The Culture Of Barbados

The Blue Lagoon, Barbados.
The Blue Lagoon, Barbados.

The Caribbean island country of Barbados is located in the North Atlantic Ocean where it hosts a population of around 293,131 individuals. English is the official language of Barbados while Bajan is the English-based creole language that is spoken widely throughout the country. The vast majority of Barbadians are Christians with 66.4% of the population adhering to the various Protestant Christian denominations. Roman Catholics and other Christians comprise 3.8% and 5.4% of the country’s population, respectively.

5. Cuisine Of Barbados

The cuisine of Barbados reflects influences of Indian, African, European, and Creole cuisines. The typical Barbadian meal comprises of a fish or meat dish cooked with herbs and spices, salads, and hot side dishes. The Cou-Cou (a dish of cornmeal and okra) served with the fried Flying Fish with spicy gravy is the national dish of Barbados. Another popular traditional meal of the country is pickled pork served with spiced sweet potatoes that are called the Pudding and Souse. Rum, Banks beer, Mauby, fruit juices, tamarind drink, etc., are some of the popular alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages of Barbados. Foreign foods like pizza, burgers, and hot dogs, as well as Indian, Thai, and Chinese dishes are also consumed in the country.

4. Literature And The Arts In Barbados

Barbados has a rich heritage of oral literature that evolves around the storytelling tradition. Published literary works in the country were produced only recently in the 20th century. The literary magazine called Bim was the first published written literature of Barbados. It was released in the 1940s. Some of the well-known Barbadian writers are Edward Kamau Braithwaite (a poet), George Lamming (a novelist), and John Wickham (an essayist). The rich art scene of Barbados is supported by a community of artists who produce murals, paintings, sculptures, and other works of art. Popular crafts produced include mahogany items, pottery, and jewelry.

3. Performance Arts In Barbados

The music scene of Barbados is influenced by that of its neighboring island countries like Trinidad and Jamaica. Calypso, reggae, steel band, soca, and jazz are popular genres of music in Barbados. The country also has its own indigenous musical tradition called the tuk band. It involves the use of bass and snare drums, and penny-whistles. The Crop Over music festival is an important annual musical event in Barbados. It features Bajan calypso and soca music and dance performances. The Barbados Jazz Festival also attracts large domestic and foreign crowds. One of the most famous singers born and raised in the country is Rihanna.

2. Sports In Barbados

Cricket, basketball, and football are three of the most popular spectator sports played in Barbados. Cricket has been played in the country since 1894. The Barbados Cricket Association was started in 1933. Many players from the country have participated in the West Indies cricket team. The national basketball team has also been very successful. It was the only team from the Caribbean region to qualify for the 2006 Commonwealth Games and one of the few from the region to take part in the FIBA Americas Championship. Other popular sports played in Barbados include rugby, scouting and guiding, and windsurfing and kitesurfing.

1. Life In A Barbadian Society

Although the traditional Barbadian society was a male-dominated one, today the women of the country have also entered the workforce in significant numbers. The country’s laws protect the rights of women. However, women’s rights advocates cite that domestic violence continues to threaten the well-being of Barbadian women.

About 45% of the households in Barbados comprises of a couple and their children. Around 35% of the households are made up of a mother and her children. Often, three generations of women live in such households and it includes brothers, sons, and partners of these women. Single man households also exist but are rarer. The inheritance patterns exhibit both patrilineal and matrilineal trends.


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