergence of Haitian herbal healing arts: dokttfey
kdve involuntary community work
konbit voluntary community work culture and its oral/musical culture
Official Roman Catholic Church totally absent until 1860s
Unofficial Roman Catholic present (pe savann)
Protestantism minimal (???)
Thomas Madiou 1845
Georges Sylvain 1905 (Creole translation)
Schools and institutions in the 19th century [Awesome paper topic!]
Population growth 350,000 > 2,000,000
From Ayiti Cheri, Jean Casimir 2000
"From 1804 to 1915, Haiti almost didn't receive any immigrants. Nonetheless the
population grew from about 500,000 to almost 2,000,000. This is because working
conditions in Haiti were a million times more tolerable than in other countries. In all
nations in the blessed earth, the Haitian race and the other races in the Caribbean, they are
the last people who would forget about the conditions in which slaves, brasewo and
agricultural workers were living in the 19th century. It is also true: Haitians committed
War of independence:
their share of abuses in all the fighting they got involved in the age of bayonets. But in
Latin America or in the Civil War in the U.S., to which add the extermination of Native
Americans, those are disasters that don't compare to the mean things Haitians do."
(Casimir 2000: 56)
US Occupation 1915 1934
2,000 men, martial law, changed the constitution, selected presidents and lesser
officials... etc. (Greene 28)
Reestablished the kdve (Greene 28)
Kanpay rejete ~ Anti Vodou campaigns
[see Tonton Liben for an account, Carri6 Paultre]
Father from L6ogine
1944 Michigan State, incomplete
Witnessed and suffered under the U.S. occupation
1930s Massacre of 20,000 cain-cutters
Becomes a medical doctor, directs a yams clinic
Member of the n6gritude movement; Jean-Price Mars
Ainsi parla l 'oncle > valorizing Haitian culture
Duvalier's candidacy 1951
Pro-black, pro-Haitian His supporters: the army
Pro-Voodoo His opposition: Church & Mulatto elite
Wins by a large margin democratically.
He collected a $50 finder's fee from the pay of each cane-cutter in the D.R. (20,000)
Promoted junior black officers to thwart coup and gain loyalty of the black middle
Established the cagoulards and the tonton macoutes
Vodou: did he use Vodou or did Vodou use him? Populist appeal
How did Duvalier extract funds from the U.S.A.?
The threat of communism
Greene's assessments: "...attrition of the population through exile and murder was a
30,000-60,000 from 1951 1971 [1,500 3,000 per year]
Baby Doc 1971 1986
Ti tig, se tig. Really?
What did Jean-Claude Duvalier do to impress U.S.A?
Fire his ministers "bring in well-regarded young technocrats" (34)
Error of Jean-Claud Duvalier 1971 1986 (Greene, Ann 1993)
Ignored the black middle class (that had ensured his father's power)
Ignored Duvalierists, the army, the Volontaires de la Securite
Stoked resentment among the elite by allowing "palace charities"
Ignored the voodooists
Married a wealthy mulatto: "insult to Duvalierists" (37).
Spending and corruption scandals
Drugs trafficking (39)
Human rights violations
Improvements during the Carter administration 1976-80
Decline after Reagan (1980-8)
Prisoners held incommunicado, torture... 100 deaths at Fort
Dimanche in 1978...
Ongoing prison violence
Patronage, not skill-set (46). Mounpa culture
83% of government expenditures in PauP (46) whence the motto:
La Republique de PauP
Duvaliers absconded with $120 million when they left Haiti
What security apparatus did JCD expand?
Tonton Makout: 10,000 >>> 25,000
Number of killings said to rise: 50,000 >>> 100,000 (42)
What interested the U.S. in Haiti most in the 80s?
* Facilitating repression against communists.
* U.S. Embassy provided money and names (43)
* Swine fever ... drought ... Hurricane Allen ... hunger ... unemployment ...
1. 15% of people own 66% of land
2. 66% of people own 10% of land
3. 24% is government owned (45)
U.S. Policy to Haiti: Ambassadors have been people on the verge of
retirements and who serve short tours and do not learn the local languages. (55)
Greene's sources: Ambassadors, Gerard Gourge
Family planning initiatives and Kalfouno peasants: what's going wrong
Jennie Marcelle Smith (1991/1998)
When so many foreigners are providing FREE "family planning"
pills, condoms, IUD's, foams, diaphragms, Depo-Provera, Norplant,
tubal ligations and vasectomies (6)
Why is family planning so rarely practiced in Haiti?
In rural, agrarian Haiti, children are a household essential
Chores / Labor / Selling at market...
Culture of promoting child-bearing.
Children make life joyful and fulfilling (8)
Premium placed on female and male fertility
Model of the fertile family and "head of the household"
Children legitimize unions
Ever-present fear of losing children (10)
Acceptable sexual relations mentioned:
plasaj, manmzel, consecutive plasaj, multiple partners (9)
The New Refugees Environmental Exodus
22 million refugees
Refugee disaster is here and climate change will make it worse (1)
Vast majority of earth's next billion will live in impovrishment (1)
Deforestation > Fuel-shortage
Desertification threatens 1/3 of earth's land surface
Water deficits and droughts
Salinisation and water logging
Developing countries with 80% of the world's population have just 21% of global GDP (2)
Dr. Bert Bolin
"most of the damage due to climate change is going to be associated with extreme
events, not by the smooth global increase of temperature that we call global
16 fold increase in urban dwellers from 1950 2025
"Vast numbers in the margin of existence"
Yesteryear's news in Haiti...
Signs of climate change:
Sea level rise
CYCLONES, STORM SURGES
changes in agricultural production: cotton, citrus, etc. move north...
loss of biodiversity
extension of the range of disease carrying pests
Caribbean: 5 million destitute and fleeing...
Doesn't this put Haiti and Haitians on the forefront of finding solutions with major global
What can be done?
* R & D on renewables and efficiency. Energy paradigm shift.
* SOLAR already widely used in Haiti. Solar revolution needed.
* WIND (turbines)
* Donor nations need to step up.
$9 billion can eliminate deaths from famine and reduce hunger.
RE-THINK THE ARMS RACE. Arms form twice the expenditure as health
and education in many nations facing environmental catastrophes.
* Spend on soil conservation and tree-planting
* Promote projects with multiplier effects:
Example: treeplanting is good for what?
fuelwood and timber
protects soil and watersheds
provides crop and windbreaks and carbon sinks for greenhouse
Information is needed to combat ignorance ...
Herskovits 1971 (much earlier)
Birth, Childhood, and Adolescence
Church, State, and African tradition (family structure, religion, folklore, class structure,
Charms dj6k, maldj6k... rad maldj6k, kolye maldj6k, etc.
