Antigua and Barbuda is a very small country in the Atlantic Ocean near Puerto Rico. Nicknamed the "Land of 365 Beaches," it has the 4th smallest population in the world. The country consists of two main inhabited islands -- Antigua and Barbuda -- that are miles apart, along with many small islands.
Antigua and Barbuda Demographics
Antigua's population is made up primarily of people of West African, British and Madeiran descent. The distribution is 91% Mulatto or Black, 4.4% mixed race, 1.7% white and 2.9% other (mostly East Indian and Asian). Most of the white population are of British or Irish descent. The rest of the population is comprised of Christian Levantine Arabs, Asians, and Sephardic Jews.
A large number of the population lives abroad, mostly in the United Kingdom, the United States and Canada. About 4,500 Americans live in Antigua and Barbuda, which is one of the largest American populations in the English-speaking Eastern Caribbean.
Before the late 20th century, and after the British established their initial settlement, there were five distinct and ranked racial and ethnic groups of the country. At the top of the structure were the British rulers, who were then divided between British Antiguans and non-creolized Britons. Below the British were the mulattos, a mixed-race people of Afro-European origin. Because mulattos had lighter skin than most Africans in the area, they developed a system based on skin shade to distinguish themselves and claim higher social status. In the middle were the Madeirans, who migrated from Maderia in the Iberian Peninsula. Next were Middle Easterners who migrated to the area, and finally Afro-Antiguans and Afro-Barbudans.
A great deal of the country's population lives abroad in the U.K. (Antiguan Britons), Canada, and the United States. There are also about 4,500 Americans in Antigua and Barbuda.