The island was settled by the Arawak
arriving from South America in the 5th century. The Kalinago
displaced the Arawak by the 15th century. Columbus
is said to have passed the island on Sunday, 3 November 1493. It was later colonised by Europeans, predominantly by the French from the 1690s to 1763. The French imported enslaved people from West Africa to Dominica to work on coffee plantations. Great Britain
took possession in 1763 after the Seven Years' War
, and it gradually established English as its official language. The island gained independence as a republic in 1978.
Dominica has been nicknamed the "Nature Isle of the Caribbean" for its natural environment.
It is the youngest island in the Lesser Antilles, and in fact it is still being formed by geothermal
activity, as evidenced by the world's second-largest hot spring
, called Boiling Lake
. The island has lush mountainous rainforests
, and it is the home of many rare plants, animals, and bird species. There are xeric
areas in some of the western coastal regions, but heavy rainfall occurs inland. The sisserou parrot
, also known as the imperial amazon and found only on Dominica, is the island's national bird and featured on the national flag
, which is one of only two national flags containing the colour purple (the other being Nicaragua
The country is a member of the Commonwealth of Nations
, the United Nations
, the Organization of American States
and the Non-Aligned Movement
Dominica's name is locally pronounced with emphasis on the third syllable,
related to its French name of Dominique
and the Spanish pronunciation of its name.
Dominica first emerged from the sea during the Oligocene
era approximately 26 million years ago, making it one of the last Caribbean islands to be formed by volcanic activity
Pre-colonial period and early European contact
Dominica's precolonial indigenous inhabitants were the Island Carib
people, who are thought to have driven out the previous Arawak
The Caribs called the island Wai‘tu kubuli
, which means "Tall is her body."
, sailing for Spain
, named the island as Dominica, after the Latin
term dies Dominica
, the day on which the Spanish first saw it in November 1493.
Some Spanish colonisers settled here. But, as European explorers and settlers entered the region, indigenous refugees from surrounding islands settled Dominica and pushed out the Spanish settlers. The Spanish instead settled other areas that were easier to control and had more natural resources.
Spain had little success in colonising Dominica. In 1632, the French Compagnie des Îles de l'Amérique
claimed it and other "Petites Antilles"
, but no physical occupation took place.
Between 1642 and 1650, French missionary Raymond Breton
became the first regular European visitor to the island.
In 1660, the French and English agreed that Dominica and St. Vincent
should not be settled, but instead left to the Carib as neutral territory.
But its natural resources attracted expeditions of English and French foresters, who began harvesting timber.
In 1690, the French established their first permanent settlements. French woodcutters from Martinique
began to set up timber camps to supply the French islands with wood, and they gradually became permanent settlers. They brought the first enslaved Africans from West Africa to Dominique
, as they called it in French.
In 1715, a revolt of "poor white" smallholders in the north of Martinique, known as La Gaoulé,
caused settlers to migrate to southern Dominique, where they set up smallholdings
. Meanwhile, French families and others from Guadeloupe settled in the north. In 1727, the first French commander, M. Le Grand
, took charge of the island with a basic French government. Dominique formally became a colony
of France, and the island was divided into districts or "quarters".
The French had already developed plantation agriculture on Martinique and Guadeloupe, where they cultivated sugarcane
with enslaved African workers. In Dominique they gradually developed coffee plantations. They imported so many African slaves
to fill the labour demands that the population became predominantly African in ethnicity.
In 1778 the French, with the active co-operation of the population, began the re-capture of Dominica
This was ended by the Treaty of Paris (1783)
, which returned the island to British control. But the island population, especially the class of free people of color
, resisted British restrictions. The British retained control through French invasions in 1795 and 1805,
the first taking place during the period of the Haitian Revolution
, which gained the independence of Haiti (formerly Saint-Domingue, France's richest Caribbean colony).
A linen market in 1770s Dominica
Great Britain established a small colony in 1805. It used Dominica as part of the triangular trade
, by which slaves were imported and sold as labour in the islands as part of a trade that included producing and shipping sugar and coffee as commodity crops to Europe. The best documented slave plantation on the island is Hillsborough Estate, which had 71 male and 68 female slaves. The Greg
family were notable: Thomas Hodgson, a brother-in-law, owned a slave ship, and Thomas Greg and his son John Greg were part-owners of sugar plantations
on Dominica. In January 1814, 20 slaves absconded from Hillsborough. They were recorded as recaptured and punished with 100 lashes applied to the males and 50 for the females. The slaves reportedly said that one of their people had died in the plantation hospital, and they believed he had been poisoned.
With freedom came enfranchisement. In 1835, the first three men of African descent were elected to the legislative assembly of Dominica. Many slaves from the neighbouring French colonial islands of Guadeloupe and Martinique fled to Dominica. In 1838, Dominica became the first colony of the British West Indies
to have an elected legislature controlled by an ethnic African majority. Most of these legislators had been free people of colour and smallholders or merchants before the abolition of slavery. Their economic and social views were different from the interests of the small, wealthy English planter
class. Reacting to a perceived threat to their power, the planters lobbied for more direct British rule.
In 1865, after much agitation and tension, the colonial office replaced the elective assembly with one made up of one-half members who were elected and one-half who were appointed. Planters, who were allied with colonial administrators, outmanoeuvred the elected legislators on many occasions. In 1871, Dominica became part of the British Leeward Islands
. The political power of the ethnic African population progressively eroded. Crown colony
government was re-established in 1896. All political rights were curtailed for people of colour and blacks, who were the overwhelming majority of the population. Development aid, offered as compensation for disfranchisement, resulted in negligible improvements in conditions for most ethnic Africans.
Early 20th century
In World War I
, many Dominicans, mainly the sons of small farmers, volunteered to fight in Europe for the British Empire. After the war, an upsurge of political consciousness throughout the Caribbean led to the formation of the Representative Government Association
. Marshaling public frustration with the lack of a voice in governing Dominica, this group won one-third of the popularly elected seats of the legislative assembly in 1924, and one-half in 1936. In 1940, administration of Dominica was transferred from the British Leeward Islands
to the British Windward Islands
During World War II
, some Dominicans volunteered in British and Caribbean forces. Thousands of Free French
refugees from Martinique and Guadeloupe escaped to Dominica from the Vichy
-controlled French islands, staying in Roseau
and other villages.