Protection sought from family deities just before parturition
kouvk skk, manje skk = vegetarian meal (Freeman/Laguerre)
manje dy6 = food and drink offered to Voodoo spirits involving no animal
manje djak = food offering including meat (except pork)
Pater Noster, Ave Maria
Those serving Danbala add a chicken sacrifice; dress in the sacred color of the lwa
What types of actions are taken after the birth of a child in this rural, mid-20th
century setting described by Herskovits?
Bathed in tepid water, kept warm
Placenta is buried in hole in the room, salt is added
Mother is bathed in water with calabash leaves (93)
Prior to baptism: gen chwal nan t0t.. "Have the horse in the head".
Baptism: wete chwal nan t0t "Take the horse out of the head"
What are some features of a child's upbringing?
Physical punishment saved for later
Potty-trained fairly quickly
Breastfed to 18 months. Describe weaning. lalwa = aloe
The role of godparents in a child's life = parenn, marenn
In Mirebalais a Church marriage had to be approved by the Archbishop!
The mechanisms of education and control operate better because...
...they are exercised by a fairly large group of persons (101)
mother, father, aunts, uncles, brothers, sisters, grandparents, cousins...
When a rural boy is able to tend a garden, what happens with the profit generated
from selling the produce?
His mothers saves it for his marriage.
How is sex education imparted?
Peers, observation... "play-life"
Mention of restavek culture
Haiti: unions and fertility, Gisble Maynard-Tucker (1996)
"Theory of demographic transition" citing Ashford (1995)
emergent = no growth rate; birth and death balance each other out
transition = soaring growth; high birth rate, low death rate due to medicine
advanced = slow growth due to spread of health services...
"Western values" of small family size in conflict with fertility culture
* Links to social position and economic survival
* Polygamous relationships promote anxiety and fear; correlate with children
* Children are seen as tying a partner's affection (1387)
* "children are the life goals of the woman and define her role and place in society"
* Loss of a partner leads to a quest for replacement and children in the new
Types of relationships are closely linked to socio-economic factors:
marye, please, renmen, fyanse, antant, flirte, wikenn
Fertility culture is seen by author as a cultural barrier to contraception (1386)
Migrant culture is seen as promoting transient sexual partnerships
What are motivations to obtain contraception in the city?
Employment and unstable relationships
How is pddisyon analyzed by Murray (1976)?
* Perdition is blood loss from the uterus. Used as excuse for low fecundity.
* "Culture-bound syndrome" shows importance of fertility (1381)
Approaches to family planning suggested by the author:
* Training curriculum on physiology, method instructions, side-effects, sensitivity
* Working relationships
* Volunteer instructors
* Involvement of men and women
* Home visits
Conjugal Unions Among Rural Women, Williams, Murthy, Berggren (1975)
"two cultural influences were bound to impinge on Haitian family formation: those of
Africa and France..." (1022)
Native American? Arawak? Polish? Hispanic? British? American? Congolese?
1889 British traveler describes "a well-to-do black lives openly with several women as
Passive acceptance of polygamy
"Land was inherited in widely scattered areas, and Haitians became mobile in their
struggle to keep it productive."
It becomes advantageous for the man to find a "female consort" to manage his mountain
land holdings and one to manage his valley holdings.
What rituals accompany plasaf?
Ceremonies at the girl's parents home.
Plasaj unions often endure as long as recognized church marriages (1023)
Noted by Price-Mars (1928)
"Almost the same preparation as marriage"
Hierarchy of status:
+++Power fanm kay
++Power manman pitit
+Power fanm plase ~ intermittently share a bed; she works a
fanm avek ~ cohabits for pleasure without
What method did the authors use to assign date of birth to their subjects?
How did the authors begin to probe private issues such as sexual lifestyle?
Ask about migration patterns
Why are rural Haitian women so mobile?
Gardening, selling in markets
Authors admit that the most mobile members of the rural society were unavailable for their
research. This may be bias in their research (1025)
When are plasaj unions most unstable?
Early and late. 25 44 is stable.
Average age to enter into union: 20 years old
Plasaj is generally more unstable than legal marriage
This correlates directly with the number of children
Births in Stable versus Unstable: Charts
"Importance of unions in population dynamics"
Stable union = more children; Unstable = less
Has the rural exodus and rapid urbanization contributed to more or less stable unions?
Women outnumber men in Haiti. 6 to 5 (???)
With respect to family planning...
Target couples in stable unions
Women in unstable unions may be more resistant
Education should offset rumors: target 15 19 year olds before union
Health risks to mother and child from union dissolution (1030)
Haitian Culture and Society,
1. What are some things Jennie Smith noticed about the Haitian families in Kalfoun6? Why does
contraception often not catch on in certain Haitian communities? [4 pts]
2. Do you think that "family planning" and contraception can improve the lives of Haitians in general?
State why. [3 pts]
3. Describe an economic aspect of the plasaj 'common law marriage' practice [3 pts]
4. Why are so many Haitian women mobile (i.e. moving around?) [2 pts]
5. From a demographic point of view, what is a major difference between legal andplasaj [plagage]
relationships? [3 pts]
6. What are some suggestions Roper (1996) and Myrlene, our guest speaker, made regarding potential
solutions to environmental problems in Haiti (and elsewhere)? [4 pts]
7. Describe the "theory of demographic transition" cited in Maynard Tucker's article. What are the roles
of medicine and health care? Key terms: emergent; transition; advanced [4 pts]
8. List a few environmental issues facing the world as noted in Roper 1996 [4 pts]
9. Climate change is going to be associated with what kind of events according to Bolin in Roper 1996
10. Extra-credit [Ipt]: What 3000-level Haiti-related class do you think UF undergraduate students would
Herskovits 1971, Mating and Marriage
Token of marriage worn by wife
The mass of people, married or unmarried?
Longevity ofplagage versus marriage
Must have for groom
Should have some of these too...
6. Above, this must be shown by groom to parents
7. The groom should be prepared to participate in
8. this collective activity
9. In 1937, a "first class wedding" cost a peasant
(a) 3,000 gourdes (b) 175 gds. (c) 47.5 gds.
10. What is wrapped around the envelope of the
lettre de demand
11. One may turn to this if marriage proposal is
12. Name a couple things required of the bride.
13. A fatherless child is well cared for in Haiti: true
(a) true (b) false
14. Voodooists will perform rites to what Iwa
15. Where do some Haitians go in order to contact
the dead regarding a marriage?
16. What lwa preside over the cemetery?
17. Marriages rarely take place in these months.
goats, pigs, beast
Nov. / Dec.
"Month of the
Gede" Nov. 1 &
19. This can be heard after a Haitian wedding
20. Unofficial priest
21. In Mirebalais at the time of Herskovits visit (1930s),
polygymous households were common. True or False?
