The Central American country of Honduras has a rich and diverse culture that is an amalgamation of cultures of its different ethnic groups.
6. Ethnicity, Language, and Religion in Honduras
Honduras is home to a population of 9,182,766 individuals. Mestizos (those of mixed European and Amerindian descent) make up 90% of the country’s population. Amerindians, blacks, and whites constitute the rest of the population. Spanish is the official language of Honduras. A variety of Amerindian dialects are spoken by the indigenous population. Christianity is the religion of the majority. Roman Catholic Christians and Protestant Christians account for 46% and 41% of the population, respectively. 9% of the population do not adhere to any religion.
5. Honduran Cuisine
The cuisine of Honduras is a fusion of Lenca cuisine, the country’s indigenous cuisine, and several foreign cuisines like Spanish, African, and Caribbean cuisines. Coconut milk and coconut are widely used Honduran dishes. Some of the traditional dishes of the country are baleada (flour tortilla filled with mashed fried red beans), tamales, fried fish, carne asada (sliced and grilled beef dish), chicken with corn and rice, etc. Seafood and meats prepared with coconut milk are very popular in the coastal areas. The Hondurans also consumed a variety of soups like bean soup, seafood and beef soups, etc. Many tropical fruits like pineapple, plum, passion fruits, papaya, etc., are consumed in the country. Softs drinks are the most common beverages.
4. Literature and the Arts in Honduras
Like most other countries in the region, Honduras has a long tradition of storytelling. Fairy tales, folktales, mythology, etc., have been transmitted orally through generations of indigenous Hondurans. The El Cadejo and La Llorona are two of the most famous legends from Honduras. There was hardly any literature in the published form prior to the arrival of the Europeans. During Spanish colonial rule, the introduction of formal education gave birth to the earliest written literary works. They were mostly in Spanish and of religious nature. In the years that followed, literature in Honduras was significantly influenced by the sociopolitical changes in the Honduran society. A large section of the literary works also went unpublished due to volatile political conditions prevailing in the country. Today, Honduran writers and poets produce works in both Spanish and indigenous languages that cover a variety of genres.
Honduran also has a rich heritage of art and craft. The country has produced many well-known painters like López Rodezno who founded the National School of Fine Arts in Comayagüela. Many artists of the country have painted the Rain of Fishes, a yearly phenomenon where blind fish from underground caves rain down on land following a summer thunderstorm. Paintings of Honduran village street scenes by painters of the Honduran school of impressionist painting are also quite famous. Newspaper cartoons are a popular medium of exhibiting criticism. Dario Banegas is one of the country’s most renowned cartoonists.
3. Performance Arts in Honduras
Honduras has a varied music scene. Punta is the most popular dance and music style in the country. Other styles like salsa, reggae, merengue, and reggaeton are also widely heard. Mexican rancheras is favored in the interior rural part of Honduras. Modern Honduran music is popular in Tegucigalpa, the country’s capital city. Folk music shows are encouraged by the Honduran government. This type of music is played using marimba, guitar, and other instruments.
Carnivals, parades, and fairs are held throughout Honduras to celebrate religious festivals and other special events. La Ceiba is the most popular carnival in the country and involves week-long celebrations with music, special food, and exhibitions.
2. Sports in Honduras
Football, rugby, basketball, cycling, volleyball, etc., are some of the most popular sports of Honduras. Football is regarded as a national sport. The country’s national football team has performed exceptionally well in 1982, 2010, and 2014 FIFA World Cups. The team has also competed in the Olympic Games, UNCAF Nations Cup, Copa America, and other international football events. Some of the sports with smaller followings in Honduras are handball, softball, and athletics.
1. Life in the Honduran Society
Both men and women play prominent roles in Honduran society and participate in the workforce. Many women work outside the home and hold important positions in their areas of employment. Marriages in Honduras are usually based on romantic relationships. Household size ranges from nuclear to extended ones. Often, married couples live with their parents until they are able to finance a home of their own. Divorce and remarriage are only slightly stigmatized. Monogamy is the norm.
Hondurans greet each other extensively. They shake hands, kiss on the cheeks, or hug each other depending on the type of person they are meeting. They look strangers in the eye and smile. They also stand or sit close by while talking. Hondurans love to interact with friends and family and also make new friends out of strangers.
About the Author
Oishimaya is an Indian native, currently residing in Kolkata. She has earned her Ph.D. degree and is presently engaged in full-time freelance writing and editing. She is an avid reader and travel enthusiast and is sensitively aware of her surroundings, both locally and globally. She loves mingling with people of eclectic cultures and also participates in activities concerning wildlife conservation.
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