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Barbados

Caribbean islands, offshore banking, British heritage, Anglican churches, sugar plantations

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Barbados, an island country in the West Indies. It is the easternmost of the Caribbean islands, bordered on the east by the Atlantic Ocean. Barbados was a British colony for more than 300 years, until it gained independence from the United Kingdom in 1966. Signs of the British heritage are everywhere, from the island’s Anglican churches to the national sport of cricket. Today, most of the country’s inhabitants are descended from Africans brought to Barbados to work on sugar plantations. The capital, major city, and chief port is Bridgetown, located on the southwestern coast of Barbados.

Barbados is known for its white sand beaches and for the coral reefs that fringe the island on three sides. Sugarcane dominated the economy of Barbados for years, but tourism surpassed sugar in economic importance during the 1970s. Tourism has grown steadily in importance, and the island now ranks as one of the most popular destinations in the West Indies. The island’s government has also promoted Barbados as a site for offshore banking and information technology.

Sources

Barbados

Beckles, Hilary. A History of Barbados: From Amerindian Society to Nation State. Cambridge University Press, 1990.

LaBrucherie, Roger A. Barbados: A World Apart. Imagenes, 1993. A photographic journey that covers Barbados history, culture, people, flora and fauna, and scenery.

Levy, Claude. Emancipation, Sugar, and Federalism: Barbados and the West Indies, 1833-1876. University Press of Florida, 1980. The transition from slavery to freedom for Barbadian blacks.

Western, John. A Passage to England: Barbadian Londoners Speak of Home. University of Minnesota Press, 1992.

Contributors

Microsoft ® Encarta ® 2009. © 1993-2008 Microsoft Corporation.



Article key phrases:

Caribbean islands, offshore banking, British heritage, Anglican churches, sugar plantations, coral reefs, island country, Sugarcane, Bridgetown, British colony, West Indies, economic importance, Africans, white sand beaches, Atlantic Ocean, major city, fringe, inhabitants, capital, United Kingdom, information technology, Signs, independence, sides, government, tourism, east, site, years

 
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