The Impact of Columbus on the Americas
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The paper discusses Columbus' discovery of the Americas and how the Europeans saw the interaction between their people and the Native Americans as a collision between people from the civilized world and insensitive savages. The paper describes how the Europeans considered it their duty to go on a special mission of civilizing the new continent's inhabitants and because of this oppression and the Natives' lack of immunity to diseases brought to the New World, the Native population experienced a dramatic decrease in numbers. The paper notes that Columbus' journey into the Western hemisphere was a decisive factor for the subsequent African diaspora and also points out that the Papal decision to support the Spanish in their endeavor was not as a result of their friendship. The paper concludes that even though he brought both good and bad to the American continent, Columbus had one of the most significant roles in shaping the world and its future. The paper includes an annotated bibliography.
From the Paper:"The last decade of the fifteenth century marked an interaction that was to change the American continent forever. Early documents, such as the Saga of Erik the Red (dating from approximately the thirteenth century), relate to how Scandinavians were presumably the first Europeans to set foot on the American land. However, it was not until 1492 when Christopher Columbus came across the Bahamas archipelago (the island Guanahani, presently known as San Salvador) and made it possible for Europeans to begin an era of interaction with the New World.
"While most Europeans did not initially share Columbus' enthusiasm about America's potential to be exploited matters gradually changed as they began to observe the benefits that an exploit of the new territories may have brought. Reciprocally, on the other side of the Atlantic, Native Americans most probably considered that their relationship with the newcomers would bring along a series of advantages for them, too. In hindsight, it is clear that Europeans and Native Americans were both wrong in anticipating the future of the European-American cooperation.
"Columbus' discovery initiated a period of turmoil in Europe and America alike. Europeans were determined to profit as much as they could from exploiting the riches believed to exist in America whereas Native Americans became confused with regard to the prolonged stay of the newcomers on American territory."
Sample of Sources Used:
- Axtell, James Natives and Newcomers: The Cultural Origins of North America [book on-line] (New York: Oxford University Press, 2001, accessed 4 July 2010), 295.
- Davenport, Frances Gardiner ed., European Treaties Bearing on the History of the United States and Its Dependencies [book on-line] (Washington, DC: Carnegie Institution of Washington, 1917, accessed 4 July 2010), 56.
- Forte, Maximilian C. "Extinction: Ideologies against Indigeneity in the Caribbean," Southern Quarterly 43, no. 4 (2006).
- Hickling, Frederick W. "The European-american Psychosis: a Psychohistoriographic Perspective of Contemporary Western Civilization," The Journal of Psychohistory 37, no. 1 (2009).
- Irwin, Graham W. Africans Abroad: A Documentary History of the Black Diaspora in Asia, Latin America, and the Caribbean during the Age of Slavery (New York: Columbia University Press, 1977) 181.
Cite this Term Paper:
The Impact of Columbus on the Americas (2013, March 22) Retrieved January 24, 2021, from https://www.academon.com/term-paper/the-impact-of-columbus-on-the-americas-152589/
"The Impact of Columbus on the Americas" 22 March 2013. Web. 24 January. 2021. <https://www.academon.com/term-paper/the-impact-of-columbus-on-the-americas-152589/>