Until 1958, Dominica was governed as part of the British Windward Islands
. Caribbean islands sought independence from 1958 to 1962, and Dominica became a province of the short-lived West Indies Federation
After the federation dissolved in 1962, Dominica became an associated state of the United Kingdom in 1967, and formally took responsibility for its internal affairs.
On 3 November 1978, the Commonwealth of Dominica was granted independence as a republic
, led by Prime Minister Patrick John
In mid-1979, political discontent with Founding Prime Minister Patrick John's administration climaxed in a civilian coup and ended in the passage of a Motion of No Confidence in the House of Assembly, Dominica's legislature, against John, collapsing the John administration. A new, so-called "Interim Government" was formed under Dominica's second Prime Minister Oliver Seraphin
Seraphin's main task was to prepare the country for fresh general elections constitutionally due in 1980, hence the unofficial title "Interim" Prime Minister. Seraphin organized and led a splinter of the Dominica Labour Party called the Democratic Labour Party into the 1980 general election and lost mainly because his nearly thirteen month-long premiership was dominated by the fallout from Category Five Hurricane David
, which caused 56 deaths and untold damage across the island. Hurricane Allen
the following year caused further damage.
After the 1980 election
, Seraphin's government was replaced by one led by the Dominica Freedom Party
(DFP) under Prime Minister Eugenia Charles
; she was the Caribbean's first female Prime Minister.
In 1981, Charles's government was threatened with two attempted coups. The first was led by Frederick Newton
, commander of the Military of Dominica
, who organised an attack on the police headquarters in Roseau which resulted in the death of a police officer.
Newton and five other soldiers were found guilty in the attack and sentenced to death in 1983; the sentences of the five accomplices were later commuted to life in prison, but Newton was executed in 1986.
A second occurred later in the year when the country was threatened with a takeover by mercenaries
in Operation Red Dog
, led by Mike Perdue
and Wolfgang Droege
. They tried to overthrow Charles as Prime Minister and reinstall ex-Prime Minister John in exchange for control over the country's development. The FBI
was tipped off, and the ship hired to transport the mercenaries never left dock. The mercenaries lacked formal military experience or training, and most of the crew had been misled into joining by the ringleader Mike Perdue. White supremacistDon Black
was also jailed for his part in the attempted coup, which violated US neutrality
The Charles government supported the 1983 American Invasion of Grenada
, earning Dominica praise from the Reagan administration and an increase in financial aid.
By the middle of the 1980s, the economy had begun to recover,
before weakening again due to a decrease in banana
prices. Eugenia Charles won the 1985
general election, becoming only the first incumbent Dominica Prime Minister to be popularly re-elected. The continuing downturn in the economy and the tight grip by Eugenia Charles on Dominica politics gave rise to a self-titled "Third Force" political formation in 1988, which disrupted the traditional two-party arrangement of governing DFP and opposition DLP. "Third Force" soon formalized as United Workers Party and selected as its leader Edison James, the former General Manager of the Dominica Banana Marketing Company. This was a strategic selection given James's prestige among banana farmers and his originating from the East or Atlantic Coast that had begun to feel alienated by the West or Caribbean Sea Coast elites in Roseau, Dominica's capital.
Eugenia Charles again won the 1990
general election, the first incumbent Dominica Prime Minister to win three consecutive general elections. However, Eugenia Charles's DFP had been pushed to within one seat of losing its majority in Parliament by the emergence of the UWP. It was, therefore, no great surprise when Eugenia Charles gave up political leadership of the Dominica Freedom Party in 1993 and did not contest the 1995 general election in any capacity. No longer benefiting from the veteran charismatic leadership of Prime Minister Eugenia Charles, the Dominica Freedom Party lost the 1995 election
to the United Workers' Party
(UWP), whose leader Edison James
became Prime Minister.
James, former General Manager of the Dominica Banana Marketing Company attempted to diversify the Dominican economy away from over-reliance on bananas. The crop was largely destroyed by Hurricane Luis
Further James was unable to restore banana to its former selling price and prestige. Moreover, the James administration became embroiled in Opposition charges of official corruption.
In the 31 January 2000 general election
, the UWP were defeated by a coalition of the DLP, led by left-leaning Roosevelt B. "Rosie" Douglas
and the Dominica Freedom Party led by former trade union leader, Charles Savarin
. Douglas became Prime Minister. One UWP member of the House of Assembly crossed the floor, joining the DLP-DFP coalition government. However, Douglas died on 1 October 2000 after only a few months.
Prime Minister Douglas was replaced by Pierre Charles
, who also died in office on 6 January 2004. Roosevelt Skerrit
, also of the DLP, replaced Pierre Charles as Prime Minister, becoming the world's youngest head of government at thirty-one.
Under Skerrit's leadership, the DLP won elections in May 2005
that gave the party 12 seats in the 21-seat Parliament, to the UWP's 8 seats. An independent candidate affiliated with the DLP won a seat as well. Later, the independent candidate joined the government.
With his 2005 election win, Skerrit became only the second incumbent Prime Minister of seven to be popularly re-elected.
In the 2009 election
, the DLP won 18 of 21 seats. The UWP claimed campaign improprieties and embarked on a wide range of protest actions, including boycott of Parliament. UWP's boycott lasted at least three unauthorized absences from Parliament for two of their three Elected Representatives in Parliament in violation of Parliamentary procedure, leading to their two seats being declared vacant and by-elections being called to fill them; by-elections were conducted for those two vacant seats in July 2010, and the UWP again won both seats.
The DLP under Skerrit went on to win the 2014 Dominican general election
On 17 September 2012 Eliud Thaddeus Williams
was sworn in as President (a largely ceremonial role), replacing Dr. Nicholas Liverpool
who was reportedly removed from office due to ill health. On 30 September 2013 former Trade Union leader and former Dominica Freedom Party leader Charles Savarin was elected president having only days before resigned as a Minister of Government.
Damage in Roseau
caused by Hurricane Maria in 2017
Tropical Storm Erika
devastated the island in August 2015, killing 30 and causing severe environmental and economic damage
Dominica was again struck on 18 September 2017, suffering a direct landfall from Category 5 Hurricane Maria
Early estimates of damage suggested 90% of the buildings on the island had been destroyed, with infrastructure left in ruins.
