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Dominican Republic Culture and Mass Media

Culture

In Dominican cultural life, music is at the center. Most Dominicans like to dance, preferably to the music styles merengue and bachata. Musician Juan Luis Guerra is internationally renowned.

The Dominican-American group Aventura created a unique bachata style by incorporating influences from hip-hop, R&B and reggaeton. The group was dissolved in 2011.

  • Countryaah: Latest population statistics of Dominican Republic, including religious profiles and major languages spoken as well as population growth rates in next three decades.

Dominican-American writer Junot Díaz is hailed as a literary talent. He won the Pulitzer Prize in 2008 for his short, wonderful life, Oscar Wao's book. The writer Julia Álvarez is also a Dominican-American. Her best-known book is Perhaps In the Butterflies' Time, which has also been translated into Swedish and filmed with, among others, Salma Hayek and Marc Anthony.

Previous writers include Manuel del Cabral (1907–1999), Pedro Mir (1913–2000), who is regarded as the national poet, and Juan Bosch (1909–2001), who was also a leading politician (see Political system and Modern history).

Baseball is an important part of cultural life. Already in 1912 the first national tournament was held in the country. Many young Dominicans dream of becoming rich and famous as baseball pros in the United States. Some succeed: the best known is Sammy Sosa who broke through with the Texas Rangers in 1989.

Culture of Dominican Republic2017

December

Medina mediates for Venezuela

December 15

In Santo Domingo, President Danilo Medina hosts a third mediation attempt between government and opposition representatives in the crisis-hit neighboring Venezuela (meetings have previously taken place on September 13 and December 2). The parties say they have come much closer together but a fourth meeting may be needed, in this case in January 2018.

October

Doctors go on strike

October 4th

The doctors go on strike since the government promised wage increases have not been achieved. More than 5,000 doctors participate and announce new and more powerful actions if nothing happens.

Real wage increase in the free zones

October 1st

The salaries of employees in the free zones are increased by 15 percent, since the unions and employers have for the first time in several decades managed to agree on a major increase. From the turn of the year, wages will be increased by another 5.33 percent.

May

Prosecution for corruption

May 29th

The Justice Minister is prosecuting 14 people who were part of a corruption network, in which the Brazilian company Odebrecht allegedly paid bribes to high-ranking government officials in the Dominican Republic as a thank-you for profitable government contracts. The charges come only nearly six months after the US Department of Justice formally accused Odebrecht of paying US $ 92 million in bribes to the country in 2001 - 2014 as part of a regional bribery scheme.

March

Protest marches against construction giant

March 5th

Environmental organizations are launching a series of demonstrations against a controversial coal power project in Punta Catalina, demanding that the mutually-accused Brazilian construction company Odebrecht be driven out of the Dominican Republic. One organization, Marcha verde (Green March), has already previously criticized the government for liaising with Odebrecht, which is at the center of a huge corruption havoc with tentacles in large parts of Latin America. The National Committee for the Fight against Climate Change (CNLCC) is also conducting protest marches.

February

Two journalists murdered during broadcast

February 14th

Two journalists are shot to death during an ongoing radio broadcast, which one of them also lovingly broadcast via Facebook. A woman is shot. Three men are arrested after the incident outside Santo Domingo.

2016

August

Medina is sworn in again

August 16th

President Danilo Medina will formally take up his second term in office. Among the participants in the ceremony are the left-wing Presidents Nicolás Maduro from Venezuela, Evo Morales from Bolivia and Rafael Correa from Ecuador.

May

New election victory for Medina and PLD

15th of May

In the presidential election, Danilo Medina already wins the first round, with 62 percent of the vote against 35 percent of the main opponent Luis Abinader, a candidate for the PRM. Medina's party PLD also retains its majority in both chambers. The PLD receives 106 seats in the Chamber of Deputies and 26 in the Senate. PRM receives 42/2, PRSC 18/1, PRD 16/1 and other parties remaining 8/1. The turnout is 70 percent.

April

King of drugs is arrested in Spain

April 22

Spanish police say that Jesús Pascual Cabrera Ruiz was arrested in Rioja where he was staying under false Costa Rican identity. Cabrera Ruiz, which tops the list of wanted individuals in the Dominican Republic, is suspected of extensive drug trafficking and money laundering.

March

Frenchman extradited from Egypt

4th of March

A French aviation safety expert arrested in Cairo is being released at the request of Dominican authorities. He is accused of helping the two French pilots in the so-called Air Cocaine case (see October 2015) flee the Dominican Republic. The pilots have been arrested in France following an international arrest warrant, but French authorities have made it clear that they will not be extradited. The flight safety expert, Christophe Naudin, is sentenced in October 2017 to five years in prison.

 

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