Haiti a 10 million population was the first independent nation of Latin America. Haiti is geographically located in the subtropics on the western third of Hispaniola, the second largest island in the Caribbean. The neighboring islands are Cuba, Jamaica, and Puerto Rico. The official language in Haiti is Haitian Creole and French. America is a melting pot of cultures, since there are people from various countries who live there. American and Haitian culture may differ greatly but they are also compatible in many ways.
Haiti is the poorest country in the western hemisphere. Majority of the country are at risk of hunger, malnutrition and lack medical supplies. In most rural areas the average family of six earns less than 500 per year. Whereas America is wealthy, has the highest income in the nation, and stable medical care. American and Haitian cultures share some of the same traditions such as music, dance, religion, and rites of passage.
Haiti and America share common symbols for instance the most noted national symbols in Haiti are the flag, Henri Christophe’s Citade, and the statue of Maroon Inconnu. The symbols that are important in American cultures similar to Haiti are the Unites States flag, the statue of liberty, and the White House. In both Haitian and American cultures men take up most of the job market. Even though in the United States women are making their way up their way up with the men. Meanwhile in Haiti, only men work as jewelers, construction workers, general laborers, mechanics, and chauffeurs.
Most doctors, teachers, and politicians are men however, in Haiti the medical field is made of women. Also in Haitian and American cultures women are responsible for domestic activities such as cooking, housecleaning and caring for the children and expect men to provide. (Haiti 2008) In Haitian culture society determine you social status by the amount of French word words you use when speaking, the type of clothing you are wearing such as western dress patterns, and if one straighten their hair.
In American culture social stratification is shown by the car you drive, the size of the house you live in, the job you work, and where you buy your clothes. In America students attend free public education but if your child attends private school that is usually a sign of greater social stratification. In America majority transport through a vehicle of which they own, but In Haiti majority of the country transport though some form of public ,and only the wealthy own their vehicle.. Parents pay for their children’s entire ducation and all children wear a uniform to school.
Furthermore, greeting is extremely important in the Haitian cultures. Those who do not greet are considered rude. Even people who are intimate with one another consider find it extremely rude to pass gas in the presence of others. People also go to great lengths to bath before boarding public places. In Haiti women and men are very affectionate toward each other to display friendship, but in America one may misinterpret that as homosexuality.
In my opinion, Haitian culture share the same core values as American culture such as, “achievement, success, activity, work, morality, freedom, and liberty”. Haitian culture focuses more on family, respect, loyalty, and hard-work however, as essential as those values are they could put more emphasis on “science, technology, individualism, and leadership”. The biggest culture difference I see is how strict churches are in Haiti when it comes to women wearing jeans or dress pants to church it is an absolutely no.
Marriage has extreme differences in the two cultures also. Even though marriage is expected in both cultures children outside of marriage is especially frowned upon in the Haitian culture. American culture puts a lot of pressure of men to be tough “macho”, but Haitian culture allow men to tear up, call things beautiful, and paint their nails clear without being considered soft or less masculine. (Kendall 2012) To conclude, the American and Haitian cultures have very vast differentiation between them, but are compatible in many ways.
The two cultures share common symbols, values, and traditions. However, differentiate in language, material objects, and social stratifications. American culture is highly diverse, including ethnicities and languages even though English is the country’s official language. French and English are spoken softer than Haitian Creole. Matter of fact Haitian Creole is spoken so vocal with such excitement it is often misinterpret as anger or attitude to people in other cultures.