Essay Sample in History: Latin American Revolutions

Published: 2019-06-24
Essay Sample in History: Latin American Revolutions
Type of paper:  Essay
Categories:  History Revolution America
Pages: 5
Wordcount: 1273 words
11 min read

By the beginning of the second decade of the XXI century, Latin America passed four steps and has entered to the fifth modern date. The second stage was colonial. During the terrible revolutions there was the formation of Latin America as an independent state. Going into the 1800s, people in Spanish colonies were influenced by the Enlightenment and the American and French revolutions, and among these people there was a growing dislike to restrictions over economic matters by Spain. There were restrictions on trading with foreigners, restrictions on growing crops that would compete with crops grown in Spain, and restrictions on making goods that would compete with goods made in Spain. Taxes imposed by Spanish authorities were also annoying. People of Spanish heritage born in Latin America were not participating in government the way that people of British were in British colonies (Lynch, John. Caudillos In Spanish America).

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The Latin American movements for independence began with unfair taxation and trade policies, race and class discrimination. By the 18th century, the Spanish colonies became manufacturers of many products and between these countries there was an exchange of commodities. Between 1778 and 1788 the volume of Spainish trade with the colonies soared by as much as 700 per cent (McKay, John P et al. A History Of World Societies).

The French Revolution and the Napoleonic War reduced control over the Spanish colonies. The main factor contributing to the rebellion were the Enlightenment ideas of Voltaire, Rousseau, Montesquieu. In addition, Columbian Antonio Narino published the French Declaration of the Rights of Man and Citizen. As a result the government imprisoned him.

Tupac Amaru II gathered force of Indians and people of mixed race to fight against the Spanish. They won that rebellion. Also there was a successful revolt in Peru and New Granada with Toussaint LOuverture. In 1804, Hawaii gained the independence. Brazil became independent, when Pedro I returned to Portugal and left his son in Brazil. He issued constitution, but despite this, the region was a producer of coffee with robbery and massive immigration.

The authors identify few factors of the beginning of revolutions and rebellions: heritage of colonial exploitation, a neocolonial economic structure, massive emigration and the fusion of Amerindian, African and Asian people (McKay, John P et al. A History Of World Societies).

But Latin America had some problems of the post-independence period. The first was that revolutions lasted much longer and outside powers provided no help, leaving those involved weary and divided; the second peninsulas returned to euripi instead of remaining in Latin America to build new nations; the third the government excluded much of the population from political participation, although they has constitution; the fourth was that local elite took the peasantry from old colonies elite over exploiting; next problem was that the government confirmed the power of the Roman Catholic Church not adopting separation of church and state; also there were unstable political and economic situations. The Latin American agriculture suffered from great destruction of farmland and animals. In many Latin countries citizens suffered from dictators arms. Juan Manuel de Rosas was in Argentina and Antonio Lopez de Santa Anna was in Mexico.

Talking about revolutions in Latin America, many authors tell about Ernesto Che Guevara and Fidel Castro. Ernesto wanted to find a person, who could take part in the revolutions with him. It was Fidel Castro. They overthrew the Batista government in Cuba. As a result, Guevara took power in La Cabana Fortess prison, but his actions were not fair. He executed harmless people. Several years later, he became a president of national bank and started the trade relations with Soviet Union. After 3 years Ernesto Che Guevara became minister of industry. But his public service did not last long and he decided to promote his own ideas of Cuban revolution to other countries. In 1966, he attracted people to revolt against the Bolivia government, but he was defeated by the local army. ( Despite the cruel actions of Ernesto, his ideas became the basis for further revolutionary plans. Many people in Latin America began to consider Guevara a saint, and called him San Ernesto de La Higuera.Besides these problems there were positive sides in Latin America. Firstly, the slaves became free, and then Latin America offered blacks greater economic and social mobility than the USA.

Some of those problems still affected Latin American nations. Political instability discouraged foreign investors, who started a new business in Latin countries because of good materials and products. For example, in Mexico, North Americans supported the production of sugar, hemp, bananas on American own plantations. Chilean copper and nitrate industries were used for medicine and fertilizers (McKay, John P et al. A History Of World Societies).

Cost-saving measures at the expense of the population and uncontrolled price increases have led to mass strikes and public unrest in Venezuela, Argentina, the Dominican Republic and other countries. In Peru, terrorist activities of extremist left-wing organization Sendero Luminoso found support among a section of the Indian population. Also the problem of discrimination has remained. In the early 90th, the United States and Western Europe achieved the free access of their goods to the markets of Latin American countries. They reinforced restrictive barriers to Latin American products on their own markets. It happened with exports of bananas from Latin America to the European Community. The leaders of the Latin American republics sharply criticized this policy as a manifestation of discrimination and inequality.

Jesse Freeston told about the situation in El Salvador in 2009. Between 500 and 700 more Salvadorans packed up their lives and left their country. Most arrived in the US without documents, where they lived under constant fear of deportation in order to send remittances home to loved ones, remittances which accounted for roughly one-fifth of El Salvador GDP. People became the instrument of production. In 2007 alone, while prices skyrocketed, 104,000 more Salvadorans fell below the poverty line, and according to UN, these trends have left 81 per cent of Salvadorans earning less than a dignified wage (Past Is Present In Latin America). This situation showed that the problems of the past were not relegated to the background and these problems have remained in the same place in our days.

The complex processes were taking place in the 80s - early 90s in the political life of Latin American countries in the party political struggle, in the development of mass movements. Workers' organizations left, and revolutionary forces were actively involved in the fight that led to the fall of the military regime, but it failed to become a leading force. Consequences of the strategic defeat of the revolutionary movements affected the change in the situation in the region and in the world. The main mass of the population supported the moderate reformist and democratic parties. Reformism is a non-violent action proved to be effective in the transition to representative democracy and the strengthening of the constitutional institutions.

However, the negative consequences of the policy of capitalist modernization sensitively reflected on the living standards and social rights of workers, and it spurred the strike movement. The main centers of the mass strike movement were Argentina, Brazil, Peru and Uruguay, where the annual strike had over 20 million people.

Works cited

Appelbaum, Nancy P, Anne S Macpherson, and Karin Alejandra Rosemblatt. Race And Nation In Modern Latin America. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 2003. Print.

Cosio Villegas, Daniel. Change In Latin America. Lincoln: University of Nebraska, 1961. Print.,. 'Che Guevara - Facts & Summary - HISTORY.Com'. N.p., 2015. Web. 25 Nov. 2015.

Lynch, John. Caudillos In Spanish America, 1800-1850. Oxford [England]: Clarendon Press, 1992. Print.

Past Is Present In Latin America'., 2009. TV programme

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