The birth of a continent


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The birth of a continent

  1. 1. Bicentenary: the birth of a continent known as Latin America Aquiles Alencar-Brayner Curator, Latin American Collections [email_address]
  2. 2. Latin American Independence
  3. 3. Pre-Independence Era <ul><li>Period of Political Unrest: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Bourbon Reforms (starting in 1713) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Expulsion of Jesuits (1767) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>North American Revolution and independence of USA in1776 </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>French Revolution in 1789 </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Popular uprisings in Latin America – Tupac Amaru II (Peru, 1780); Comuneros (New Granada, 1781); Inconfidencia Mineira (Brazil, 1789) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Slave revolt leading to independence of Haiti (1791 – 1804) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Napoleonic Wars in Europe </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>5 th May 1808 – Joseph Bonaparte proclaimed King of Spain </li></ul></ul>Papeles varios. Mexico, 1820. BL 9180.3.6
  4. 4. Antonio de Ulloa y Jorge Juan, Relacion historica del viage a la América meridional, hecho de orden de S. Mag …. Madrid, 1748 BL G.7226-30
  5. 5. Pre-Independence Era: European Publications Guillaume Raynal. Histoire philosophique et politique des établissemens et du commerce des Européens dans les deux Indes . La Haye, 1774. BL 582.e.9-15
  6. 6. Pre-Independence Era: European Travelogues <ul><li>Jean François Marmontel, Les Incas, ou la destruction de l’Empire du Pérou . Paris, 1778 BL 12517.g.9 </li></ul>
  7. 7. Pre-Independence Era <ul><li>Growing awareness of an American national identity: </li></ul><ul><li>“ The creoles prefer to be called Americans… they are frequently heard to declare with pride, ‘I am not Spaniard, I am an American’.” (Alexander von Humboldt, circa 1800) </li></ul>BULLOCK, William. Six Months’ Residence and Travels in Mexico . London: John Murray, 1824. BL 1050.k.16
  8. 8. Anti-Napoleonic Protest in Sp. Am. Papeles varios. Mexico, 1820 BL 9180.3.6
  9. 9. Independentist publications in Britain Juan Pablo Viscardo y Guzman. Letter to the Spanish Americans (written apparently in 1791. Translated from a French copy). London, 1808. BL 8175.b.18 William Burke. Aditional Reasons… London: J.Ridgway, 1808 BL 1446.h.14
  10. 10. Spanish American Publications <ul><li>Liberal Ideas / Enlightenment </li></ul><ul><li>Translation of The Declaration of the Rights of Men by Antonio N ariño in 1794 </li></ul><ul><li>Jean-Jacques Rousseau’s Discourse on the Origin of Inequality (1755) and The Social Contract (1762), emphasized that the natural condition of humanity is disguised by the corruptive influence of civilization: “&quot;Man is born free but everywhere is in chains.&quot; </li></ul>BL 11451.bbb.44.(42.) BL 8005.a.11
  11. 11. Spanish American Liberators <ul><li>Miguel Hidalgo (1753 - 1811): </li></ul><ul><li>Grito de Dolores, 15 th September 1810 </li></ul><ul><li>Simon Bolivar (1783 – 1830): </li></ul><ul><li>Panamericanism </li></ul><ul><li>Influenced by British constitution </li></ul><ul><li>Jose de San Martin (1778 -1850): </li></ul><ul><li>Together with Simón Bolívar, San Martín is regarded as one of the Liberators of Spanish South America. After a meeting with Bolívar at Guayaquil (Ecuador) on 22 July 1822, San Martín unexpectedly resigned the command of his army, excluding himself from politics and the military, and moved to France in 1824. </li></ul>BL RF.2009.b.26 BL C.115.i.1 BL 010882.k.1
  12. 12. Latin American Independence and Nacional Boundaries <ul><li>Source: Wikimedia Commons </li></ul>
  13. 13. British Interest in Latin America <ul><li>Re-establish the links with the continent after USA Independence </li></ul><ul><li>Military and commercial protectionism </li></ul><ul><li>Export of manufactured goods </li></ul><ul><li>Mining exploitation </li></ul><ul><li>Political intervention </li></ul>John Miller. Memoirs of General Miller, in the service of the Republic of Peru . London: Longman, 1829 BL 1453.i.15
  14. 14. British Military Intervention: Portugal & Brazil <ul><li>1808: Portuguese Royal family moves to Rio de Janeiro </li></ul><ul><li>1822: Brazil becomes an independent empire by paying £ 2 million to Portugal – Brazil had to borrow money from Britain initiating a long process of external debt. </li></ul><ul><li>1888 Slavery was abolished in Brazil and 4 million slaves were freed </li></ul><ul><li>1889 Brazilian monarchy was overthrown and a republic was established </li></ul>Source: Library of Congress
