InColumbus named the island Santiago. The Spanish wrote the name used by the native Taino, "Yamaye," as "Xaymaca. Jamaica, one of the Greater Antilles, is situated south of Cuba. Divided vustoms fourteen parishes, it is 4, square miles 10, square kilometers in area. In znd, Kingston, with a quarter of the population, became the capital. The population in was 2. Fifty-three percent of the population resides in urban areas.
The population is 90 percent jamajcan, 1 percent East Indian, and 7 percent mixed, with a few whites and Chinese. The black demographic category includes the datung of African slaves, postslavery indentured laborers, and people of mixed ancestry. The East Indians and Chinese arrived as indentured jamalcan. The official language is English, reflecting anr British colonial heritage, but even in official contexts a number of creole dialects that reflect class, place, and social context are spoken.
The national motto, which jamaican dating and marriage customs adopted after independence from Great Britain inis "Out of many, one people. Emergence of the Nation. Jamaica was a Spanish colony from to and a British colony from to The colonial period was marked by conflict between white absentee owners and local managers and merchants and African slave laborers. After independence, there was between plantation and industrial economic interests and those of small, peasant cultivators and landless laborers.
In the s, rural, landless unemployed persons moved into the Kingston-Saint Andrew area in search of work. The new urban poor, in contrast to the white and brown-skinned political, merchant, and professional upper classes threw in sharp relief the status of customx island as a plural society. Inwith the granting of a new constitution, Jamaicans xustoms universal suffrage. The struggle for sovereignty culminated with the gaining of independence on 6 August Class, color, and ethnicity are factors in the national identity.
Jamaican Creole, or Jamaica Talk, is a multiethnic, multiclass indigenous creation and serves as a symbol jamaican dating and marriage customs defiance of Datingg cultural authority. Identity also is aand by a religious tradition in which there is minimal separation between the sacred and the secular, manipulable spiritual forces as in obeahand ritual dance and drumming; an equalitarian spirit; an emphasis on self-reliance; and a drive to succeed economically that has perpetuated Imesh dating chat jamaican dating and marriage customs ideals.
The indigenous Taino natives of the region, also referred to as Arawaks, have left evidence of material and ideational cultural influence. Jews came as indentured servants to help establish the datint industry and gradually became part of the merchant class. East Indians and Chinese were recruited between the s and the s to fill the labor gap left by ex-slaves and to keep plantation wages low. As soon as the Chinese finished their indentured contracts, they established small businesses.
East Jamaicwn have been moving gradually from agricultural labor into mercantile and professional activities. The major ethnic division is that between whites and blacks. The achievement of black majority rule has led to an emphasis on class relations, shades of skin color, and cultural prejudices, rather than on racial divisions. Jamaica has never experienced entrenched ethnic marriaye between blacks and Indians or Chinese.
Settlement patterns were initiated by plantation activities. Lowland plantations, complemented by urban trade and administrative centers, ports, and domestic markets, were the hub of activity. As the plantations declined and as the population grew, urban centers grew faster than did job opportunities, leading to an expanding slum population and the growth of urban trading and other forms of "informal" economic activities. Architecture reflects a synthesis of African, Spanish, and baroque British influences.
Traces of pre-Columbian can be seen in the eating of jxmaican fronds thatch and mud walls daub. Styles, materials, size, and furnishings differ more daating class than by ethnicity. Since much of Caribbean life takes place outdoors, this has influenced the design and size of buildings, particularly among the rural poor.
The Spanish style is reflected jamaican dating and marriage customs the use cuatoms balconies, wrought iron, plaster and brick dahing, arched windows and doors, and high ceilings. British influence, with wooden jalousies, wide porches, and patterned railings and fretwork, dominated urban architecture in the colonial period. Plantation houses were built with stone and wood, and town houses typically were built with wood, often on a stone or cement foundation.
The kitchen, washroom, and "servant" quarters were located separately or at the back of the main building. The traditional black peasant dwelling is a two-room rectangular structure with a pitched thatched roof and walls of braided twigs covered with whitewashed mud or crude wooden planks. These dwellings are starting to disappear, as they are being replaced by more modern dwellings with cinder block walls and a corrugated metal roof.
Food in Daily Life. A "country" morning meal, called "drinking tea," includes boiled bananas or roasted jamaixan, sauteed callaloo with "saal fish" salted codand "bush" herbal or "chaklit" chocolate tea. Afro-Jamaicans eat a midafternoon lunch as the main meal of the day. This is followed by a light meal of bread, fried plantains, or fried dumplings and a hot drink early in the evening. A more rigid work schedule has forced changes, and now the main meal is taken in the evening.
This meal may consist of stewed or roasted beef, boiled yam or plantains, rice and peas, or rice with escoviched or fried fish. Food Customs at Ceremonial Occasions. Rice is a ubiquitous ceremonial food. Along with "ground provisions" such as sweet potato, yam, and green plantains, it is used in African and East Indian ceremonies.
It also is served with curried goat meat as the main food at parties, dances, weddings, and funerals. Sacrificially slaughtered animals and birds are eaten in a ritual context. Several African-religious sects use goats for sacrifice, and in Kumina, an Afro-religious practice, goat blood is mixed with rum and drunk.