May 31, 2007

Which Caribbean?

Francis WadeMany people use the terms “West Indian” and “Caribbean” interchangeably. Yet the question still remains, is there a distinction between the terms “West Indian” and “Caribbean”? Living Guyana thinks it’s “mere semantics”, while Wade uses the terms interchangeably: “Logically I know that Cuba, Haiti, Dominican Republic, Guadeloupe, and Martinique are Caribbean,” he says. “Caribbean primarily means English-speaking, Caribbean Basin country, but I include Bahamas and Belize in there although they are not really a part of the Caribbean Basin.”

Philp, on the other hand, has a clear distinction about the terms:

“West Indies refers to the former colonies of England – mostly English speaking. ‘Caribbean’ refers to the whole gumbo: English, French, Spanish, patwa, what-have-you speaking archipelago of islands, and the coastal regions of South and Central Americas. You could even extend the definition to places in North America such as the recently colonized Miami and the older cities in Louisiana and the Carolinas or Plantation America.”

Check out the rest of the discussion between Guyana Media Critic, Francis Wade, and Geoffrey Philp over at Global Voices



Jdid said...

i'll check the link later but my personal definition is if you participate in the regional cricket tournament you're west indies if not your just caribbean :-)

Karel Mc Intosh said...

Thanks for getting involved Geoffrey. I know you love these things.

Geoffrey Philp said...

JDID, that's the best answer I've ever heard! True-true.

the prisoner's wife said...

lol@jdid. comedy.

Karel Mc Intosh said...

J did. Add that comment to the GV post. It's a great discussion generator.

Mad Bull said...

I read this already... It was very interesting.