Seven Myths of Spanish Conquest Theme 5-Part 2 History 140 Jessica Jefferson
Seven Myths of Spanish Conquest Acknowledgements & Introduction How? - Why? - Seven? - Who Says?The number seven has deep roots with in thehistory of the Americas.• Mexica origin myth• Medieval law code• Cibola seven cities of goldSpains actions and observations in theAmericas occurred within the context oftheir own culture.• Bernal Diaz had to compare Tenochtitlan to medieval fantasy• “Truth itself has been discredited as a concept relevant to historical investigation”
Seven Myths of Spanish Conquest Chapter 1 The myth of Exceptional MenThe story of a “handful of adventurers”conquering the Americas is not what isseems.• The Spaniards who crossed the Atlantic were a part of a larger process• Columbus’s, Cortes’s, and Pizarro’s name fame is mostly due to the fact that they were the initial discoverers of the Americas and it’s major Empires• The “great men” concept leaves out the accomplishments of the natives• The famous conquistadores were simply performing the already routine aspects of Spanish conquest
Seven Myths of Spanish Conquest Chapter 3 The myth of the White ConquistadorAfricans accompanied the Spanish in theirinvasions; equaling or exceeding them innumber. Natives also played a key role. • Alvarado’s letter to Cortes stated his force comprised 250 Spaniards “and about five to six thousand friendly Indians.” • The Huejotzincans sought to use the presence of the Spanish to promote their interests and pursue rivalries against Mexica and Tlaxcalans • Using native allies was standard procedure for Spanish conquests
Seven Myths of Spanish Conquest Chapter 7 The myth of Superiority Saying the Spanish were superior because they conquered is circular reasoning.• The Spanish falsely viewed the natives as less than human; as barbarians• Mythic and non-mythic reasons are cited to explain Spaniard’s superiority: - God’s intervention & Miracles - God’s plan to unite the world under a Christian Spanish Monarchy - Disease killed the inferior natives - Natives had a different cultural approach to war - Natives saw conquistadors to be god-like• Spanish conquest was a component of the larger process of globalization
Seven Myths of Spanish Conquest Epilogue Interpretations of the pastMultiple points of view are recorded foreach of the four stages leading to anddescribing Cuauhtémocs Betrayal• Spanish journey into Mactun territory• Expedition’s stay in Itzamkanac• Discovery of plot• Violent denouncement the dawn of Shrove Tuesday - The Maya’s description is most devoid of stereotypes• The exact truth of the event is masked by the varying accounts The myths behind Cuauhtémocs death and ofthe Spanish conquest are metaphors that offerinsight to the motives, methods, and patterns of human behavior.