European, Native American, and African Collisions

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In the 1400s alone, two collisions of worlds took place. They are collisions in the sense that there were two parties who were socially very different whose cultures met at rather sudden point. These collisions' importance and impact in history and global economics is great. The first was the introduction of European trading posts into Africa; the second was Columbus landing in the Bahamas and unintentionally discovering the New World. These two events are alike in they both let to dramatic changes in the course of history and both were much more beneficiary for the Europeans.

The Portuguese clashed cultures with the Africans in the mid-1400s. When the Portuguese found that it was possible to get back to Europe using a certain route with westward breezes and had developed a new type of ship, they began to set up trading posts on the African shoreline. They reached previously unreachable places (unreachable, at least, to Europeans at the time). Now Portugal had prime access to slaves and gold. Using methods invented by Arab 'flesh merchants', the Portuguese set up their own slave distribution system that was very profitable, especially when selling slaves far away from the slaves' homeland. Bartholomeu Dias eventually sailed around the tip of Africa and discovered the water route to India. This clash of cultures proved very beneficial for the Portuguese, as many became rich off of the gold and slaves. The European popularization of slave trade would eventually lead to Enland's colonial success, which in turn lead to the creation of the United States of America.

The Africans, however, did not receive as much of a benefit from the slave trade. According to The American Pageant, “some forty thousand Africans were carried away to the Atlantic sugar islands in the last half of the fifteenth century. Millions more were to be wrenched from their home continent after the discovery of the Americas.”

In 1492, Christopher Columbus sailed to find the Indies under...
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