Alisha Small Sociology 1101 Dr. Johnson 31 Oct. 2012 Danger of A Single Story: Liberia Liberia is the second poorest country in the world. People are dying in this country or about to die because of the poverty getting worse day by day. Liberia is now the poorest on the continent of Africa because of the 15 years of war that helped damage this country. This country may have a low poverty rate but it’s cultural aspects still remain. Liberia has a different style of dressing than America depending upon the part of Liberia you live in.
In urban areas Liberians are more likely to dress in typical western style that consist of jeans and t shirts. In rural areas, Liberians wear more traditional West African attire. Men wear shorts or long pants with loose round neck shirts. Women wear a long wrap skirt called, “lappa” and loose top called, “bubba”. They also may wear a head wrap. West Africa’s clothes are famous for their bright colored and patterned fabrics and also their conservative clothing. Liberia’s primary food is something common to us Americans known as rice.
Rice is also used ceremonially to make offerings to ancestors, to the recently dead, and to social superiors when asking for a favor. Liberian’s do not use meat and fish as their main focus on the meal, it’s used as a garnish. Depending on the time of the year, the main meal may be served at midday or in the evening. There are not a lot of different religions in Liberia. Most Liberians are either Christian, about one fifth are Muslims, and two fifths profess other religions.
More than two thousands languages are spoken in Liberia. Liberia’s primary language is English, other than that they speak predominant languages, which are Kpelle, Bassa, Gebo, Dan, Kru, Mano, Loma, and Mandingo. Marriage is an important factor of any human beings life, but it’s different in Liberia. Marriages are polygynous and patrilocal. When married, the bride moves to her husband’s compound to live with his extended family. Extended family means a man can have more than one wife at a time.
Also when married, Liberia has a law called Bridewealth. This states the right of a husband to claim any children born to his wife regardless of their biological father. The husband will take care of the child like it’s his own. Liberia’s economy was mostly dependent on a few primary products or raw materials. Their value of exports came from iron ore and rubber. These exports accounted for more than half of Liberia’s earnings before the war.
After the war Liberia main exports was timber and rubber, which earned Liberia over millions of dollars. They still export these products, but it doesn’t give them the fundings they need to get out of poverty. The type or most popular music Liberia listens to changes everyday. As of now Liberians listens to several genres of pop that are influenced from neighboring countries, like Ghana and Nigeria. Liberians also listen to local Folk and Christian Music. They are also very much influenced by the United States R&B and Hip-Hop Music.
Even though the civil war ended years ago, Liberia is still politically and economically unstable, and the government’s mismanagement also helped destroy it’s economy. Eighty percent of Liberia’s population is living below the poverty line, and now they engage in agriculture and farming small plots of land. Since the war hard occurred, Liberia still hasn’t been the same, Liberians are still trying to recover their economy. Despite the difficult global economic environment, Liberia’s economy has expanded at an average rate of over six percent during the past five years.
The restoration of the infrastructure and the raising of incomes in this ravaged economy depend on the implementation of sound macro- and micro-economic policies of the new government, including the encouragement of foreign investment. The economy has shown signs of growth, but very little progress has been made in addressing the criteria laid out by the International Monetary Fund for creating an improved economic environment that would attract foreign investment.
Most productive facilities in Liberia were devastated during the civil conflict, so there is potential for growth in almost every sector. Work Cited http://www. africaw. com/forum/f17/the-poverty-in-liberia-the-poorest-country-in-t1558/ http://www. state. gov/r/pa/ei/bgn/6618. htm http://www. heritage. org/index/country/liberia http://www. globalsecurity. org/military/world/liberia/economy. htm http://www. everyculture. com/Ja-Ma/Liberia. html