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Aim Research A Critical evaluation of the value of the Rastafari culture in brand Jamaica Research Objectives 1 Define Rastafari,

Tourism, Rastafari Tourism 2 Evaluate whether the Rastarian culture is used in Jamaica Tourism (sources official and unofficial sources) 3 Review academic literatures on branding, Commodification, branding, authenticity and Commodification 4. (Make recommendation to the Jamaican/tourist board) Suggest recommendations and develop Strategies on how industry personnel can capitalize on the Rastafari Culture 5. Review the evolution of Rastafari culture and its and its place within culture tourism (Brand Jamaica) 6. Evaluate how the Rastafari culture contribute to Brand Jamaica (Product Jamaica) Rastafari Culture The Rastafari Culture is based on the Ethiopian ideology that rose in the 1930s. The area of origins for this movement is Jamaica. Initially, it was limited to one country, but then slowly it spread out to a number of other African regions. Most of the followers of this movement term it a way of life. In other words, they believe that this culture offers them with a complete way of life which is to be followed at all times and under all circumstances. The followers or adherents of this culture worship and pray in front of Haile Selassie I who used to be the emperor of Ethiopia. Most of the people consider him 2nd Jesus or the God Father. The people who follow this culture are referred to as Rastas. As expected, this culture or religion has been criticized by the Christians as well as Muslims from all over the world. This particular way of life is most of the times referred to as Rastafarianism. It is to be noted here that most of the followers consider this term to be as a derogation. They also term it to be offensive to their way of life and all the beliefs they have held for long. The core reason for this being the fact that they dislike ism to be used in relation to them. Ism used to be a part of the Babylon Culture so for this reason they do not like if this concept is used in relation to their beliefs and ideologies (Williams, 2000). Rastafari can be divided into two integral parts. The first part of the name i.e. Rasname has been derived from Ras Tafari. As far as the second part i.e. Tafari is concerned, it has been taken from the name of the religions founder, Tafari Makonnen. In Amharic language, the name refers to a person who is feared a lot or who is considered to be a hero. A number of scholars and religious experts have long considered this religion to be based on vague terms and concepts, most of which do not hold any resemblance or basis to the past religions. In addition, a number of Muslim Scholars have also argued that the founder of this religion considered himself to be God. At the same time, a number of scholars and intellectuals have termed this religion as being an offshoot of Christianity. As Christianity had infiltrated at all levels of the Ethiopian and African Cultures, the emperor of the country exploited the limited knowledge and understanding of the locals in order to fulfill his desires for power and control. He was able to convince his followers that he was an incarnation of God the Father or more commonly as the 2nd coming of Jesus onto the realms of earth. Moreover, he is referred to as the selected or chosen king for ruling humanity (Dickerson, 2004).

More recently, the Rastafarian movement symbolizes a religion that perhaps represents an ideological, rather than violent, mode of resistance to European values, beliefs, and institutions. The Rastafari have become a phenomenon throughout the Caribbean and, indeed, throughout the entire worldwide African Diaspora. They are now commonplace to the extent that their dreadlocks (challenging traditional notions of European beauty), their wearing of the Ethiopian colours of red, gold, and green, their influence on reggae music, and their linguistic innovations have easily made them a social force. Those seeking to categorize it have oversimplified their worldview, defined by some as a kind of African Zionism. Rastafari consciousness owes much to the world view that was central to the socio-political movement of Garveyism, which was based on a black theology that overturned the negative valuations attached through colonialism to the word African. As this weeks readings effectively demonstrate, the African consciousness of Rastafari goes deep in the Jamaican and West Indian past, and is an example of the process of continuity and change, of rooted consciousness and startling innovation, that are characteristic of Caribbean history (Mcdavid, 2003). Topic 10: Social Critique and Identity Formation We refuse to be What you wanted us to be We are what we are And thats the way its going to be, if you dont know You can educate I For no equal opportunity Talking bout my freedom People freedom and liberty Yeah weve been trodding on The winepress much too long Rebel, Rebel And weve been taken for granted Much too long Rebel, Rebel (Taken from Bob Marleys Survival Album, 1979) These lyrics symbolizes how music has been used by Caribbean musicians, in this case Bob Marley (1945-1981), as a socio-political weapon of resistance, while, at the same time, providing information or news to local peoples. Marley is perhaps the regions most heralded musical ambassador as he was instrumental in spreading the genre beyond the Caribbean region. He is perhaps one of the worlds most widely acclaimed artists known for his passion for Africa and its peoples and his music routinely promoted messages of upliftment and liberation (whether physical or mental). In 1984, Island Records would release Legend, - a compilation of his greatest hits that has sold over 10 million copies internationally. Reggae music, as has other forms of Caribbean music, represents a potent form of resistance for Caribbean peoples as it is used to speak to issues directly affecting the people. It typically deals with issues that speak to the everyday struggles and realities of the regions most marginalized peoples as lyrics often touch on topics like poverty, politics, racism, violence, and Rastafarianism (McDavid, 2003).

