Indian Heritage in the French Creole-Speaking Caribbean: A Reference to the Madras Material

by Hélène Zamor


Madras appeared in both Guadeloupe and Martinique during colonization. This southern Indian material has not only been used for the national costume but also for domestic purposes and decoration. It is common to see tablecloths and bags made of madras. A house may be decorated with Madras curtains, lamps or dolls. Madras as a symbol for Creole identity has spread to the commercial sectors. Madras colours have been reproduced in advertisements and websites, as well as on locally made products such as yogurts or rum.

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