Sunday, March 28, 2010

Mardi Gras Indians Traditions and History revisited

This website talks about the history and customs behind the group of people known as the Mardi Gras Indians that have been neglected for too long. Their story as a community is an interesting component of the country because of the fact that in their blood lies the history of African Americans and the Native Americans that were willing to help them during “the tyranny of slavery.”
Traditionally, what happens during the Mardi Gras parade is that is two tribes meet, and the chiefs of both tribes will greet each other with a song, dance, and the challenge of a "Humba" which is the demand that one chief pays respect to the other by bowing. Although it sounds like there is a tension between the tribes, the reality is that they respect each other, which is shown in the appreciation they have for each other’s flamboyant costumes that took a year of dedication, money and motivation to complete. In addition to this, the website talks about how the Indians also compare each other dances and songs during the Mardi Gras parades.
Fortunately, the history of this group of people is receiving more recognition around the country and around the world. Also, the creation of the New Orleans Mardi Gras Indian Council in 1987 has helped in the preservation of the Indian culture. This website reminded me a lot about the article we read in class about the Mardi Gras Indians, and how they strive to be appreciated for their resistance to mainstream culture. I thought this website was interesting and informative in giving a more complete description of what happens on the big day when they show of their creative talent and their pride. I think it would also be interesting to see what their lives are like outside of this event, and whether that pride is as publically displayed.

No comments:

Post a Comment