Caribbean peoples have historically relied on forms of musical expression as a mode of sociopolitical resistance to the imposed cultural norms and values of their oppressors. It has provided a space for oppressed peoples to express anger and frustration about the societies in which they lived. The sound of African drums, such as the abeng (cow horn), during the period of slavery in the West Indies was often a call to arms signifying yet another attempt at dismantling a dehumanizing system. Drumming and breaking out in song was also used by African peoples as a way of combating colonial tactics aimed at promoting self-hatred and a rejection of their ancestral past. For example, since plantation owners banned drums, song was a way for enslaved peoples to communicate or criticize their masters without being overt. Oppressed peoples were also quite creative, in that they adapted European music to suit their own political needs, despite being forced to participate in it. Calypso, for instance, is based on the music of West Africa fused together with European cultures. Today, several forms of folk music in the Caribbean is reflective of this cultural synthesis of African and European traditions, including the beguine in St. Lucia, mento in Jamaica, salsa in Cuba and bossa nova in Brazil (Rhiney, 2006). Almost all of the elements and facets of this religion indicate that the roots of this religion are based in Ethiopia and Jamaica. It is to be pondered here that both these countries were dominated by Christianity. Christianity enters into the region around 4th century BC at the time when St. Mark had laid the foundations of the first Christian Church in the region. Rastafari is in close resemblance to a number of Christian and Jewish Beliefs. All of its followers believe in Monotheism or Believe in Tri-Une Deity. They refer to this tri unity as Jah. It is their belief that God had sent his son to earth in the form of Jesus and had revealed himself in the body of Haile Selassie I. The followers of this religion accept most of the writings in Bible but are of the view that the interpretation and explanations of this Holy Book have been corrupted. This is one of the reasons for which most of the top Christian scholars and experts have termed this religion to be baseless and pointless. The core reason being the fact that they have accepted a human being as being God. It is also considered to be a blasphemy by Muslims who do not even accept Jesus as being the Son of God. Spiritualism has always been an integral component of this culture from the very start. Just like Christianity and a number of other religions, a number of spiritual components happen to be central to this culture. One of the many themes in which they believe is the spiritual use of Cannabis. Moreover, they also widely rejected the society which was blinded with materialism and greed for power. To them, the way of their God on earth was the best code of life to be followed. In other words, they are of the view that the way their God spent his life should be considered a benchmark for all humanity. They consider the material and sensual pleasures of the world as being immoral. For this reason, they also term these pleasures and human desires as being Babylon. Another interesting belief of the people is that Zion is the place where mankind had originated. They are of the view that Zion is the only place that can be referred to as the heaven on earth. Moreover, they also believe that the original way of life calls for a complete repatriation of Zion. The critical point of their beliefs is that Zion had moved to Ethiopia in physical terms. In other words, they only consider Zion as being the Promised Land and a heaven on earth in reference or relation to Ethiopia (Niaah and Stanley Niaah, 2007). Rastafari Tourism It takes an in depth historical analysis in order to establish the importance of culture in relation to tourism. The internal and external manifestations of a culture have always been important in Rastafari Tourism. Mass tourism in Jamaica and Ethiopia can be understood in relation to the

Rastafari Culture. It is considered to be the responsibility of the tourism administrators to spread the culture to all tourists and travelers. It should be pondered that the economy of these countries is dependent on the presence of mass tourism. Most of the economists and financial experts have argued that without tourism these economies will surely collapse. Almost all of these states depend on the presence of tourism as a means of generating foreign currencies and investment. According to a number of researchers and tourism specialists, the Caribbean happens to be the most tourism dependent region in the world. It can be argued that the religion is now developing as a strong social force and system of mass tourism. The contribution of tourism has also been quite important in relation to the employment rate in Jamaica. Mass tourism with its strong association with the sun and sea happens to be the most privileged approach for attracting and pulling tourists towards Jamaica and all other Caribbean regions (Milne & Ewing, 2004). Jamaica is classified as those regions of having the highest profiles in relation to tourism. In other words, it is known as a high profile destination in reference to tourism and its manifestations. The economic health of this country is dependent on the tourists and travelers who pour in from the North America and European Regions. According to a number of reliable sources, it has been reported that the country received around 1.5 million tourists from the month of January to November, 2006. On the other hand, the same number of visitors had also been attracted to the region in months that followed. Tourism has always been growing at a consistent pace from the past few decades. Although a decline had been seen during the years of the Global Economic Recession, but things returned to normality pretty soon. In the year 2005, the stopover visitors helped in adding US$ 1.5 million or more to the countrys economy. Rastafari tourism in the country is considered to be an economic discourse. Adding or relating ecotourism to the culture might seem to be odd, but in reality, it is a preplanned strategy that is being used by the government as well as the followers. Some people argue that the Rastas are not at all interested in attracting the White Men towards their simplistic and honest way of life. In other words, for them the white people are absorbed in a carefree indulgence and lust for materialistic possessions. However, a number of people argue that it is their duty to attract the misguided and obsessed white population towards their way of life. Most of us also see the Rastafari Culture as a means for rejecting the control of the White Population on all the economic activities of the world. In reality, the Rastas are seen participating in the tourism Jamaica as musicians, cooks, informal guides, vendors, health providers etc. It is clear that that a number of public as well as private sectors have been marketing and promoting the Rastafari Culture. In most of the books and guides based on Tourism Jamaica, the Rastafari Culture has been promoted in form or the other (Niaah and Stanley Niaah, 2007). The followers of this religion believe that their way of life is liberation from all forms of racism and prejudicial feelings present in the world. For them, the annihilation of all forms of racism and material things is the only way in which all humanity can be saved. The congruence of the Rastafari Culture with tourism is also referred to as the means of maintaining the purity and reverence of the environment. In other words, their country has a lot of natural and spiritual beauty. The only way it can be preserved is by bringing the elements of their culture into the dynamics of tourism. It might seem that the followers of this religion are on a mission to influence the tourists and travelers from all corners and regions of the world. Mandy

