HomeQ&AChristopher Columbus and the Spanish Language

Christopher Columbus and the Spanish Language

5
votes

In the U.S., today is "Columbus Day". Not much is done to celebrate it, although most schools and government jobs have the day off.

It occurred to me that in part, it is due to Spain and Queen Isabella, Christopher Columbus and the discoveries of the New World that has led most of us to even be interested in this site. Just think of how many millions of people speak Spanish now around the world as a result of this discovery. When you think of most of the continent of South America, Central America, Cuba, Puerto Rico, The Dominican Republic, etc. it is amazing how many people speak Spanish as a result of these discoveries.

I was wondering if anyone else had any thoughts or any other history to add. I'm curious.

11085 views
updated OCT 13, 2009
posted by Nicole-B
By the way, my husband (and kids) are a part Italian (like Chris) and part American Indian. I thought I would mention that so no one thinks I'm taking sides. - Nicole-B, OCT 12, 2009
Your either "with us" or "against us" Nicole, pick a side, no fence sitting! lol just kidding... - cheeseisyummy, OCT 12, 2009
I never have problems telling people which side of the fence I'm on. But for today, I'm just enjoying the debate!!! - Nicole-B, OCT 12, 2009
Very nice thread, Nicole, never mind people who get carried away. - 00494d19, OCT 12, 2009

18 Answers

2
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I must say, as a soldier, overseas, It does my heart proud to see people of different beliefs able to freely voice their opinion. I feel like my time here isn't wasted. Thank you all.

updated OCT 12, 2009
posted by Seitheach
Definately not wasted, Thank you! - Yeser007, OCT 12, 2009
All I can say is Thank you!!!!!! - Nicole-B, OCT 12, 2009
7
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Everyone is so hostile...did it ever occur to anyone if any of that never happened, the good and the bad, none of us would be sitting here arguing about Christopher Columbus. Look, I'm sorry my ancestors had to suffer in slavery to help build this country, but am I pissed about it? To my way of thinking, that would be a waste of time, and it would be an affront to those very ancestors if I spend my life angry about something I didn't have anything to do with, instead of truly appreciating all the people that save worked and suffered and died in order that I can tell you all to get over it and live your lives. wink If it wasn't for Columbus, we'd all be speaking german or russian or french. So be thankful for what you have, have sorrow for those who have suffered, and move on. wink

updated OCT 12, 2009
posted by ChamacoMalo
Great post chris - Izanoni1, OCT 12, 2009
That really was my point, but I probably didn't express it well. Because of the holiday, I just started thinking that we were all kind of connected on this site because of history, whether good or bad. - Nicole-B, OCT 12, 2009
Eso mismo. - ChamacoMalo, OCT 12, 2009
Thanks Iza. ;-) - ChamacoMalo, OCT 12, 2009
I've no idea where I'd be, or if I'd be, but that is not relevent to what I think about Columbus and his actions either. - kittybrougham, OCT 12, 2009
5
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You know, (as an aside), as an african american, I hear the same old arguments about whites. Whites did this, whites did that. Oh, but you never hear about all the white people who risked life and limb to further the liberty of the then slaves. Never hear about that. EVER. Everyone is carrying on about Christopher like he was the biggest jerk on the planet, but no one wants to talk about the real history of the thing, I've heard all kinds of hot button words designed to get people all fired up, under the guise of "I'm telling history", well why doesn't someone tell the history of more than half of the indigenous people of this side of the world were wiped out by disease? I'm pretty sure Christopher didn't think to himself, "them fools don't have the germs I have so I'm gonna go sneeze on them and kill them." Not to mention the very small but significant fact that killing your slaves makes absolutely no sense whatsoever. The idea of slavery is to have someone else do your work for free. Why doesn't anyone here talk about all those tribes and peoples that drove the Spanish back into the sea? Why doesn't anyone talk about all the White people that gave food and shelter and their lives to give liberty to the Blacks? And while we are at it, when Bush was in office and all them people was hating on the french (talking about some **** french fries), if you really hated them, you'd send them back the Statue of Liberty....oh...that's right, 2/3 of the population of the United States don't even know it was given to us by the French.

