Cabeza De Vaca Outline
Native Americans in the United States /
Pages: 4 (846 words) /
Published: Dec 12th, 2013
Thesis: Reséndez’s argument that Cabeza wanted a more humane wane to colonize holds some validity, but his argument has some holes because Cabeza did not believe some Native Americans could become loyal Christian citizens of Spain.
I. Introduction to controversy:
1. Andrés Reséndez’s central argument for his book is that the castaways’ “journey thus amounts to a fork in the path of exploration and conquest, a road that, if taken, could have transformed the brutal process by which Europeans overtook the land and riches of America.” However, this is ignoring the earlier part of the Reséndez’s book which talks much about the process from which Cabeza goes from a slave to a medicine man. Even though Cabeza is respected as a medicine man, he is still mistreated often.
2. Reséndez’s argument that Cabeza would be totally peaceful to the natives is incorrect
1.1. Evidence: hostilities with native populations and a shortage of food forced the group to retreat from the coast of Florida; during the retreat, various storms caused Cabeza de Vaca and his small party to be separated from the rest of the Spaniards and eventually this small group made their way into modern-day Texas. During this period, Cabeza de Vaca lived as a captive with various native tribes for several years until finally escaping and returning to Spanish settlements in Mexico.
II. Explain summaries of both books:
3. Summary of Cabeza De Vaca: As the navigators were uncertain of their location when they landed, Cabeza de Vaca thought it prudent to keep the land and sea forces together. Narváez and the other officers, excited by rumors of gold, overruled him and started off on a march through Florida, promptly getting lost. After several months of fighting native inhabitants through wilderness and swamp, the party reached Apalachee Bay with 242 men. They believed they were near other Spaniards in Mexico, but 1500 miles of coast lay between them. Although starving, wounded,