Dickerson, who happens to be a researcher on the Rastafari Culture, is of the view that the followers of this religion protest against all those who have misused the economic and spiritual wealth of the world. In other words, the Rastafarians protest against the unlawful and immoral use of land by those who follow the Babylon beliefs and cultures. They have declared an internal war against those who are seeking to capitalize on the rights and productivity of all those who are unable to defend themselves. Moreover, they have also argued that these white and all other populations of the world have been engaged in a deliberate exploitation of the gifts of God. They also criticize the control of land by the large multinational firms and companies. There are also a number of other writers of the Rastafari Culture who have given a confirmation about the tourism-related sensibilities and motives of the Jamaica People. Another top research has argued that making efforts for protection of the land, air and water of the region is a core component of their beliefs and ideologies. In simple words, they follow a green philosophy and believe that all the tourists travelling to Jamaica should take up the same beliefs (Rhiney, 2006). It is also argued by that the Rastafari People that tourism functions to degrade the purity and intactness of the natural environment. Moreover, it also leads to a number of issues and problems of pollution. At the same time, all sorts of tourist activities degrade the serenity and psychic appeal of the marine life which happens to be an integral component of the Jamaican Culture. So for this reason, the only way that this negative influences can be reduced is by teaching the people the Rastafari way of Life. Although the government has never accepted that they are using a number of tactics and tricks to convert people to their beliefs, still most of the literature available in this regard is an open testament to the fact. Most of the Rastafari communities now face a challenge in the form of ecotourism. One way they will be able to meet these challenges is by using a complex tourism and macroeconomic model. The logic behind the development of such a model is to reduce the environmental damages and effects of tourism by attracting the tourists towards the harmless and unified Rastafarian way of life. Branding and Commodification The rise of different forms of branding can be termed to be a fact linked to increasing commodification. Commodification can be defined in terms of transforming products into saleable objects. Branding is now classified as being one of the most diverse and important dimension of business strategy. No business strategy can be planned without adding effective branding measures and strategies. The same is the reason for which a detailed review of the literature in this regard is crucial. However, it is more often misunderstood in business related domains. Most people consider branding as being a form of advertisement directed towards honing the profits and earnings of a business. At the same time, there are a number of business managers and experts who consider branding as a means of establishing a product image and identity. In other words, they consider it a supplementary task that can be easily isolated from all other business processes. It is to be pondered that branding is a multifaceted and multidimensional process that is to be understood in all the contexts and domains in which it is used. Firstly, branding is a strategic and tactical point of view and not a holistic set of several activities. Secondly, it happens to be central in terms of creating customer value and satisfaction. Thirdly, it is a prime tool for formulating and maintaining a competitive advantage over all other competitors in the business markets. Fourthly, brands are more like cultures that circulate at all levels of the societies. Each facet and activity of human life is under the influence of branding in one form or the other. It is crucial that branding strategies the distinct and integral components of

business and brand value as without a brand name, a business has no identity. Most importantly, it is imperative that the branding strategies should be engineered into the wider marketing mix. Moreover, the teams responsible for branding should have the required competencies and skills needed to establish a strong brand presence. All marketing strategies can be seen to be beginning from the value proposition. This proposition can be defined in terms of the various amounts of value that companies and businesses want the customers to receive. In other words, it is the value that a firm seeks for the purpose of building on their products and services. In the domain of marketing, the value proposition is more often referred to as the statement for positioning the products. The product value as created by the firm and the value which the customers experience is integral towards establishing a strong brand identity and presence. If a firm will be able to build a better product, the customers will be able to derive the maximum value of it. It is evident that the customer experience is shaped by the value that a company offers in terms of its products and services. Moreover, value is also shaped by the inherent and subjective understanding of the customer (Milne & Ewing, 2004). Brand Culture Brands should be considered as Cultures of the Product. The brands are to be understood as being cultural artifacts. Products do hold specific meanings and purposes for the customers. For this reason, they are to be understood in cultural contexts. Overtime, the meanings the customers attach to these products become conventional and are then accepted as being undeniable truths about products. So it is evident that at this point a product has acquired a specific culture which will define it for a long time to come. All the products might seem the same to some people but in reality they are manifestations of different forms and classes of cultures. There are a number of particular markers that are used to determine a customers experience in relation to a specific product or service. The names, logos and all other design features are the markers that are used to define a product. At the same time, there are a number of ideas which the customers hold in relation to the products. Overtime, most of these ideas accumulate to fill in these markers. In other words, these ideas combine to give a meaning to a product which will remain with it. So in this manner a brand culture is formed (Milne & Ewing, 2004).. Brand Authors Brand cultures are formed as the different brand authors help in creating stories related to a product. Most brands are marked for having 4 types or classes of authors. These include: companies, influencers, customers and popular culture. Companies They shape the brand by employing a number of brand related strategies and techniques. Almost all elements of the complex marketing mix including: the product, channels and the pricing formulas can help in telling the stories about a product. These stories function in a collaborative manner in terms of shaping the customer experience. Popular Culture Products happen to be a prominent and core segment of the world in which we reside. They are more often used in films, dramas, TV shows, magazines, on the internet and all other forms of mass media. For this reason, their representations can have a major influence on the perception of brands. In other words, brands and products are influenced by these representations. The

