yourparentsjust asked: Do you know why there is tention between many Haitians and Dominicans ?
there’s a history of tension between DR and Haiti that isn’t so pretty, and the division is more complex than i had originally thought. it’s more than saying that dominicans are anti black. to say this is to ignore the notion of nationalism that took place in the development of the DR.
scholar Eugenio Matibag in Haitian-Dominican Counterpoint states five time periods that contributed to the island division:
- the colonial immigration of French settlers and Spanish colonizers and the delivery of enslaved Africans into a space already inhabited by indigenous ppl
- the Haitian Revolution in 1801 after which Haiti controlled the entire island of Espaniola/Hayti for 22 yrs
- Dominican independence from Haiti in 1844 in which Dominicans developed their own national identity
- Dominican Dictator Rafael Trujillo’s and his antihaitianismo until 1961, and Haitian Dictator Francois Duvalier until 1971
- the post dictatorship period
so basically, the tension grew out of many different factors. i think the main one is that, after Haitians won independence and controlled the island between 1822-1844, Dominicans, particularly those lighter skinned, felt they were being dominated by free blacks and wanted to have their own nation separate from black people. <this is my assumption.
another scholar, Dominican/Haitian Silvio Torres-Saillant in “Introduction to Dominican Blackness”, argues that the racial dynamics in DR is complex and distinct from the one we find here in the U.S. where racism is clearcut between white and black/people of color (poc),.but in DR it’s very complicated.
due to the history of slavery and the interracial rape and marriage between colonizers and the enslaved, a larger brown/mulatto class grew and moved up the ranks. this is why Dominicans are so racially mixed. Torres-Saillant calls this a “deracialized black consciousness” in which Dominicans do not necessarily identify so much as black as they do as nationally Dominican distinct from Haitians.
it’s interestin to note tho that Hispaniola/Hayti is the only island in the Caribbean to be divided into two nations.
also, it was Haiti that abolished slavery in DR. so why do many Dominicans want to hold onto an elitist, colonizer white European identity? somethin to think about. read the above linked publications for more info.
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