• The Spanish influence is seen in the names of many places and foods - pelau, sancoche, pastelle, sapodilla, parang.
Trinidad and Tobago is a republican country located in West Indies sharing the border with the northeastern coastal region of Venezuela. Before, 1962, Trinidad and Tobago was under the rule of the United Kingdom. Trinidad and Tobago language was much influenced by the culture of United Kingdom and that is why English is the official language in Trinidad and Tobago.
Besides English, Spanish and Castilian are also spoken largely in various corners of the country of Trinidad and Tobago. Hindi is also another very popular language in Trinidad. Many people use Hindi as their way to communicate. In fact, the language difference is varied with place to place. In different locality, people speak in different dialects.
French was also spoken in the country, in its initial stages. For about hundred years, French was a popular language of Trinidad and Tobago. Still now, French influence can be observed in several words spoken in the island especially in the names of people. Similarly, Spanish influence is also very much prominent especially in the names of various food items and places. However, Tobagonian Creole English is the most widely spoken language in Tobago. Language of a country not only means the medium of communication among the people, but it also determines the culture of the nation.
The Peoples of Trinidad & Tobago
by Merle Hodge
The very business of choosing between 'People' and 'Peoples' of Trinidad and Tobago for the title of this chapter is charged with emotive, cross-purpose argument. Even more than the term 'West Indian', the definition of a Trinidadian is far from cut and dried. Perhaps the epitome of a Trinidadian is the child in the third row class with a dark skin and crinkly plaits who looks at you out of decidedly Chinese eyes and announces herself as Jacqueline Maharaj. The strains which converge in her may be...