discussion board 1385

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**PLEASE POST IN YOUR ASSIGNED DISCUSSION SECTION THREAD

***5 total discussion board posts, 4 (2 posts and 2 replies) per discussion board (10 points per post, total 200 points)

DISCUSSION POST

Please scroll and contribute at least 2 posts to this Discussion Board on at least 2 distinct questions threads. Each post will be given points for the following:

1) adequate length (approximately 200 words)

2) clarity and good writing

3) including a specific example

4) including an in-text citation (to either assigned or extra material must use a proper citation format) – The citation should come from course readings, films, or outside sources (Prof Douglas’s lessons don’t count).

Example (author, page number)

5) including a question that you are left with.

To receive full credit, be sure to add something new to the thread and answer the question directly.

You can review a list of the questions posted below HERE.

DISCUSSION REPLY

Please scroll and contribute at least 2 responses to your peers on this discussion board. Each post will be given points for the following:

1) adequate length (approximately 150 words)

2) clarity and good writing

3) addressing the original prompt and the student response

4) including an in-text citation (to either assigned or extra material must use a proper citation format) – The citation should come from course readings, films, or outside sources (Prof Douglas’s lessons don’t count).

Example (author, page number)

5) including a question you are left with after reading your peers’ response

These are the questions for Discussion Post #3 in Week 6. Please respond in your Discussion Section board. Remember that there are two parts to the assignment.

  1. Choose two of the questions below and post a response to each. Submit those two response posts by 11:59pm this Friday 5/8. Post two replies to other students’ responses by 11:59pm this Friday 5/8.

PLEASE RESPOND TO TWO OF THE FOLLOWING QUESTIONS:

  1. The traditional story of the European conquest of Mexico claims that the Aztec Empire fell due to European technological superiority (this view is even reflected in The Conquistadors film). Based on lecture and on the Broken Spears book, why is this inaccurate? What reasons for the fall of the Aztec civilization had nothing to do with European technology or a more advanced European civilization? In what ways is the telling of the conquest of the Aztecs in The Broken Spears and The Conquistadors film different? Why is it important for readers to read about the conquest from the viewpoint of the Aztecs? What does this show us about the importance of historiography?
  2. According to the Eurocentric diffusionist argument, why did Europeans conquer the Americas? What is Blaut’s counter-argument? According to Blaut, what were three reasons the Americas were conquered by Europeans and not by other societies? What are the myths that Blaut mentions regarding the way Europeans conquered the Americas? What is his counter-argument? Specifically, address military technology and susceptibility to disease in the Americas (See pages 183-186). Compare one of Blaut’s points to either main points from The Broken Spears or The Conquistadors film.
  3. How did Europe benefit from colonialism (what did the region gain)? Include mention of the types of capital Europe acquired. How was this important to the rise of capitalism in Europe and the rise of Europe’s position in the world? Considering all of the factors that lead to the rise of Europe, what effect do you think this had on the rest of the world (See pages 198-201)? Give one example of the effects of European colonialism that is evident in the world today.
  4. What was the importance of the Indian Ocean? What types of economic systems developed across regions from Africa to Eastern Asia during the Middle Ages due to trade on the Indian Ocean? What were the consequences of Europe being excluded from trade in that region? Choose a City State in Africa and explain its economic features during the Middle Ages. What were some of its successes or accomplishments? What events and political and economic systems led to China’s status as a superpower in the 1400s? How does this knowledge of economic activity around the Indian Ocean compare to your understanding of global economic history prior to taking this course? Give a specific example from your education, reading, or films and visual representations.
  5. What role did religion have in the formation of the Holy Roman Empire as well as its mission and the beliefs of its leaders? How did Emperor Charles V gain control over so much territory? Describe the beginnings of the Protestant Reformation. What policies of the Catholic church did Martin Luther critique in his 95 theses? Choose 1-2 policies that Luther critiqued at the time and explain whether you agree or disagree with his criticisms and why.

Question that needs to be replied:

Q 1. The traditional story of the European conquest of Mexico claims that the Aztec Empire fell due to European technological superiority (this view is even reflected in The Conquistadors film). Based on lecture and on the Broken Spears book, why is this inaccurate? What reasons for the fall of the Aztec civilization had nothing to do with European technology or a more advanced European civilization? In what ways is the telling of the conquest of the Aztecs in The Broken Spears and The Conquistadors film different? Why is it important for readers to read about the conquest from the viewpoint of the Aztecs? What does this show us about the importance of historiography?

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Despite the Eurocentric view that the European conquest of the Americas was so successful due to technological advantages, The Broken Spears tells us otherwise. It is true that Hernando Cortez and the Spaniards were armed with cannons on their ships and a few guns. However, the Aztec accounts clearly indicates that the Aztecs put up a good fight, even forcing the Spaniards to retreat a few times.1 Perhaps the greatest factor that contributed to the fall of the Aztecs was European diseases, such as smallpox, that the natives of the New World had no immunity for.2 Although Cortez and the Spaniards are portrayed as dedicated, driven heroes of Spain in the documentary The Conquistadors(2000),3 the Aztec accounts in The Broken Spears portrays them as gold-hungry, terrorizing, and untrue to their words.1 The Aztec side of the story is extremely important, because it preserves the loss and destruction of an entire civilization and does not glorify it. While historiography is a critical part of our learning, it is also crucial to keep in mind that there are always multiple sides to a story, and historiography is often biased. This makes me wonder, how did Malinche feel about this? What is her side of the story?

References

  1. León Portilla, M. (Ed.). (2007). The broken spears: The Aztec account of the conquest of Mexico(Expanded and updated ed). Beacon.
  2. Crosby, A. W. (1967). Conquistador y pestilencia: The first new world pandemic and the fall of the great indian empires. The Hispanic American Historical Review, 47(3), 321. https://doi.org/10.2307/2511023Links to an external site..
  3. Wood, M. (2000). The Conquistadors. BBC.

Q3. How did Europe benefit from colonialism (what did the region gain)? Include mention of the types of capital Europe acquired. How was this important to the rise of capitalism in Europe and the rise of Europe’s position in the world? Considering all of the factors that lead to the rise of Europe, what effect do you think this had on the rest of the world (See pages 198-201)? Give one example of the effects of European colonialism that is evident in the world today.

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The vast and widespread colonialism during the seventeenth century brought an influx of silver and gold to Spain, as well as capital gain in the form of land (e.g. sugar plantations), foreign products through unequal (semicolonial) trade, and slaves for the Dutch and British.1 The new form of capital during this time was what Blaut calls the “colonial capital.”1 This new type of capital did not require significant technological advancements; it relied solely on exploiting workers and raw materials from colonies to produce a higher yield of products.1 The use of external resources to increase market created a feedback loop that fueled the growth of capitalism in Europe, giving them the legal and political power to invade and demolish the non-European world for its own gain. While Europe gained considerable wealth, it all happened at the cost of the livelihood of the rest of the world, where the colonized were oppressed and deprived of basic human rights, their own land, and their culture. Profound examples of the effects of colonialization today can be seen through language. Many Central and South American and Caribbean countries speak Spanish and Brazilians speak Portuguese. Many families in the Philippines have Spanish last names.2 The question I am left with is: what would the world look like today if European colonization did not occur?

References

  1. Blaut, J. M. (1993). The colonizer’s model of the world: Geographical diffusionism and Eurocentric history. Guilford Press.
  2. Shatkin, G. (2005). Colonial capital, modernist capital, global capital: The changing political symbolism of urban space in metro manila, the philippines. Pacific Affairs, 78(4), 577–600. JSTOR.

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