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#3722: Laleau replies to Jude on Haitian creativity


Dear Jude,

-I was glad you corrected your wording on Haitian creativity. When I read it 
in your post it bothered me, because I've never been in a culture that had 
more creativity than Haiti... I was there during the embargo and also met a 
mechanic who was doing the propane conversions... I've seen more 
"combinaisons" in Haiti than I could imagine! It's a wonderful thing, and I'm 
convinced it's also a sign of intelligence, and an ability to see beyond many 
limitations of social convention. Unfortunately, there's the rub: social 
convention in Haiti seems to imply (perhaps correctly) that there is no 
future and that poor Haitians' only option is to "make do" with limited 
resources, or leave the country... it makes me angry just to think about the 
horrendous stifling of human spirit that is involved in that.

I think the limited vision is mostly on the part of the elites, though... 
they are the ones with the option of creating a different socioeconomic 
reality, but they sit in their walled estates and mansions in the midst of 
the disaster that the rest of the country has become, and blame it all on the 
"lazy and uneducated" people that they are feeding upon. I do know this from 
first hand... as you do. That's the horror of it all... It's not surprising 
the the poorer Haitians don't know how to get themselves out of this mess 
except by leaving the country, or by imitating their "betters" if they get a 
chance... most of them haven't seen any other models... and when they have 
gotten close to creating one, either personally or socially (1991), it's 
usually been brutally wrested away from them. 

Nancy Laleau