Latin America Study Guide

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Latin America Test Study Guide

1. Explorers for Spain and Portugal:
a. Portuguese
i. First to launch large-scale operations
ii. Prince Henry supported explorations, established court—sent expeditions west to Atlantic islands, south to Western African coast—Portuguese settled Azores and Madeira Islands, learned about African coast—gold and slaves iii. Wanted water route around Africa to India—Bartolomeu Dias attempted, pushed back iv. Vasco da Gama completed journey, learned about Muslim merchants, sailed to Calicut, India v. Pedro Cabral sent to India—sailed west, ‘discovered’ Brazil vi. Trade established between Portugal and India—Portuguese =set out to find other lands vii. Made Portugal rich and powerful

b. Spanish:
viii. Ferdinand and Isabella funded Columbus’ voyage to reach China by sailing west around world ix. Columbus was wrong about earth’s size—ignorant of Americas, believed Caribbean were Indies x. Returned with exotic items/native Americans—hailed as a hero xi. Amerigo Vespucci sailed along south American coast, concluded land was not Asia—later, land was named America xii. Vasco Nunez de Balboa sent to explore America—crossed Isthmus of Panama, became first European to see Pacific xiii. Ferdinand Magellan sent to circumnavigate globe—died in Philippines, crew led by Juan Sebastian de Elanco completed journey c. Both:

xiv. Proximity to Atlantic made exploration easy
xv. Sought routes to Asia
xvi. Set up trade with foreign regions
xvii. ‘Discovered’ Americas
xviii. Impactful feats of navigation
xix. Supported by monarchs
2. Treaty of Tordesillas
d. Between Spanish and Portuguese—drew line in Atlantic to divide Americas—west of line belonged to Spanish (included most of Americas because true size was unknown at the time), east of line belonged to Portuguese e. Only Brazil remained a Portuguese colony

f. Lead to size differences—Portuguese smaller
g. Heavy jungles in Brazil made land difficult to mine or farm, causing no hurry to settle h. Colonists settled American coast, built huge farming estates, enslaved Native Americans and Africans 3. Mercantilism

i. Developed by Europeans, idea that a nation’s strength depended on wealth measured in god and silver—believed that the world contained a fixed amount of wealth, implying that to make one nation wealthier, another nation would become poorer j. Wealth created two ways: mining gold or creating a trade surplus (balance of trade) k. To create favorable balance of trade, 1) tariffs used to reduce imports, 2) high-priced exports encourage leading to government provision of subsidies to businesses, 3) control overseas sources of raw material and precious metal l. Lead to creation of colonies to control raw materials and provide new markets for exports—exist only to benefit home country m. Restrictions on colonies—could not sell raw goods/ buy manufactured goods from other countries, could not manufacture goods n. Colonization lead to increase in business activities, leading to urbanization and a creation of a powerful wealthy class of merchants 4. Encomienda

o. Important institution in early colonial Spanish America—resulted from transition between violent conquest and creation of peaceful states, originated from re-conquest of Iberia from Moors p. Grant of Indian labor to an individual by the crown q. Were not legally slaves, could not be traded

r. Encomienda used to reward conquistadors and other services—required encomenderos to “civilize” and “Christianize” workers, protect and treat workers humanely s. Laws were ignored, encomienda was essentially slavery t. Was declared unchristian by Bartolome de las Casas, Holy Roman Emperor Charles V...
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