Showing posts with label Jean Price-Mars and the Future of Haiti. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Jean Price-Mars and the Future of Haiti. Show all posts

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Price-Mars as Haiti's Prophet, and the Future of Haiti in the Twenty-First Century (Part II)

Price-Mars as Haiti's Prophet, and the Future of Haiti in the Twenty-First Century (Part II)
by Celucien L. Joseph
  
As we have observed in the previous article the optimistic Price-Mars was very anxious about the future of his beloved country and the destiny of young Haitian men and women in the second half of the twentieth-century in the post-American occupation Haitian society. In the excerpt taken directly from "The Vocation of the Elite," Jean Price-Mars, depicting himself as Haiti's prophet of the twentieth-century, laments terribly on the Haitian predicament and future possibilities for all Haitian citizens--especially the welfare of the Haitian masses and the underclass. He does not take the liberty to predict the Haitian future; as a social prophet, he is deeply concerned about what the future holds for those living in the margins of modernity in the Caribbean nation. The psychological discomfort expressed in this passage not only reveals Price-Mars' patriotic zeal, but also a sense of urgency for Haitian solidarity and collaborative partnership--toward a transformed Haitian society.

I do not know what will become of Haiti's around the year 2050, because the confused data I have are obscuring my anticipations. I see an elite thirsty for lively pleasures, without zeal or faith whatsoever. And what is even more serious, it has lost the sense of solidarity both social and ethnic. For, you see, no greater offense can can be done to a man of our elite than to tell him he is a Negro--whatever may be the color of his skin, black as the night or fair as the day.

Ah! one may be a refined Black--please admire the euphemism--marabou, griffe, chabine, mulatto, white. But to be Negro, collectively and conventionally speaking, no one deigns or wants to be so. However, it is the fact that we are Negroes that gives us some originality.

I do not know what will become of this country in a not too distant future when I look at the mass of the people bound by the fetters of ignorance under a superficial sprinkling of formal Catholicism, while the elite camouflage their shortcomings under an attitude of elegant detachment. Anarchy at the base and cowardice and hypocrisy at the top. I do not know what will become of this country--maybe a mere geographical expression in the American Mediterranean, inhabited by the industrial pariahs.

Source: Price-Mars, La Vocation of the Elite, translated by Jacques Carmeleau Antoine, Jean Price-Mars and Haiti, p. 132.