The UK, France and the Netherlands set up shipping and air lifts to take aid to the island; the scale of destruction having left most people homeless.
The current Prime Minister of the Commonwealth of Dominica, Roosevelt Skerrit
In December 2019, incumbent Prime Minister Roosevelt Skerrit won his fourth consecutive general election eighteen seats to three, becoming the first Dominica Prime Minister ever to do so.
Geography and climate
Map of Dominica.
Known as "The Nature Island of the Caribbean" due to its lush scenery and varied flora and fauna, Dominica is largely covered by rainforest
and is home to the world's second-largest hot spring
, Boiling Lake
Within its borders lie two ecoregions: Windward Islands moist forests and Windward Islands xeric scrub.
The most mountainous of the Lesser Antilles, its volcanic peaks are cones of lava craters, the largest of these being (north-to-south) Morne aux Diables
, Morne Diablotins
(the highest on the island at 1,447 m), Morne Trois Pitons
and Morne Anglais
. Morne Trois Pitons National Park
is a tropical forest blended with volcanic features;
it was recognised as a World Heritage Site
on 4 April 1995, a distinction it shares with four other Caribbean islands.
area in the country's northeast has sandy beaches.
Some plants and animals thought to be extinct on surrounding islands can still be found in Dominica's forests.
The island has several protected areas
, including Cabrits National Park
, as well as 365 rivers. For a few years the government sought to encourage the island as an ecotourism
destination, although the hurricane of 2017 has since changed these plans.
The country had a 2018 Forest Landscape Integrity Index
mean score of 1.06/10, ranking it 166th globally out of 172 countries.
There are two primary population centres: the capital Roseau
(with 14,725 inhabitants in 2011) and Portsmouth
(with 4,167 inhabitants in 2011). The main centres tend to be located around the coast, with the mountainous interior sparsely populated.
Dominica is especially vulnerable to hurricanes
as the island is located in what is referred to as the hurricane region.
In 1979, Hurricane David
struck the island as a Category 4 hurricane, causing widespread and extreme damage. On 17 August 2007, Hurricane Dean
, a Category 1 hurricane at the time, hit the island. A mother and her seven-year-old son died when a landslide
caused by the heavy rains crushed their house.
In another incident two people were injured when a tree fell on their house. Prime Minister Roosevelt Skerrit
estimated that 100 to 125 homes were damaged, and that the agricultural sector was extensively damaged, in particular the banana crop.
In August 2015, Tropical Storm Erika
caused extensive flooding and landslides across the island. Multiple communities were evacuated and upwards of 30 people were killed.
According to a Rapid Damage and Impact Assessment prepared for Dominica by the World Bank, the total damage and losses from the storm were US$484.82 million or 90% of Dominica's yearly GDP.
Category 5 Hurricane Maria
struck the island in 2017 and caused losses of approximately US$930 million or 226% of GDP.
The Sisserou parrot
) is Dominica's national bird and is endemic
to its mountain forests.
A related species, the Jaco or red-necked parrot
), is also a Dominican endemic.
Both birds are rare and protected, though some forest is still threatened by logging in addition to the long-standing threat of hurricanes.
Dominica has recorded at least four species of snakes and 11 species of lizards.
Dominica is home to 195 species of birds, because of the isolated location of Dominica this is a lesser number compared to Trinidad
which is located closer to mainland South-America
with 472 bird species.
The Commonwealth of Dominica is engaged in a long-running dispute with Venezuela
over Venezuela's territorial claims to the sea surrounding Isla Aves
(literally Bird Island, but in fact called 'Bird Rock' by Dominican authorities),
a tiny islet located 140 miles (225 km) west of the island of Dominica.
Dominica is divided into 10 parishes
, given below with their 2011 Census populations:
- Saint Andrew Parish (9,471)
- Saint David Parish (6,043)
- Saint George Parish (21,241)
- Saint John Parish (6,561)
- Saint Joseph Parish (5,637)
- Saint Luke Parish (1,668)
- Saint Mark Parish (1,834)
- Saint Patrick Parish (7,622)
- Saint Paul Parish (9,786)
- Saint Peter Parish (1,430)
Graphical depiction of Dominica's product exports in 28 colour-coded categories.
Dominica's currency is the East Caribbean Dollar
. In 2008, Dominica had one of the lowest per capita gross domestic product
(GDP) rates of Eastern Caribbean states.
The country nearly had a financial crisis in 2003 and 2004, but Dominica's economy grew by 3.5% in 2005 and 4.0% in 2006, following a decade of poor performance. Growth in 2006 was attributed to gains in tourism, construction, offshore and other services, and some sub-sectors of the banana industry. Around this time the International Monetary Fund
(IMF) praised the Government of Dominica for its successful macroeconomic reforms, but also pointed out remaining challenges, including the need for further reductions in public debt, increased financial sector regulation, and market diversification.
Agriculture and especially bananas once dominated Dominica's economy,
and nearly one-third of the labour force worked in agriculture in the early 2000s. This sector, however, is highly vulnerable to weather conditions and to external events affecting commodity prices. In 2007, Hurricane Dean
caused significant damage to the agricultural sector as well as the country's infrastructure, especially roads.
In response to reduced European Union
(EU) trade preferences
for bananas from the former European colonies after the 2009 WTO
the government has diversified the agricultural sector by promoting the production of coffee, patchouli
, aloe vera
, cut flowers, and exotic fruits such as mango, guava and papaya,
while the economy has become increasingly dependent on tourism.
The expected increase of Dominica's Citizenship by Investment
(CBI) fees has been suspended with no implementation date in sight, as announced by Prime Minister Roosevelt Skerrit, in the 2016 budget speech.
Financial services industry
Starting in the mid-late 1990s, offshore financial centres
, such as the Commonwealth of Dominica, came under increasing pressure from the OECD
for their allegedly harmful tax regimes, where the OECD wished to prevent low-tax regimes from having an advantage in the global marketplace. The OECD threatened to place the Commonwealth of Dominica and other financial centres
on a "black list" and impose sanctions against them. However, the Commonwealth of Dominica successfully avoided being placed on the OECD black list by committing to regulatory reform to improve transparency and begin information exchange with OECD member countries about their citizens.
