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HIS271 - A Collision of Cultures (Lecture 1)

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Grant Brown

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A Collision of Cultures “Old World Meets Old World” North American Cultures and Languages 1. Each group lived within specific regions, and participated in their own unique/specific cultures. 2. Some were nomadic – which meant they moved around a lot 3. In places where there were more fish/water, there were more art 4. When Europeans came to this land, Europeans had skewed perspectives The “Discovery” of America 1. 1507 map = fairly Eurocentric view of what the world looked like 2. Major centers are still Europe, Asia, and Africa Explaining the Growth in Exploration and Conquest 1. Growth in population 2. Advancements in navigation and long distance sea travel  became dangerous 3. Stronger monarchies  need power and money to sustain a colony 4. Social, economic and cultural impulses  the renaissance led to a spirit of optimism, the printing press allowed for the printing of images and spread of ideas 5. A desire for exotic goods  Sugar was becoming very important in Europe 6. The narratives of famed explorers  inspired others Christopher Columbus “…one of the most successful failures in history.”  set out to find the ocean passage  1492 he set sail (convinced Ferdinand that he could find the passage)  2 months later he landed on the coast of an island (ended up being the Bahamas)  a month after returning, he set sail again  1498 he finally realized he had not found his original place he had set out to find  Cuba, Dominican Republic, Venezuela, and Honduras, etc had been claimed for Spanish throne  Violent clashes at first arrival of “new worlds”  First contact defined in terms of extremes: Old world vs. New world, etc.  Many Europeans overlooked the fact that this new world had a new identity, which made it difficult to conquer it  Images of them without clothes, eating each other, acting in a barbaric manner dehumanizes them Questions to Consider 1. What clues do these images offer about European worldviews in the 15 and 16h th centuries? 2. What can we
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