Culture refers to the total way of life that is learnt and shared by any society. It is the combination of the arts, customs beliefs and institutions created by a group of people at a particular time and place which forms part of our cultural heritage.
Our cultural heritage includes everything that has been handed down to us by our ancestors that continues to affect our patterns of behaviour and the way we live. However, for a thought or action to be considered cultural, it must be commonly shared by some population or group of individuals. It includes the way we dance or sing or play music. It is the way we speak, the expressions and the languages we use. It is the special foods we cook, and the way they are prepared. It is the stories that we tell or write about ourselves and the land around us. It is the toys and handicrafts we create, the way we build our homes and the traditional methods we use to fish or farm. Our culture is made up of all these things, it even includes the way we enjoy ourselves. A great aspect of our culture is our folklore such as; Clowns, Moko-Jumbies, Masquerade, Bull, and Actors. All come on display in the tremendous exuberance at Christmas time during our carnival to entertain and educate the community about our culture.
The Traditional Masquerade Performing Arts of St. Kitts and Nevis emerged in the early 17 th Century embracing the deep cultural roots and traditions of Europe and the Americas but are distinctly African in interpretation.
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REFLECTIONS ON THE CULTURAL HERITAGE OF ST. KITTS AND NEVIS
by Larry Armony
What is „Culture‟? We humans inhabit a world made up of oceans and seas, land, an atmosphere, plants, other animals, forests, mountains, deserts and other physical or natural components. Some of these have been and are being used and abused in the quest to provide the needs of survival: food, shelter, energy. We interact with each other through codes of conduct which we have formulated; and try to make sense of it all through rituals and belief systems we have constructed or which have been revealed to us. Read More >>
ST. KITTS MAS’ AND THE SPIRIT OF CHRISTMAS
Carnival preceding Lent has always had a spiritual dimension especially as it relates to Catholic countries but the holding of Carnival at Christmas, a major event in the Christian calendar, might for those same societies seem a sacrilege! For Kittitians however there is little contradiction between the singing of carols and joyous church services celebrating the birth of the Christ Child and the enjoyment of the activities and performances associated with Carnival. The centuries old masquerade tradition of the Christmas Sports such as the Bull, Masquerade, Moko Jumbie, and Mummies blended with the more recently introduced Trinidad style elements makes it logical for Carnival, as it has come to be known, be held at this time of year. Read More
THE REVOLUTION IN EDUCATION IN THE 1960′s
The island of St.Kitts has had a long history of being the first to experience certain events and occurrences in the Eastern Caribbean. Archaeological evidence indicates that this small island has been continuously inhabited for some 5000 years ago. It was on Liamuiga in the early 17th Century that both English and the French chose to establish their first colonies of St. Christopher/ St. Christophe from which they spread their empire and influence in the region. The first documented African Slave rebellion in the Eastern Caribbean took place here in 1639 on the French part of the island. Read More