Come Jine We.
November 10, 2003 2:34 PM   Subscribe

D'you know about the Georgia and Carolinas' sea island culture of the Gullah? Mostly known for their crafts which can fetch a pretty penny, the Gullah way of life (which may be endangered) is an interesting synthesis of American and African culture. They speak a unique dialect of English, which you can hear with Aunt Pearlie-Sue's folktales. Of course, there's the food... check out the recipies for Frogmore Stew and other classic island cuisine.
posted by moonbird (10 comments total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
Yeah, I dated one of them once. Not a great experience, but I don't hold it against them.
posted by Hildegarde at 2:47 PM on November 10, 2003

Steamer Pub on Lady's Island in Frogmore, SC serves the best Frogmore Stew.
posted by stbalbach at 4:09 PM on November 10, 2003

Daughters of the Dust is a worthwhile movie about the Gullah culture as well. Thanks for the links moonbird.
posted by jessamyn at 4:26 PM on November 10, 2003

I believe Pat Conroy's The Water is Wide (Amazon link) is about the gullah culture. Like all Conroy books, it is a good read.
posted by five fresh fish at 4:27 PM on November 10, 2003

I've been interested in Gulla culture since getting my hands on a copy of the Smithonian Folkways CD Been in the Storm So Long. Great folk songs and stories, and you might recognize some samples from various Brian Eno and David Byrne albums.
posted by Etaoin Shrdlu at 4:47 PM on November 10, 2003

Very, very neat set. I've got to point out, though, that the Gullah speak neither a "dialect of English" (as the post states), or a "creole language" (which one of the links states and is really an oxymoron).

The Gullah speak a creole, which means an amalgam of two or more different languages. In this case, it's english and one or more west african languages. It isn't a dialect of english because it's fundamentally different in structure. A dialect can be only slightly variating in structure.

(Sorry that I'm anal about that.)
posted by Mayor Curley at 5:00 PM on November 10, 2003

I learned about Gullah culture thanks to Gullah Gullah Island, what was once a fantastic show on Nickelodeon that won several NAACP Image Awards.
posted by jennak at 6:00 PM on November 10, 2003

Stbalbach: I was just at Bowen's Island restaurant near Charleston SC and apparently they served the worst Frogmore, ever, FWIW.
posted by moonbird at 8:02 PM on November 10, 2003

[good post]
posted by plep at 10:53 PM on November 10, 2003

One of my cousin-in-laws is Gullah. She's got some fascinating stories to tell.

Mama Day is a novel set on a fictional Gullah island. It's a powerful book.
posted by me3dia at 8:58 AM on November 11, 2003

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