22. Rival "wives" [not living under the same roof] may
sing these derisive songs if to meet by chance is a
23. Haitian attitudes toward homosexuality at this time can
best be captured in which word:
(a) derision (b) vindictiveness
24. Children born outside of legal marriage have no right
to their father's name. True or False?
25. How are the children of various types of matings most
26. Children born outside of legal marriage have no right
to their father's land. True or False?
27. Some men believed that placing this under the tongue
during intercourse could prevent pregnancy...
28. Many Haitian Voodooists/Catholics make pilgrimages
to this sacred places like...
AIDS and Haiti: A lecture on Paul Farmer's work
Paul Farmer. 1999. Infections and Inequalities, the Modern Plagues. Berkeley:
University of California Press.
Racist and outlandish speculations erupt in 1982 and continue into the mid-80s
"this may be an epidemic Haitian virus that was brought back to the
homosexual population in the United States" (99 citing the U.S. National
Cancer Institute in December 1982)
Viera, J. 1985. The Haitian Link. In Understanding AIDS: A
Comprehensive Guide, edited by V. Gong, pp 90-99. New Brunswick,
N.J.: Rutgers University Press.
"Magic ritual provides a means for transfer of blood and
secretions from person to person"
Female followers of Erzulie are said to add menstrual blood to
food to prevent straying
Voodoo priests ritualize homosexual acts...
After a brief visit to Haiti, MIT Physicians declare: "It seems
reasonable to consider voodoo practices a cause of the
syndrome" (99 citing Annals ofInternal Medicine October
A camp of U.S. scientists immediately blamed Africa and Haiti for the origin
of AIDS... a media bandwagon publicized the claims in a string of popular
press articles in the early 80s...
"...I knew that science, cultures, and transnational inequalities were
coming together in a volatile mix" (96)
Haiti's tourism was devastated and has not recovered
Theory behind Farmer's research
Farmer's contribution is biosocial:
ethnographic work is linked to critical epidemiology
epidemiology = a branch of medical science that deals with the
incidence, distribution, and control of disease in a population
[see epidemic] (Webster's)
Research questions: why AIDS so quick to spread in urban Haiti and by what
routes would it reach the countryside? (97)
AIDS in Haiti
Between 1979 1982, 61 cases
In 1983 a team of Haitian doctors led by Pape published research that began to
shed light on the real origins and nature of AIDS in Haiti
* 74 % of men with infections live in P-au-P (home to 20% of all Haitians)
* 33 % of AIDS patients live in Carrefour, neighborhood known for
prostitution at that time
* The earliest population with AIDS in Haiti also included individuals who
had lived in the US and Canada.
* At least 7 men who said they were homosexual also noted that they had
sexual contact with North American men in Haiti and the U.S. (102)
* Plus, at least half of the allegedly heterosexual men had either lived or
traveled outside Haiti (104)
* All denied sexual contact with persons from Africa, in fact most had never
met a person from Africa. But several admitted to having sex with U.S.
Emerging picture: AIDS spread from the U.S. and went to Haiti
More evidence... Farmers studies the spread of AIDS in Haiti
"through the study of HIV seroprevalence in asymptomatic populations" (107)
Chart from page 108
Highest seroprevalence rates among Haitian sex workers, reaching 41.9%
Children with HIV
Chart on page 109
Speed of spread: sera stored in 1977-1979 was HIV-free (109)
Phase 1: "The American Phase" of the urban epidemic in Haiti (110)
1970: 100,000 tourists visit Haiti
1979: 143,000 tourists
winter 1981-2 75,000 tourists
-- Haitians blamed for AIDS --
the year 1983: 10,000 tourists... 6 hotels fold,
Pape's team found that throughout the Caribbean "the major risk for the
spread of AIDS was homosexual contact with a partner from primarily
"sufficient data now exist to support the assertion that economically
driven male prostitution, catering to a North American clientele, played a
major role in the introduction of HIV to Haiti" (120)
Spartacus International Gay Guide wrote in 1983: "handsome men with a
great ability to satisfy are readily available ... there is no free sex in Haiti,
except with other gay tourists you may come across. Your partners will
expect to be paid for their services but the charges are nominal" (123)
An ad in the gay-advocacy magazine, The Advocate, wrote that Haiti is
where "all your fantasies come true" (123)
Phase 2: The feminization of AIDS in Haiti
All the male Haitian AIDS patients admitted to being bisexual
This paved the way for rapid dispersion through the Haitian population
Table 4, p. 114
Table 5, p. 115
Phase 3: HIV moves into rural Haiti
In 1986-7 seroprevalence rate for HIV was 3%
Chief risk factor in rural Haiti turns out to be profession of partner and not the
number of partners (134)
Soldiers and truck-drivers are the bridge between urban and rural
U.S. origin homosexual sex-tourists > bisexual Haitian sex workers
bisexual Haitian sex workers > infect the general urban population
soldiers and truckers > infect the general rural population
Further notes from Farmer (1999)
"Cultural, economic and social factors are not of equal significance in all
"We can identify differently weighted, synergistic forces that promote HIV
Population pressures: P-au-P grows from 12% of total population in 1950 to
27% in 1980
Economic pressures: 27% of population, 80% of state expenditures (139)
Patterns of sexual union: plasaj, i.e. 'pre-existing sociocultural institution
speeds the spread of AIDS'
Gender inequality: first note that Hait's women "have a higher proportion of
economically active women than any other developing society except Lesotho"
Example: female please partners do not have the authority to demand
condom use (141)
Political disruption: for example in the 1991 coup d'etat one half of the
residents of Cite Soleil fled to rural Haiti, thereby increasing the spread of
Inaccessibility of medical services: hospitals, providers and drugs out of reach
Property, Wealth, and the Family, Herskovits 1937
Haitian family has a wide range of relatives, both direct and collateral, on
both sides of both parents...
African and French family traditions prevail in Haiti
French tradition: "...custom binds children with equal strength to the
families of both parents" (123)
Major transition in the life of the peasant:
Moving from habitation of his parents to his own house on land received
from his father (124)
Peasant family's major pursuit is the acquisition of land
Rarely does he live with his wife's family; this will lower his status.
Husband expected to procure food through farming; wife sells surplus food.
With profits she may buy:
Animals for transport, food or breeding
Saved for land
Saved for mass or (Voodoo) ceremony (125)
Women perceived as more thrifty = she's the bank (125).
Women also do 30% better on the U.S. stock market, apparently because
they are more cautious.
Peasant consults the elders about everything; "family head" has special
A widow holds the land of her husband until her death; land is held in trust for
the children (if they are minors) should they both parents die (126)
Deities of the vodun cult are believed to be inherited in family lines...
