Most of us have learned about African American culture in terms of black experience from Africa to slavery and the civil right movement in the United States. While it is commonly known that the civil right movement began in the United States around the 1950's. In reality, the movement actually began hundreds of years ago, not in the U.S, but in Jamaica. Starting with a small group of rebellious slaves, a strong black resistance movement developed and continues to exist today in the culture of Rastafarianism. You might recognize this religion from the famous singer "Bob Marley" who became a symbol of this religion. If you are anything like me, you probably have an image of Rastafarians as wild looking people who constantly smoke marijuana while partying to reggae music. But as the Caribbean Club President Tamara Darroux said: "Rastafarianism is not a hairstyle, it's a lifestyle". After doing an extensive research on this speech, I can tell you that Rastafarianism is indeed a lifestyle. Today I would like to introduce to you this rich piece of African cultural development by explaining Rastafarianism in terms of origins as political movements and some common practices. i. Rastafari religion history begins with the colonization of Jamaica. Around the 16th century, Spain brought around 700 thousand slaves to Jamaica, and in 1655 England have invaded Jamaica. After the invasion and after the slavery, exploitation of blacks in Jamaica continued in the form of social and economic oppression. Blacks were 90% of the population with less than 5% of wealth. In the 1900's, resistance became more organized political activity led by a man named Marcus Garvey. Marcus Garvey was the one who began the Rastafarian movement. His main goal was to empower and organize blacks to recapture their cultural identity. In the 1930's, Marcus Garvey have preached and said "Look to Africa where a black king shall be crowned, he shall be your redeemer" this statement became...
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