companies and organizations that make the best use of these representations are able to enjoy the maximum number of profits. On the other hand, the companies that fail to understand and articulate these representations are forced to face losses. For centuries now, companies and organizations have been trying to manage the manner in which their services and products are presented (Milne & Ewing, 2004). The Customers The most important author of a product is after all, the customer. The value and importance that a customer attaches to a product determines the recognition of a brand. In other words, customers help in authoring the brand culture in a diverse manner. The manner in which they interact and engage with the product, a number of consumption stories are created. Then onwards, these stories are shared with friends and acquaintances, thus giving rise to a chain reaction. It is also referred to as the Word of Mouth phenomenon through which companies try to establish a well-grounded brand identity (Milne & Ewing, 2004). Influencers In most of the contexts, the opinion of the non-customer population is also considered to be important. Now here, the reviews published the trade magazines and all other critical spheres hold great significance. The prime reason for this is the fact that most of the customers finalize their purchasing decision in accordance to the critical reviews available in reference to a product. The stories circulated and formulated by these authors is the manner in which products interact with the customers. If the interaction is negative, then it is clear that a product will fail in the business markets. Failed products do not contribute towards branding. On the other hand, the companies whose products are successful in engaging and influencing the customers will lead to the maximum profits (Milne & Ewing, 2004). Branding and its relation to Competitive Advantage Branding has always been considered a potent measure for establishing a competitive advantage. It is the brand culture context that helps us in seeing the mechanism through which this process happens. It is to be noted here that brand cultures are really sticky. Once these cultures have been accepted as norms and conventions, the customers will always remain reluctant in abandoning them. The only way their brand preference will change is if they are struck with contradicting stories. It is a fact that consumers are happy to maintain their established beliefs and experiences with products unless conflicting experiences are presented to them. Moreover, the quality of the available experience is also central in this regard. Researches made in the domain of psychology have confirmed that brad cultures are really durable primarily because that people are cognitive misers. As we are loaded and equipped with a lot of information, we prefer to use a number of heuristics in order to simplify the experiences we receive. In other words, we are always in search of ways that will help us in simplifying our understanding and perceptions. At the same time, sociological research has also helped in understanding brand cultures. It has been argued in the relevant literature brand cultures are shared widely at all levels of a society. Furthermore, these cultures are expressed and conveyed in a variety of manners. The contexts included in this regard are: talks, gossips, customer experiences, advertisements, stories etc. It is evident that brand cultures are always maintained and conveyed in a number of ways. Moreover, the manner in which the brand cultures and their

markers pulse through the networks is also crucial in this context. There is a conventional wisdom that is linked with the brand cultures. It is also argued that brand cultures are related to the collective consciousness of the people. It is the societys consciousness through which brand cultures are able to maintain a tenacious hold. Most of the literature available on branding asserts that powerful brand cultures facilitate the process of gaining a competitive advantage. In addition, these cultures also help in making negotiations with all the existing channel partners. It can be said that a strong brand culture gives a company or firm superior levels of leverage in terms of branding, commodification and authenticity. Branding and authenticity are integral to one another. Powerful and effective branding strategies are also based on the customer needs for authenticity. In order to understand both these dimensions, here are the four important components of brand value (Dickerson, 2004). The Reputation Value When considered from an economic point of view, it will become clear that brands can be used as containers for market reputation. Products do happen to have a number of tangible features which are to be used towards profitable ends. Customers consider the risk involved in purchasing their desirable products while keeping these features in mind. In other words, the customers always perform a cost and benefit analysis at the time of purchasing their desirable products and services. The present and future performance is also considered at the time when a customer decides to buy a product. So it is crucial that the customers should be given an added value in the form of products that are reliable and less prone to future failures. It is the brand that helps the customer in knowing the future performance and use of a product. It should be remembered here that the history of any product is also spread in the stories about brand culture (Milne & Ewing, 2004). The Relationship Value Brands also determine the relationship between a company and its customers. In other words, a brand communicates to a customer that a product can be trusted in terms of its performance and usage. For this reason, most companies prefer to keep the customer needs, uses and preferences in mind while formulating a multidimensional branding strategy. Experiential Value When considered from a psychological perspective, it can be said that a brand can be used as a perceptual framework for highlighting as well as modifying the benefits given a product. This form of framing guides the consumers decision making process. Moreover, the heuristic value that a brand offers also helps in determining the experiential value of a product. It is obvious that the experiential value of a product relies on the consumers and the experiences given to them. Symbolic Value Brands also serve as mechanisms for conveying values and identities. From a historical perspective, it can be said that human beings have always been using brand cultures in the form of concrete markers about their values and identities. In other words, brands have now become powerful markers in terms of expressing lifestyles, politics and all other statuses. It is to be considered here that when symbolic value is transformed into a brand cultures, the maximum customers are influenced by it. Brand value should always be evaluated while considering these 4 important dimensions and facets (Williams, 2000).

Designing the Branding Strategy Branding is integral to the economic strategy which a company or organization uses. An effective branding strategy helps in delivering the business goals through an enhancement of the different brand cultures. As brands, contexts and business goals vary widely, there are no specific rules and concepts involved in creating branding strategies. However, the following 4 step process is more often used in terms of formulating a branding strategy. Goal Identification A branding strategy is termed to be effective and powerful when it helps in meeting the business goals. For this reason, it is crucial that all the business goals and plans should be identified from the very start. However, it should be pondered here that not all business goals demand the use of a branding solution. Moreover, branding is to be viewed as a long term process (Niaah and Stanley Niaah, 2007). Mapping the Brand Culture It involves the evaluation of a brand culture in terms of the four components outlined above. Analysis of the Competitive Environment One important and unique driver of any brand strategy is based on delivering a stronger brand value in comparison to all other competitors. In other words, the branding strategy that proves to be helpful in establishing and maintaining a brand superiority should be given due priority. Modulating the Strategy This strategy is used to describe the movement from the present towards the most optimal brand culture. Authenticity and Commodification Commodification has a number of meanings and contexts. We will be considering commodity in terms of mainstream business theories and concepts. It can be defined as the assignment of some specific economic value to something which was not previously evaluated and considered in economic terms. In the domain of economics, a commodity is an item that has been produced to satisfy the needs and wants of the customers. For this reason, most of the economic commodities comprise of services, goods and all other related things. Moreover, the process is also used to offer a description about the transformation of the business markets to make them more suited for desired products. In other words, it is the process used to modify the dynamics of the business markets to make them more optimal and well-suited for specific brands and products. It is to be considered here that commodification is quite different from branding, as the former is more of a cultural phenomenon. In other words, commodification implies to the literal transformation and modification of things into profitable commodities. It can be said here that Jamaicans need to use commodification, branding and authenticity in order to influence the consumers in relation to Brand Jamaica. For this reason, it can be said here that commodification is more like a powerful marketing strategy or a transformation of the social as well as cultural lives into anything that can be used for sales and profits. There are a number of business experts and analysts who are of the view that branding and commodification can be used in relation to one another. Moreover, they also assert that the companies and businesses which are able to use

