The Haitian Revolution is a series of revolts which began on August 22,1791 and ended on January 1st, 1804 where African slaves in Haiti overthrew the French and eventually gained their independence.
This Revolution is a significant event because it was the catalyst for countries all over the world to fight for their freedom. However, why it is that every year on Haiti's Independence Day, that there is very little celebration outside of the Haitian community?
Although I was born to Haitian parents and always heard about the Haitian Revolution and that it was an important time in history, it was not until the summer of 2020 that I truly understood what it was about and what took place.
Haiti is a country with a painful but powerful history and in order for folks to understand some of the real reasons for the country's current political and economical situation, we need to start from the beginning.
If you're interested in learning more about the Haitian Revolution, in depth, then this video is perfect for you. Click to watch!
Key Things to know about the Haitian Revolution
1.The Haitian Revolution is known to be the largest and most successful slave rebellion in the Western Hemisphere.
2. The slaves rebelled because the level of brutality on the island of Hispaniola was the worst among other colonized islands. Before rebelling, slaves tried to negotiate with the slave owners on several occasions but conditions got worst and so slaves got tired and decided to fight back.
3. The Haitian Revolution inspired countries worldwide to fight for their freedom. Countries like Venezuela have paid tribute via their flag to Haiti for assisting them in gaining their freedom from colonial rule. Watch video above for more details.
4. Many descendants in New Orleans come from the descendants of people who escaped from Hispaniola during the time of the Haitian Revolution.
5. During the Haitian Revolution, Polish soldiers who were sent to fight along side the French joined the side of the Haitian slaves after realizing that they were fighting against the same injustice they were experiencing in Poland. To date, there is a Polish community in Haiti. Learn more.
Why Haiti is poor?
Growing up, an annoyance for me was to hear teachers using Haiti as an example for poverty. Although it was true to some extent, it would have been more effective if students were told why Haiti was poor. For the most part, Haiti was never set up for success as during the time they gained their independence, they were extorted by France to pay approximately $21 billion in order to preserve their independence.
I didn't always have the answer to these questions and so I did a video with another fellow Haitian who was a bit more knowledgeable in this area. Click to watch
Haitians treated as 2nd class citizens
Due to negative media and ignorance towards Haiti's history, many individuals including their own Caribbean brothers and sisters have treated Haitians as 2nd class citizens. Growing up in Jamaica, I would frequently be told by peers to "go back on my banana boat". This statement, although it was meant to be hurtful was ironic to me because those same individuals didn't own a passport or visa (both of which I owned)... but I digress.
I shared my experience as a child of Haitian parents in depth in the video below.
It is my hope that as we are getting more access to information and resources and have the opportunity to use platforms like blogs and social media to re-educate the public, that the future generation will be better more aware, understanding and better human beings.
Maggie is Youtuber who uses her Youtube channel, CharisMaggie Tv to create content about cultures and traditions through topics around food, music, language, history and more.