“Columbus, the Indians, and Human Progress”, chapter one of “A People’s History of the United States”, written by professor and historian Howard Zinn, concentrates on a different perspective of major events in American history. It begins with the native Bahamian tribe of Arawaks welcoming the Spanish to their shores with gifts and kindness, only then for the reader to be disturbed by a log from Columbus himself – “They willingly traded everything they owned… They would make fine servants… With fifty men we could subjugate them all and make them do whatever we want.” (Zinn pg.1) In the work, Zinn continues explaining the unnecessary evils Columbus and his men committed unto the unsuspecting natives. The argument that seems to be made (how Columbus
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Argumentative Essay Outline I. Claim: Celebration of Columbus Day should be abolished due to Columbus’ harsh treatment toward the Native Americans and fallacies in his exploration. II. Sub-Claims: A) Reason: Columbus’ exploration was not meant to discover America but to conquer and exploit existed American civilizations.
In fourteen ninety two, Christopher Columbus sailed the ocean blue to find the world of new. Though the History books have a preconceived idea that he was a benevolent adventurer, Bartolome De Las Casas proclaims Columbus’ interactions differently. De Las Casas described several events during Columbus’ encounter with the Native Americans. Columbus demoralized the Native Americans by regarding them as subhumans, disintegrated their families, and committed mass murders. What the textbooks fail to include are the immoralities that could possibly shed a new light on your perspective of Christopher Columbus.
Upon arrival, they were kindly greeted by the Arawak tribe. Gazing at faces strikingly different, Columbus looked at the Natives with admiration. He observed them- they had coarse hair, tan skin, and eyes like a work of art. All seemed picturesque; European explorers had found new lands and befriended the ones inhabiting it. However, our history books have done us an injustice, puzzling students around the world.
Zinn states Columbus’ encounter with the Indians: “They would make fine servants….With 50 men we could subjugate them all and make them do whatever we want (Zinn, 1)”. With that approach, it didn’t take time before enslavement, murders, and rape to begin. With the goal of bringing back gold for the royalty in Spain, Columbus and his men took slaves and forced them to find gold or they were to be murdered. By the end of the 16th century, the Arawak Indians became extinct due
Christopher Columbus was an awful man who treated natives as inferior, yet people celebrate him. Loewen states that former President George H.W. Bush had very kind words to say about our so-called hero. Bush said that “Christopher Columbus not only opened the door to a New World, but also set an example for us all by showing what monumental feats can be accomplished through faith and perseverance”. Cleary, he must not know about the slave trade and slaughter that came along with that “faith and perseverance”. Jeffrey Hart, a columnists, also had affectionate words to say about Columbus.
Great Post! I believe Columbus could have worked alongside the natives rather than trying to enslave them especially when they were so avid in welcoming him. For example, today the U.S. is seen as a nation that takes what it wants (i.e. the scourge of the world), however, if we take the time to understand others and their traditions we might find ourselves alongside those we are working with to be happier people. Therefore, if Columbus could have understood this notion, he might have had more supportive individuals who welcomed his religion and
Howard Zinn’s point on how we regard on how we teach and learn about Columbus is that the historians only focus on one criteria on how Columbus had found this land but didn’t focus on the crueler facts that the Arawaks faced, like how they were enslaved to work for the Spaniards. Howard Zinn thinks that we should rethink the Columbus Legacy and it’s implications for the present and future because of the factors that the historians didn’t put in their teachings and books. In History textbooks, Christopher Columbus is known for the man who founded North America. Which is technically not true since the Arawaks were already there.
In spite of the fact that he fizzled in his endeavor to arrive at Asia, he did land in the Bahamas and the Caribbean, where he established the framework for European colonization of that district. Since the fifteenth century, social analysts have contended over the way of Columbus' achievement; his administration of the Spanish states secured in the Caribbean, his treatment of the local Indians who existed there and particularly his case to the status of "pioneer" of America have incited a mixed bag of responses extending from hero worship to reproach. Columbus' notoriety has long been disturbed by the way that his triumphs in route and investigation can't be divided from the legacy of abuse and viciousness that check European association in the New World (Zamora, Lois Parkinson). Any record of his works and his deeds must start with the affirmation that Columbus' "revelation" of the Americas prompted the obliteration of to the extent that four-fifths of the local populace of the locale (Bartosik-Vélez, Elise). Conceivable the most critical record of Columbus' investigations, his diary, has been lost.
In the first chapter of A People's History of The United States: 1492-Present by Howard Zinn, he sheds light on the history of the United States concerning Christopher Columbus's expedition, exploitation of Native Americans, and human progress. He entails the full extent of the voyage without sparing any details or censoring anything unwarranted to hear. Howard Zinn informs the reader how Christopher Columbus caused a genocide and enslaved the Indians. By the end of the chapter, it is quite evident that Christopher Columbus was barbaric, cruel, and greedy.
Christopher Columbus was a teenager when he went on his trip on the sea. He first went to the island of Khios, in modern day Greece, brought him the closest he would come to Asia. His first voyage in 1476 But when he went on it almost caused him his life. That is because the ships he was on were attacked by French privateers off the coast of Portugal.
Using excerpts from Columbus’ own journals as well as the writings of La Casas, Zinn exposes Columbus as a man who was greedy and hungry for power. He had no hesitation in torturing, enslaving and killing thousands of men, women and children in order to obtain these goals. Columbus and his motivations demonstrate a clear clash of cultures between Europeans and the Arawak. In his writings, Columbus sees that the Native Americans are strong and well-built, but have no means of weapons except spears made of canes. In Columbus’ mind, these factors make the native people the perfect subject to be conquered and made into slaves (Zinn 1).
1. Zinn had stated that many historians have so far heavily relied on biased views that are influenced by ideological choices on what to present and emphasize in portraying history. However Zinn is not to ‘accuse, judge, condemn Columbus’, but to question against the ‘easy acceptance of atrocities as a deplorable but necessary price to pay for progress.’ In other words, Zinn is challenging the prevalent, stereotypical story telling of the American history by demoting the exaggerated heroism, and telling it from the victims and the lessor’s perspective. 2.
At the time Columbus’s name rose to popularity, America was in need or an identity, and so the true nature of Columbus was omitted and his legacy was used as an icon symbolizing courage and unity. Through the surfacing of the true story behind the man, Columbus lost much of his fame. Yet in many ways the upstanding ideals he represented still carry
Taino that were left behind were forced to search for gold mines and on plantations. Within 100 years of Columbus’s arrival, the Taino population was practically wiped out. In all, many people think Columbus is a brave sea captain who “discovered America”. But, from the Native American’s point of view Columbus was a selfish individual who cared only about his personal wealth.
According to Loewen, few textbooks explained how Columbus was involved in the slavery and the exploitation of Indians. Another error that we have learned in schools about Columbus is that he was the first person to “discover” America. However, this is an error because people from other continents had already reached America before 1492. In fact, we forget