in commodification and branding in combination make the maximum revenues from their products and services. When it comes to tourism, then authenticity and commodification are integral to one another. Most of the previous studies have indicated that commercialization of the different local identities results in a number of negative consequences. Authenticity should be analyzed from three dimensions: the government, the tourists and the third parties. Authenticity and different forms of cultural commodification are closely linked to one another. An analysis of the literature has revealed a close resemblance of these two concepts. The questions related to power, culture and tourism should be answered in order to take an in depth view of the branding, commodification and authenticity. It has been argued that the analyses that have helped in deconstructing the concepts and notions of authenticity have been termed fascinating from theoretical perspectives, but they have been unable to address the issues pertinent to destination communities. Touristic modification might be a complex process as it varies from society to society. It is to be considered here that touristic modification had led to a disempowerment in most of the societies. In order to have an answer to this question the different meanings and forms of authenticity will need to be analyzed. MacCannell (1976) is the person to be credited for initiating the debate on commodity and tourism. He argued that authenticity happens to be a western culture phenomenon which has been articulated in order to oppose the modern views. Moreover, there are a number of different forms of authenticity that are to be considered. The most discussed forms of authenticity include: objective authenticity, cultural authenticity, existential authenticity etc. Selwyn (1996) has argued about real and genuine forms of authenticity. Constructive authenticity can be defined as something that is successful in acquiring higher levels of social recognition. Existential authenticity can be defined as a specific state of being in which the individuals are always true to themselves. Now here, closely related and associated with authenticity is the phenomenon of cultural modification. There is a common view that tourism can turn any culture into a stylized form of commodity that is more often packaged, processed and then sold to the tourists. Moreover, this process of selling results in a loss of authenticity. A number of researchers have tried to understand and examine how performance, hospitality, crafts and identities have been able to modify and transform the presence of travelers and tourists. In terms of tourism in the less developed countries, art and performances more often become commoditized. MacCannell has argued in this regard when a group or population sees itself as being an attraction for other people of the world, they begin to consider themselves as representatives of an organized and ethnic way of life. Same is the case with the Jamaican Population. So any change or modulation in this regard has a number of economic, political and social implications for the entire group (Niaah and Stanley Niaah, 2007). Butcher (2001) has argued that different types of cultural tourism can be used for creating a straitjacket for communities. Moreover, different levels and versions of economic development are termed as parts of the dominant culture. At the same time, inequality is interpreted as a stylized form of cultural diversity. Following this dimension is the need to address the lack of economic development. Culture should never be defined as an object of tourism, as in doing so its worth and authenticity is reduced. In other words, culture should not be presented as an attraction for the tourists and travelers of the world. Culture should always have an independent and superior presence. Furthermore, if any remote or far off destination becomes developed, it finally transforms as a society of tourists. A culture becomes commoditized when all its assets

become consumables for the tourists. As a result, a destination might appear to be less authentic or its value will be reduced. Some researchers have given a new direction to the debate on authenticity and tourism. They ask the question that who has the power and right to define what is authentic and what is not? These questions take us towards power relations. It should be remembered that power relations are dynamic in relevance to tourism. These relations can be seen to be working in different dimensions and directions due to which they are difficult to be analyzed. However, it has been difficult to understand the manner in which power can be harnessed in terms of tourism. In other words, the circumstances in which powers of tourism can be harnessed are difficult to know. All the answers and complexities will need to be analyzed and simplified in order to ensure that the importance and purity of a culture is maintained at all times and under all circumstances. Branding, commodification and authenticity will only be understood if these questions and complexities will be addressed (Niaah and Stanley Niaah, 2007). After having analyzed the available academic literatures, it is now clear that branding, commodification and authenticity should be used extensively in relation to Brand Jamaica. Moreover, these three factors should also be used by the business personnel and experts in order to capitalize on the Rastafari Culture. It can be said that authenticity has no sort of objective equality. In other words, it is socially constructed due to which it is negotiable. It also varies according to the needs and preferences of the tourists. Authenticity can also defined in terms of the value placed on some setting by a tourist or observer. However, it is to be considered here that commodification of any culture might not destroy the meaning and concepts of the different cultural products. There is no doubt in saying that cultural commodification is always regarded in a negative manner. The core reason here is the fact a culture might lose its value and worth when it is presented in the form of a commodity. Most of the researches have concluded that most of the tourists indeed make a number of judgments in relation to commodification and authenticity. Furthermore, the commodification of culture has always been considered a negative thing. The same has been asserted by the academic literature that is available in this regard. A number of commentators have noted that the different forms of cultural commodification can be used for affirming the identities of the local people and communities. It is recommended that the government personnel should take a number of measures and strategies in order to ensure that the authenticity of the culture is maintained at all times. The government can pass a legislation to protect the culture, its symbols and conventions. Although a number of Jamaican citizens have classified tourism as being important and central to their economic needs, still there are a number of issues that should be addressed. Most of the residents also argue that tourism has made them self-conscious as well as proud of their culture and its manifestations. An analysis of the literature has not only revealed that there are a number of different interpretations about authenticity, but has also reported a number of sociocultural consequences. Rather than defining different forms of authenticity, commodification and branding, researchers should focus on how these three domains are articulated. Cultural tourism needs to be understood and analyzed in detail for the purpose of considering all the marginal communities. There also exists an interface between commodification and branding due to which both of them are to be considered from differential perspectives. What the industrial analysts and experts need to understand is the manner in which cultural commodification can lead to positive consequences. In other words, they need to bring an empowerment for the local people and communities (Niaah and Stanley Niaah, 2007).

