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Chapter 27 The Festive Culture of Trinidad and Tobago

DOI: 10.23912/978-1-910158-55-5-3024

ISBN: 978-1-910158-55-5

Published: February 2016

Component type: chapter

Published in: Focus on World Festivals

Parent DOI: 10.23912/978-1-910158-55-5-2822

Abstract

The twin island Republic of Trinidad and Tobago is simultaneously one of the most industrialized Caribbean nations and the home to the region’s signature annual Carnival, the largest of Trinidad and Tobago’s many festivals. 1 Currently the world’s leading exporter of ammonia, second leading exporter of methanol and the largest supplier of liquefied natural gas to the United States, Trinidad has a lifestyle, an economy, and a cultural diversity harvested from old world civilizations in Africa, Europe, and Asia – all keyed simultaneously to its industrial energy production and its rich festive calendar. A half dozen miles off the coast of Venezuela, this small island republic is partially defined by what it hovers between: urban and rural communities, a kaleidoscope of ethnicities and races, industrial development and multi-ethnic, multi-religious festive celebrations. T&T (as the Republic is often known) is poised between the demands of work and play (Riggio, 2004). Central to this lifestyle is Carnival, which in the late nineteenth century evolved as an African Emancipation celebration masked within the French Catholic pre-Lenten Carnaval (‘farewell to the flesh’). Popularly dubbed ‘the greatest show on earth’ 2 or, ironically, ‘the Mecca’ of carnival performances, Trinidad Carnival coexists with a wide range of ethnic, religious, and secular celebrations.

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Contributors

  • Milla Cozart Riggio (Author)

For the source title:

  • Chris Newbold, De Montfort University (Editor)
  • Jennie Jordan, De Montfort University (Editor)

Cite as

Riggio, 2016

Riggio, M.C. (2016) "Chapter 27 The Festive Culture of Trinidad and Tobago" In: Newbold, C. & Jordan, J. (ed) . Oxford: Goodfellow Publishers http://dx.doi.org/10.23912/978-1-910158-55-5-3024

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