Caribbean visual arts questions

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Based on the readings on visual culture and performance studies, use these theories to discuss the images, videos and readings about Mocko Jumbies

Mocko (Moko) Jumbies are the vibrantly-colored costumed stilt walkers who dance at street carnivals in the Caribbean islands. As one watches Mocko Jumbies perform, one can experience them on many levels. Visibly, on the surface, one experiences their brightly-colored costumes, the dance moves of their performance, the music of the carnival, and may actively participate in the festival themselves. This description could be from a tourist perspective, one which is not aware of the connections to the history that is presented by these masquerading characters. Although the Mocko Jumbie and the carnival tradition has been found on many of the Caribbean Antilles, it has specific ties to the United States Virgin Islands. Using the theoretical lenses of visual culture and/ or performance studies discuss an element of the Mocko Jumbie.


Carnival – St. Croix Christmas Carnival Resources


Nicholls, Robert W. 1999, Autumn. The Mocko Jumbie of the U.S. Virgin Islands; History and Antecedents. African Arts (32) 3. p. 48-61+94-96.

Nicholls, Robert. 2012. The jumbies’ playing ground old world influence on Afro-Creole masquerades in the Eastern Caribbean. Jackson: University Press of Mississippi.


John, Willard. “Mokolution” The Evolution Of Moko Jumbies. YouTube videos. Posted by WTJX Channel 12 Virgin Islands Public Television System. Uploaded April 1, 2009 (no longer available on YouTube – available for sale can message on Facebook).


Jump Up! St. Croix. David & Veronica. The GypsyNester: Celebrating Life After Kids.

The Mocko Jumbie: A Cultural Icon.

“Mokolution: The Evolution of the Moko Jumbie”. Virgin Islands Traveller: exploring the islands with the author of Moon Handbooks Virgin Islands. Susanna. September 18, 2011.

The Guardians of Cultural Moko Jumbies.

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