Dominica supposedly offers tax-free status to companies relocating from abroad. It is not known how many companies benefit from the tax-free status because of the strict confidentiality the government enforces, although it is known many Internet
businesses and hedge funds
utilise Dominica for this reason. However, on 12 July 2012 Dominica signed an agreement with Poland to exchange tax information.
The Commonwealth of Dominica offers an official and legally mandated economic citizenship
to those seeking a valid second citizenship. The nationality law of Dominica authorises the government to waive the normal requirement of seven years of legal residence to acquire citizenship in exchange for an investment into their country's economy. The required contribution for a main applicant starts at US$100,000 through the Economic Diversification Fund.
Alternatively, since 2014, applicants can make a US$200,000 minimum investment in pre-approved real estate from island exclusive resorts or global brands like Marriott, Kempinski or Hilton.
According to officials, the citizenship by investment
(CBI) programme was an economic and fiscal "lifeline" in the aftermath of Tropical Storm Erika in 2015 and Hurricane Maria in 2017, and its new investment option had become the main source of Foreign Direct Investment
into Dominica by early 2016.
Dominican citizens can travel without a visa, or obtain a visa upon entry, to nearly 140 countries and territories, including the United Kingdom and the Schengen Zone.
Applying for Dominica citizenship requires interacting with official Government Approved Economic Citizenship Agents as the first step in the application process.
This program is currently valued at 16% of the government's total revenue.
The government's management of the economic citizenship programme and an initial perceived lack of transparency in the use of the revenues generated are a frequent topic of heated domestic political controversy. Referring to the opposition, Prime Minister Skerrit in 2016 stated that "If they can discredit the Citizenship by Investment Program and make Dominica an unattractive place to obtain citizenship, then revenues would fall and the government would not be able to rebuild the country. Or, the government would then have to increase taxes on the people; making itself unpopular in their sight."
Since then, the Government of Dominica has improved transparency of CBI funds. According to Prime Minister Skerrit's 2018-2019 Budget Address,
the island's CBI Programme has helped develop a National Health Insurance pilot that provides Dominican children in critical medical conditions with overseas treatment. Because many residents were displaced by Hurricane Maria's impact on the small Caribbean island, the government pledged to build 5,000 hurricane-proof homes, of which the first batch of 125 houses were scheduled for occupancy in February 2019.
The CBI Programme has also significantly helped to develop and create jobs in the island's ecotourism sector.
Furthermore, the Skerrit administration set aside EC$5m every month for the construction of a new airport.
The Financial Times
' Professional Wealth Management publication ranked Dominica as the world's best citizenship by investment programme in its annual CBI Index.
According to the report, investors choose Dominica's citizenship because it has the most affordable investment threshold, the application process is straightforward and streamlined,
while the security checks each applicant is subjected to remain very strict.
Batalie Bay, Dominica
Dominica is mostly volcanic and has few beaches; therefore, tourism
has developed more slowly than on neighbouring islands. Nevertheless, Dominica's mountains, rainforests, freshwater lakes, hot springs, waterfalls, and diving spots make it an attractive ecotourism
destination. Cruise ship stopovers have increased following the development of modern docking and waterfront facilities in Roseau, the capital.
Out of 22 Caribbean islands tracked, Dominica had the fewest visitors in 2008 (55,800 or 0.3% of the total). This was about half as many as visited Haiti.
The volcanic nature of the island has attracted scuba divers
There are two regional airports on the island, but no international airports. Therefore, flying to Dominica requires travelling through San Juan, Puerto Rico
or other nearby islands in the Caribbean such as Martinique
, or Barbados
. The primary airport, Douglas-Charles Airport
(DOM), is on the northeast coast and is about a 45-minute drive from Portsmouth (1 hour from Roseau). The second is Canefield Airport
(DCF), about 15 minutes from Roseau on the southwest coast. Douglas-Charles Airport is suitable for limited use of commercial jets because of runway length. Douglas-Charles currently has regular service by Air Sunshine
and Seaborne Airlines
using twin turboprop aircraft like the ATR
and Saab 340
, as well as Conviasa
, which, using Boeing 727 Freighters
, is the only airline with jet service to the republic. A runway extension and service upgrade project began at Douglas-Charles Airport around 2006 and was finished in 2010. In March 2013, airline American Eagle halted flights to the island citing high labour costs.
Petite Savanne (pictured) was uninhabitable after numerous landslides.
Dominica's road network runs primarily along the coastline and along river valleys. Major roads are two-lane highways which connect the capital, Roseau, with Portsmouth (Edward Oliver Leblanc Highway
) and the Douglas Charles Airport (Dr. Nicholas Liverpool Highway). It takes about 45 minutes to drive from Portsmouth to Roseau. Private minibuses form the major public transport system. These major roads were reconstructed from the early 2010s to 2015 with assistance from the People's Republic of China and the European Union.
Due to Tropical Storm Erika of 2015
several road surfaces and bridges were damaged by flooding and landslides, including on the just completed E.O. LeBlanc Highway (Roseau to Portsmouth) and Dr. Nicholas Liverpool Highway
(Pont Cassé to Douglas Charles Airport). To alleviate this, the government announced that it intended to install emergency bridges in Roseau Valley near the Trafalgar Falls to Wotten Waven and in Emshall. Hurricane Maria of 2017
also damaged the road network.
Dominica's electricity sector includes power from hydroelectricity, solar energy, and geothermal energy.
Following on from the devastation caused by Hurricane Maria in September 2017, the Dominican government claimed it would invest in geothermal energy. In early March 2018 Dominica signed an International Solar Alliance
Framework Agreement, in an attempt to exploit solar energy to power the country with a source of renewable energy.
The vast majority of Dominicans are of African descent. There is a growing mixed population along with a small European origin minority (descendants of French and British colonists along with some people of Irish descent from indentured servants) and there are small numbers of Lebanese, Syrians and Asians. Dominica is also the only Eastern Caribbean island that still has a population of pre-Columbian native Kalinago
(previously called Caribs), who were exterminated or driven from neighbouring islands. As of 2014 there are more than 3,000 Kalinago remaining. They live in eight villages on the east coast of Dominica. This special Carib Territory
(now Kalinago Territory) was granted by the British Crown in 1903.
