Readings on Latin America and its People, Volume 1 (To 1830)

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  • Edition: 1st
  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2010-01-03
  • Publisher: Pearson

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Author Biography

Cheryl E. Martin has taught Latin American History at the University of Texas at El Paso since 1978. A native of Buffalo, New York, she received her bachelor’s degree from the Georgetown University School of Foreign Service and her M.A. and Ph.D. from Tulane University. She studied at the Universidad de Cuenca, Ecuador, on a Fulbright Fellowship and was a visiting instructor at the Universidad Autónoma de Chihuahua, Mexico. Her publications include Rural Society in Colonial Morelos (1985) and Governance and Society in Colonial Mexico: Chihuahua in the Eighteenth Century (1996). She also co-edited, with William Beezley and William E. French, Rituals of Rule, Rituals of Resistance: Public Celebrations and Popular Culture in Mexico (1994).


Professor Martin has served on the council of the American Historical Association and on the editorial boards of the Hispanic American Historical Review, The Americas, the Latin American Research Review, and H. Borderlands. She has received two fellowships from the National Endowment for the Humanities and Awards for Distinguished Achievement in both teaching and research at the University of Texas at El Paso. In her spare time, she likes to ice skate. 


Mark Wasserman is a professor of history at Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, where he has taught since 1978. Brought up in Marblehead, Massachusetts, he earned his B.A. at Duke University and his M.A. and Ph.D. at the University of Chicago. He is the author of three books on Mexico: Capitalists, Caciques, and Revolution: The Native Elite and Foreign Enterprise in Chihuahua, Mexico, 1854—1911(1984); Persistent Oligarchs: Elites and Politics in Chihuahua, Mexico, 1910—1940 (1993); and Everyday Life and Politics in Nineteenth Century Mexico: Men, Women, and War (2000). He also coauthored the early editions of the best-selling History of Latin America (1980—88) with Benjamin Keen. Professor Wasserman has twice won the Arthur P. Whitaker Prize for his books. Professor Wasserman has received research fellowships from the Tinker Foundation, the American Council of Learned Societies/Social Science Research Council, the American Philosophical Society, and the National Endowment of the Humanities.  He has been Vice-Chair for Undergraduate Education of the Rutgers Department of History and Chair of the Department’s Teaching Effectiveness Committee. Professor Wasserman was an elected member of the Highland Park, New Jersey, Board of Education for nearly a decade and served as its president for two years.  He is an avid fan of Duke basketball and enjoys hiking and travel.

Table of Contents

1.    Writing and Record-Keeping in the Ancient Americas: The Quipus of the Andes

  • Photograph of a quipu
  • José de Acosta on indigenous scripts
  • 1583 decree of the Church Council of Lima, declaring the quipus to be the work of the devil
  • Felipe Guaman Poma de Ayala’s illustration of a quipu
  • Garcilaso de la Vega (El Inca)’s account of the use of quipus
  • A modern analysis: quipus as binary codes: Gary Upton


2.    Moral debates and the Conquest of the Americas

  • Antonio de Montesinos sermon on the first Sunday of Lent, Santo Domingo
  • Bartolomé de las Casas on the Conquest of Cuba
  • The Requerimiento
  • Response to the Requerimiento in Panamá
  • Juan Ginés de Sepúlveda
  • Garcilaso de la Vega (El Inca) on the New Laws in Peru
  • Antonio de Vieira on abuses in Maranhão, Brazil


3.    Fact-Finding for the King: The Relaciones Geográficas and the Spanish Empire in the Sixteenth Century

  • The questionnaire
  • Relación of Jauja, Peru
  • Relación of the City of Huamanga, Peru
  • Relación of Meztitlan, Mexico
  • The Misquiahuala, Mexico, Map, 1579


4.   Pirates and Contraband: Life on the Coasts

  • Map of Central America and the Caribbean
  • John Hawkins at Rio de la Hacha, Colombia
  • Illustration: Francis Drake being knighted by Queen Elizabeth I, 1581
  • Map of the Caribbean
  • John Esquemeling’s account of the pirate nicknamed “El Brasiliano”
  • William Dampier’s account of the disruption of Spanish commerce at Panamá, 1685
  • William Dampier on the Miskito Indians, 1681
  • John Campbell’s 18th century account of smuggling in the Spanish empire


5.    Slavery in Brazil

  • Antônio Vieira’s sermon on the treatment of slaves, 1633
  • Domingos de Loreto Cuoto’s description of the Brotherhood of Our Lady of the Rosary, Recife, 1757
  • Illustration: slaves mining for diamonds, 18th century
  • Slaves mining for diamonds, Minas Gerais, early 19th century
  • A Slave Rebellion in Bahia, 1789
  • Maria Graham’s observations in the early 1820s


6.    Native Communities in the Spanish Empire

  • Selections from the Tlaxcala cabildo proceedings, 16th century
  • Illustration: Signatures of Tlaxcala cabildo members
  • Native lords of Ecuador write King Philip II, 1580-1599
  • Thomas Gage’s description of an Indian town in 17th-century Guatemala
  • Guaraní letter to the governor of Buenos Aires following the expulsion of the Jesuits


7.    Maroon Communities

  • Thomas Gage on maroons in Guatemala
  • A description of the role played by cimarrones in Francis Drake’s attack on the Isthmus of Panama
  • War and Peace at Palmares, Brazil
  • Quilombos inciting revolts in Minas Gerais, Brazil, 1719
  • Illustration: Plan of Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe de los Negros de Amapa, Mexico, 1769-1770


8.    Life in Colonial Convents

  • Description of the convents of Quito, 1650
  • Thomas Gage on a Guatemalan nun
  • Madre María de San José, on her decision to become a nun, and on the supervision of novices in Mexico, early 18th century
  • Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz, Reply to Sor Filotea
  • Property of the convent of Santa Clara, Cuzco
  • Illustration: photo of Santa Catalina Convent, Arequipa


9.    Life on the Northern Frontier of New Spain: New Mexico in the 18th Century

  • Bishop Pedro Tamarón y Romeral’s visit to Taos, 1760
  • Illustration: photo of Taos pueblo
  • Letter of Governor Manuel Portillo Urrisola, on hostilities with Comanches, 1762
  • Nicolás de la Fora’s description of Apaches, 1766
  • Fray Juan Agustín Morfi’s report on disorders in New Mexico, 1778


10.    Natural Disasters, Religion and the Political Order

  • The Quito Earthquake of 1582
  • Chimalpahin on the 1611 earthquake in Mexico City
  • “The Fear of God”: Bartolomé Arzáns de Ursúa y Vela
  • El Aurora de Chile, 1813


11.    The Enlightenment Comes to Latin America

  • Alexander von Humboldt on the progress of the Enlightenment in Latin America
  • José Antonio Alzate on the cotton gin
  • Illustration of Alzate’s cotton gin
  • Contents, Gaceta de Literatura, Mexico City
  • Formation of the Sociedad Patriótica in Quito, from the Mercurio Peruano
  • Cafes in Lima, from the Mercurio Peruano


12.    Mexican Independence

  • Letter of Chito Villagrán to Dr. Diego Antonio Rodríguez, June 8, 1812
  • Appeal to Mexicans to break ties with the royalists, El Despertador Americano, 1811
  • Excerpt, Lucás Alamán, The Alhóndiga
  • Agustín de Iturbide, Plan de Iguala

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