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Your Guide to Latin America and Hispanic America
How do we DEFINE Latin America?
Latin America: (América Latina or Latinoamérica) is a region of the Americas where Romance languages (languages that come from Latin) – particularly Spanish, Portuguese, and sometimes French – are primarily spoken. Hispanic America: (Hispanoamérica) is the region comprising the American countries inhabited ONLY by Spanish-speaking populations. These countries have a lot in common with each other and with Spain. In all of them, Spanish is the main language, sometimes sharing official status with one or more indigenous languages. Roman Catholicism is the predominant religion, as well. In this class, we will mostly be learning about Hispanic America, but sometimes we will touch on the culture of Latin America as a whole.
La vida es un reto – ¡desafíate!
Georges Guadeloupe – Basse-Terre Haiti – Port-au-Prince Jamaica .Bogota Ecuador .Nassau Barbados .Santiago Colombia . Lucia .Caracas North America La vida es un reto – ¡desafíate! .Gustavia St.Castries St.Belmopan Costa Rica – San Jose El Salvador – San Salvador Guatemala – Guatemala City Honduras .Basseterre St. Vincent and the Grenadines .Quito French Guiana – La Cayenne Guyana .Lima Suriname .Tegulcigalpa Nicaragua .Bridgetown Cayman Islands .Asuncion Peru . Johns Bahamas . Kitts & Nevis .Brasilia Chile .Georgetown Cuba – La Habana Dominica .Paramaribo Uruguay .Georgetown Paraguay .Kingston Martinique – Fort-au-France Puerto Rico – San Juan Saint Barthélemy .Roseau Dominican Republic – Santo Domingo Grenada – St.Kingstown Trinidad & Tobago – Port of Spain Turks & Caicos Islands – Cockburn Town Virgin Islands – Road Town Central America • • • • • • • Belize .Managua Panama – Panama City South America • • • • • • • • • • • • • Argentina – Buenos Aires Bolivia – La Paz y Sucre Brazil .Montevideo Venezuela .Spanish Ab Initio Profesora Beato What COUNTRIES make up Latin America? Caribbean • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • Antigua & Barbuda – St.
known as Mestizos. Whites. Nahuatl is one of the 62 native languages spoken by indigenous people in Mexico. also. Puerto Rico. and Ecuador. Beginning in the late fifteenth century. Colombia. French is spoken in Haiti and in the French overseas departments Guadeloupe. in Cuba. Ecuador. Colombia. it is also spoken by some Panamanians of Afro-Antillean descent. called Mulattoes. Asians. Latin Americans of mixed Black and White ancestry. Venezuela. Significant populations are also found in Cuba. Smaller populations of mulattoes are found in other Latin American countries. Brazil. the predominant language of Haiti. people identified as "Black" are most numerous in Brazil (more than 10 million) and in Haiti (more than 7 million). the Amerindians (native Americans). and is spoken by a majority of the population. large numbers of Iberian colonists settled in what became Latin America (Portuguese in Brazil and Spaniards elsewhere in the region). Quechua and Guaraní hold official status alongside Spanish. and depending on source. Guarani is. and many Iberian traditions. Mestizos compose large minorities in nearly all the other mainland countries. as a result of Spain's trade involving Asia and the Americas. Peru. • • • • • • What are the LANGUAGES spoken in Latin America? Spanish and Portuguese are the predominant languages of Latin America. Brazil is home to perhaps two million people of Asian descent. making the region one of the most diverse in the world. creole languages are spoken. Costa Rica. Mulattoes are people of mixed European and African ancestry. as well as in Puerto Rico (where it is co-official with English). Panama. and Mexico contain the largest numbers of whites in Latin America. Intermixing between Europeans and Amerindians began early in the colonial period and was extensive. • Amerindians. In Bolivia. Martinique. ethnic groups. during the colonial period. and Brazil. Among the Hispanic nations and Brazil. and the Netherlands Antilles. Amerindians are a large minority that comprises two-fifths of the population. the majority of whom were sent to the Caribbean region and Brazil. Panama. an official language of Paraguay. the biggest and most populous country in the region.) In several nations. Portuguese is spoken only in Brazil. and Uruguay. arrived thousands of years ago. Brazil is home to Latin America's largest mulatto population. Additionally. Millions of African slaves were brought to Latin America from the sixteenth century onward. Mestizos. which includes the largest ethnic Japanese community outside of Japan itself. mostly descended from Spanish or Portuguese settlers on one side and African slaves on the other. people of mixed Amerindian and European ancestry make up the majority of the population. Iberians brought the Spanish and Portuguese languages. and Saint Pierre and Miquelon. The most widely spoken creole language in the Caribbean and Latin America in general is Haitian Creole. Spanish is the official language of most of the rest of the countries on the Latin American mainland. In many countries. these territories are not necessarily considered part of Latin America. and are also numerous in Venezuela. The resulting people. alongside Spanish and any other indigenous language in the areas where they predominate. Zambos: Intermixing between Africans and Amerindians was especially prevalent in Colombia. with a 15% ratio. They now compose a majority only in Bolivia and Guatemala. La vida es un reto – ¡desafíate! . and at least a plurality in Peru. Today. In Ecuador. and races. Dutch is the official language in Suriname. there is also a growing Chinese minority in Panama. Whites make up the majorities of Argentina. Aymara. Chile. often due to slaves's running away and being taken in by Amerindian villagers. Argentina. make up the majority of the population in half of the countries of Latin America. the Catholic faith. The specific composition varies from country to country. Puerto Rico. Cuba and the Dominican Republic. especially in the Caribbean region. The majority of Asian Latin Americans are of Japanese or Chinese ancestry and reside mainly in Brazil and Peru. Quechua is an official language. and at present most white Latin Americans are of Spanish or Portuguese origin. In Peru. Brazil. Dominican Republic. People of Asian descent number several million in Latin America.Spanish Ab Initio Profesora Beato • Mexico – Mexico City What are the ETHNIC GROUPS in Latin America? The population of Latin America comprises a variety of ancestries. The first Asians to settle in the region were Filipino. along with Spanish. French Guiana. Puerto Rico leads this category in relative numbers. Mulattoes form a majority of population in the Dominican Republic and Cuba. Blacks. Aruba. (As Dutch is a Germanic language. which are officially recognized by the government as "national languages" along with Spanish. and Venezuela. The aboriginal population of Latin America. are far more numerous than Blacks. Mulattoes.
