Customs and traditions of the Mariana Islands

Northern Mariana Islands – the fastest growing area in Micronesia. Over the past 20 years, the population has increased more than 5 times, and almost all growth is achieved by emigration from other countries in the region, as well as with Philippines, China and Korea. Therefore, many local traditions are very distorted by foreign influence (first of all, Spanish and American), and the original customs and traditions of the peoples of Chamorro or immigrants from the Caroline archipelago can be seen for the most part, only on the peripheral islands.

English – Official language of the islands, although in everyday communication are widely used dialects of Chamorro and Caroline Islands. Most hotels and some stores are often used by Japanese and Chinese. At the same time, some confusion of linguistic forms of various peoples inhabiting the islands are well noticeable. Along with ordinary English greeting you can hear no less than traditional "Hafa Adai" from a chammorro language or slang "Hovzit". The same mixture of various adverbs is often well noticeable in many areas of local life, which sometimes makes it difficult to communicate somewhat difficult, but local residents are mostly trying to avoid when communicating with foreigners frankly incomprehensible terms.

The prevailing religion on the islands – Catholicism (especially among the Chamorro and Philippine immigrants), although representatives of almost all world denominations can be found on the islands. The church has a significant impact here, and most cultural events are timed to all sorts of religious festivals, including annual fiesta in honor of the Saints patrons. Each village has its own church around which the whole cultural life of one or another settlement is often focused (often one church conducts services immediately for several confessional groups).

The family community in the Mariana Islands traditional for many peoples of Oceania is much weaker than in most nearby islands. Mostly, settlements and social groups are still organized by the community (clan) principle in which the power belongs to the elders or the most respected community members. However, this order is more and more "blurred" foreign influence, remaining, for example, at Saipan, rather echoes tradition, than a real social force. Most of the settlements are dominated by quite European norms of the public device, when all the cases are managed by the election mayor or other local official, and all socially significant decisions are made on the basis of wider than the interests of one community, prerequisites.

As in all islands Oceania, dancing, choral singing and just music play a big role in Mariana Culture. Locals are very musical, and the influence of immigrants from other countries will bring here a noticeable element of the mixing of cultures and traditions. Now here you can meet traditional theatrical dances for chamorro, and Philippine states, and characteristic "Female dancing" Caroline Archipelago, and quite European forms of musical culture, often performed under the accompaniment of traditional wooden drums for the islands.

Customs and traditions of the Mariana Islands

The attitude of local residents to tourists is very friendly. The characteristic features of the local etiquette include almost Japanese reluctance to deny guests or fear upset it with his refusal. Therefore, there are often a complete misunderstanding situation, since a local resident can easily give the advice that, as he believes, does not upset the tourist, but not at all that corresponds to reality. At the same time, some Asian is clearly visible "Humanity", Not turning, however, the framework of the usual careful attitude to the tourist. And at the same time, in some regions, especially on the peripheral islands, the influence of old traditions of indigenous inhabitants of the islands is noticeable, with numerous taboos and ceremonies. Therefore, when visiting local villages, it is recommended to consult with a guide or other representatives of the turbines on possible subtleties of local rituals. At the same time, in most tourist areas, orders are quite European, and any difficulties in communicating with local residents can not be afraid. Handshake – the usual form of greetings both at a meeting and in parting.

When photographing local residents should always be pre-asked permission.

Relationship to clothes is quite democratic. In official cases, it is assumed to have strict evening clothes (however, there are enough light trousers or a long skirt and a strict shirt with a sleeve of medium length), and the evenings will use a light sweater. In everyday life, you can do a light dress and even jeans (however, in the local heat it is often not the best choice) or just T-shirt and shorts. Beach suits outside the coastal feature are not recommended, too open swimsuits can also cause disapproval (although someone will hardly turn special attention on this).

Customs and traditions of the Mariana Islands

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