Politics and society of Latin America - Essay Example

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Politics and society of Latin America

Encomienda period or the age of colonialism and slavery in Latin America, which lasted for almost 350 years, made its influence on contemporary state of affairs in Peru, Guatemala, Nicaragua and other countries. Brenner (2002) and Lisovsky (1999), for instance, underlines the influence of slavery on the racial structure of colonial society, which led to brightness in racial structure in the contemporary Latin American world. White peninsulares (those born in Spain) and criollos (those born in America of Spanish background) were considered elite then; they were served by the white Canary Islanders, who naturally worked as wage laborers; then came a large group of ethnically mixed pardos, who by the late eighteenth century numbered more than half the total; they were followed by African slaves, who constituted about 20 percent of the inhabitants; and, lastly, by the Indians. Furthermore, the population inherited colonial mentality, which affects the whole organization of the governments. Colonial mentality is a term that is connected with one of the following: "A cultural notion of inferiority sometimes seen amongst populations previously subjugated and colonised by foreign entities; a willing within one nation to expand its own culture and its political and economic control in other countries" (Wikipedia,par.1). Civil wars and guerilla movements (in 1950s-1970s) in these countries destroyed colonial system, but still haven't eliminated the approaches to governing. ...Show more

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Encomienda period or the age of colonialism and slavery in Latin America, which lasted for almost 350 years, made its influence on contemporary state of affairs in Peru, Guatemala, Nicaragua and other countries. …
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