Published April 16, 2020
This video was recorded by Tajaun Gibbison in the U.S. state of Florida. Jamaican Creole English, also referred to as Jamaican Patois, Jamaican Creole, Jamiekan, Limon Creole English, and sometimes simply "Patois", is spoken in Jamaica by about 2.7 million people, as well as among the Jamaican diaspora (around 800,000 worldwide). Patois features considerable West African influence, particularly from the Akan language group. It has similarities with other creole languages, reportedly being very similar to Belize Creole, with inherent intelligibility with creoles in Panama and Costa Rica. Jamaican Creole English is spoken in a continuum, from provincial English to the distinct Creole language, with the latter being mutually unintelligible with standard English. Historically, Standard Jamaican English was often held in higher esteem than Jamaican Creole English, but Jamaican Creole has been gaining prestige in recent decades. Today, Jamaican attitudes towards the language are widely positive; it is a dominant language in the country and is representative of national identity for Jamaicans.