Cultural Erasure, Retention and Renewal Essay

1276 Words Dec 26th, 2012 6 Pages
Cultural Retention, Renewal and Erasure Culture can be defined as the way of the life of a people, with regards to both the material and non-material aspects. However, as a result of a developing and maturing society, in addition to the birth of various generations and external influences, these “ways of life” can be inadvertently retained, renewed and even discarded. Our own Caribbean society, specifically Barbados is not exempt from such occurrences. Cultural Erasure is the gradual removal of various traditions and customs from society. The process of cultural erasure is gradual as these practices generally make a slow but noticeable transition from a state of prominence to a rarity in everyday life. In most instances, cultural …show more content…
For example, Pudding and souse, even now is known as a typical dish on Saturday afternoons while Rice, Peas, Chicken and Macaroni Pie remain as “Sunday food”. It is highly unlikely that these aspects of culture will be removed or forgotten anytime in the near future as they are a source of national identity and pride. In addition, cultures tend to be preserved if they benefit society financially. Throughout the Caribbean where tourism is our main source of income, any culture that is known for being successful in terms of finances will be preserved. A primary example of this would be Barbados’ Crop Over festivities. Not only do the locals find this festival entertaining and enjoyable, but the tourists share the feeling as well. The final segment of this discussion is cultural renewal. Cultural renewal stems greatly from the idea of “getting back to my roots”. This process refers to traditions and customs that, for the most part, may have been forgotten or neglected but may have been recovered as a result of a fresh desire for said traditions. Most of these customs may have been on the brink of erasure, until a group of individuals that share a common appreciation, seek to salvage a dying culture and hopefully utilise newer innovations, so as to gain the cooperation of others. In addition to this it could have been a custom that upon closer evaluation, benefits society in more than one

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