"pronouncedly African trait"
"inheritance of the soul within the family" (126)
"adds its sanction to help maintain the inner cohesion of the
Oldest male member of the family
Consulted for secular and spiritual matters
"all relatives help one who, for example, has run afoul of the law
because of attendance at a forbidden vodon dance and needs a certain sum
to pay a fine" (127)
Great subordination is shown by peasants to their elders
Duty-bound relationships enforced by notions such as:
Curses (bad-luck in life)
The dead will deeply resent an injustice (130)
"...the dead can enforce the discharge of this duty by sending
illness, bad fortune, and death to those of their descendants who are
>>> Consequently aplacee wife is cared for if left with nothing
The pursuit of land is an obsession (135)
In troublous times money is buried in jars...
The wealthy are not ostentatious to avoid arousing...
Herskovits provides a valuable look at rural life in the 1930s; while some
things have changed, much remains the same.
Herskovits continued, "The Setting of Haitian Life" (1937)
Agriculture: the small cultivator holds center stage
Land acquired through inheritance, purchase or rent
Who has land to rent in Haiti?
Dawn ~ wife rises to prepare coffee
~ husband works from sunrise to sunset except when the sun
~ wife works nearer home, pounds grain in mortar, takes
care of home tasks, might farm a home plot; sells on
~ farmer typically eats twice per day, midmorning in the
field and early evening, alone, after work
Sunday, mass; occasionally on Saturdays a vodou dance occurs into
Hard field work abates from December February (dry season) when
repairs and roof thatching takes place.
Dances and cockfights are popular in that season
Life cycle of a (traditional) Haitian farming plot:
No crop rotation.
3 successive crops are introduced until fallow
Finally cotton is planted.
Lastly animals are sent to graze on the land until
mira ~ "small konbit" (6-10 men)
koutmen ~ slightly larger group
konbit, sosyete kongo ~ strenuous labor:
see page (70)
chefeskwad makes an invitation in the form of kleren
simidb ~ leads the singing and uses a 'European' drum; drum rhythm
regulates the work and also signals the konbit;
Call and response song structure at the konbit
"Theme" and "response" (74)
Songs convey news and gossip
Details are alluded to somewhat scrupulously
"love of gossip and patterned relish for oblique public
statement of individual shortcomings" (74)
"The simidor is a journalist, and every simidor is a Judas!" (74)
* Travelers in Haiti often confuse konbit drumming for vodou
* Participation in konbit is also a form of insurance; should a loyal
participant fall ill, his own land will often be tended by a konbit
* Konbit of up to 75 participants is described
* Large konbit can be competitive, i.e. 2 competing groups are
* Prayers and invocations protect fields, MAt Sous (Simbi)
* Cranium of a horse, wooden cross
* Sacred trees are rewarded for their care over the field
* "In the main garden magic is directed toward protective rather than
malevolent ends" (81)
Market rules and conventions:
Women retain a given place in the market
Women generally specialize their product: meat or baskets...
Money, not barter is found
Vendors adjust prices through the day
Vendors must pay a small fee to sell at the market in Mirebalais
Taxes are collected on all animals sold live or for the butcher
Women will sell goods on off-market days, too. At crossroads, cock-
Specialization in Mirebalais in 1934 (see p. 85)
Social class: pov ~ malere ~ klas mwayen ~ gran neg
Of Worlds Seen and Unseen: The Educational Character of Haitian Vodou
~ Claudine Michel, 1996
Comparative religion assumes that the search for meaning is universal
(Charles Long, Karen McCarthy Brown, Patrick Bellegarde-Smith)
* Religion has been an instrument in the West to dominate people
* In some forms: contact and conjuncture for marginalized peoples
Vodou adapts African practices to New World Realities (280)
European & Catholic African & Voodooist
but: African & Catholic
(Congo see Terry Rey)
In the colonial period clandestine nature of Vodou increased its prestige
Revitalization... channel to organization and resistance...
Syncretic fusion: why according to author?
"sociopolitical realities impelled Haitians to integrate such Catholic
elements such as prayers, hymns, and the Gregorian calender into Vodou
Vodou is not sorcery and witchcraft
Vodou differs from Christian traditions in:
dogma >>> teachings, ritualized words, phrases
phenomenology >>> understanding of the world, phenomena
hierarchy >>> organization of power
monumental structure >>> places of worship, objects
no prescriptive code of ethics in Vodou
but moral principles are self defined, wisdom of ancestors,
communication with spirits (282)
Moral coherence through cosmological understandings
Vodou is concerned with:
Search for purpose
Making life whole
Interpreting and giving meaning to the universe
Quote p. 282
Protestantism is problematic? Why?
Family and Temple Vodou
Temple is informal; crossroads; cemetery; oceans; rivers; waterfall (Sodo),
What are signs and symbols of Vodou?
Candles, icons, lamp, flags, bottles, jars, rosaries...
Urban temple Vodou
"they remain the center of urban life where devotees recreate family left behind
by migration and continue their quest for religious and moral values" (285)
Teaching Methods and Instructional Strategies
Vodou is a way of life.
While interacting with spirits
in everyday activities...
Vodou is African cosmological understandings and American and Creole
Symbiotically taught via spoken language with action and aesthetics
Learner-centered; teachers are guides and facilitators; democratic
Priest is a ritualizer, a "technician of the sacred"
"help community find cohesion and teach Vodou adepts how to avoid the
source of moral decay: imbalance." (288)
"race and nationality never factors in deciding whether a person is
Artists, sculptors and painters
Vodou "emphasizes the common good over individual satisfactions" (290)
"collective self developed through elision of individual self" (291)
"everyone dances in a quest to find a rhythm and balance..."
"Confidence, liveliness, relevancy, flexibility, endurance, musicality
and rhythm enhance beliefs, rituals, experiences and healing"
Haitian Culture and Society, HAI 3930
Introduction to vodou concepts via song: Azor, Sanba Move 'Angry Poet'
Transcriptions by Ben Hebblethwaite
1. Maladi pa tonbe sou Iwa, sou kretyen 1 tonbe
Illness doesn't fall on lwa, on humans it falls
Le y ap fe maji yo, m di yo m pa anmede yo
When they are doing their magic, I tell them I don't bother them
Le y ap trase v&ve yo, m di yo m pa anmede la...
When they are tracing their cosmograms, I tell them I don't bother there...
2. Rele gwo woch o, se mwen yo rele gwo woch o M ap prale...
Call big rock, it's me they call big rock I'm going...
Di Ogou fey, Ogou feray o, Ogou fey la, Ogou feray o...
Say Ogou fey, Ogou feray, Ogou fey, Ogou feray o
anko mwen inosan, anko mwen inosan papa,
again I'm innocent, again I'm innocent father,
yo fe konplo la pou yo tiye chwal mwen...
they have made a plot in order to kill my horse
3. Feray o m pral fe on wout o, ann ale ave mwen... Bilolo!
Feray o I'm going to be on my way, let's go together Bilolo!
