Dominica is home to a wide range of people. Although it was historically occupied by several native tribes, the Arawaks and Kalinago Carib tribes remained by the time European settlers reached the island. "Massacre" is a name of a river dedicated to the murders of the Native villagers by French and British settlers, because the river ran red with blood for days. Each (French and British) claimed the island and imported slaves from Africa. The remaining Caribs now live on a 3,700-acre (15 km2) territory on the east coast of the island. They elect their own chief. This mix of cultures is important to Dominica.
The 11th annual World Creole Music Festival was the first activity held there since its completion on October 27, 2007, part of the island's celebration of independence from Great Britain on November 3. A year-long reunion celebration began in January 2008 marking 30 years of independence.
Dominica is often seen as a society that is migrating from collectivism to that of individualism. The economy is a developing one that previously depended on agriculture. Signs of collectivism are evident in the small towns and villages which are spread across the island.
Dominican cuisine is similar to that of other Caribbean countries. Common main courses comprise meat (usually chicken, but can be goat, lamb, or beef) covered in sauce. The sauces are either spicy pepper sauces, or concoctions made from local fruit. A huge variety of local fruit, from tamarind to passion fruit, are served on the island, usually in juice or sauce form. Soursop is peeled and eaten raw. Sorrel, a red flower that only blooms around Christmas, is boiled into a bright red drink. Typical dishes include "pelau," a one-pot dish of rice and chicken, mountain chicken (frog), all types of local fish, frozen joys (a homemade flavored popsicle), and several types of "ground provisions,"--root vegetables including dasheen and tania.
The island has its own state college, formerly named Clifton Dupigny Community College. Some Dominicans get scholarships from the Cuban government to attend universities in Cuba. Others go to the University of the West Indies or to schools in the United Kingdom, the United States, or other countries for higher education. Ross University, a medical school, is located at Portsmouth. The Archbold Tropical Research and Education Center, a biological field station owned by Clemson University, is located at Springfield Estate between Canefield and Pond Cassé. In 2006, another medical school called All Saints University School of Medicine opened in temporary facilities in Loubiere, with a permanent campus being constructed in Grand Bay. Currently All Saints is located in Roseau, Dominica. Until 2009 there was also a marine biology institute in Mahaut, I.T.M.E (Institute for Tropical Marine Ecology), 15 minutes north of Roseau.
Cricket is a popular sport on the island, and Dominica competes in test cricket as part of the West Indies cricket team. On October 24, 2007, the 8,000-seat Windsor cricket stadium was completed with a donation of EC$33 million (US$17 million, €12 million) from the government of the People's Republic of China.
Dominica has three major newspapers, The Sun, The Times, and The Chronicle. There are two national television stations and a few radio stations, including Stations include: ZBC-AM 590, ZGBC-AM 740, ZGBC-FM 90.7 (Portsmouth), ZGBC-FM 102.1 (Roseau) and ZGBC-FM 106.1 (Marigot), Q95 FM, the Dominica Broadcasting Corporation, and Kairi FM. Before 2004, there was one telecommunication company called Cable and Wireless. In 2005, Digicel and a UK-based company called Orange started to offer service to the island. There are a number of mobile networks operating on the island.