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Caribbean Studies


17th c pirate printsteel pan player illustrationArchæological evidence shows human habitation in the Caribbean for centuries before the arrival of Europeans.  It was the 1492 arrival of Christopher Columbus in so-called the new world that initiated a great race for riches by Europeans. For the next 550 years, the Caribbean region would play a vital role in the economic history of the western world and, often, a tragic role in in the world's social history. Significant events, in the present, demonstrated by the recent changes in Cuba, the economic crisis in Puerto Rico, the earthquakes and subsequent turmoil in Haïti, and the climate-driven rise of sea levels that threaten the very existence of some island states, demonstrate the historical centrality and the cultural contributions of the region.

This Library guide will offer a starting point for those wishing to study the history and culture of the many and varied nations and territories that populate the Caribbean region.

Country Reports and Name Index

Map of the Caribbean

Map of Caribbean Region [public domain]

Caribbean Region 


The Caribbean region is made up of both independent countries and dependent territories which are divided into five geographical regions: The islands are located in the Greater Antilles; Lesser Antilles; North American Continental Shelf, or South America Continental Shelf. A few countries located on the mainland of Central and South America, are included in the Caribbean region for reasons of politics, history, or regional affiliation.

Listed here in alphabetical order are the nations and territories (governing nation is indicated in square brackets next to territorial names.  Some islands are part of a group, which is indicated in parentheses. The locations within the Caribbean region are indicated in italics.

Some links to country information have bee added below. For more information about all countries and territories, select the 'Country Reports' tab

Anegada (British Virgin Islands, BVI) [UK] -Lesser Antilles

Anguilla [UK] -Lesser Antilles

Antigua and Barbuda -Lesser Antilles

Aruba -SA Continental Shelf

The Bahamas -NA Continental Shelf

Barbados -Lesser Antilles

Belize -Mainland, Central America

Bonaire [Netherlands] -SA Continental Shelf

Cayman Islands [UK] -Greater Antilles

Cuba -Greater Antilles

Curaçao [Netherlands] -SA Continental Shelf

Dominica -Lesser Antilles

Dominican Republic -Greater Antilles

Gayane (France Outre Mer *)Mainland South America

Grenada -Lesser Antilles

Guadeloupe [France Outre Mer] -Lesser Antilles

Guyana** -Mainland South America 

Haïti -Greater Antilles

Jamaica -Greater Antilles

Jost Van Dyke (BVI) [UK] -Lesser Antilles

Martinique [France outre mer] -Lesser Antilles

Montserrat [UK] -Lesser Antilles

Puerto Rico [USA] -Greater Antilles

Saba [Netherlands] -Lesser Antilles

Saint Barthélemy  (France Outre Mer *) -Lesser Antilles

Saint. Croix (USVI) [USA] -Lesser Antilles

Saint. John (USVI) [USA] -Lesser Antilles

Saint Kitts and Nevis -Lesser Antilles

Saint. Lucia -Lesser Antilles

Saint Vincent and the Grenadines -Lesser Antilles

Saint Martin   (France Outre Mer *) -Lesser Antilles

Saint. Thomas (UVI) -Lesser Antilles

Sint Eustatius [Netherlands] -Lesser Antilles

Sint Maarten [Netherlands] -Lesser Antilles

Suriname -Mainland South America

Tortola (BVI) [UK] -Lesser Antilles

Trinidad & Tobago - SA Continental Shelf

Turks and Caicos Islands [UK] -NA Continental Shelf

Virgin Gorda (BVI) [UK] -Lesser Antilles

Water Island (USVI) [USA] - Lesser Antilles

* Citizens of the Outre Mer regions are French citizens and these regions are considered part of France.  

** Guyana was formerly British Guiana. 


Cayman Islands [UK] 


Dominican Republic 



Puerto Rico [USA] 






Gayane  (France Outre Mer) * 

Guyana **


* AKA French Guiana

** Guyana was formerly British Guiana.


The Bahamas

Turks and Caicos Islands [UK]

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Catalogs: Books, etc.

Article Databases

Databases A-Z

Primary Databases & Documents

Timelines of Carribbean History

Archives, Libraries, Museums

Archives, Libraries, Museums



Audio-Visual Media

Audio-Visual Media

Music is universal in the sense that every culture absorbs and contribute to all musical styles. So it is natural that one will hear popular contemporary styles of music such as jazz, pop, hip-hop, and rap, etc. However, some music genres were developed in the Caribbean region and remain popular there. A few of the more popular of these were or are notable: 

Afro-Cuban       Calypso       Creole       Dance-Hall       Konpa       Reggae       Salsa       Soca       Ska 

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Education in the Caribbean Region


American University of the Caribbean Medical School


Caribbean Medical University

Caribbean Medical University is one of the top medical schools in the Caribbean, established by Caribbean Medical University Foundation and registered on the island of Curacao, supported by the Government of Curacao

Ponce Health Sciences University

Located in Ponce, Puerto Rico, PHSU offers Medical and Health  Science degrees from Bachelor through Ph.D.

Saba University School of Medicine

Saba graduates have achieved a record of success unmatched by graduates of other international medical schools.  In recent years, 99% of our students have passed the USMLE Step 1 exam on their first attempt—and they've attained residency placements in the U.S. and Canada at a rate that's on par with graduates of U.S. schools, and much higher than graduates of other international schools.

St George's University 

Located in St. George's Grenada

Saint James School of Medicine

Saint James School of Medicine provides a quality medical education, faculty, and facilities on two beautiful islands of Anguilla and St. Vincent.

University of Curaçao


University of Puerto Rico, Mayaguez 


University of Puerto Rico, Rio Piedra

The University of Puerto Rico, Río Piedras, also known as UPR-RP and La IUPI, is a Spanish language research university located in Río Piedras, San Juan, Puerto Rico

The University of Trinidad and Tobago


University of the Virgin Islands (US)

The UVI experience is uniquely multi-cultural, international, entrepreneurial and intellectually stimulating. UVI provides a vital and exciting environment for educating future leaders in the global community.

University of the West Indies - Home

UWI Cave Hill Campus, Barbados

UWI Mona Jamaica

UWI Saint Augustine, Trinidad and Tobago

UWI Open Campus




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Maps, Charts

This links below will take you to various maps, Click on the name of the Country or Territory name.

The site link to maps digitized and posted online by the Perry Cate˜edos Digital Map Library 


Cayman Islands [UK]    |   Cuba   |   Dominican Republic   |   Haïti   |   Jamaica   |   Puerto Rico [USA] 


Anegada (British Virgin Islands, BVI) [UK]   |   Anguilla [UK]   |    Antigua and Barbuda   |    Barbados   |   Dominica   |    

 The Bahamas   |   Belize   |   Turks and Caicos Islands [UK]


Aruba  |  Bonaire [Netherlands]  |  Curaçao [Netherlands]  | Guyana  | Gayane (France Outre Mer*)  |   Suriname


Political Evolution of the Caribbean


Digitized News and Media

Selected Websites

For the British Virgin Islands, and US Virgin Islands, click Tab 'V' 

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Statistics and Data Sources

Statistics and Data Sources

Terms of Use, Contact and Guide Info.

Guide Information and Terms of Use

This Library Research Guide is posted on the Rowan University Libraries' Research Guides site and provides an initiation to the study of the history and cultures of the Caribbean region. Rowan University Libraries' Research Guides are hosted on the Springshare LibGuides Portal, to which Rowan University Libraries subscribes.

Rowan University makes no claim to freely available websites nor does it accept responsibility for the information or opinions expressed by those who have created or authored the content or by those who are quoted on the sites.