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Investigating Issues in the Caribbean

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Presentation on theme: "Investigating Issues in the Caribbean"— Presentation transcript:

1 Investigating Issues in the Caribbean
Module 3: Research

2 Introduction To investigate an issue is to study it formally using the research process. Why investigate?

3 Leadership or dominance, esp. by one country or social group.
What is the Caribbean? When we think of a region or a place that is called by a singular name e.g. Caribbean, North America, Europe, Asia we usually assume the term means there is a hegemony that ties the area together. he·gem·o·ny Noun Leadership or dominance, esp. by one country or social group. Read more

4 However The islands in the Caribbean region share similar geographic traits which tie them together. Similarities in it’s colonial history. But at the same time each island has evolved uniquely from each other with different languages, cultural adaptations to religion, food and dress as well as attitudes and ethnic diversity.

5 Map of the Caribbean Islands/Countries are within the Caribbean basin- Geographic area.

6 Read this excerpt from: The Caribbean in Brief
Imagine asking someone who lives in the Caribbean to describe the Caribbean. He or she could describe it in the way one would describe any place: by naming the landmarks that make up the area, and giving their relative positions. In other words, this person would paint a visual picture of what is physically there – like a mental map or a verbal landscape painting. Inevitably, the person doing the describing puts some things into the description, and leaves some things out, even landmarks that might seem blatantly obvious to others. It is often easy to tell a lot about the person doing the describing, or painting the picture, by what he or she puts in and what he/she leaves out. Likewise, there is a deeper significance to the picture anyone paints of the Caribbean, whether in words or in maps.

7 Then Consider: For an English-speaker, the word “Caribbean” most likely conjures up an image of the archipelago that borders the Caribbean Sea. If that English-speaker lives in a territory of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM), the Caribbean may then be seen to include the archipelago, plus Guyana and Belize, but nothing else.

8 Or For most Spanish-speakers El Caribe refers to the Spanish-speaking islands of the archipelago (Girvan 1999). For others, it describes all of the Central and South American nations which have coastlines on the Caribbean Sea.

9 And The French-speakers use of the term La Caraïbe tends to have a focus on the islands, particularly those of the Lesser Antilles. There are other names that are used for the region as well, such as the West Indies and Les Antilles. Though some people use these terms interchangeably with terms like Caribbean and Caraïbe, closer examination reveals that they have their own specific connotations and associations.

10 So… Even people who live in the Caribbean don’t have one specific idea of what the Caribbean is. There is no specific Caribbean Identity.

11 Defining the Caribbean
As a people however, in the eyes of the world and even to a large extent ourselves we have adopted a Eurocentric-North American imperialist definition of what and who the Caribbean is. im·pe·ri·al·ism the effect that a powerful country or group of countries has in changing or influencing the way people live in other, poorer countries . Read more

12 The truth is that the Caribbean only becomes a reality as we paint its picture in our verbal and written descriptions, and draw its maps. A place is not just an area on the earth’s surface, it really consists of three things: a geodetic location (a set of coordinates that position it on the globe) a material environment, and the subjective attachments that people have to it (see Creswell 2004).

13 So we have to use multiple definitions to describe the Caribbean
The Geographical Caribbean: Describes the area washed by the Caribbean Sea and is often described as the Caribbean Basin. It includes most of the islands of the lesser and greater Antilles as well as mainland territories in northern part of South America (Columbia, Venezuela) as well as mainland territories in Central America. The common link here is the Caribbean Sea.

14 The Historical Caribbean:
This describes the area that saw the impact of European colonization, slavery, indentureship and the plantation system. This refers to all the territories, so that one way of defining the Caribbean is to identify those countries that experienced the rule of specific European countries. So, the Caribbean may be defined as being broken up into: The English speaking Caribbean The French speaking Caribbean The Dutch speaking Caribbean The Spanish speaking Caribbean

15 The Spanish Speaking Caribbean

16 English Speaking Caribbean

17 The Geologic Caribbean:
This is not used frequently. It refers to the structural features if the Caribbean defined by the Caribbean Plate and the countries which experience similar tectonic, seismic and volcanic features and processes.

18 Activity Identify any errors or problems in three ways of defining the Caribbean Geographical Historical Geological 1. 2.

19 Compare your answers Geographical Historical Geological 1.
Guyana & the Bahamas do not have coastlines on the Caribbean Sea, yet both countries are commonly accepted as part of the Caribbean The ‘problem’ with defining “Caribbean” according to the linguistic or European heritage, is that it tends to ignore the commonalities of the Caribbean experience at the hands of these colonial powers The western edge of the Caribbean plate is located in the Pacific and includes Honduras, Costa Rica, Nicaragua and Panama in the Caribbean 2. This definition includes countries not normally associated with the Caribbean eg. Panama, Columbia, and other countries of Central America This definition would include Guyana and the Bahamas. It should also include the French, Dutch and Spanish speaking countries of the Caribbean and Central America. The northern edge of the Caribbean Plate defines much of Belize, Cuba and the Bahamas as extra-regional. Similarly, Guyana in the south.

20 Considering the diversity of the Caribbean
It becomes additionally important to examine the various issues that affect us as people: Economically Socially Culturally Globally

21 What are you interested in?
Why are you interested in this? Not interested in anything? Don’t know what to choose? Think…. What issues are affecting the Caribbean? What issues are affecting you?

22 Make a list of the issues you are interested in.

23 If you have questions or concerns please contact your teacher(s):
End of Session 1 If you have questions or concerns please contact your teacher(s):

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