The calypso is a living example of Afro-Caribbean oral tradition adapting itself to a process of continuous change. Its history reflects the immigration of Europeans, Africans, Asians and Caribbean people into an island that had known 299 years (1498–1797) of Spanish rule, and was, through ongoing contact with Venezuela, to retain strong Hispanic cultural ties. The Trinidad experience involved a process of continuous indigenization, enacted on ground stolen from reduced though not erased Amerindian communities to create out of this teeming welter of ethnicities a restless and, according to V.S. Naipaul, "half-formed" society, sufficiently flexible to accommodate the paradox of homogeneity and difference: a jarring, jamming, carnivalesque collision and clashing counterpoint of rhythms.