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