Monday, January 26, 2009

Holidayz In The Bahamas:Part 1 "Junkanoo???"

So I spent the holidays in the Bahamas. I did a lot of the things while I was there> some are none of you business(lol). While other I am willing to share. As many of you know I ma born and raised in Nassau, the capitial of The Bahamas. I spent time with family, caught a tan and ate a lot of Bahamaan food. I also went to our annual festival called Junkanoo.

Junkanoo is a Bahamian cultural expression, which has been derived from our ancestry. It encompasses parades that are held here in the Bahamas twice a year, the 1st in January and 26th of December. In theses parades, we showcase this part of our culture in three forms: Music, Art and Dance.

There is a huge controversy about the origin of Junkanoo, as many historians have offered explanations for the origins and beginning of this festival.

The most accepted on is that the word “Junkanoo” comes from the name John Canoe, who was an African prince and slave trader operating on the Gold Coast in the seventeenth (17th) century. He was said to have outwitted the English and subsequently gained control of Fort Brandenbury. Therefore, the Dutch and English alike feared him. However, to the slaves, he was a hero and was worshipped and idolized by them. Those slaves who were brought here to the Bahamas kept up this distinct form of worship.

Others say, it was derived from the celebration that would happen during the master holidays, when slaves would take their master's "junk" and make it "new". Thus, "Junkanoo".

Regardless of the history, today, Junkanoo, Like Brazil's And Trinidad's Carnvial, is one of the greatest cultural events of not only The Bahamas, but also the world at large.

Junkanoo street parades are showcased only twice per year, Boxing Day and New Years Day. I went to both.

For more information on the history of Junanoo.

No comments: