April 27, 2023 5:00 PM to 6:00 PMUptown Campus
The island of Hispaniola, in the middle of the Caribbean basin, is one of only a handful of islands in the world that is shared by two independent nations with distinct official languages. Haiti, in the west, speaks Haitian Creole, and in the Dominican Republic in the East, Spanish is the official language. For more than 60 years, there has been a steady flow of Haitian migration to the Dominican Republic, with some scholars estimating that today there are upwards of 2 million Haitians and their descendants living in the Dominican Republic. This talk will explore the history of this migration and the complexities of the communities of Haitians who call the Dominican Republic home. It will also highlight the unofficial language of the Dominican Republic: Haitian Creole. How do Haitian migrants maintain this language in the Dominican Republic? And how has the Dominican government responded to this language in their legal system?