Kriol Traditional Beliefs

Many values and attitudes are passed along within a culture through the oral traditions. In Belize, the telling of Anancy stories and Creole Proverbs have a strong tradition. Other characters of Creole folklore include Tata Duhende, Warrie Master, and Jacko Lantern. Laughter is the gift of the Belize Creoles who always enjoy a good joke. To not be ‘thin skinned’ is important where joking is concerned. Customary folklore includes both verbal and non-verbal elements. It includes folk beliefs such as passing a child over a coffin to keep the dead from returning for the child. This, again, is an African tradition. Folk gestures, such as to stand kimbo and to look cut eye have powerful meaning.

There are also folk games, such as bruk maka chista and moon shine baby, and folk dances, such as the fire sambai, kunjai, punta, wine-up, rusho, and sadunga. The fire sambai is a fertility dance done during the time of the full moon. Many people hold strong beliefs about the truth of many cultural ‘superstitions’. Many Creole ‘superstitions’ are concerned with pregnancy and childcare, such as believing that a snake will not bite a pregnant woman, or that if you stare at a baby too much you will ‘over look’ them and give them ‘gripes’.