Di Feray o, kite m fe wout o, ann ale ave mwen,
Say Feray o, let me be on my way, let's go together,
ou met tande tire, piga ou vire gade, ann ale ave mwen Kite m fe wout o!
you may hear booms, don't turn around and look, let's go together Let me be on my way o!
4. Yaye o yaye, Ezile kanpe nan barye a, pa sa antre
Yaye o yaye, Ezili stands at the gate, (and) can't get in
Wi, yaye priz sa a, wi yaye, yaye, o yaye... Bizango wi yaye...
Bizango See Chanpwel
O yaye pwen sa, wi yaye, Ezile kanpe nan baye sa 1 pa sa antre
5. Feray o nan men ki moun w a kite badji a la
Feray o in whose hands will you leave the badji (inner sanctuary of voodoo temple)
Ay sobadji a la, m ap prale... Feray o...
Ay the sobadji is there, I'm getting going... Feray o
6. ...mennen 1 ban mwen Bi lo lo
bring her/him to me
al pou chache 1 mennen 1 ban mwen, se vye granmoun o, pa ka fe anyen anko la, al pou chache 1 mennen 1
go in order to find her and to bring her to me, she's an elderly person o, can't do anything more here, go in order to find her and bring her for me...
ban mwen, tande [de]manbre
give me, listen demanbre
7. Mwen nan bwa ay, sevi maji lakay mwen
I'm in the woods ay, to practice the magic of my house
M pral nan bwa ye, m pa konnen kote m ap tonbe Adje o!
I'm going to the woods ye, I don't know where I'm going to stop Oh my!
M pral nan bwa, kote n ap rive misye... Pral nan bwa ye!
I'm going to the woods, where are we going mister
8. Lwa Simbi Makaya oke
Lwa Simbi Makaya is okay
Going to the woods yes!
W a lage pwen an nan men timoun yo, si gen lavi,
You will leave spell in the hands of the children, if there is life,
n ap dwe gangan yo, si pa gen lavi n ap di yo nou pa dwe...
we are going to owe the gangan (male priest -oungan), ifthere is no life we're going to say we don't owe...
Adye! o ann al lage pwen makaya....
Oh my! o let's go let the makaya charm loose
Songs recorded by Ben Hebblethwaite, January 10th 2000 in Bl Rivye, south-eastern Haiti
Bawon konnen moun yo, konnen Bondye
Baron knows people, knows God
Bawon an, Bawon Lakwa, konnen moun yo, konnen Bondye
The Baron, Baron of the Cross, knows people, knows God
Bawon an, Bawon Lakwa, konnen moun yo, konnen Bondye
The Baron, Baron of the Cross, knows people, knows God
Bawon papa konnen moun yo, konnen Bondye
Baron knows people, knows God
Mimwoz: Sa se rit rasin ginen
Benn: Eske ou konn kek chan pou Ogou, pa egzanp?
0 o, Ogou!
M ap vole,
M pral rele Ogou o, m pral vole
Le m vole, m vole two wo,
Si ou pa pare, pa rele Ogou sa! Abobo!
I going to call Ogou o, I'm going to fly
When I fly, I fly too high,
If you're not ready, don't call that Ogou! Abobo!
Ogou travay o, Ogou pa manje!
Ogou travay o, Ogou pa manje! (x2)
Ogou sere lajan 1 pou 1 achte yon bel rechany
Bel rechany o, Ogou domi san soupe
Ogou works o, Ogou doesn't eat
Ogou works o, Ogou doesn't eat
Ogou saves his money to buy a nice suit
Nice suit o, Ogou sleeps without supper
Alex de Sherbinin, "Human Security and Fertility: The case of Haiti"
Lack of social order, especially governance, is the cause of high fertility
Lack of governance increases desire for large family.
Large family = economic security in Haiti
Land fragmentation and tenure discourage soil conservation,
planting of tree crops over annual cropping which leads to
Loss of vegetative cover and topsoil leads to decreased absorption of
rainfall and increases run-off
Big picture: Decrease in quality and quantity of resources
+ Population growth
+ Inequal access to resources
+ No socially responsible governmental institutions
= Conflict (Homer-Dixon cited in de Sherbinin 31)
Institutional factor argued as most important
Other major factors: Linguistic and cultural isolation; unfair terms of
trade/debt; economic embargos; low wage assembly industries (see page 34)
Household economic security: the case of African swine fever
* In 1978 African swine fever detected in Haiti's native pig population
* U.S. swine industry pumped $23 million into swine eradication in Haiti
* Replacement program was a total failure because of 'the pampered pig' that
* Deeper crippling of the Haitian peasant's economic strategies
Large families improve RESOURCE CAPTURE (Panyatou); number or
children is decisive
The elderly without children face major difficulties
Land inheritance and tenure practices can raise productivity
Lack of social order creates context in which fertility remains high
Paw6l 2ranmoun, Jeanty and Brown 1996
1. Madichon pa pe nan nwit 'Atoufe pa pe anyen'
Curses are not fearful of the night
2. Neg sot se chwal malentespri
The stupid guy is the horse of the evil spirit
3. Konplo pi f6 pase wanga
A plot is stronger than an amulet
4. Kote zonbi konnen ou, li pa fe ou pe 'Menm nan lanfe gen moun pa'
Where the zonbi knows you, he won't make you scared
5. Tout maladi pa maladi dokte 'There are other ways to get healed'
All illnesses are not medical illnesses
6. Jijman Bondye vini sou bourik
God's judgment comes on a donkey
7. Neg di san fe, Bondye fe san di
Humans say without doing, God does with saying
8. Lavi se kod sapat; ou pa ka konte sou li
Life is a sandal string; you can't count on it
9. Nan benyen nanpwen kache lonbrit
In bathing there is no hiding the naval
10. Lamepriz vo mye ke larepons
Scorn is worth more than responding
One dedicated to Jean-Claude Duvalier and Jean-Bertrand Aristide:
11. Egzile miyo pase fizye
Exile is better than the firing squad
Haitian Culture and Society
Wed. = 2 pages + Bibliography. Please see format at back of class packet.
Read: "Work and gender in Rara," McAlister 2002
"Urban life in the Caribbean: A Study of a Haitian Urban
Community," Laguerre 1982 [pop quiz?]
Arab-Haitians, review of Miami Herald article
"All of my core values, what I believe in, my basic
education, I got them in Haiti"
201 out of 214,893 Haitians in S. Florida identify themselves as Arab
Haitian. Notable Haitians of Arabic decent: Andre Apaid, T-Vice (?)
* Sold textiles to the masses
* Struggle for inclusion over generations in Haiti...