It is now evident that the Rastafari culture should be presented in a manner that will directly contribute to Brand Jamaica. In addition to creating a number of economic benefits for the country, the locals will also benefit from it. Tourism in Jamaica needs to be structured in a manner that will be in accordance to the needs of the local cultures and communities. There also seems to be some psychic appeal in the Rastafari Culture for most of the tourists and travelers. For this reason, industrial personnel should use the strategies and tactics outlined above in order to ensure that the maximum advantages are obtained from it. Furthermore, they should also consider the present dynamics of the Jamaican cultures and the business environment. As tourism is itself a business when considered from economic dimensions, economists and business analysts should consider the available strategies that can be used (Weis, 2001). The Rastafari Culture has been able to generate an interest in almost all of the tourists who travel to the region. For this reason, it should be presented as a spotlight in most of the travel guides and books in the region. Moreover, the culture should also be promoted in the films, art and all other forms of mass media in order to ensure that the tourists keep pouring in. It is crucial that the branding, commodification and authenticity strategies and measures outlined above should be used for advancing the Rastafari Culture in relation to Tourism Jamaica and Brand Jamaica (Williams, 2000). Culture of the Caribbean The correlation between skin shade and class has always occupied a prominent role in Caribbean societies. Colonialism brought with it racial ideologies that created a social pyramid based on broad divisions of class, colour, and culture that still exists today despite taking on different forms in local settings. Historically, Europeans were situated at the top of the social hierarchy (with admixtures of Middle Eastern and Chinese) representing the upper-class while those identified as mulatto or brown occupying a middle-class status. Africans and, later East Indians, representing the majority of peoples were relegated to base of the social pyramid. Notions of race are quite different in the Caribbean when compared to North American societies. For example, people in the United States are often defined as either white or black whereas racial categories have always been based along a continuum in the Caribbean whereby the slightest variation becomes socially important. In places like Barbados or Haiti brownskinned persons are distinguished from those who are black. only speaks Kreyol. Only in the Spanish-speaking Antilles is the official language also the language of the peopleThe second theme of cultural synthesis or creolization refers to the process of blending diverse cultural elements into new original forms. Pretty much every aspect of Caribbean society demonstrates this phenomenon as the merger of Africa and Europe lie at the root of many cultural practices that exist today, including religion, music, and many cultural celebrations. Carnival in Trinidad provides a rich example of this process. In colonial Trinidad, the French Catholic elite celebrated the pre-Lenten season with masked balls and parades. AfroTrinidadians had their own Canboulay celebrations commemorating their emancipation from slavery. Eventually, these traditions merged into the vibrant Carnival period that takes places in Trinidad every February. The same blending processes can be seen linguistically as Kreyol (French-speaking), Patwa (English-speaking) and Papiamentu (Dutch-speaking) symbolizes the mixing of French/English/Dutch words and African syntax. Enslaved Africans were able to

preserve the grammatical core of their related mother tongues and infused this into the structural vocabulary from their colonizers European languages. Finally, the theme of culture as resistance represents another significant thread to be found throughout the Caribbeans history. By borrowing elements of culture and transforming them, oppressed peoples have been able to fight back against cultural domination. For African peoples, the drum has always symbolized resistance as well as a strong connection back to their ancestral homes. Traditionally used in Africa for long distance communication, this same practice was routinely employed by enslaved Africans on the plantation to signify the start of a revolt. Fearful of slave insurrections, laws were passed outlawing the use of this instrument and harsh penalties were often inflicted for those who disobeyed. Although these attempts to ban drums could never be totally enforced, it gave rise to another practice known as bamboo-tamboo where the beating out of rhythms with cured sticks in the ground was used as an alternative. In the 1930s, young men in Trinidad living in the urban slums would turn to using metal biscuit tins and old oil drums leading to the creation of the last modern instrument the steelpan. settle down permanently on the island. Within the context of the Caribbean, early Spanish colonial possessions appeared to have followed this pattern. For example, Spanish conquistadors were unwilling or unable to provide the labour necessary to make colonies economically viable which led to the system of encomienda being imposed on indigenous peoples forced to pay a tribute (gold) or perform agricultural and other labour needs for individual owners. Exploitation societies also lacked a common, unifying, institutional basis beyond the plantations and other economic enterprises. This would ultimately make it difficult for the Spanish monarchy to maintain a level of control over colonies that were marked by instability and irrationality. On the other end of the spectrum are colonies of settlement. Land, women, and labour were important in many colonies of settlement as institutions and ideals that existed in European metropolitan societies were transferred to the West Indies. In fact, the transfer of conventional institutions of the metropolis was meant to provide a model of conformity and socialization for settlers trying to get acclimatized to their new surroundings. In the end, each colonial possession would eventually develop politically and socially into new societies with new identities distinct from the Old World. As mentioned earlier, dividing the Caribbean into settler and exploitation colonies is an oversimplification merely intended to facilitate a simple analysis of the process of colonization in the New World. In the latter half of the 20th century, there have been several attempts to establish political or economic ties with countries in the English-speaking Caribbean, but most of those have arguably failed. Political fragmentation is largely a result of the regions colonial past, in that it prevents a sense of political or economic unity from developing across the Caribbean. For example, this small region has no less than six political traditions governing Caribbean nations. Then there is always the language barrier to consider. For the former British colonies, there was never any concerted effort during the colonial period to govern the territories as one single entity, which might have helped revive relations in the contemporary era. Political independence, more recently, has simply served to reinforce the parochial, now called national, spirit. Smaller West Indian countries have been reluctant to enter into joint ventures for fear of being swallowed up geographically or demographically by larger nation states. Countries, like Barbados, Jamaica, and Trinidad who have relatively strong economies have, in turn, suggested that political unification will merely foster economic dependency from countries not as stable. Some of these tensions are already quite evident. For example, the poor relationship between St. Kitts and