Scotts Head, Dominica
The population growth rate of Dominica is very low, due primarily to emigration to other countries. In the early 21st century, emigrant numbers for the most popular countries are as follows: the United States (8,560), the United Kingdom (6,739), Canada
(605), and France (394).
Dominica had a relatively large number of centenarians
. In March 2007 there were 22 centenarians out of the island's 70,000 inhabitants —three times the average incidence of centenarianism in developed countries. The reasons for this were once the subject of a study that formerly had been undertaken at Ross University School of Medicine
Dominica was partially integrated into the federal colony of the Leeward Islands
in 1832. Later, in 1871, it became a full part of the Federation of the Leeward Islands. From the start it was a peculiar relationship for previously Dominica had played no part in the political or cultural traditions of the other more Anglophone islands of the federation. Now, as a Leeward Island, this much larger territory, with thousands of acres of forested unclaimed land, was open to the people of Montserrat
. At the beginning of the 20th century, the Rose's Company, which produced Rose's lime juice
, saw demand for its product outgrow its ability to supply the product from Montserrat. Their response to the situation was to buy land on Dominica and encourage Montserrat farm labourers to relocate. As a result, there came to be two linguistic communities in Dominica, Wesley
In 1902, on 8 May, the Mount Pelée
volcano on Martinique erupted destroying the city of Saint-Pierre
. Refugees from Martinique arrived in boats to the southern villages of Dominica and some remained permanently on the island.
is the official language of Dominica and is universally spoken and understood. In addition, Dominican Creole
, an Antillean Creole
based on French
, is widely spoken. This is due to French migration to the island starting in 1690, a majority French Creole speaking population that resided on the island,
and its location between the two French-speaking departments of Martinique
. Since 1979, Dominica has been a member of La Francophonie
. Dominican Creole is particularly used among the older generation, which also speaks a patois
language. Because of a decline in the use of Creole by the younger generation, initiatives have been set up in an effort to increase usage and promote this unique part of the nation's history and culture.
Along with Creole, a dialect known as Kokoy (or Cockoy) is spoken.
It is a type of pidgin English
which is a mix of Leeward Island English Creole
and Dominican Creole,
and is mainly spoken in the north-eastern villages of Marigot and Wesley, by the descendants of immigrants from Montserrat
. Over time there has been much intermarrying, but there are still traces of difference in origin.
As a result of this mixture of languages and heritage, Dominica is a member of both the French-speaking Francophonie and the English-speaking Commonwealth of Nations
School in Dominica is mandatory up to secondary school. After pre-school, pupils attend primary school for six or seven years, and are admitted into secondary school on the basis of a Common Entrance Exam. After five years the students take the General Certificate of Education (GCE), widely replaced by the current Caribbean Secondary Education Certificate administered by the Caribbean Examination Council (a 15-member confederation of the Caribbean community (CARICOM). The more advanced version of this examination, CAPE, can be taken upon completion of two years of community college. The island has its own Dominica State College
, formerly named Clifton Dupigny Community College. Some Dominicans attend universities in Cuba on scholarships offered by its government; others go to the University of the West Indies
or to universities in the United Kingdom, the United States, or other countries.
Ross University School of Medicine
was located at Portsmouth
. Ross had been operating in Dominica since the 1980s.
There used to be a thousand medical students arriving annually from the United States and Canada who studied at Ross University, but the campus was permanently relocated to Barbados
at the beginning of the 2019 Spring semester due to extensive hurricane damage suffered at the Dominican campus.
The Dominica Library and Information Service serves an integral role in the education of the citizens of the country. The creation of a public library in Dominica did not come easily though the impetus was a noble one that would help "the coloured people... [improve] their lot as they moved along the path to complete freedom...” (Boromé, 203). The Dominican library began as a reading room that would evolve into a free and public library that wasn't fully free: patrons were required to pay a subscription fee. Surviving religious and political discord, the great depression, and two world wars, the library finally came under the care of the government where funds were set aside for its upkeep. Ironically, the early stages of the library's history were dedicated to remove the "uncouth", and "barbarous patois", which today is being preserved. However, it did achieve its goal of "diminishing the island’s very high percentage of illiteracy" (pg. 225).
However, the historical library was demolished in the wake on hurricane Maria in 2018, and slated to be rebuilt with a more modern outlook.
Dominica is home to a wide range of people. Although it was historically occupied by several native tribes, the Arawaks
(Tainos) and Carib (Kalinago) tribes occupied it at the time European settlers reached the island. "Massacre
" is a name of a river dedicated to the mass murder of the native villagers
by English settlers on St. Kitts -the survivors were forced into exile on Dominica.
Both the French and British tried to claim the island and imported slaves
from Africa for labour. The remaining Caribs now live on a 3,700-acre (15 km2
) territory on the east coast of the island. They elect their own chief. This mix of cultures has produced the current culture.[original research?]
Music and dance are important facets of Dominica's culture. The annual independence celebrations display a variety of traditional song and dance. Since 1997, there have also been weeks of Creole festivals, such as "Creole in the Park" and the "World Creole Music Festival
Dominica gained prominence on the international music stage when in 1973, Gordon Henderson
founded the group Exile One
and an original musical genre, which he coined "Cadence-lypso
". This paved the way for modern Creole music. Other musical genres include "Jing ping
" and "Cadence
". Jing ping features the accordion and is native to the island. Dominica's music is a mélange of Haitian, Afro-Cuban, African and European traditions. Popular artists over the years include Chubby and the Midnight Groovers, Bells Combo, the Gaylords, WCK
, and Triple Kay.
The 11th annual World Creole Music
Festival was held in 2007, part of the island's celebration of independence from Great Britain on 3 November. A year-long reunion celebration began in January 2008, marking 30 years of independence.
