Film No 2: Living on Heritage – Amerindian Presence in Haiti

Film No 2: Living on Heritage – Amerindian Presence in Haiti

A film by Till Sonnemann & Joseph Sony Jean 

There was no initial plan to make this short film on Haiti, but the idea developed over time. Joseph Sony Jean focuses in his PhD dissertation on the changes of the historic landscape around Fort Liberté in the département Nord-Est. To support him in the fieldwork I visited Haiti in January and June 2015, and took the drone to record some of the archaeological sites. We drove all over north-eastern Haiti, and experienced the country’s amazing cultural heritage, ranging from the time of the first Amerindian arrivals in archaic times, over colonial occupancy and Haitian independence until now. What was most fascinating is that the remains of its rich history are still visible everywhere in the landscape, so we decided record some of it.

When Sony interviewed local landowners and craftsmen in and around the village of Meillac on their connection to the Amerindian heritage they live upon, we asked if they agreed on having it recorded. We also met with Erol Josie, Director of the Musée d’Ethnologie in Port-au-Prince, who has kindly approved on using his fabulous music for the film. The language of the film is entirely in Haitian Creole and subtitled in English, to promote the historic wealth of this remarkable country to both, Haitians and foreigners alike.