Jamaican Stories

Week 8: African Traditions - Assignments - Reading - Resources - Images


The stories for this week's reading come from Jamaican Anansi Stories by Martha Warren Beckwith (1924), which is part of the African and Caribbean section of Sacred Texts Archive.

The stories that Beckwith collected are in English (albeit a Jamaican dialect of English); you can look at this Anansi story that is actually recorded in Jamaican creole, with an English translation: Anansi Mek Grong. The Wikipedia article on Jamaican English also has some helpful links.

There are also some voodo sources at Sacred Texts: Last of the Voudoos and New Orleans Superstitions by Lafcadio Hearn (1885-6); Voodoo and Obeahs and Psychic Phenomena of Jamaica by Joseph J. Williams (1932-34). New York, [1932].

David Bowen has a nice article online called "Folk Tales and Storytelling" which talks about oral traditions and storytelling in general, and Anansi stories in particular.

Global Volunteers website has a nice overview of Jamaican culture.

The Jamaicans.com website includes sections on Anansi stories, along with Jamaican folksongs and a variety of brief articles about other aspects of Jamaican folk culture.

If you would like to see some contemporary artwork from Jamaica, check out the The Jamaican & Cuban Art Gallery.

Mary Pender provides a brief history of Jamaican Music Styles: Ska, Rock Steady, Reggae and Calypso. At ReggaeTrain.com you will find a giant web portal for everything having to do with reggae music.

Modern Languages / Anthropology 3043: Folklore & Mythology. Laura Gibbs, Ph.D. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons License. You must give the original author credit. You may not use this work for commercial purposes. If you alter, transform, or build upon this work, you may distribute the resulting work only under a license identical to this one.
Page last updated: October 9, 2004 12:52 PM