Dominica is often seen as a society that is migrating from collectivism
to that of individualism. The economy is a developing one that previously depended on agriculture. Signs of collectivism are evident in the small towns and villages which are spread across the island.[clarification needed]
Dominica's cuisine is similar to that of other Caribbean islands, particularly Jamaica, Saint Lucia and Trinidad and Tobago. Like other Commonwealth Caribbean
islands, Dominicans have developed a distinct twist to their cuisine. Breakfast is an important daily meal, typically including saltfish, dried and salted codfish
, and "bakes" (fried dough). Saltfish and bakes are combined for a fast food snack that can be eaten throughout the day; vendors on Dominica's streets sell these snacks to passersby, together with fried chicken, fish and fruit and yogurt "smoothies". Other breakfast meals include cornmeal porridge
, which is made with fine cornmeal or polenta
, milk or condensed milk, and sugar to sweeten. Traditional British-influenced dishes, such as eggs, bacon and toast, are also popular, as are fried fish and plantains
Common vegetables include plantains
, tanias (a root vegetable), sweet potatoes
, rice and peas
. Meat and poultry typically eaten include chicken, beef and fish. These are often prepared in stews with onions, carrots, garlic, ginger and herbs. The vegetables and meat are browned to create a rich dark sauce. Popular meals include rice and peas, brown stew chicken
, stew beef, fried and stewed fish, and many different types of hearty fish broths and soups. These are filled with dumplings, carrots and ground provisions.
During the 2014 Winter Olympics
, a husband and wife team of Gary di Silvestri and Angela Morrone di Silvestri spent US$
175,000 to register as Dominican citizens and enter the 15 km men's and 10 km women's cross-country skiing
events, respectively. Angela did not start her race, and Gary pulled out several hundred meters into his race. To date, they are Dominica's only Winter Olympic athletes.
Dominica has two major newspapers, The Sun
and The Chronicle
. There are two national television stations and a few radio stations, including Stations include: ZBC-AM 590, the first private local radio station is called Radio En Ba Mango 93.5/96.9FM in the Village of Berricoa Grand Bay and is owned by Urban Dangleben, ZGBC-AM 740, ZGBC-FM 90.7 (Portsmouth), ZGBC-FM 102.1 (Roseau) and ZGBC-FM 106.1 (Marigot), Q95 FM,
the Dominica Broadcasting Corporation
, and Kairi FM.
Before 2004, there were two telecommunication companies Cable and Wireless
and Marpin TV
founded by Dominican, Ronald Bernard Maroni Abraham. In 2005, Digicel
and a UK-based company Orange
started to offer service to the island. There are a number of mobile networks operating on the island; LIME and Digicel compete for most of Dominica's wireless customers. Orange shut down in 2010 and is no longer operating on the island of Dominica.
- ^ "Coat of Arms – Government of the State of Dominica". www.dominica.gov.dm.
- ^ "Dominica Ethnic groups 2001 Census". Cia.gov. Retrieved 29 September 2013.
- ^ Pew Forum Research Data 2010 Archived 24 September 2015 at the Wayback Machine Page 46. December 2012. Retrieved 28 May 2017.
- ^ ""World Population prospects – Population division"". population.un.org. United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs, Population Division. Retrieved 9 November 2019.
- ^ ""Overall total population" – World Population Prospects: The 2019 Revision" (xslx). population.un.org (custom data acquired via website). United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs, Population Division. Retrieved 9 November 2019.
- ^ a b c "2011 POPULATION AND HOUSING CENSUS" (PDF). Dominica.gov.dm. Retrieved 29 August 2017.
- ^ a b c d "Dominica". International Monetary Fund.
- ^ Human Development Report 2020 The Next Frontier: Human Development and the Anthropocene (PDF). United Nations Development Programme. 15 December 2020. pp. 343–346. ISBN 978-92-1-126442-5. Retrieved 16 December 2020.
- ^ a b "One woman's fight to get David Dimbleby to correctly pronounce Dominica". The Guardian. 12 November 2014. Retrieved 31 August 2020.
- ^ a b "Learn about Dominica". A Virtual Dominica. n.d. Retrieved 31 August 2020.
- ^ "Dominica - pronunciation of Dominica". Macmillan Dictionary. Retrieved 31 August 2020.
- ^ "Dominica | Pronunciation in English". Cambridge Dictionary. Retrieved 29 October 2019.
- ^ a b c d "Dominica's Constitution of 1978 with Amendments through 1984". Constitute. Retrieved 20 July 2016.
- ^ P. C. Evans & L. Honychurch, Dominica: Nature Island of the Caribbean. Hansib (1989).
- ^ "Country Flags With Purple". World Atlas. Retrieved 3 April 2019.
- ^ Whitley, David (29 January 2016). "The 22 places you're probably pronouncing incorrectly". Stuff. Retrieved 31 August 2020.
- ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x y z aa"Encyclopedia Britannica - Dominica". Retrieved 29 June 2019.
- ^ "Discover Dominica: an introduction to our Caribbean island". Dominica.dm. Archived from the original on 23 September 2010. Retrieved 27 June 2010.
- ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l "Background note: Dominica". U.S. Department of State (July 2008). This article incorporates text from this source, which is in the public domain.
- ^ P.C. Emmer & BW Highman, (1999) General History of the Caribbean: Methodology and Historiography of the Caribbean, volume 6, p. 637
- ^ "Important Dates in Dominica's History". Lennox Honychurch. 5 July 1990. Archived from the original on 30 August 2013. Retrieved 29 September 2013.
- ^ "Janus: Dominica Estate documents". janus.lib.cam.ac.uk.
- ^ London Society for the Abolition of Slavery throughout the British Dominions (1831). Anti-Slavery Monthly Reporter, volume 3. London Society for the Mitigation and Abolition of Slavery in the British Dominions. p. 211.
- ^ "Slavery Abolition Act 1833; Section LXIV". 28 August 1833. Retrieved 3 June 2008.
- ^ "The Dominica Termination of Association Order 1978". www.legislation.gov.uk.
- ^ Lawrence, Miles (1979). "Hurricane David Preliminary Report, Page 3". National Hurricane Center. Retrieved 5 October 2010.
- ^ Goldman, Lawrence (2013). Oxford Dictionary of National Biography 2005–2008. Oxford University Press. p. 210. ISBN 9780199671540.
- ^ a b "Ex-Commander Hanged For Dominica Coup Role". The New York Times. Associated Press. 9 August 1986. Retrieved 26 August 2009.
- ^ "Caribbean Islands – Regional Security Threats, 1970–81". Country-data.com. Retrieved 27 June 2010.
- ^ Stewart Bell, Bayou of Pigs, presents the story of the planned coup.
