“In 1492 Columbus sailed the open blue”

Whenever I think of Christopher Columbus I think of two things. First, his actual un-anglicized name “Cristoforo Columbo” as that how I learned about him and secondly this video.

I think about the woman staring at the camera, hurt in her eyes, saying “evil, pure evil” I cannot fathom her hurt. I cannot fathom the ways that his “discovery” have ruined her life.

I found this particular lecture interesting. I found this sentence particularly potent.

For the Western Hemisphere 1492, is the great dividing line between the pre-colonial, pre-Hispanic, pre-latin America and the colonial and post-colonial periods.

What is most interesting to me is that Columbo’s discovery was a pure accident, that he truly believed that he was elsewhere. But I do not think this makes him innocent, I still believe that although it was in his best interest to convert the people he met to Christianity for his king and queen. The way he went about it was indeed malicious, he still believed that he was better than those he was interacting with, he still gave them broken glass, as presents, he exploited those he interacted, responded to their kind actions with mockery. So, reading his account has not generated sympathy from me, I do not believe┬áhim to be blameless because of his time, his self-importance paved the way for the generational propriety of European self-importance, that led Europe to “conquer” the world under the same guise of Christianity that he did. He may not necessarily be a villain, but I see validity in the fact that he is “evil, pure evil”.