CULTURE & HERITAGE

Bermuda has a very rich, diverse cultural heritage. Explore some of the elements of this through the following pages.

What is Culture?

The Regional Cultural Policy of the Caribbean Community defines culture far more broadly than the anthropological context; and refers to culture as:

[…] The distinctive ways in which a particular grouping of people has responded to, reflected on and expressed their historical and presently continuing experience of life. These ways are explored and expressed in everything from clothing and cuisine – from the dimension of biological survival – to dance, painting, storytelling or any of the other art–forms, which have no apparent immediate survival value. This sum total of intricately connected ways of being […]worked out by a people in relation to a particular environment and with a particular legacy of ideas, beliefs and practices is what gives a people a sense of cohesiveness, a sense of having a particular irreplaceable value in the world. […] It is our culture which makes it possible to bond ourselves meaningfully to our physical and social environment and to each other. (6)

While culture is something that is inherited through beliefs and traditions, it is important to note that culture is not a static entity but continues to evolve in response to the people and experience of the world.

What is Heritage/Cultural Heritage?

Heritage is something that is inherited from one’s ancestors. Cultural heritage can be thought of as the legacy of physical artefacts and intangible attributes of a group or society that are inherited from past generations including monuments, research, language, religion, architectural works, art, oral traditions and archaeological sites, maintained in the present and bestowed for the benefit of future generations.

Cultural Policy

The Department of Community and Cultural Affairs is currently working with industry stakeholders and the general public to develop a National Cultural Heritage Policy for Bermuda. This policy will present the Department’s vision for preserving, celebrating and educating about Bermuda’s rich cultural heritage. The National Cultural Policy will be a product of significant community engagement  ... Learn More

THE ARTS

Bermuda’s vibrant artistic scene reflects a sophisticated set of visual artists, talented musicians, disciplined and dedicated dancers, filmmakers committed to capturing the essence of our island home, writers whose work reflects our varied experiences, and a number of imaginative creatives whose work spans multiple and mixed media. Their work is a masterclass in Bermudian culture and society: w... Learn More

Folklife

Bermuda boasts a rich, diverse and fascinating folklife, with roots that stretch back for many centuries. Folklife is the shared, lived expressions of culture and ways of being that are passed from one generation to the next. Folklife expresses the way a people live, eat, worship, entertain themselves, and share their talents. It is taught informally in the day-to-day life of people, but is not ne... Learn More

Being Bermudian

Bermudian culture is a blend of African, British, Caribbean, Portuguese, American and Native American heritage which has fused into a culture that is unique in its own right. Being Bermudian is a way of life. For some, it’s following the Gombeys at the end of a holiday celebration. For others, it’s a Sunday trip to Paradise Lakes or watching the runners on Bermuda Day. It’s honouring our her... Learn More

Historical Heritage

Much of Bermuda’s historical heritage is illustrated by the island’s various landmarks, which makes Bermuda an ideal place for historical bus and walking tours. Some of these include Fort St. Catherine in St. George’s, built in 1614 and towering just above Gates Bay, the beach where Admiral Sir George Somers and the first settlers landed after the wreck of the Sea Venture; Cobbs Hill Methodi... Learn More