Spanish Language and Latin America

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International Baccalaureate History of the Americas HL Required Summer Reading Study Guide
Born in Blood and Fire: A Concise History of Latin America
By John Charles Chasteen

Foreign Affairs November/December 2000 states: Born in Blood and Fire is a briskly written yet sophisticated introduction to Latin America that will be greatly welcomed by non-specialists and experts alike. Chasteen paints on a very broad canvas, but he succeeds in capturing with enviable conciseness the major ingredients of Latin America's uniqueness and complexity. Especially welcome is his graceful integration of Brazil into the overall picture, which general histories of Latin America often lack. He first takes the reader from the European conquest through the colonial consolidation by Spain and Portugal before looking at the role of indigenous communities in the new order imposed by the Europeans and African slavery's social and cultural consequences. He then follows with the independence movements and the uneven attempts at nation-building in the nineteenth century; race, ethnicity, religious and liberal ideologies, and the roles of key individuals are also covered. Chasteen concludes with the recent return to economic liberalism, this time in the context of open elections, continuing poverty, and social exclusion of large segments of the population. A stellar performance!

Summer Reading Directions: The answers to these questions should be well thought out, typed, 12 point font, single spaced, New Times Roman. The completed review sheet is a summer long process that is not designed and should not be attempted at the last minute. This assignment will be due on the first full school day of the 2011 – 2012 academic school year. These questions will prepare you for the first 2 day examination made up of 96 multiple choice questions and 57 matching terms. This is the first grade of the course and will set the study tempo for the remainder of the school year.

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