Islamabad, 20 February 2023 (TDI): Latin American and Caribbean countries are celebrating the Carnival Monday festival today.
The Carnival Monday is observed before Ash Wednesday (Praying and Fasting day in Christian Countries) on Monday and Tuesday in February. The festival is celebrated with the Parade, Music, Food, and dances.
History of Carnival Monday
Carnivals are popular events as they represent the last chance to party and overindulge before the fasting period of Lent begins on Ash Wednesday.
The tradition of a Carnival in the Americas came with the colonials who arrived from Europe, particularly the Spanish and French.
These new settlers needed a workforce, which was supplied by slaves brought from Africa. Despite the hardships endured by the slaves, they also brought festival customs of their own.
The carnival celebrations were an opportunity that the slaves used to observe their festivals as a way of maintaining their identity and expressing their beliefs.
Over time these African customs fused with European carnival traditions to give rise to the more colorful and exuberant displays and parades that today brighten up the streets of many parts of Latin America and the Caribbean.
Carnival Monday in Brazil
Over the weekend Rio de Janeiro’s iconic carnival returned with outrageous costumes, head-spinning samba dancers, and enormous floats parading down the streets to the sounds of live music in Brazil.
This year marks the first time the celebration has returned to normal since the Covid-19 pandemic began three years ago.
However, the heavy rain and landslides that have killed more than 30 people in 4 different cities including Sao Paulo have canceled the Carnival festival in affected cities.
Celebrations in Haiti
Despite the political unrest in Haiti, the organization Boulva Naval has announced they will still hold the music, dance, and cultural festivities.
Under the theme ‘Let’s help Cap-Haitien keep Haiti alive,’ the city will hold traditional costume parades and dances from Feb. 19 to Feb. 21.
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However, the Haiti National Police protest has caused uncertainty among the nationals across various cities ahead of the festival. The police demonstration started on 26 January, after six of their colleagues were killed in a gang confrontation.