Abstract

The Caribbean area is a known mobile zone of the Earth's crust. The existence of the island arc of the Antilles, the verified differences between the Caribbean crust and the oceanic as well as the continental one, and all the Neoidic mobility lead to the assumption that a new part of the continent has been built here since Cretaceous times.

After consideration of field study and geological deductions, the author came to the conclusion that the metamorphosed basal complex of Cuba represents an entirely unconformable, most probably Paleozoic continental structure. This conclusion indicates, with regard to the morphological and crustal dissection of the Caribbean, existence of a former continent in this region. The preserved relicts of this continental structure indicate that it was destructed in the geological past by the process of a partial “oceanization.” This process, caused by the intrusions of large quantities of the melted upper mantle material, produced a total change in the crust of the Caribbean and its relation to the neighboring blocks. The isostatic equilibrium was completely disturbed, and its stabilization gave rise to new movements, volcanism, and other effects which are usually considered as a demonstration of the Neoidic orogeny. The term “regeneration of continent,” instead of orogeny, seems to be genetically more exact for this sequence of events.

First Page Preview

First page PDF preview
You do not currently have access to this article.