updated OCT 12, 2009
posted by ChamacoMalo
Keep rolling Chris - Izanoni1, OCT 12, 2009
You're on fire today!! By the way, you weren't names after Senor Columbus, were you? - Nicole-B, OCT 12, 2009
I don't know...by the way I'm defending him, you'd think I was, huh? - ChamacoMalo, OCT 12, 2009
Exactly. That is part of what's missing from history, white people are denied role models for resistance to racism, which has always exsisted. - kittybrougham, OCT 12, 2009
Almost every Hollywood movie that portrays "minority history" includes a white hero. Danny Glover got in trouble for stating that Hollywood won't make a movie about minorities unless they are being "saved" by a white person. Plenty of role models. - jrey0474, OCT 12, 2009
... and when has Danny Glover ever steered you wrong? - jrey0474, OCT 12, 2009
You are the only black man I have ever heard say this. Thank you! My ancestors fought and died for the Norht. - Seitheach, OCT 12, 2009
4
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In the U.S., today is "Columbus Day". Not much is done to celebrate it, although most schools and government jobs have the day off. It occurred to me that in part, it is due to Spain and Queen Isabella, Christopher Columbus and the discoveries of the New World that has led most of us to even be interested in this site. Just think of how many millions of people speak Spanish now around the world as a result of this discovery. When you think of most of the continent of South America, Central America, Cuba, Puerto Rico, The Dominican Republic, etc. it is amazing how many people speak Spanish as a result of these discoveries. I was wondering if anyone else had any thoughts or any other history to add. I'm curious.

Thank you for posting this, Nicole. It's pretty obvious from the responses here that Christopher Columbus has fallen out of favor with large segments of the liberal population in this country, but I, for one, appreciate Columbus, and I'm grateful for the colonization of the Americas and the subsequent formation of the United States. If that rubs some people the wrong, way, so be it.

The holiday is so down-played in the US now that I didn't even realize it was today until a Spanish friend told me.

I'm fascinated by the deep Spanish heritage in so many parts of the New World. My friend said, "The Spanish made crappy Conquistadores", but I think that the turmoil in their own country just led them to abandon things here that they had won pretty well.

I'd like to see it become more than a day off for school and government employees. It's part of our heritage, as much as liberals would like to deny it, and it should be preserved.

updated OCT 12, 2009
posted by Goyo
That's another reason you're my hero! - Seitheach, OCT 12, 2009
3
votes

I know this is not the place to be political, but I wanted to comment about the reactions.

I do not have to wallow in grief or anger (or be of a particular political persuation) to know the history and therefore see Columbus as someone who did many evil things - to the indiginous peoples, and even to his own men. his name is very evocative for anyone who knows the whole story - just the bare facts, not opinions or political viewpoints.

History in the US is taught as propaganda in large part. It is heavily "white washed" one could say. Knowing that history - (as one example: the racism of Woodrow Wilson and his terrible relations with Latin America and how that effected events and arguably still does) - is not an inability to "move on". It's a good thing to know the real story and be informed, form your opinion on a more complete picture. Our past - the triumphs and great accomplishments as well as the tragedies and wrong-doings is fascinating and helps inform the present. As an intellegent person, I can not accept the grade school cardboard cut-out of Columbus that was handed me, and knowing more I surely am not going to honor him. This does not make me a bitter person who lives in the past, simply well-informed and conscientious.

So, it is hard for some people to answer the question as posed, I think the words we use such as "discovery" all carry meanings and one can not help but have feelings about it, though I appreciate this is probably not the place to get down into it. For good historical sources on this and other misinformatiom about US history, feel free to contact me off the forum.

updated OCT 13, 2009
posted by kittybrougham
well said Kitty - Izanoni1, OCT 12, 2009
Some would say all history is propoganda, as it is written by the victors, not the victims. ;-) - ChamacoMalo, OCT 12, 2009
ChamacoMalo, you're so right. Just ask any North Korean child, and they'll tell you... - Issabela, OCT 13, 2009
2
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So, from an American in New Hampshire, Happy Colombus Day

updated OCT 13, 2009
posted by Yeser007
2
votes

how many people speak Spanish as a result of these discoveries

Please, don't call it "discoveries". People in both Americas neither needed nor wanted to be "discovered", they just wanted everyone to leave them alone!

updated OCT 13, 2009
posted by Maciek071
For lack of a better word, they happened regardless. My intention wasn't so much to say everything was perfect or wonderful about them. Rather, I was starting a dialogue about the impact they have had on the Spanish language and our lives. - Nicole-B, OCT 12, 2009
As far as discoveries goes Mr. Colombus did not discover anything, he was lost he thought that he was in India. - 00769608, OCT 12, 2009
I understand that. But quite a few things have been discoverd by accident. - Nicole-B, OCT 12, 2009
Considering you are not from that time period, you have no clue on what they actually wanted, and cannot say "they wanted to be left alone", fyi... - cheeseisyummy, OCT 12, 2009
I'm sorry my poor English make my posts more simple than I would like them to be. By the way, I've recently read the book about conquestion of Peru. It said that Atahualpa really thought, that Pizarro would leave them with gold he got - Maciek071, OCT 13, 2009
2
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It has nothing to do with a liberal point of view or a conservative point of view.Rather it has do with the Europeans people in the 16th,17th,18th centuries and their beliefs that their God (with a capital G )gave them the right to kill ,robbed and otherwise cause mayhem in this continent. How dare these people preach the bible with one hand while with the other hand they did all that was prohibited by Jesus Christ...............