* Expelled through anti-Arab laws
* Arabs saw progress under Duvalier, he named Carlo Boulos as health
The downside: "Frankly, they don't have a good track record of
affirming their Haitian-ness, of actually contributing to the social,
political and cultural growth of the island they claim to be their
homeland" Gepsie Metellus
Anecdote: P-au-P Lebanese shop with stickers on cash register reading:
"Haiti: no electricity, no water, we love it!"
Gabriel's drumming in Baudin, south-eastern Haiti
Drumming concepts: rit tanbou
Sanmba / Samba
Tcha tcha tcha
[African] Side 2
Work and Gender in Rara (McAlister 2002) / The Haitian family (Rey
"work values" = "learned as the most important feature of the
extended family" (89)
Control the household Dominate the street corner
Respectability Reputation and maintenance
Urban Life in the Caribbean A Study of a Haitian Urban
Michel Laguerre 1982
What are the features of Upper Belair (and La Saline)?
cohesive population in terms of interactions
lakou vodou > "trees inhabited by Vodou spirits"
gossip at the well...
Laguerre's focus: community structural dependency
humans and habitat
we shape and are shaped by environment
humans live in niches, they are socialized in niches
Laguerre looks at the detail of life in Belair. He examines both
mundane and exceptional features of the community. He opens up
Haiti for outsiders:
Devotes a paragraph to lamp varieties used in Belair
Water containers kanari
Latanye ~ tropical palm; atemiyo = 'on the ground is better';
Malet ~ important documents; Sunday clothes
Twa woch dife ~ 'three fire stones' = metaphor the basics
The folkloric imagination. baka; zonbi;
UFOs don't mean much to Haitians!
The bayakou ['Dem a payaka']
Vodou: "One temple was found as a place where an expression of
homosexuality and Voodoo piety are observed equally"
[Of Gods and men]
* fritay stalls: see the interplay of social relations between men and
* bol t
* Interdependence of lakou people
* The seismic threat
Trades and the "informal economy"
Marketers and pratik
US-owned factory workers
6 a.m. to 4 p.m. in the corridor
Citation on page 32, final paragraph:
Press clippings on Belair
Diglossia and language conflict in Haiti, Albert Valdman 1988
5% of Haitians are balanced bilinguals in French and Haitian Creole
Relationship between French and Creole is complex
French symbolizes the social and political privileges of dominant
Conversely, Creole symbolizes the social and political exclusion
of the monolingual masses
The role of Creole is schools. The beginning of the debate: late 70s
Opponents: don't want to be denied the linguistic avenue of
social advancement and access to outside communities and
Proponents: insure effective teaching
Bilingualism and diglossia:
Bilingualism is inappropriate in describing the Haitian situation.
Haitian Creole and French don't really have a diglossic relationship:
1. Both are distinct languages (they are more genetically
removed from each other than even French and Latin)
Example, the French versus Haitian Creole relative clause:
la personnel qui est venue a laisse Ca
moun ki te vini an te kite sa
the person who came left that
2. Bilingual Haitians acquire Haitian Creole and French at home,
unlike the typical diglossic scenario with the LOW language
acquired at home and the HIGH language acquired at school.
High German and Swiss German
3. French does serve some vernacular functions among bilinguals
No communicative function is exempt from Creole (whereas
in the classic model of diglossia [Ferguson 1959] some
functions are excluded the LOW language...
New model of linguistic functions for the languages of Haiti needed:
Vernacular Everyday communication and expression with
Vehicular Communication to external groups
Referential ~ Transmission of cultural heritage
Magico-religious ~ seek mediation from divine
Membership in social groups ~ Elite versus Mass
Symbolization of power relationships ~
French as a means of escaping poverty and low status
French as a means of excluding the mass; French is used as
a "filtering device to keep people in their place" (70).
Valdman 1988 continued...
Universal Grammar interlude...
Language conflict in Haiti, page 70
Dominance/Subordination relationship inherently engender
Social differentiation and unequal power cause the
majority to have "minority behavior and attitudes" (examples
Occitan/French; Catalan/Spanish; Creole/French)
Ambivalence toward vernacular
Self-hate toward own group
But attest strong loyalty and emotional attachment to language
Feel alienated from dominant group, but will invest in
acquiring French due to its symbolic function, role in
economic and social advancement
French as achte
French as lang blan and barye
Creole seen as symbolic of san enstriksyon
Haiti is still a LINGUISTIC COLONY
JEAN CASIMIR interlude
Valdman's evaluation of Creole's evolving functions:
1. Creole as lingua franca between white colonial establishment and
acculturated Creole slaves and the Bossal slaves. Function: vehicular.
2. Creole as subject to 'repidginization,' i.e. waves of new slaves
continually reduced and restructured the Creole they found
Classic example: the Possessive + Definite Noun Phrase
The earlier Northern variety:
Kay an mwen / Kay an m = 'my house'
'the house of mine'
Fre ran mwen / Fre ran m = 'my brother'
'the brother of mine'
The repidginization from the immigration waves
(c. 1750-c. 1790):
Kay mwen an /
Fre mwen an / Fre m nan
3. Creole as marker of Social Identity. For colonist: Symbolic of
Colonial life in contrast to 'metropolitan' life
4. For 'servile population': Gradual replacement of African languages
by Creole; extension of Creole into domains previously carried out by
means of African languages (Vodou). Creole as dominant language
over African languages.
Irony: Independence won by Creole speaking warriors followed by re-
establishment of linguistic symbol of white colonial rule.
Resolution of language conflict:
Substitution: Shift to dominant language; demise of
Normalization: Up-grading of subordinate
language through becoming
(1) Vernacularization of French
(2) Extension of French
Solution 1 is COST-INEFFECTIVE; Haitian schools are inadequately
equipped to pursue this
Solution 2 is COST-EFFECTIVE
Spelling system is efficient and logical
Language is more or less unified in Haiti
Language is increasingly home to VENERABLE and
PRESTIGIOUS culture institutions like art and religion
But: depreciative attitudes and other complexities hinder any
Only social transformation and political evolution can bring
about the advancement of Creole in Haitian institutions.
Haitian Creole Language and Bilingual Education in the US: Problem,
Right, or Resource? Flore Zephir
* Flood of immigrant students in US schools
* 1968 Bilingual Education Act
* Bilingual Education as "transitional" toward English
* Seen as remedial
* Originally more "politics than pedagogy" = channel funds to SW
* Bilingual Education Act of 1974, 1978, 1884 and 1988
* Gradual legitimization of bilingual education
Haitians Creole speaker are the third most numerous linguistic community
in NY City School system... Second in Miami?
"Home language instruction as a problem"
* Claims that such students face "cognitive problems"
* Cultural fragmentation or disruption, poor self-image and self-esteem...
* "ill advised and threatens the social and political stability of the US" (cited
in Cummins 1991)
* Roosevelt: "We have room for but one language here, and that language is
* Thorough acquisition of English advocated as the solution
But the validity of these claims can be challenged!
