The island nation of Barbados, located northeast of Venezuela in the Atlantic Ocean, is one of the world's most densely populated nations, with blacks forming a substantial majority of the population. Christianity is the predominant religion. Increasing educational and employment opportunities have left women less economically dependent on their husbands and adult children. The predominant Creole culture is a synthesis of British and West African traditions. Barbados ranked 21st of 134 countries according to the World Economic Forum's “2009 Global Gender Gap Report.”

Common relationship unions include visiting unions, in which a couple lives apart, as well as common law and legal marriages, with common law marriages predominant. Traditional socialization emphasizes male power and virility and both genders tend to be sexually active at a young ...

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