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Was columbus a hero who ushered in economic well being thoughout the world?

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Was Columbus a hero who ushered in economic well being throughout the world? That's an interesting question, and it can be looked at in two different ways. For the Native Americans (especially the ones who met and dealt with the Europeans and their descendents during the first four hundred years or so after Columbus), who were, from what studies and history have shown, overall happy and content with their lives before meeting the Caucasians, the answer (based on the way the Native Americans overall viewed and perhaps still view things such as the world's economy and its well-being), the answer is most likely no, and they (at least a good majority of them now), would not look at Columbus as a hero and one who brought economic prosperity throughout the world. Because of Columbus, and the related, large and rather (historically speaking), fast growing amount of explorers, missionaries, soldiers and settlers that came to the new world, their lives were totally changed forever, and for the most part not in a good way at all.
I would also say that the Africans whom were forced into slavery, their economic well being in their world (what they mostly new about the world and its economy, much like that of the Native Americans, almost in its entirety for both groups, was based on what they knew about the prosperity and happiness of their tribe and perhaps tribes in a rather relatively small geographic community), was certainly not improved by Columbus and the consequentially following destruction of their lands, forced into slavery, negative exposure to European diseases (more so for the Native Americans than the Africans), political instability (especially for the Africans), and introduction of weapons and greed (again more for the Africans here than the Native Americans), forced relocations and abuse and destruction ...

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Was Columbus a hero who ushered in economic well being throughout the world?

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Captain John Smith Summary: Epic Hero

Read The General History of Virginia and A Description of New England (attachment). Then, in the appropriate Discussions topic, post your response to the writings of John Smith. Share your likes/dislikes, ask questions, give specifics that support the outline below, etc.

Captain John Smith

Smith gave the most famous contemporary account of the founding of Jamestown in 1607. Smith was a swaggering, headstrong, unscrupulous, capable soldier, and bold leader. He was definitely a great propagandist, creating glorious pictures of a New World in which riches were available for anyone who would avail himself of them. He was able to create beautiful pictures, was very convincing, but notoriously inaccurate in details.

Note how he describes his adventures by using the third person to discuss himself. Why do you think he does this? Pay specific attention to sections where he describes himself as being almost on the level of a superhero. Also, note the lists of riches to be found in the New World how do these descriptions compare to those given by Columbus?

Here is an outline of important ideas to pay attention to as you read:

1. Propaganda Reasons for colonization

a. profits for investors

b. markets for English manufacturers

c. glory for the colonizers and their monarch

d. abundant raw materials

e. good health for colonists

f. riches

g. freedom from harsh landlords, from lawbreaking multitudes, from tedious pleas in law

h. abundance of land

i. the bringing of poor savages to know Christ and humanity

j. work for the poor, the idle, orphans, and apprentices

k. sport for gentlemen

2. Use of poetry

a. reemphasizes and summarizes the ideas in passages that precede the quotations

b. makes philosophical observations on the nature of the world

c. demonstrates his own piety and learning

d. implies that the ancients themselves would ratify his judgments and actions

3. Similarities between Smith and epic heroes

a. leads people to a new land

b. acts as diplomat and lawgiver

c. makes speeches before foreign kings

d. quiets dissention among his people

e. heals the sick and injured

f. tours a hellish region where he encounters demons and fiends

g. engages in combat

h. is recognized even by enemies as brave

i. suffers from a mysterious wound

j. triumphs through bravery, strength, guile, and cleverness

k. is self-confident.

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