Write 5 pages thesis on the topic st. vincent: location, culture, religion, music. Britain and France both laid claim to the island but were mostly chased off. Then Britain gained rule over St. Vincent in 1763 and struggled with the Carib (who were egged on by the British) for over 30 years. Finally, Britain deported most of the African-looking people and let the Amerindian-looking people stay.
The capital is Kingstown. The population of St. Vincent is 120,000 people, comprised of the descendants of African slaves (66%), Carib Amerindians (2%), indentured servants from East India (6%), Portuguese, French, and British colonists (4%), and a lot of mixed blood (20% officially) (Central Intelligence Agency). There is a 96% literacy rate. Life expectancy averages 74 years of age (Central Intelligence Agency).
Friendship is of central importance in the culture. Letter-writing is extensively practiced, as a way to stay in touch with treasured people outside one’s village (Abrahams 296). Friendship is also reflected in the strong emphasis on conversation and the registering of minute details of each other’s lives. In fact, gossip is an art form in St. Vincent (Gullick 88), and talking is truly a cultural focus (Abrahams and Bauman 762).
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Conversation, especially with demonstrations of fluency and style, is part of the wider focus on decorum and spotless behavior (Abrahams and Bauman 763). Vincentians distinguish between sense (proper speech with courtesy, fluency, and logic) and nonsense (rude speech, illogical, ignorant, scandalous, and poorly spoken) (Abrahams and Bauman 764). Scandalous speech or song can if done really fluently, be elevated to a higher status, however (Abrahams and Bauman 765). Oratory is revered (Abrahams and Bauman 769).
Tea meetings are a good example of how oratory is honored, grounded in religious tradition. Tea meeting tradition comes out of 19th-century testimonial meetings, in which alternated choir music and religious speeches. In the St. Vincent version of this tradition, the scriptural speech portion has evolved into oratorical contests among the community’s highest status proper speechmakers (Chairmen), apprentices (Scholars), and most rude performers (Pit Boys).