Why don't Afro-Caribbeans have African names or Indo-Caribbeans have English names? Did colonizers find it difficult to pronounce African names but not Indian names?

Further to this question, if this was due to Africans being slaves and Indians being contract workers, why were only Africans used as slaves in the Caribbean and not Indians?

  • 9
    Afro Carribeans are descendants of slaves, Indo-Caribbean are descendant of 'free' workers. A master of a slave may define the name of a slave, but an employer normally don't define the name of the employee.
    – knut
    Apr 11, 2016 at 18:02
  • I agree with the @knut explanation, but let me add that "Indo Carribeans" are not descendants of the indigenous population (Caribs). They came from other parts of America.
    – Alex
    Apr 11, 2016 at 18:17
  • @Alex Before I wrote I checked for Indo-Caribbean and found a wikipedia article: They are descendent from India. There is no american origin.
    – knut
    Apr 11, 2016 at 18:22
  • @knut: wherever they come from, they are not descendants of slaves, so your answer is correct.
    – Alex
    Apr 11, 2016 at 18:50
  • 1
    Knut, please expand your comment a bit and put it in as an answer. :)
    – CGCampbell
    Apr 11, 2016 at 19:48

1 Answer 1


Afro Carribeans:

Afro-Caribbeans are Caribbean people who trace their heritage to Sub-Saharan Africa [...] Between the 16th and 19th centuries, European-led triangular trade brought African people to work as slaves in the Caribbean on various plantations.

These Afro Carribeans are descendants of slaves. The slaves had no rights and a master of a slave may define the name of a slave. Especially if the master doesn't want to learn 'strange' names.


Indo-Caribbeans are Caribbean people with roots in India. They are mostly descendants of the original indentured workers brought by the British, the Dutch and the French during colonial times.

The Indo-Caribbeans arrived after the end of slavery at the West Indies. They were 'free' workers and an employer normally doesn't change the name of the employee.

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