  15. 15. British Military Interventions Spain & Spanish America <ul><li>1796 – Spain joined France in its war with Britain, thus giving Britain cause for military action against Spanish colonies </li></ul><ul><li>1797 – British blockade of Cadiz: cut of transatlantic route between Spain and Latin America </li></ul><ul><li>1806 and 1807 – Maitland plan (proposed by Nicholas Vansittart in 1795 and later modified by Thomas Maitland) British invasion of the Río de la Plata (Buenos Aires and Montevideo ) – defeat of British army; strengthening of creole militia </li></ul>The Times , 15 th Sept. 1806
  16. 16. Wars of Independence – UK and Irish participation <ul><li>Between 1810 and 1825, thousands of British, Scottish, and Irish mercenaries travelled to Spanish America to fight against Spanish colonial rule under the rebel forces of Simón Bolívar and San Martin. </li></ul><ul><li>Daniel Florence O'Leary. Born in Cork (Ireland). He was a military general under Simón Bolívar. </li></ul><ul><li>Lord Thomas Cochrane. British naval officer and radical politician. After being dismissed from the Royal Navy, he served in the rebel navies of Chile, Brazil, and Peru during their respective wars of independence. </li></ul>Daniel O’Leary Source: Wikimedia Commons
  17. 17. San Martin’s Fleet – All led by British officials <ul><li>  Rodolfo H. Terragno . Maitland & San Martín . Bs. As.: Universidad Nacional de Quilmes, 1998. </li></ul><ul><li>BL YA.2001.b.930 </li></ul>
  18. 18. Military Account: Popular Participation James H. Robinson, Journal of an expedition 1400 miles up the Orinoco and 300 up the Arauca; with an account of the country, the manners of the people, military operations &c. , London, 1822 <ul><li> English Surgeon in the Venezuelan Service </li></ul><ul><li>“ These squalid troops presented a very motley group. They were of every age, from eight years to fifty, or even more. Some were completely naked; some had a hair rope bound round their body, to which was attached a piece of cloth, behind and before, which passes between the thighs, called Yayuco , or Guayuco ; some had a jacket; some, a kind of short pantaloons, of very coarse linen; some a cap; some, an old hat; some, a hat made of straw; but none of them were completely clothed; while all of them had a knife or dagger hid about some part of their body. They were all furnished with muskets[…] Many of these men, and not a few of their officers, had never before been on board a ship: and, of course, to such men everything seemed strange and even unaccountable.” pp. 138 – 139. </li></ul>BL 1050.h.14
  19. 19. Military Accounts: popular participation James Hackett. Narrative of the expedition, which sailed from England in 1817, to join the South American Patriots… London: John Murray, 1818. James Hackett entered into the service of the Spanish American independence cause and set off to make his fortune in 1817. He wrote his account to dissuade other Britons from following in his footsteps. “ The Independent armies march in hordes, without order or discipline; their baggage consisting of little more than the scanty covering on their backs. They are totally destitute of tents, and in their encampments observe neither regularity nor system. The commanding officers are generally mounted, and likewise such of the others as are able to provide themselves with horses or mules, the latter of which are in great plenty. The exterminating principle upon which the war is carried on between the contending parties, render their campaigns bloody and destructive; desolation marks the progress of those hostile bands, to whose inveterate enmities the innocent and unoffending inhabitants are equally the victims, with those actually opposed to them in military strife. In action the Independents display much bravery and determination, and frequently prove successful, notwithstanding their want of discipline, deficiency of arms, and disorderly manner of attack and defence. Unhappily the work of death terminates not with the battle, for on whatsoever side victory rests, the events which immediately succeed those sanguinary struggles are such as must cast an indelible stain upon the Spanish American Revolution. The engagement is scarcely ended, when an indiscriminate massacre of the prisoners takes place; nor is the slaughter only confined to the captives, the field also undergoes an inspection, when the helpless wounded are in like manner put to the sword.’ pp. 55-56 BL 798.h.12.(4.)
