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  • The Dominican Republic is a Caribbean Island nation rich in traditions drawn from Indian, Spanish, French and African influences. Women uphold their cultural heritage dating back hundreds of years to colonial times, but are also quick to embrace 21st century practices.

    Family Traditions

    Mothers and daughters are very close beginning from childhood. Mothers supervise their daughters at all times in hopes of having them marry well someday. Women are expected to remain virgins until marriage, when they become part of their husband's family.

    Marriage Types

    Women can be married in a church, a civil ceremony or a common-law union (often in the country), and the man always proposes. Large bridal parties are not common, but a woman may have a young "flower girl" or ring bearer at her wedding, and her father will serve as "padrino" (godfather) of the wedding, along with the groom's mother.

    Gender Facts

    Dominican families are patriarchal, but women can take charge in rural areas where the father is absent and a woman must care for her children and even grandchildren. It's acceptable for a man to have children by several concubines.

    Behavioral Norms

    Both rural and urban women take pride in their appearance and long skirts and dresses are considered proper in most areas, except in the city when more American fashions such as jeans are acceptable. Dominican women, almost without exception, straighten or relax their hair. Spreading one's legs, as on a horse or a motorcycle is considered impolite so women ride sidesaddle.

    Fun Facts

    Dominican women greet by kissing each other on both cheeks. All Dominican girls learn to dance the meringue, a traditional Dominican dance, from the time they are children, and many dress up in colorful costumes for the yearly Carnival, which coincides with Dominican independence from Haiti.

    Source:

    Dominican Republic

    Traditions

    Dominican Society

    More Information:

    Go Dominican Republic

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