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Copy of Latin America's Independence

Latin America: Shaped by its history

Gabe Rountree

on 14 October 2012

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Transcript of Copy of Latin America's Independence

Independence: Latin America Toussaint L'Ouverture, a former slave, led the people of Saint-Domingue in the fight for Haiti's independence for 10 years, and eventually, they won. Liberty spread from Haiti to all of Latin America. Haiti won independence in 1804.
(becomes beacon of hope for abolitionists in N.America, & a warning for the creole pop in S.America.) Haiti's leaders drew encouragement from two famous revolutions. 1.) During the 1770s and early 1780s, the13 British colonies in North America fought a war to free themselves from Britain's rule. 2.) In 1789, ordinary people in France staged a violent uprising against their royal rulers. Reminder on Creoles:
Creoles had Spanish parents, but had been born in Latin America. They were often the wealthiest and best-educated people in the Spanish colonies, but few had any political power. Only people born in Spain could hold government office. Many creoles attended school in Europe. They learned the ideas that inspired France and the United States. They especially liked the idea that people had the right to govern themselves. Father Miguel Hidalgo led the way. He was a creole priest in the town of Dolores. In September 1810, the Spanish government discovered Hidalgo's plot, but before they could find him, he took action. He began ringing church bells and shouting out "Recover from the hated Spaniards the land stolen from your forefathers." Mexico began its struggle for its self-government in 1810. Hidalgo's call for revolution attracted some 80,000 fighters in a matter of weeks. The army consisted of mostly mestizos and Native Americans. By the beginning of 1811, their luck turned, and Hidalgo tried to flee the country. But, government soldiers, captured him. He was put on trial and convicted of treason. Hidalgo was executed by a firing squad in July 1811. The Spanish could execute the revolution's leaders, but they could not kill its spirit. Small rebel groups kept fighting. Then Agustin de Iturbide joined the rebels. He was a high-ranking officer in the Spanish army. Many people who had opposed the rebellion changed their minds. They had viewed Hidalgo as a dangerous hothead. But, Iturbide was different. He was a criollo and an army officer. They could trust Iturbide to protect their interests. They decided to support the rebellion. In 1821, Iturbide declared Mexico independent. -South America- Simon Bolivar was not the first Latin American revolutionary leader. Almost certainly, however, he was the greatest. Simon Bolivar was born in the country of Venezuela in 1783. His family was one of the richest and most important families in Latin America. Bolivar & Venezuela
Bolivar joined the fight for Venezuelan independence in 1804. Six years later he became its leader. Bolivar was completely certain he would win. His confidence, courage, and daring inspired his soldiers. They enjoyed victory after victory. By 1822, Bolivar's troops had freed a large area from Spanish rule (the future countries of Columbia, Venezuela, Ecuador, and Panama. This newly liberated region formed Gran Columbia. Bolivar became the president of Gran Columbia. Even though his country was free, Bolivar did not give up the cause of independence. "The Liberator," as he was now known, turned south toward Peru. San Martin & Argentina
Jose de San Martin, an Argentine, had lived in Spain and served in the Spanish army.
When Argentina began its fight for freedom, he quickly offered to help. San Martin took good care of his troops. He shared each hardship they had to suffer. They loved him for it. Many said they would follow San Martin anywhere - even over snow capped Andes Mountains. -Haiti- In 1817, his soldiers ended up actually going over the Andes. San Martin led them through high passes in the Andes into Chile. This bold action took the Spanish completely by surprise. In a matter of months, Spain was defeated. San Martin declared Chile's independence. Then he turned his attention to Peru. San Martin also savvy w/ battle tactics.

Spanish defenses quickly collapsed. In July 1821, San Martin pushed inland and seized Lima, the capital of Peru. San Martin A year later, San Martin met with Bolivar to discuss the fight for independence. Historians do not know what happened in that meeting. But, afterward, San Martin suddenly gave up his command. He left Bolivar to continue the fight alone. This Bolivar did. Eventually, he drove the remaning Spanish forces out of South America altogether. By 1825, only Cuba and Puerto Rico were still ruled by Spain. Dom Pedro used more power than the king expected. He declared Brazil independent in 1822. Three years later, Portugal quietly admitted Brazil was independent....Dom Pedro becomes Emperor. Brazil:
Portugal's colony, Brazil, became independent without fighting a war.** In the early 1800s, French armies invaded Spain and Portugal. Portugal's royal family fled to Brazil for safety. The king returned to Portugal in 1821. However, he left his son, Dom Pedro, to rule the colony. After winning independence, Latin American leaders faced great challenges. They had to decide how to govern their nations. Economy:
Also, after years of fighting, Latin American nations' economies were devastated
mining industries destroyed by both sides
livestock depleted by hungry armies
Bad habits/decisions:
preferred purchase of imported manufactured goods
reliant on continued production & exportation of raw materials...in turn, made them dependent on cheap labor
Results? reliant on foreign investors that established control over most domestic industry....leading to a stranglehold on key resources After winning their own independence, in 1822 Haiti invades the Spanish colony of Santo Domingo (present day Dominican Republic), to end slavery there. (Until 1844 when Haitian occupation of the DR ends)
1838 France recognizes Haiti's independence fully, officially and unconditionally because Haiti paid 150 million gold francs as “compensation to French losses”.
1862 The United States officially recognizes Haiti as a free and independent nation Mexico -- Foreign Intervention/
Influence? U.S. Interest?
U.S. welcomed Mexican Independence
Falls in line with Monroe Doctrine; U.S. envisions mercantile-like/imperialistic aspirations...less commerce hindrance Foreign Influence...
Inquisition anxious/fearful of 'American' Revolutionary ideals
Thomas Paine's Rights of Man condemned
Elements of U.S. Constitutional Articles extremely popular
Black Influence?
1000s of runaway slaves fled to Mexico...assisted in various battles for Mexican Indep as well as other points in Mexican history Most of Spain's colonies will declare & win indep between 1810-1825
Heavily influenced by 'American' & French Revolutions
Spark for most can be cited as Napoleon's invasion of Spain (1807-08) mov'ts were not only for political independence but for social equality
major difference from 'American' Revolution:
due to local situations, mov'ts called for creation of a number of new countries out of the viceroyalties...rather than unification, there was 'balkanization.'
fragmentation or division of a geopolitical entity Social Status
Creolos were successful in retaining their control of political & social life.
class of elites based on race still existed...European education much easier to achieve
Non-whites faced discrimination but attained more rights than before
Mixed-race indigenous pop faced even more severe discrimination...often led to revolts
Slavery remained...too much reliance on exportation of natural resources
...justified stratified social system that kept creoles in power
Though slavery unimportant in Mexico, Central America & Chile....but essential in Columbia, Venezuela, Peru, Argentina & Ecuador. Legacy:

U.S. had begun to establish itself as dominant power in region
numerous new nations plagued by debt, emancipation, suffrage, taxation
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