Colorful Karnaval Costumes Show the Vibrant Spirit of Haiti
Haiti's largest annual celebration puts the spirit of the island on display.
For Haiti, celebration is a catharsis.
And the biggest catharsis takes place during the country's annual Karnaval celebrations, held during the weeks leading up to Mardi Gras.
Just as Mardi Gras in the U.S. has been uniquely shaped by the South, so has Karnaval been shaped by Haiti. For over 100 years, the celebration has been held in various cities around the island and showcases the country's unique creole culture. The only catastrophe large enough to halt celebrations was the magnitude 7.0 earthquake that hit Haiti in 2010. Almost seven years later, Haiti is still considered one of the world's poorest countries and recently suffered a cholera outbreak, but Karnaval has since come to represent the resilience of Haitians.