Dr. Vincent DeGennaro Jr. '02 | Mar. 19, 2014 | Notre Dame Magazine
Haiti’s Carnival, or Kanaval in Creole, is not one weekend but an entire season, fusing the French tradition of pre-Lenten celebrations with a uniquely Haitian embrace of the transience of life.
Every Sunday night for six weeks, the streets of Port-au-Prince erupt in thumping rhythms of music and people flooding the streets, making a pilgrimage either to downtown or to the main square of the upscale section of the city. Traffic slows to a crawl on the principal avenues uphill and downhill as the party rages in both directions. The weekly festivities are merely a prelude to the revelry that approaches, spanning the island of Hispaniola and culminating on Mardi Gras.