A este día se le ha denominado Día de la Raza, El Encuentro de Dos Mundos, El Descubrimiento de América, Día de la Hispanidad. Independientemente de qué nombre se le dé, esta celebración no tiene ningún significado para los pueblos maya, garífuna y xinka.

Solo lo celebran los centros educativos, los cuales seguramente enseñan que la Conquista trajo civilización a estas tierras. En pleno siglo XXI estas ideas ya no deben existir, ya que la venida de los españoles representó para los pueblos originarios invasión a su territorio e imposición de otra cultura.

Desde entonces los pueblos indígenas de Guatemala han estado en una lucha permanente frente a las diversas políticas de asimilación que se han implementado con la idea de exterminarlos, y que a pesar de ello han resistido pacíficamente, manteniendo su cosmogonía, cultura e idioma, lo cual es bueno, porque su cultura es digna de admiración y aporte a la humanidad.

El 12 de octubre no tiene ninguna trascendencia para los pueblos indígenas, debido a que es una concepción occidental, etnocentrista y colonialista. Nuestro deber es contrarrestar las diversas formas de discriminación y racismo e insistir en el reconocimiento de que todos tenemos los mismos derechos y oportunidades. Lo anterior no existe en Guatemala, porque las políticas tienen un enfoque monocultural y patriarcal, y no responden a la diversidad cultural del país.

Guatemala es un país diverso, donde convivimos cuatro pueblos y 25 idiomas, lo cual es una realidad que no se debe ignorar, y el Estado debe asumir su responsabilidad y propiciar el desarrollo de cada una de las culturas. taken from Prenla libre.com Guatemalan newspaper

updated OCT 12, 2009
edited by 00769608
posted by 00769608
I would not judge every person who came to the Americas on some of them. EVERYONE did not do these things, yes, some did, but, there were also some who didn't, and I think these people are often forgotten. - hlsbookworm, OCT 12, 2009
2
votes

I love Spanish and learning it but there is nothing to celebrate today. :( Columbus day represents a massacre of the indigenous races of the Americas.

updated OCT 12, 2009
posted by 003487d6
Indigeonous races were killing each other alredy before the white man. - Seitheach, OCT 12, 2009
1
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Muchas Gracias to all who answered or commented on this question. I read everything, and there was a lot to read. tongue rolleye I am so thankful that everyone feels welcome to share their opinions. Hopefully, there will be no hard feelings and as my buddy from Philly, Chamacomalo says, we should all kiss and make up and start the whole thing over again tomorrow.

Buenas Noches smile

updated OCT 13, 2009
posted by Nicole-B
1
vote

When the @#$& did this site become so @#$& political. Can't we just learn Spanish without the personal attacks?

I have read the thread, not very carefully I admit, it has gotten very intense, jeje, but I don't see any personal attacks so far.

Please keep it that way. smile

updated OCT 12, 2009
posted by 00494d19
1
vote

In Canada, it is Thanksgiving day wink So we remember to give thanks. I believe it all goes back to the native americans and european settlers sitting down and sharing with one another. Of course, Thanksgiving for Americans is in November.

So I guess thanksgiving day and columbus day are the same day? always the second monday of October?

updated OCT 12, 2009
posted by robertcs
0
votes

Talking about getting carried away...

A more apt analogy would likely be to compare Hitler to the conquistadors and not to Columbus. A better analogy would be to compare Columbus to Kaiser Wilhelm.

big surprise big surprise big surprise

Izan, you know you are avery appreciated member of this forum, but this is so off the hook no way we are going to allow this political talk here, sorry for Nicole, but this thread is closed.

Several posts were flagged so I removed them.

updated OCT 13, 2009
edited by 00494d19
posted by 00494d19
0
votes

When I was very young all that was taught in school was that Australia was "discovered" by Captain Cook. Captain Cook claimed Australia (for England) on the basis of "terra nullinus" (hope I've spelt that right - uninhabited land). Of course that wasn't the case at all....

A short time back our Prime Minister, Kevn Rudd said "sorry" to all indigenous Australians, Torres Strait Islanders, especially our "stolen generations" on behalf of the government (and of course previous governments). Many Australians were against this taking place and such was the feeling against it where I worked I actually took a day off so I could watch and be part of it without the flak happening around me.

We can't change the past..but we can certainly acknowledge it..

Now...if Columbus had discovered "Australia" instead perhaps I'd be taking Paralee's English lessons.

Annie.

updated OCT 13, 2009
posted by nonombre
0
votes

This thread would be really hot if it was in Spanish.

updated OCT 12, 2009
posted by nizhoni1
de acuerdo - Izanoni1, OCT 12, 2009
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