Nevis has fostered a desire by the latter to separate from the twin-island federation. Similar threats were recently articulated in Tobago with threats of opting out of the unitary state with Trinidad. Barbuda has expressed discontent with its larger and less underdeveloped partner, Antigua, from whom it sought unsuccessfully to separate at the time of independence in 1981 (Niaah and Stanley Niaah, 2007).. Despite these tensions, seven small English-speaking islands in the Eastern Caribbean all of which also belong to CARICOM have come together to form the Organization of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS). Members include Monsterrat, as well the nations of Antigua and Barbuda, Dominica, Grenada, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, and Saint Vincent and the Grenadines. These countries became sovereign nations between 1974 and 1983 and during these years, the economic and political climate was markedly different from that of the 1960s, when Jamaica, Barbados, and the Bahamas were granted independence. Economic circumstances throughout the 70s and 80s were unstable and generally unfavourable. Demands for the islands main sources of income bananas and tourism fluctuated widely under changing global forces. The political situation was even more precarious as socialist ideologies permeated the region (e.g. Cuba, Jamaica, Grenada) amidst growing fears it would destroy democracy in the eastern Caribbean nations. Political leaders in these small nation-states were aware that independence did not provide a strong foundation for development and so the economic and political climate fostered integration and even encouraged calls for stronger political unity. In June 1981, the seven nations created the OECS and the heads of government formed a governing body that has authority over foreign affairs, defense, security, and economic affairs. The organization maintains offices in Saint Lucia and Antigua, while judicial activities are coordinated through a joint Supreme Court. The OECS nations are most clearly integrated in economic terms. The East Caribbean Central Bank issues one common currency for member states. Member states have created an exclusive fishing zone, as well as abolishing tariffs on most goods within the Eastern Caribbean Common Market. Through the OECS, governments jointly promote tourism, coordinate civil aviation activities, and send our overseas missions. The creation of a joint military force accompanied economic integration. After gaining independence, only Jamaica and Trinidad had established armies. The revolution in Grenada, and attempted military coups on other islands demonstrated the inadequacy of the police forces and volunteer militias inherited from the colonial era. In October 1992, Anitgua, Barbados, Dominica, Saint Lucia, and Saint Vincent formed the Eastern Caribbean Regional Security System (RSS). Saint Kitts and Nevis joined in 1983 and Grenada two years later. The British, American, and Canadian military have providing training and new equipment while Jamaica and Trinidad have participated in the forces annual war games The political changes sweeping across the English-speaking Caribbean in the 1960s would ultimately raise two important issues for governments related to the viability and sustainability of West Indian countries whether independent or not. First, could the economies of these small nations and especially the parliamentary democratic ones handle the social tensions engendered by high rates of unemployment, declining agricultural production, urbanization, the mobilization of demands by both unionized and non-unionized labour and, crucially, the expectations of a highly educated but unemployed youth population? Second, and directly

related to the question of economic viability, are political concerns. Are these governments, unchanged from the colonial period when they were imposed, really democratic if they were not instituted with the interests of most Caribbean peoples at heart? American government policies have always placed an inordinate amount of outside pressure on Caribbean governments. In many respects, the US presence in the Caribbean region has historically been based around efforts to promote their own social, political, and economic interests. As early as 1823, the Monroe Doctrine was implemented not only to demonstrate American support for Spanish American colonies seeking to assert their independence, but to also signal that Latin America was within their sphere of influence. At the same time, the US government was unwilling to give political and diplomatic recognition to the newly independent nation of Haiti a former French colony. In 1898, the US would declare war on Spain and use the opportunity to annex Guam, Puerto Rico, the Philippines, and Hawaii, as well as to occupy Cuba after the war. The US would leave Cuba in 1901 but only after forcing the newly independent country from instituting part of the infamous Platt Amendment into their constitution which would ultimately give the US the right to intervene in Cubas internal affairs at any time. Cuba was also forced to cede Gauntanamo Bay to the U.S. in perpetuity. The 20th century would see the American government take a more militaristic approach to dealing with Caribbean countries. In 1905, American president Theodore Roosevelt declares the United States to be the policeman of the Caribbean and then determines that the Dominican Republic is found to have committed an offence and is placed under a customs receivership. The US military would occupy the Dominican Republic again in 1965 after rioting broke out after a coup brought down the provisional government which had replaced Rafael Leonidas Trujillo (1930-1961) who had been in power for some three decades. The number of American troops (42, 000) and the pretense of stopping the spread of communism as the reason for the missions signaled the new stance the US government would take when imposing order across the region. Intervention would no longer be a surreptitious act by the CIA as in the Bay of Pigs invasion, 1961 but rather a military operation. This display of military force was clearly evident in the 1983 invasion of Grenada. The tensions that have resulted from American policies in the Caribbean are perhaps best exemplified in the relationship between the country and Cuba since Castro assumed power in 1959. For example, the Helms-Burton Act, among other features, seeks to deny aid to countries dealing with Cuba, requires foreign companies to declare any property they possess in Cuba that had been confiscated from its American owners by the Castro government, allows Americans to sue such companies in US courts for compensation for such property, prohibits companies trading with Cuba carrying on economic relations with the USA, bars entry to persons dealing in US confiscated property, and provides a policy framework for the US government to assist an elected Cuban government. It was signed by American President Bill Clinton in 1996 and came into effect the same year. Major economic and political groups, including the UN General Assembly, the Organization of American States, the European Union, Mexico and Canada, and CARICOM, have condemned this piece of American legislation. It is seen as a breach of international law, in that the Helms-Burton Act attempts to extend US domestic law beyond its own borders by compelling another country to abide by laws governing whom it can trade with and the conditions under which to do so While a few Caribbean countries have experienced

