• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Critically discuss the three main models of Caribbean Society

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Critically discuss the three main models of Caribbean Society. By Name: Dahlia Grosvenor FD13A: Law, Governance, Economy and Society Tutor: Mrs. W. Jones Date: March 22, 2004 Each society is a product of the particular historical forces that shape it and give it form. Therefore, it is essential that in studying any society, in order to grasp a firm understanding of it, it becomes necessary to first study its origins. Throughout the vast literature about the Caribbean, three pervasive theories emerge in an attempt to explain the formation of contemporary Caribbean society. These theories or models have been titled as the Plantation society theory, the Plural society theory and the Creole society theory. The Plantation society theory is an attempt to explain Caribbean social structure in relation to the plantation experience. The plantation experience existed in the Caribbean for over three hundred years, along with which came the institution of slavery. Until the abolitionist movement came about in the 19th century, the Caribbean society was a slave society. Its base was the production of sugar cane, which needed heavy capital investments and cheap labour. This labour constituted at first of white servant labour, the poor whites, and felons of the society, etc. ...read more.

Middle

The distribution of political power is identical to the pattern of social and economic power. Beckford (1972) notes, although slavery has been abolished for over four generations, the basic structure in the New World remains very much the same. The plantation society theory then, gives a moderate understanding of contemporary Caribbean society, explaining in part how the society progressed socially, economically and politically and why it progressed in the way that it has. However, present day Caribbean society is moving away from the plantation slowly but surely and as a result the plantation society theory proves to be inadequate and according to Craig (1982) 'too simple and reductionist'. In an attempt to further explain the Caribbean society, the plural society theory, as applied to the Caribbean by M.G. Smith, maintains that these societies are made up of different cultural sections which all try to maintain their own values and institutions, only interacting in the marketplace for economic transactions. The plural society has come into existence because of the common economic factor. Each section shared the desire for economic advancement. Pluralism can be found in the plantation society whereby labour was extracted from different regions in Africa and also East India with their different cultures, language, social structure, political conditions and even religions and brought together for the purpose of working on the plantation. ...read more.

Conclusion

This can be seen in the establishment of the Barbados Landship, the various festivals such as carnival and cropover, the development of calypso, reggae and pan, the Creole languages and dialects of the Caribbean. Creolization however is sometimes seen as a loss of ethnic indigenous cultures and the adoption of inferior ones. The basic facts about Creole societies are that they were rooted in the political and economic dominance of the metropolitan power. It was colour stratified and gave moral and cultural superiority to anything European. However, the social system which grew up in the West Indian territories after emancipation was not European but Creole. Creole society was much more differentiated economically than the plantation society. The working class population was not drawn into the wage and consumer markets. A new class of merchants and shopkeepers constituted an important element in the society. The Windward and the Leeward Islands are an example of Creole society. The three main models of society account for different aspects of the contemporary Caribbean society and therefore give a more complete account of the Caribbean when integrated. However, as individual theories and as attempts to explain present day Caribbean society, they can be seem as limited, inadequate and rigid for an ever changing society, though the Creole society theory maintains the best model at recognising such change. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our University Degree Political & Economic Sociology section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related University Degree Political & Economic Sociology essays

  1. Racial Discrimination. I will discuss about the issue of racial discrimination in employment and ...

    percent from 60 percent in 2001 means that nearly half of all African Americans aren't working. Why is the national average rate lower than the African American unemployment rate? Why does half of African American do not work? Is it because they are lazy?

  2. 'Homelessness is an individual difficulty, not a social problem.' Discuss in relation to current ...

    and at least one in five homeless people have mental heath problems (ibid). Homeless people are often victims of crime and shockingly this is often by members of the public (ibid). 45% of rough sleepers have been assaulted at least once and one in three have been wounded at least once (IPPR/Crisis, Unsafe Streets, 1999 cited in Crisis, 2003:np).

  1. "To what extent do we live in a risk society?"

    Our anxieties do not exist independently from our perceptions of risks. What we consider here in the West to be a risk is moulded through values and norms in which vulnerability has become our defining condition. The 'What If' question dominates our perceptions, discourses, debates and theoretical thinking and captures the essence of our current concept of risk.

  2. A serial killer as defined by Brian and Wilfred Gregg in The Encyclopedia of ...

    It can be hard for a child at a young age to grow up in a family that neglects and/or verbally/physically abuses them; especially when the person of whom they look up to has so much hatred inside them. Most serial killers can be placed in two categories, the psychopath and the psychotic.

  1. Discuss the main influences in the development of social policy before 1945 with reference ...

    Wages were very low that savings did not exist; the money was more or less enough for their essential needs such as food, water, and clothing. The best prescription for the poor would be high-quality food, which was again far away from the financial possibility.

  2. "Outline the main features of the 'sociological imagination'. Using an example, demonstrate its value ...

    The consequences of this include the emotional, social and intellectual effects on all involved in the relationship break up, financial pressures of one-parent incomes and legal industries employed to enforce correct division of assets. This also affects the economy and government as more people are needed to be employed to administer divorce associated support.

  1. Outline who are the winners and losers in a consumer society .

    This has lead to an increase in the amount of rubbish being produced . This creates ecological implications, and so the environment is a loser in a consumer society. It is environmentally unsustainable for the earthâs resources to be used up in the making of products because the earth can

  2. Consumer society gives people choice. Discuss.

    We as a Consumer Society are very seduced by the power of advertisement. If goods or leisure services are advertised in the right way out attention is caught and the advertising agencies know this. The use of someone famous promoting the latest perfume or sporting equipment seems to work, and

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work