and Portugal all areas to the east (the Portuguese lands in South America subsequently becoming Brazil). Under the leadership of a new generation of leaders. Spanish and Portuguese power was weak and Britain and France grew stronger in the colonies. Puerto Rico became a commonwealth. The earliest known settlement.000 years ago. including the Aztecs. South America’s vast rainforests. the Quechuas and Aymaras of Bolivia and Perú were the three Indian groups that settled most permanently. What was the EUROPEAN COLONIZATION in Latin America? With the arrival of the Europeans following Christopher Columbus's voyages. wiped out a large portion of the indigenous population. which along with the rest of the non-colonized world was divided into areas of Spanish and Portuguese control by the line of demarcation in 1493. The Aztec empire was ultimately the most powerful civilization known throughout the Americas. Fighting soon broke out between the Latin-Americans and the Spanish colonial authorities.Spanish Ab Initio What was PRE-COLOMBIAN HISTORY in Latin America? Profesora Beato The Americas were thought to have been first inhabited by people crossing the Bering strait. Some groups formed permanent settlements such as the Chibchas of Colombia and the Tairona groups of the Carribean. Central and South America. By the end of the eighteenth century. Cuba gained independence from Spain after the Cuban Revolution in 1902. the Aztecs (who also lived in Mexico) and Incas (who lived in Peru. and. ultimately extending from Alaska to the southern tips of the Patagonia. except for Puerto Rico and Cuba. Bolivia. Toltecs. these early movements were crushed by the royalist troops. all Spanish America. The European powers of Spain and Portugal colonized the region. including France. by the end of the colonial period. The golden age of the Maya (who lived in what now is known as Mexico and Belize) began about 250. Over the course of millennia. This followed from a violent slave revolt led by Toussaint L'Ouverture. plains and coasts were the home of tens of millions of people. Latin America was home to many indigenous peoples and advanced civilizations. How did the countries in Latin America become independent? Haiti was the first to gain independence in 1804. José de San Martin of Argentina. the independence movement regained strength. in occupying large areas of North. lost power to the heavy European invasion. such as the Incas and Aztecs. and by 1825. or an unincorporated territory of the United States. Diseases brought by the Europeans. with epidemics of diseases reducing them sharply from their prior populations. in 1917. Napoleon's invasion of Spain in 1808 marked a turning point. the indigenous elites. with the last two great civilizations. At first. such as smallpox and measles. Tupi. people of mixed ancestry (mestizos) formed majorities in several colonies. customs and government were introduced. was identified at Monte Verde in Southern Chile. In Latin America resentment grew among the majority of the population over the restrictions imposed by the Spanish government. which gave Spain all areas to the west. La vida es un reto – ¡desafíate! . Maya. Intermixing between the indigenous peoples and the European colonists was very common. Caribs. The Chibchas of Colombia. Haitian independence helped inspire independence movements in Spanish America. By the end of the sixteenth century Spain and Portugal had been joined by others. mountains. however. Ecuador and the upper part of Chile). compelling Criollo elites (the rich descendents of Spaniards) to form juntas (political committees) that advocated independence. such as Simón Bolívar of Venezuela. as well as the dominance of native Spaniards in the major social and political institutions within the colonies. until its downfall caused by the Spanish invasion. from northeast Asia into Alaska well over 10. European culture. eventually becoming the only official religion of the Americas during this period. and Inca. The victors abolished slavery. and other Libertadores in South America. By the first millennium AD. with the Roman Catholic Church becoming the major economic and political power to overrule the traditional ways of the region. had gained independence from Spain. people spread to all parts of the continents.
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