Rose's Essay

Essay circle

Period one
Between 1750 and 1890, Europe’s contact with Latin America had religious, economic and social changes and continuities.
Europeans brought their religion of Catholicism, their language, and their culture to Latin America. The Catholic Church was the primary introduction to Christianity. The Europeans took over Latin America so that everything could minister to the spiritual needs of the settlers. It promoted intellectual life though the introduction of the printing press and formal education. In Latin America, thousands of conversions and baptisms were achieved within a few years of conquest. European clergy arrived in the colonies with the intention of transmitting catholic Christian belief and ritual without alteration. The effort to convert America’s native peoples expanded Christianity on a similar scale to the early expansion in Europe at the same time of Constantine. Spain and Portugal justified their American conquests by assuming an obligation to convert native populations. Despite its failures, the Catholic clergy did provide native peoples with some protections against the abuse and exploitation of Spanish settlers.
The European invasion in Latin America changed the economy. The Spanish swiftly moved to curb the independent power of the royal authority over both the defeated native populations and the rising tide of European settlers. The silver mines of Peru and Mexico and the sugar plantations of Brazil prevailed economic development of colonial Latin America. The mineral wealth fanned the early development of European capitalism and funded Europe’s greatly expanded trade with Asia. Gold worth millions of pesos were extracted from mines in Latin America but since silver mines in the Spanish colonies produced the most wealth; it showed the most economic influence. Portugal’s increasing tolerance to British trade also allowed Brazil trade also allowed Brazil to become a conduit for an illegal trade...