Suriname, Republic of. [Surinam]
- Terry Agerkop,
- Kenneth Bilby
- and Peter Manuel
Country in South America. Suriname (formerly Dutch Guiana) is situated between French Guiana and Guyana on the north-east coast. Bounded to the south by Brazil and to the north by the Atlantic Ocean, it has an area of 163,820 km². Suriname is notable for its heterogeneous population: ethnic groups among its approximately 450,000 inhabitants include East Indians (‘Hindustanis’, 35%), Creoles (30%), Indonesians (18%), Maroons (descendants of escaped slaves, also known as ‘Bush Negroes’, 10%), Chinese (2%), Europeans (1%), and other minorities such as Lebanese. The indigenous inhabitants were the Carib, Arawak and Warroo Indians, and Amerindians comprise 3% of the present population, retaining their own languages and aspects of their religious and musical traditions. There is no state religion. Most Creoles are either Protestant or Roman Catholic; the majority of the East Indians are Hindu, although some are Muslim; most of the Indonesians are Muslim; and the Maroons maintain distinct religions that are largely African-derived....