- ^ Woodward, Bob, Veil: the Secret Wars of the CIA 1981-1987, New York: Simon and Schuster, 1987, pp. 290, 300.
- ^ "www.mathaba.net". www.mathaba.net. Retrieved 12 May 2018.
- ^ Ellsworth Carter, "Dominica Leader Douglas Dies", Mathaba.net.
- ^ "U.S. Department of State Background Note on Dominica". State.gov. 7 February 2013. Retrieved 29 September 2013.
- ^ General Election Results - 8 December 2014 Caribbean Elections
- ^ "Hurricane Maria 'devastates' Dominica: PM". BBC News. 19 September 2017. Retrieved 19 September 2017.
- ^ "Dominica devastation emerges with fatalities and '90% of buildings destroyed'". WIC News. 19 September 2017. Retrieved 19 September 2017.
- ^ a b Handy, Gemma (25 September 2017). "Dominica grieves after Hurricane Maria". BBC News.
- ^ a b c d e f g h i "CIA World Factbook - Dominica". Retrieved 29 June 2019.
- ^ "Between Two Reunions: Boiling Lake, 1988 to 2008 |". The Government of the Commonwealth of Dominica's Official Website. Retrieved 27 June 2010.
- ^ Thompson, Keith (2010). Life in the Caribbean. New Africa Press. p. 288. ISBN 978-9987160150. ASIN 9987160158. p.173.
- ^ Dinerstein, Eric; Olson, David; Joshi, Anup; Vynne, Carly; Burgess, Neil D.; Wikramanayake, Eric; Hahn, Nathan; Palminteri, Suzanne; Hedao, Prashant; Noss, Reed; Hansen, Matt; Locke, Harvey; Ellis, Erle C; Jones, Benjamin; Barber, Charles Victor; Hayes, Randy; Kormos, Cyril; Martin, Vance; Crist, Eileen; Sechrest, Wes; Price, Lori; Baillie, Jonathan E. M.; Weeden, Don; Suckling, Kierán; Davis, Crystal; Sizer, Nigel; Moore, Rebecca; Thau, David; Birch, Tanya; Potapov, Peter; Turubanova, Svetlana; Tyukavina, Alexandra; de Souza, Nadia; Pintea, Lilian; Brito, José C.; Llewellyn, Othman A.; Miller, Anthony G.; Patzelt, Annette; Ghazanfar, Shahina A.; Timberlake, Jonathan; Klöser, Heinz; Shennan-Farpón, Yara; Kindt, Roeland; Lillesø, Jens-Peter Barnekow; van Breugel, Paulo; Graudal, Lars; Voge, Maianna; Al-Shammari, Khalaf F.; Saleem, Muhammad (2017). "An Ecoregion-Based Approach to Protecting Half the Terrestrial Realm". BioScience. 67 (6): 534–545. doi:10.1093/biosci/bix014. ISSN 0006-3568. PMC 5451287. PMID 28608869.
- ^ "Morne Trois Pitons National Park by World Heritage Sites". Whc.unesco.org. 7 December 1997. Retrieved 27 June 2010.
- ^ St. Lucia (2004), Saint Kitts (1999), Hispaniola (Dominican Republic /Haiti ) and Cuba (multiple).
- ^ "A Photo Tour of the Calibishie Coast". Calibishiecoast.com. Retrieved 29 September 2013.
- ^ Stephen Durand and Bertrand Jno. Baptiste, "Dominica" (Forestry, Wildlife and Parks Division).
- ^ Grantham, H. S.; Duncan, A.; Evans, T. D.; Jones, K. R.; Beyer, H. L.; Schuster, R.; Walston, J.; Ray, J. C.; Robinson, J. G.; Callow, M.; Clements, T.; Costa, H. M.; DeGemmis, A.; Elsen, P. R.; Ervin, J.; Franco, P.; Goldman, E.; Goetz, S.; Hansen, A.; Hofsvang, E.; Jantz, P.; Jupiter, S.; Kang, A.; Langhammer, P.; Laurance, W. F.; Lieberman, S.; Linkie, M.; Malhi, Y.; Maxwell, S.; Mendez, M.; Mittermeier, R.; Murray, N. J.; Possingham, H.; Radachowsky, J.; Saatchi, S.; Samper, C.; Silverman, J.; Shapiro, A.; Strassburg, B.; Stevens, T.; Stokes, E.; Taylor, R.; Tear, T.; Tizard, R.; Venter, O.; Visconti, P.; Wang, S.; Watson, J. E. M. (2020). "Anthropogenic modification of forests means only 40% of remaining forests have high ecosystem integrity - Supplementary Material". Nature Communications. 11 (1): 5978. doi:10.1038/s41467-020-19493-3. ISSN 2041-1723. PMC 7723057. PMID 33293507.
- ^ Jonathan Katz (18 August 2007). "Hurricane Dean Gains Caribbean Strength". Forbes. Associated Press. Retrieved 18 August 2007.[dead link]
- ^ "Hurricane claims one life in St. Lucia and possibly two in Dominica". CBC. 17 August 2007. Archived from the original on 28 August 2007. Retrieved 17 August 2007.
- ^ "Dominica Badly Affected". CBC. 17 August 2007. Archived from the original on 28 August 2007. Retrieved 17 August 2007.
- ^ "Dominica pleads for help as storm death toll tops 30". Yahoo News. 1 September 2015. Retrieved 4 October 2015.
- ^ "Rapid Damage and Impact Assessment: Tropical Storm Erika" (PDF). Government of Dominica. 25 September 2015. Retrieved 4 October 2015.
- ^ Carlyle L. Mitchell; Edgar Gold; Dalhousie Ocean Studies Programme (1983). Fisheries Development in Dominica: An Assessment of the New Law of the Sea Implications and Strategies. Dalhousie Ocean Studies Programme, Dalhousie University. p. 41. ISBN 978-0-7703-0280-1.
- ^ Avery, Daniel (4 April 2019). "71 Countries Where Homosexuality is Illegal". Newsweek.
- ^ "State-Sponsored Homophobia". International Lesbian Gay Bisexual Trans and Intersex Association. 20 March 2019.
- ^ "Dominica". U.S. Department of State. Retrieved 4 August 2020.
- ^ "(World Bank 'At A Glance')" (PDF).