In fact: "developing bilingualism and biliteracy within a 'strong'
bilingual education situation is educationally feasible and can lead to
the obtaining of higher achievement across the curriculum for minority
language children, the fostering of self-esteem and self-identity, and the
formation of a more positive attitude toward schooling" (Baker 1993)
"Home language instruction as a right
Language as a fundamental human right
1,800 Chinese students versus San Francisco Board of Education:
"if these students could not understand the language used for instruction,
they were, indeed, being deprived of an education equal to than of other
Under US federal law, immigrant children who do not speak English are
entitled to a meaningful educational experience
Flore Zephir continued...
Second language instruction and maintenance as a RESOURCE:
* They can be exploited for cultural, spiritual, educational, economic
and political gain.
* USA: heedless monolingualism
(Strategic) language acquisition as a major US foreign
policy objective (if we don't understand the world, how can we
make peace with it?)
* Common Underlying Proficiency model of bilingualism: basic
skills are transferable in another
* A student who is confident and recognized in her or his primary-
group relates more positively to school and society
* Use of home language facilitates the development of critical
* Promotes metalinguistic awareness. Metalinguistic awareness
refers to knowledge on the structure and organization of language.
* Facilitates earlier reading acquisition, leading to higher
Lessow Hurley's 1996 findings (p. 228):
Transfer of skills from Li to L2
Primary acquisition facilitates second language acquisition
Students need time to develop!
Bilingualism/biliteracy has positive effects on achievement
Enhances self concept
Zephir's evaluation of bilingual programs:
* Poor quality, lack of commitment and understanding
Language is a central part of a person's being, IT SHOULD NOT
Dangerous labeling in schools.
'...it is an absolute fallacy to regrad all Blacks as a
Haitians consider themselves ethnically distinct
Haitians consider themselves to be multiracial
Linguistic assimilationist model has failed
Zephir argues that Haitians do not see assimilation as a viable
Status assigned to Creoles... deviant... dialects... underdeveloped...
Chomsky's Universal Grammar (1981, 1995):
I'm watching the film:
[IP I [I am [vp [v' watching [DP D' the [NP [N'film]]]]]]]
M ap gade fim nan:
[IP M [i ap [VP [' gade [Dp [Npfim]i [D' nan [Nti [N' ]]]]]]]]
Educators must realize: "this Black population has its own ethnic
identity and that its full-fledged language, Creole, is a strong
component of its ethnicity
Using Creole takes the foreignness out of school
Lowers the affective filter, i.e. the emotional filter that can block
Do we spend more now preparing people for academic success or
more later rehabilitating people?
We have the highest percentage of incarcerated people per capital in
the world: I GUESS WE'VE ALREADY MADE OUR CHOICE.
Symbol of hope and pride for many Haitian and Haitian-American youths and
Wyclef s exuberant display of the Haitian flag at his Grammy-win was
symbolic of the Haitian potential in U.S. cultural and economic life
Dramatically symbolic of (a certain type of) American dream, i.e. the
Song-writer, poet, multi-instrumentalist, entertainer...
Mastery and practice of various musical genres, i.e. rap, konpa, twoubadou,
ragga, reggae, gospel, rock... and fluently bilingual...
Wyclefs collaborative and unifying spirit:
T-Vice Live 2002: on the road, "MVP Compas,"
Dega Ba li gazzz, "I don't want to know"
Wyclef promotes the unity and equality of the "races" living in Haiti and the
Wyclef provides popular entertainment and education through music.
* Pan-African philosophy (Marcus Garvey)
* Haitian awareness and promotion of Haiti
* Conscious of social and historical injustices (sequencing Jean
* Lessons through narrative (stories).
* Master of pithy and catchy narratives that leave some room for
reconstruction and interpretation in the imagination. But remember: we
might read a good essay or poem several times, but we listen to Wyclef oh
so many times!
* Some gangster and sexist metaphors: "guns," "bitches"... (but this does not
* Where is our female Haitian mega-star
Haitian Culture and Society, Ben H. 3/25/2005
The Serpent and the Rainbow, Friday and Monday
Take home quiz on the portrayal of Haiti and Vodou in Hollywood and Harvard... (Anmweeev!)
1. List some things about the film that makes Haiti appear appealing.
2. List some things about the film that makes Haiti appear unappealing.
3. What different sectors of Haitian society are represented? Lower/Middle/Upper Class.
4. According to the film, does traditional Haitian religion and medicine have something to offer the
5. What exploitative/unnecessarily negative/false images on Haiti/Vodou are used in the film?
6. What are some of the places featured in the film?
7. What mythological/folkloric figures appear in the film? What are American parallels?
8. Explain the concept ofzonbi developed in the film, i.e. is the zonbi a monster or a victim? Explain
9. What political issues does the film raise?
10. What kind of link does the film make between Vodou and politics?
11. What are the strengths and weaknesses of this film?
12. Why do you think my first Haitian friend (a voodooist) loved this film so much?
Notes on Serpent and the Rainbow:
What features of vodou culture were exhibited?
Vodou wedding involving zotolan (doves)
Pilgrimages to natural and historical landmarks
Syncretism with catholicism
Poison and potion arts -
Makandal's 6,000 victims (Davis 1985: 162)
Poison in African secret societies and royalty
Maroons: between 1764-1793 48,000 cases of maroonage
In 1786 of 10,000 slaves imported, 2,000 escaped (Davis
Playful entertainment, pointless vilification of Haiti... both?
Metraux: Voodoo in Haiti, The Supernatural World
Great Iwa of African Guinea: Legba, Zaka, Ezili, Danbala...
Local spirits varying in name and attributes from community to
community: "Ti bout koulev"
The loa might have been expelled from heaven, but not before they
acquired many powers.
'spirits' (let's do it right first) 'devils' (by any means necessary)
men dwat men gach
oungan/manbo boak/choche & oungan/manbo (?)
English word 'god' fails to capture the 'snooping and comic' spirits who cheer
Papa Bondye as IMPERSONAL DIVINE
Lwa as PERSONAL DIVINE
Where do the loa come from?
Promotion of an individual to the status of Iwa: Makandal > Makanda
Promotion of an individual to the status nanchon: Dom Pedro > Petwo
Promotion of lwa through dream-revelation
Promotion of wife's "maiden iwa" into husband's family
Types of major ceremonies:
fivwt kach (whip cracks)
Originate in Haiti
or outside of Dahomey
Great force, roughness, ferocity...
Helpful and 'human-eating' spirits
Originate in Dahomey/Nigeria -
Rada is well-viewed; Petwo is viewed with some apprehension
The devotee expresses the character of a spirit in her/his movement and
Learning about the lwa requires watching the possessed.
Possession replaces statuary and holy images...
Vodou's heterogeneous origins create a diverse make up in the field.
The power of the loa ~ Metraux continued...
