UNIT C3 - Video: "World's Apart"

Adapted from:Ambrose Video Publishing (Producer). (1992). Portrait of the Caribbean, "World's Apart"[Videotape] New York: Ambrose Video Publishing.

SUMMARY: A town like Chaguanas in Trinidad could be anywhere in India. Originally indentured servants, East Indians are the largest single population group in Guyana and Trinidad. Their cultural identity remains strong. Marriages are still arranged, outside every home are prayer flags and offerings, and the Hindu ways are observed. A cane-cutter and his family, a gold miner and a calypso singer offer a glimpse into the lives of East Indians in the West Indies and their relationship with minority black political power.(1)


  1. How do Trinidad and Guyana differ in demographics and culture from the other Caribbean islands?
  2. How are these islands similar to others in a social and economic sense?
  3. East Indians:

a. Where are the largest numbers of East Indians(Two nations)?

b. Why did East Indians choose to contract for indentured labor?

c. Standard length of indenture?

d. Why, for so many, did the contract only continue their cycle of poverty?

e. What are the current practices of the East Indians regarding marriage and the Hindu religion?

f. What are the current conditions of many of these people?

4. Describe the interaction between Rashid and his foreman and former classmate Roy Ramroop.

a. Is the foreman sympathetic to Rashid's plight--explain?

b. How is the situation difficult for both men?

5. What is the East Indians' view of education?

6. East Asians:

a. In addition to East Indian, name another East Asian group to migrate to the Caribbean?

b. Who are the "coolies"?

c. How has this group fared?

d. What is "CREOLIZATION"?

e. Describe the conflict between the blacks and East Asians of Guyana and Trinidad. How do these conflicting viewpoints impede progress?

f. What is the importance/role of oil for Trinidad?

g. What are the religious practices of the East Asians?

h. Which racial group controls the political process and important positions in Trinidad?

7. What is EL DORADO? How does the concept and its implications affect modern Guyana, both negatively and positively?

8. Carnival:

a. What did "Carnival" represent during slavery?

b. Is it important today-explain?

9. The Calypso singer:

a. Describe her lifestyle: family, religion, etc.

b. How has she crossed the cultural barrier?

10. Explain: "All Caribbean people come from somewhere else".