  20. 20. British Travellers in Spanish America during the 19 th century <ul><li>Mainly written by: </li></ul><ul><li>Diplomats </li></ul><ul><li>Army officials </li></ul><ul><li>Explorers </li></ul><ul><li>Entrepreneurs </li></ul><ul><li>They all offered a rich and biased account of everyday life in Spanish America and described their encounters with political and army leaders </li></ul><ul><li>Biased and, most of times, romanticised vision of indigenous population in line with European idealised civilisations </li></ul>George Thomas Love, Five Years Residence in Buenos Ayres During the Years 1820 to 1825 . London: G. Herbert, 1825.
  21. 21. Some important Spanish Americans who lived in UK <ul><li>Andres Bello (1781 – 1865) : poet, lawyer, diplomat. Lived in England from 1810-1829. Bello’s stay in England made him favour a constitutional monarchy </li></ul><ul><li>Francisco de Miranda (1750 – 1816): Political thinker and educator </li></ul><ul><li>Bernardo O’Higgins (1778 – 1842): was educated in England where under the influence of Miranda he started to support the independence cause in 1810. He was appointed supreme director of independent Chile </li></ul><ul><li>Simon Bolivar (1783 – 1830): one of the key leaders of Spanish American independence. Studied with Bello and Miranda. Lived in London in 1810 before returning to Venezuela. </li></ul>BL 1453.i.15 BL
  22. 22. Relationship between Europe and America Andres Bello, Repertorio Americano . Londres, 1826. BL P.P.4086. Interesting official Documents relating to the United Provinces of Venezuela . London, 1818 BL
  23. 23. Relations to Britain Andres Bello, Repertorio Americano . Londres, 1826. BL P.P.4086. J. Fernandez Lizardi (El Pensador Mexicano), 1820 BL 8180.bbb.18
  24. 24. Women depicted in foreign travelogues <ul><li>The women especially are handsome and elegant. </li></ul><ul><li>With the greatest natural endowments, the </li></ul><ul><li>intellectual education of the latter seems to </li></ul><ul><li>have been almost entirely neglected: but the </li></ul><ul><li>late political changes, and the intercourse with </li></ul><ul><li>foreigners, principally English, by dissipating </li></ul><ul><li>the mists of prejudice, has given an impulse to </li></ul><ul><li>mental as well as physical exertion, that promises </li></ul><ul><li>ere long materially to modify, or perhaps </li></ul><ul><li>change the whole frame of society in this </li></ul><ul><li>part of the world . </li></ul><ul><li>William Bowers, Naval Adventures during Thirty-five Years' Service , London: Richard Bentley, 1833, pp. 47.) </li></ul>Mathison, Gilbert Farquhar, Narrative of a Visit to Brazil, Chile, Peru and the Sandwich Islands during the years 1821 and 1822 . London, C. Knight, 1825 BL 10492.dd.10.