- ^ Barkham, By Patrick (5 March 1999). "The banana wars explained". Retrieved 4 August 2020 – via www.theguardian.com.
- ^ "Banana war ends after 20 years". 8 November 2012. Retrieved 4 August 2020 – via www.bbc.com.
- ^ https://econlife.com/2018/06/banana-trade-war-2/
- ^ "Ending the banana wars: Who wins and who loses? | News | European Parliament". www.europarl.europa.eu. 24 January 2011. Retrieved 4 August 2020.
- ^ No Fee Increase for Dominica CIP. ntltrust.com (2016-7-28)
- ^ "Ministerstwo Finansów". Mf.gov.pl. Retrieved 29 September 2013.
- ^ "Economic Diversification Fund - Dominica". Dominica. Retrieved 30 November 2018.
- ^ Dominica Citizenship by Investment Unit website http://cbiu.gov.dm/
- ^ "Dominica’s Citizenship Programme 'Main Source of FDI', Officials Say", Dominica News Online, 16 February 2016.
- ^ "Dominica Passport Visa Free Travel - Dominica Visa Free Countries". www.goccp.com. Retrieved 30 November 2018.
- ^ "Authorised CBIU Agents – Government Approved CBIU Agents".
- ^ "Selling citizenship is big business—and controversial". The Economist. 29 September 2018.
- ^ "Full speech of PM Skerrit at DLP meeting in St. Joseph", Dominica News Online, 3 February 2016.
- ^ "Full budget speech of Prime Minister Roosevelt Skerrit – Dominica News Online". dominicanewsonline.com. Retrieved 30 November 2018.
- ^ "First phase of CBI-funded housing projects ready for occupation in February 2019 – Dominica News Online". dominicanewsonline.com. Retrieved 30 November 2018.
- ^ "How Dominica's CBI is Changing the Lives of its Citizens - Dominica". Dominica. 6 August 2018. Retrieved 30 November 2018.
- ^ "Land acquisition begins for international airport – PM Skerrit – Dominica News Online". dominicanewsonline.com. Retrieved 30 November 2018.
- ^ "Getting over Hurricane Maria". The Economist. Retrieved 30 November 2018.
- ^ "CBI Index | Rankings of the Best Programmes". cbiindex.com. Retrieved 30 November 2018.
- ^ "Dominica named best country for 2nd citizenship". www.tradearabia.com. Retrieved 4 August 2020.
- ^ Team, CBI Index Research. "The CBI Index: key findings - Caribbean continues to dominate". www.pwmnet.com. Retrieved 30 November 2018.
- ^ S-RM, Heyrick Bond Gunning, CEO of. "The CBI Index: the due diligence process in the Caribbean". www.pwmnet.com. Retrieved 30 November 2018.
- ^ DeLollis, Barbara; Hansen, Barbara (19 January 2009). "Bookings started to fall along with stock market". USA Today.
- ^ "American Eagle worries". Dominica News Online. Retrieved 29 September 2013.
- ^ "Completion ceremony of Edward Oliver Leblanc Highway Friday". Dominica News Online. Retrieved 29 September 2013.
- ^ "Dr Nicholas Liverpool Highway Officially Commissioned". Dominica Government Information Service. Retrieved 4 October 2015.
- ^ "Emergency bridges being developed PM says". Dominica News Online. Retrieved 4 October 2015.
- ^ "Emergency Bridges Being Developed PM Says". Dominica News Online.
- ^ Caribbean, Renewable Energy (24 August 2018). "Dominica cementing its position as a renewable energy trailblazer". Retrieved 4 August 2020.
- ^ "The Carib Indians". Avirtualdominica.com. Retrieved 27 June 2010.
- ^ Pickford, John From Our Own Correspondent BBC Radio 4. First broadcast 31 March 2007. Dominica report 17'49" – 22'55"
- ^ Honychurch, Lennox (1995). The Dominica story : a history of the island (3rd ed.). London: Macmillan. pp. 49–60. ISBN 978-0333627761.
- ^ Schreier, D; et al. (2010). Lesser-known varieties of English. Cambridge University Press. ISBN 9780521710169.
- ^ "Creole for Beginners". Avirtualdominica.com. Retrieved 27 June 2010.
- ^ "Migration from Montserrat to Dominica". Lennoxhonychurch.com. Archived from the original on 11 May 2011. Retrieved 27 June 2010.
- ^ "The World Factbook – Central Intelligence Agency". www.cia.gov.
- ^ "Tropical Islam". Arabwashingtonian.org. Archived from the original on 5 September 2009. Retrieved 27 June 2010.
- ^ "The Association of Religion Data Archives | National Profiles". www.thearda.com. Retrieved 16 October 2017.
- ^ "Clemson University ATREC". 2012. Retrieved 7 October 2012.
- ^ "Clemson University". Clemson.edu. 8 January 2010. Archived from the original on 22 August 2018. Retrieved 27 June 2010.
- ^ "All Saints University School of Medicine, Dominica". Retrieved 7 October 2012.
- ^ "Ross University School of Medicine, Dominica". Rossu.edu. Archived from the original on 4 December 2011. Retrieved 29 September 2013.
- ^ "Medical school relocates to Barbados after hurricane". washingtonpost.com. Retrieved 3 August 2018.
- ^ "Adtalem Global Education Announces Barbados as New Location for Ross University School of Medicine". Adtalem Global Education. Retrieved 3 August 2018.
- ^ Boromé, Joseph A. (1970). "Origin and Growth of the Public Libraries of Dominica". The Journal of Library History. 5 (3): 200–236. ISSN 0022-2259. JSTOR 25540240.
- ^ Hubbard, Vincent (2002). A History of St. Kitts. Macmillan Caribbean. p. 17. ISBN 9780333747605.
- ^ McKenna, Dave (24 February 2014). "Dominica's Fake Ski Team Scammed The Olympics and the Press". Deadspin. Retrieved 25 February 2014.
- ^ "Q95 FM". Wiceqfm.com. Retrieved 27 June 2010.
- ^ "Kairi FM". Kairi FM. Retrieved 27 June 2010.
- ^ "Account Suspended". www.marpin2k4.com. Retrieved 4 August 2020.
Last edited on 10 May 2021, at 15:38
Content is available under CC BY-SA 3.0
unless otherwise noted.