A funeral in Haiti is an affair that might seem to an outsider, something out of a highly sensationalized plot. It invokes the same trappings of mainstream funerals in other countries, with the church, the body in the casket, the singing and scripture reading, but the differences soon become clear and can be quite an experience for someone who least expects it.
When someone dies in Haiti, burial is the only option. Organ donation and cremation are treated as abominations, as a body needs to be whole in order to be resurrected. And the belief in zombies, the dead-living created from evil intent or avarice, are the only reason, apart from suspected foul-play, why autopsies are sometimes practiced.
The "Haitian Joudalist" just heard something that is very upsetting. Even worst, it was revealed on May 18, the day we celebrate our flag, a symbol of unity and Black pride.
The Race issue is back in the Haitian society. That is if the information revealed by the Haitian politician and former president of the Democratic United Committee (Komite inite Demokratik, KID) is true. Mr. Evens Paul reported on the popular Radio show "Ranmase" that in an event taking place recently in the city of Milot in the North of the country, the Chief of Protocal responsible to organize the event wanted more children of mixed color in front because too many of them were dark; he ordered the black children to go on the back, moving the light skinned children to the front.
When Haiti's 2010 earthquake struck, the country lost more than hundreds of lives of its population; it lost its feminist leaders. Courageous, intelligent women such as Myriam Merlet of Eufofanm, Magalie Maralin of Kay Fanm, and Anne Marie Coriolan of SOFA. With their deaths, women's voices have become muted.
Modern Haitian feminist organizations were formed after Jean-Claude Duvalier was ousted in 1986. Their aim was to advocate for all women, regardless of economic status. Feminists were very proactive during periods of military rule or foreign occupation on the island, exposing atrocities being committed on women's bodies. Some of the crimes included rape, amputation, and other forms of brutality and humiliation. These acts were done to empower political factions and foreign interests seeking to rule or occupy Haiti.
Haiti's ethnic heritage is complex and has evolved well over two centuries, beginning with the original inhabitants, the Arawaks, followed by the Tainos, and finally the Caraibes. The Caraibes named the island Haiti. Although other names were attached to the island, Haiti has persisted as the modern appellation.
Haiti has been subject to four foreign invasions, or colonizations that began race integration. Spain was first, under whom the island was named Hispaniola. They brought slaves from the Congo to work the land. France was the second intruder, renaming Hispaniola Saint Domingue and battling Spain for control of the island. Spain eventually negotiated with France to rule the western half of Hispaniola. By now, Africans became the dominant race, over the indigenous Indians.
LGBT or Lesbians, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender community of Haiti managed to gather over 300 women and men whose sexual orientation is disgraced and greatly disapproved by Haitian society. This gathering was meant to ask the country to stop the discrimination against them. On May 17, 2012, a man spoke in Hotel Montana during the first National Congress of LGBT Population in Haiti where he said that he was proud to be the part of LGBT community.
This event was marked by the presence of the supporting institutions for the International Day against Homophobia. Some of the institutions which participated in the first National Congress of LGBT Population were: Kouraj, AIDS and Promoters Target Zero, Ministry of Public Health, FACDIS (Women in Action against Sexual Discrimination), Sérovie, UNDP, UNAIDS, movement initiator working with UNFPA (United Nations Funds for Population Activities) and Housing Works.
In the last week of May during a week-long celebration from Sunday through Saturday the Cubans showed how fascinated they are about the Haitian culture by devoting the whole week to the Haitian Culture. The news agency Presna Latina submitted a report on more than a century of Haitian presence on Cuban soil which infused the Creole language of Haiti into at least half a million Cubans and paved the path for sharing culture and art between the two countries.
Haitian Ambassador to Havana, Jean Victor Geneuse said that taking account of the migration of Haitians to Cuba since the birth of the first black republic of the world, the process of cultural copulation is natural. The migration started from the days of Revolution when the Haitians moved to Cuba to flee the bloodbath of the Revolution but later there were temporary waves of farm workers seeking work in coffee and cane harvest.
The Petion-Ville municipality came up with a strategic policy to attract international and domestic tourists to the city and to make it more dynamic. Promotion of the local products of Petion-Ville was also a part of the strategic policy. As a part of this policy, Junior Chamber International Innovation along with Town Hall of Petion-Ville invited people to attend the "Popouri Kiltirel Koulè Lokal" at Place Saint Pierre, which was held on 24th, 25th and 26th of May, 2013 at 5.00 p.m. It was the first revelation of the event "Popouri Kiltirel Koulè Lokal" for the year 2013.
The event was marked by exhibition of works of art and their sale, blood donation camps, screening, fashion, film, AIDS Candlelight Memorial, live theater groups and DJ. The three-day long event was the valuation of the heritage communal in both its intangible and tangible forms.
Haitian culture's emblematic figure, Franketienne is a Haitian teacher, painter, actor, writer and poet. He has authored 40 books in Creole and French that include names like Ultravocal and Dezafi. His exceptional work has earned him numerous literary awards and prizes. He was born in 1936 and his original name was Franck Etienne. When it comes to painting and art, Franketienne is known for his abstract and colorful work and very often he has been found to be emphasizing on red and blue.
Franketienne is a protagonist - larger-than-life type of protagonist and even during the days when Haiti succumbed to the dictatorships of Papa Doc and Baby Doc, he was never forced by his fear to step down of the National Stage. Franketienne compares a dictator to sado-masochistic relationship where a master is served by his slaves and the very existence of a master depends on the existence of slaves. However, Franketienne never related the historic Haitian slavery with sado-masochistic relationship because even though the master-slave relationship held true in those days, the only problem was that the slaves were considered to be expendable because of excess supply.
Haiti is among one of the world's poorest countries and THE POOREST in Western Hemisphere. Not only that, Haiti also records the maximum child mortality rate in whole Western Hemisphere. One child among every 8 children Haiti dies before reaching the age of 5 years. This translates into 117 children out of 1,000 births die under the age of 5. What kills them? Haiti is plagued by enormous poverty. 80% of Haitian live under poverty line and this leads to serious malnutrition issues. Healthcare facilities are also severely crippled with only 11 nurses and 25 physicians available for attending every 100,000 people. As a result, even preventable diseases like pneumonia, tuberculosis, malaria and diarrhea manage to show their dirty dance and claim several lives. Apart from this environmental hazards and social violence are also responsible for high child mortality rate.
Haiti culture is informed by multi-cultural influences. Religious traditions are grounded in Voodoo and Roman Catholicism. The melding of these two different belief systems arose when Voodoo was imported by African Congolese slaves. It soon became cross-bred with French and Spanish settlers' Christian practices.
Haiti's musical traditions have derived from Voodoo, Afro-Cuban, and Creole jazz-roots genres.
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