  25. 25. Women depicted in foreign travelogues William W. Carpenter. Travels and Adventures in Mexico . New York: 1851 BL 10480.b.6
  26. 26. Women in Spanish America Josefa Acevedo Gomez, Tratado sobre Economia Domestica para el uso de las madres de familia i de las amas de casa . Bogota: 1848. BL 8415.a.57.(1.) BL P.P.2589.sab
  27. 27. Indigenous population: Scientific expeditions <ul><li>Charles Darwin: </li></ul><ul><li>Tierra del Fuego Feb. 25 th, 1834 </li></ul><ul><li>“ 300 years. Although essentially the same creature, how little must the mind of one of these beings resemble that of an educated man. What a scale of improvement is comprehended between the faculties of a Fuegian savage & a Sir Isaac Newton ... I could not have believed how wide was the difference between savage and civilised man: it is greater than between a wild and domesticated animal, inasmuch as in man there is a greater power of improvement.” Narrative of the surveying voyages of His Majesty's Ships Adventure and Beagle between the years 1826 and 1836. London: Colburn, 1939. </li></ul>BL W32/1571
  28. 28. Indigenous population depicted in British travelogues William Bullock. Six Months’ Residence and Travels in Mexico . London: J ohn Murray, 1824. BL 1050.k.16 Emeric Essex Vidal. Picturesque Illustrations of Buenos Ayres and Monte Video . London: Ackermann, 1820. BL C.115.i.1 John Constance. Letters from Buenos Ayres and Chile . London: R. Ackermann, 1819. BL 279.k.13
  29. 29. The Indian as a National Myth Vicente Riva-Palacio y Guerrero. México a través de los Siglos. México: Ballescá y comp., 1889. BL C.115.i.1 José Joaquin Olmedo. La Victoria de Junin: canto a Bolivar . Londres: I mprenta de M. Calero, 1826. BL 11450.d.26
  30. 30. The indian in Spanish American literature <ul><li>Romanticism: idealised image of indigenous population </li></ul><ul><li>(cf. Montaigne’s Le Bon Sauvage ) </li></ul>Manuel Maria Nieves, Los Mártires de Buenos Aires ó El Verdugo de su República . Madrid, 1857 BL 1570/2479
  31. 31. Indigenous population in the popular press <ul><li> Juan Engaña, Letters Pehuenches (Chile, 1819) a series of educational pamphlets published as letters exchanged between two Pehuenche indians: Melillanca and Guanalcoa. Letters Pehuenches opens with an explicit reference to the freedom of press established in the first Chilean constitution: “Every man is free to publish his ideas and to examine the objectives that are proposed by them.” </li></ul>
  32. 32. Constitutions: nationality vs. citizenship Peru, 1823
  33. 33. Constitutions: nationality vs. citizenship Bolivia, 1826
  34. 34. 20 th century response to (mis)representation of native peoples <ul><li>“ El criollismo no ha podido prosperar en nuestra literatura, como una corriente de espíritu nacionalista, ante todo porque el criollo no representa todavía la nacionalidad…Nuestro &quot;nativismo&quot; -necesario también literariamente como revolución y como emancipación-, no puede ser simple &quot;criollismo&quot;. El criollo peruano no ha acabado aún de emanciparse espiritualmente de España. Su europeización -a través de la cual debe encontrar, por reacción, su personalidad- no se ha cumplido sino en parte… Los ‘indigenistas’ auténticos -que no deben ser confundidos con los que explotan temas indígenas por mero &quot;exotismo&quot;- colaboran, conscientemente o no, en una obra política y económica de reivindicación -no de restauración ni resurrección.” </li></ul><ul><li>José Carlos Mariátegui 7 Ensayos de Interpretación de la Realidad Peruana. Lima, 1928 BL 8025.d.40. </li></ul>
  35. 35. Useful Links <ul><li>Spanish American Independence Movements (The British Library): </li></ul><ul><li>Gendering Latin America Independence (University of Nottigham): </li></ul><ul><li>Nineteenth Century Adventurers in Gran Colombia (University of Bristol): </li></ul><ul><li>British in South America: </li></ul><ul><li>Irish in Latin America: </li></ul><ul><li>Reliquias e identidades (CILAVS – Birkbeck College): </li></ul><ul><li>Pronunciamientos (University of St Andrews): </li></ul>
  36. 36. Q&A Robert William Hardy. Travels in the interior of Mexico in 1825, 1826, 1827, & 1828 . London: Henry Colburn and Richard Bentley, 1829. BL 1050.k.21