What powers do the loa have?
Hope and consolation in times of hunger
Warn of machinations of those who wish wrong
Protection from elements and bad situation
Vengeance in killing an enemy
Loa asks for a job for the possessed.
Banker loa who lend money to devotees (???)
Money given by possessed brings luck
Money a priest receives due to the services of a loa must be used for
the loa (except profits that accrue)
Money obtained from administering Zaka's services can be spent on
peas....Gede loans of interest...
How do you win favor with the loa
Sacrifice, offerings.., vow, participation in rites, compliance with
orders of the loa (See sacrifice in Hebrew religion)
Neglecting loa has consequences;
(See punishment and reward in Hebrew religion)
Loa are proprietors. The spared goat is still belongs to a loa.
Did you know?
Ezili can possess 2 people and her 2 incarnations can speak to each
One can be the butt of an angry loa; punishment varies
One is obliged to serve root-loa, but one can wait until financially
Illness, madness, persistent bad luck
Laennec Hurbon (2001), "The Catholic Church and the State in Haiti,
1804 1915 with added notes from:
Pwomes kominis ak esperans leglizpou Ayiti, Dr. Jules Casseus (1987)
Bon Nouvel, April 1986, December 1986, etc.
Haiti's international isolation includes the Catholic Church from
Hurbon's goal in historiography is to "present a new understanding" (155).
Few French priests survive the war and Dessalines
Many French priests were slave owners
Churches sacked, objects destroyed
Haiti's 1805 constitution (Dessalinian constitution):
Destroy church's privileges; marriage and divorce a civil affair
Note: Toussaint and the Church
* Roman Catholic
* He installs priests loyal to (the pro French revolutionary priest) Abbe
Gregoire. (Famous in French Linguistics for promoting universal French-
only education and for doing a survey of the patois languages spoken in
France in the 1790s).
Petion adopts Toussaint's pro-catholic constitution
Christophe seeks in vain for priests
* Seeks an agreement with the church
* He wants his own clergy, seminary, to appoint his own bishop of Port-au-
Prince, unconditional support from the priesthood...
Rome refuses to "betray" (???) [ read: do the right thing and reject]
French/international diplomacy (158)
His fall from power opens the way to the Concordat
France wanted to send French priests to Haiti
Role of Church for the Haitian state: "civilization" and "pacification"
Ideological control and acknowledgement of Haiti's independence
Church as "defense mechanism against racist attacks"
Civil strife was sometimes linked to Voodoo activists:
* Boyer's decision to pay the debt to France angered peasants and several
rebellions broke out:
* Voodooist Jean Jacques Aca in 1843
* The Church could quell this (162)
Support for the "schismatic" Church in Haiti is based on the failings of the
official Catholic Church in Saint Domingue.
The Church seen as ally to the colonists, and it was
The Church itself was content with itself in the 19th century and is partly to
blame for the long separation
Voodoo flourishes: lakou, ounf6
The Casseus (1987) review of Catholic history in Haiti
Native Americans, Zemes
Krist6fKolon 1492 at M61 Sen-Nikola, he plants a cross
Catholic religion is promoted in constitutions of
1806, 1907, 1816, 1846, 1849, 1950
Konkoda 28 Mas 1860: "fe lide politik kowonpi yo kontan" (32)
Major contribution of Catholic Church:
"li vize selman yon ti minority"
The Church over-emphasizes the ruling class.
However, liberation theology has been instrumental in various ways
Literacy, TKL, Bon Nouvel...
Hurbon continued (p 164)
Church needs State to establish itself as prestigious power
State needs Church to consolidate itself internally and externally
The "schismatic" Church's legacy in Haiti
The Christian-Voodoo "confusion" in Haiti (Msgr Robert)
But in reality the Christian-Voodoo syncretism in Haiti began at the
beginning of the slave period (circa 1690 or 1640...)
Soulouque OUT, Geffrard IN
The Church in Haiti, 1860-1915
Archbishop of P-au-P, Msgr Testard du Cosquer and 24 priests in 1860.
Suspended or priest not in agreement with Rome forced out.
Church wanted to be a peacemaker in political conflicts.
Given right to control its finances, sacraments and educational system.
Mark of period: persecution of the church
Church wanted to keep Soulouque out of power
Soulouque and black followers saw the concordat as tool of the
Suspended priests cause conflict
Church did not give preferential treatment to mulatto or black political
The Church resisted revolutionary movements and supported the
Seen as foreign power
Church expected autonomy but expected the Haitian state to pay priest
Government help organize parishes and bishoprics (170)
Black intellectuals started emerging from Catholic schools; they
expressed support for Freemasonry, divorce...
1900 Situation "normalizes" (172)
Several dioceses formed
Seminary in France
150 priests in 78 parishes
States signs education agreements with the Catholic Church
Period of prosperity, but:
Church marriages don't increase
Illegitimate children don't decrease
1864 Le Moniteur publishes a letter by Geffrard advocating the
elimination of Voodoo (especially in the city)
Church confronts syncretism: banishing of Saint statues
p. 177, paragraph 1
Jan Rabel 23 jiye 1987
Gwoupman Tet Ansanm
Ekip Misvone ~ Church groups composed of lay people
~ Church upkeep and administration
~ Small scale credit; cooperative
~ Farm supplies
~ Organized a pilgrimage of 3,000 peasants over 30
kilometers to visit Estati Lasent Vyej.
The conflict in Jan Rabel:
Their faction gained control of the hospital
Farm supplies impacted merchants' profits
Land disputes dating generations
Led law suits against grandon over theirfemaj on State-owned land
Reactionary sector of the Church, US embassy collude with grandon
Gage Averille, A day for the hunter, a day for the prey
Yon jou pou chase, yon jou pou jibye
Tropes in Haitian (political) music
Haitian social and musical life is steeped in
DIVISIVENESS. "A deeply rooted habitus..."
Bands display factionalism internally and externally
Heightens fan loyalties
Drama during kanaval
Topics for adversarial song lyrics
Spurs creativity and reaching new levels
"The synchrony experienced by audience members at a Haitian
concert, dance, carival or other events is largely based in the
expectation of (and desire for) collective participation and for
alignment with an event that 'heats things up.'"
Mete men nan 1I
Kenbe selile nan lb (Miami)
Sketch of konpa history
Harold Courlander [HOMEWORK]
on Folkways Records
78s start appearing
Joe Anson gives Haitian industry
a transnational structure (NYC)
ownership in artistic
Cuts the tie
Syndicat des Auteurs, Compositeurs, et Editeurs de
Bootlegging eclipses legal sales 4 to 1 in the insular market
"Pirate industry feeds large demand for cheap musical commodities
under conditions of intense poverty"
= Pay hommage in song
= Street party
= "Sound as power"
chan pwen/chante pwen