consistently high growth rates in the last two or three decades, the vast majority have had to struggle for most of this period. The situation has been exacerbated, in part, by the continuous growth in the regions population and could be much worse if not for periods of mass emigration. Great disparities exist within the Caribbean in respect of levels of income, natural resource endowment and access to health and educational facilities. The gap between the affluent and the masses of Caribbean peoples identified as the poor and the powerless continues to grow. For example, in 1990 the unemployment rate in Guadeloupe was approximately 31 per cent and in 1993, Martinique and Barbados had a rate of unemployment of 21.6 and 25 per cent respectively. The situation in Haiti, routinely identified as the poorest country in the Western hemisphere, is much more pronounced. In 1990 the World Bank reported the level of poverty exceeding 70 per cent in the cities and 80 per cent in rural areas. The raw realism of Caribbean life is that the economies are small, fragile, open ones, characterized by great external exploitation. This has been one of the sad legacies of colonialism. When it comes to international relations, most Caribbean countries seem to be dealing with similar realities, marked by: a high ration of international trade to national product; a high level of commodity (primary) production relative to total national production; high concentration on few commodities; high concentration of exports to developed countries; high imports of food, manufactured goods, technology and managerial skills; high levels of external borrowing and debt financing; and a high level of expatriate ownership and control of the means of production, distribution and exchange. In short, the issue that many Caribbean countries must come to grips with is the structural dependence, which characterizes the economic (and other) relationships between the region and developed countries, due to specific historical factors (Niaah and Stanley Niaah, 2007). International lending institutions seem to be replicating economic systems of the past as Caribbean countries are forced to borrow funds from agencies like the IMF, the World Bank and the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) to finance structural adjustment initiatives or reforms. In theory, these programs are designed to reduce significantly, if not completely eliminate, their balance-of-payment deficits, balance their fiscal accounts and make their exports more competitive internationally. Many third-world countries, in particular, see the IMF, as a bank of last resort because their strategies do not economically empower countries. For example, countries relying on the IMF for help find out that they have little or no bargaining power when it comes to the structural adjustments, which the IMF requires them to undertake in order to, secure the desired loan. The internal mechanisms of IMF policies usually involve a severe regimen of financial cuts in government expenditures, an end to subsidies on a wide range of basic foods for the poor and stringent taxation. IMG demands, therefore, almost invariably result in massive lay-offs in the public and private sectors; a severe reduction in government welfare programs, including unemployment, maternity and sickness benefits; drastic cuts in health care, education, and sports; and scaling down projects aimed at developing the local infrastructure. In turn, IMF policies demand that the government divests itself of the ownership of, or shares in, public corporations and industries, and that it devalues the currency under the auspices that its value is a cause of the uncompetitive nature of the national exports. In concert with the World Bank, which is controlled by the same group of countries that control the IMF, the IMG seeks to encourage

debtor countries to open their doors to foreign investment on more liberal terms, including the sale of national assets. The ramifications of IMF policies is the focus of Stephanie Blacks (2001) film, Life and Debt, which uses tourism as a backdrop to illustrate how much of an effect structural adjustment programs have threatened the countrys economic viability. It is also evident in places like Jamaica, Dominica, Guyana, Grenada, Haiti, Trinidad and Tobago, and the Dominican Republic. In these countries, economists believe that IMF loans have merely served to push them further into an economic crisis and make them more vulnerable to the realities of international capitalism and more dependent on the injection of foreign loans for the economic survival. Notions of gender have always been varied across the Caribbean. There are many perspectives about the status of Caribbean women ranging from subservient to independent. For a long time, these constructed images meant that the struggles and accomplishments of Caribbean women were routinely diminished or ignored by those interested in charting the development of the region. When the sacrifices of women have been documented, they have often been assigned supporting roles. However, in recent years, female historians, academics, authors and literary poets have begun to re-write the histories of many Caribbean societies illustrating just how vital women were in leading the country along new paths. This section briefly focuses on women in the realm of Caribbean politics . Caribbean women have historically contributed to the political development of many West Indian countries. Queen Nanny of the Windward Maroons in Jamaica is perhaps one of the earliest female leaders in the Caribbean. Nanny is held up as one of the most important figures in Maroon history and is the only female recognized as a National hero in Jamaica. She was the spiritual, cultural and military leader of the Windward Maroons and led her people through one of the most intense periods of resistance against the British, between 1725 and 1740. Enslaved African women also played a key role in bringing about an end to slavery, in that they were often intimately involved in revolts and uprisings in colonies across the region and routinely engaged in various forms of resistance and protest on their own accord. Throughout the 20th century, women have been strongly advocating for increased economic and social opportunities that would eventually propel some women to enter into representation politics. As Shepard (1997: 170) notes, working- and middle-class women were determined to move from the social welfare role they play in voluntary and charitable organizations to become politically active and sit in seats of political power. However, women would not have an easy time breaking into a domain historically dominated by men and were initially relegated to roles as campaigners and organizers. Some of the obstacles that women face trying to obtain political power, include the problem of role conflict, economic factors, and lack of male support. For example, women sometimes experience conflict in choosing between entering politics and her family life. The fact that running for office is also quite expensive, economic restraints is another barrier preventing women from ascending through political ranks. Nonetheless, the 20th century has produced a cadre of exceptional and influential Caribbean women politicians. For example, Elsa Barrows of Barbados was prominent in forming the

countrys Democracts Labour Party while in St. Vincent, Vilma Cox helped for the St. Vincent Labor Party. More recently, we can see that there are five women holding ministerial portfolios in Barbados current government, including The Hon. Mia Mottley who is the Deputy Prime Minister. In Jamaica, the Most Hon. Portia Simpson is the countrys current Prime Minister and represents the first female leader of the 68-year-old Peoples National Party (PNP). Table 1.0 (below) shows you the percentage of women in the Commonwealth (English-speaking) Caribbean parliaments in 1995 and 2000 (Brereton 2004: 502).

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