Jamaica

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Weather and Climate

In the Caribbean off the coast of Cuba is the country Jamaica. Jamaica's climate is tropical like most Central American countries. Tropical climates consist of hot and humid weather. The temperatures here range from 70-90 degrees Fahrenheit all year long with humidity around 70% or more.


During the dry/ warm seasons there is heavy precipitation with 75% chance of thunderstorms, 15% moderate rain and 11% light rain. While in the cool seasons there is only 6% chance of thunderstorms, 55% moderate rain and 36% light rain.

Characteristics

In Jamaica the highest point is Blue Mountain Peak. Raising 2,256 meters high above sea level it makes it the highest mountain in Jamaica.


The city of Kingston is the biggest city in all of Jamaica facing a natural harbor. It was founded in July 1692 after a major earthquake destroyed Port Royal. As time went on Kingston became the biggest trading city in Jamaica.


Hope Gardens serves as a national attraction. It is about 2,000 acres of land making it the largest botanical garden in the Caribbean. Hope Gardens is situated at the foot of the
Blue Mountain. In the past it was used as a crop testing facility for plants like cocoa, coffee, tobacco, and pineapple.

Culture

Language

In Jamaica, the main language spoken is English. There is a creole language named Jamaican Patois which derived in the 17th century when African slaves were exposed to different forms of English. Patois is the combination of the African language and the English language they were exposed to.

Folkways

There are many folkways in Jamaica. One of which is, in marriage, the spouse is made by choice and not arranged. It is common to get permission and approval by the family members of the spouse. Secondly, When addressing someone it is important to address them by their honorific title (Mr., Mrs., etc) and their surname. Along with this folkway there is a smaller one attached to addressing someone this way. One has to get permission to call one by their first name. Lastly, status is respected. They refer to higher authority by commonly using the terms bossman and bosswoman.

Food Taboos for children

It is thought that if a child eats chicken before the learn to speak, they will never speak at all. Secondly it is believed that eating half an egg will make children grow up to be thieves. Lastly If a child drinks milk out of a bottle it is believed they will become a drunkards.

Daily Taboos

In Jamaica smoking is strongly disliked and if wished to do so it has to be in public. Another taboo for Jamaicans is homosexuality and HIV. If one has HIV, their partner thinks of it as an act of betrayal, though there is a greater acceptance of people with HIV now.


In marriages, if anything is broken at a wedding it is believed that the marriage will break apart too.

Values

In Jamaican cultural values, it is common for children to grow up with their grandparents while parents work for better lives. It isn't uncommon for parents to migrate to other countries in search of better jobs to support their families back home.


As in many cultures, it has been a rule to respect your elders such as teachers, ministers grandparents etc. They impose the values on the children while they grow up in the communities. This is helpful for keeping the some of values the same from generation to generation while the the younger generations are changing.


In Jamaica it is common for the city of Kingston to have different morals and values of those in the country. As for working, jobs, status and home life can differ between city and country.

Subcultures

The Rastafarian

The Rastafarian believe completely in living off the land 100% of the time. They do not believe in going to the hospital when sick or scientific medications. To heal wounds they would take "sacred herbs" and chew them or rub them on their skin.


To the Rastafarian, everyone is equal and they have a strong standard of not discrimination. Along with little to no discrimination, the Rastafarian believe styling hair to look good is vain and unacceptable, hence the dread locks. Dread locks are part of the natural lifestyle in which they do not cut or chemically treat the hair.


Going against the most traditional taboo in Jamaica, the Rastafarian have a huge belief in the act of smoking marijuana. They believe it helps them live the calm, non-aggressive and stress free life.


Reggae music has helped the Rastafarian people express their values and beliefs. The most commonly known Rastafarian is Bob Marley, and in our society today, Snoop Dog, now Snoop Lion, has announced taking up the Rastafarian lifestyle and experiencing their non-aggressive life style.

Rude Boy

The Rude Boy subculture originated in the poorer parts of Kingston, associating with violent youths. The rude boys started wearing sharp suits and thin ties with trilby hats. Their fashion style helped create the image of American Jazz. Our American outlaw and gangster films helped contribute to the advancement in the Rude Boy style.

Cultural Landscape

With tourism, they have made multiple new roads that connect main tourist attractions. Jamaicans have physically made roads allowing tourist to travel easily across the island.

They have added many United States fast food restaurants to accommodate and attract tourist that want fast and easy food. Along with making fast food accommodations with food they have created many new tourist spots for a change in attractions. These cultural landscapes have added to Jamaicans economy, and allowing them to add more.

Cultural Diffusion

In Jamaica, they speak English. The English language originated in the United Kingdom and was spread into the areas that the British took over, including Jamaica. Along with English language came Patois, the combination of African language and English. With the migration of African slaves into Jamaica, they brought their language along to the Jamaicans.

With many Jamaicans migrating to the UK in the 1960s they experienced many different kinds of music along with reggae. Reggae was the popular music of the time and when they migrated back to Jamaica, they brought reggae back along with them.

Just a simple thing such as human migration, we bring over multiple foods, resources, jobs, employment, sports and many other things.

Home of Usain Bolt

Jamaica is home to the famous Olympic runner Usain Bold commonly referred to the fastest person ever. He is the first man to hold the fastest 100 and 200 meter record.

Cultural Changes

The Rastafarian movement has changed many of the Jamaican taboos. With the popularity of smoking marijuana with this subculture, this taboo is getting harder and harder to follow in Jamaica.

Along with smoking, homosexuality is being accepted more and more as the generation goes on.

Further back in history, the slave trade contributed to a lot of cultural changes. The cultures of slaves coming to and from many countries contributed music, jobs, resources, languages and many more. Each region that passed through may have contributed to the culture they have now.

Resources

Central Intelligence Agency. Central Intelligence Agency, n.d. Web. 22 Apr. 2015.

"Countries and Their Cultures." Culture of Jamaica. N.p., n.d. Web. 22 Apr. 2015.

"Jamaica - Language, Culture, Customs and Etiquette." Jamaica. N.p., n.d. Web. 22 Apr. 2015.

"Jamaica Weather & Climate." Jamaica Weather, Temperatures. N.p., n.d. Web. 22 Apr. 2015.

"Jamaican Living." : Jamaica's Cultural Landscape. N.p., n.d. Web. 22 Apr. 2015.

"You've Just Watched." The Daily Meal. N.p., n.d. Web. 22 Apr. 2015.