Independence Past and Present

The Dawson textbook exert gave minimal descriptions of the various Latin American colonies struggle and entrance into independence. Each country could be course in itself at UBC for reasons of independence and other ideas, which made it difficult for me to soak in all the information. This exert also seemed to be the first if I recall to include Haiti into this discussion. Most of the talk in the previous weeks included mostly Spanish-speaking, or presently Spanish-Speaking colonies and geographic areas, and Haiti is a French speaking country. Also, Dawson references Latin America and Haiti in the context of the 18th century, seeming to suggest this socially constructed term of Latin America shouldn’t have a definite time table as to when it begins or when we should start studying it. It was interesting to identify the role that slavery played in independence of these countries as well, which has parallels to other countries in the Americas, like Canada. Canada was built on slavery and the slaves leaving United States to come up North, even though they still occupied as slaves and used as free labour. Another interesting parallel that I drew from the independence movements of Latin America and Canada, is the role of the Church. The struggle between liberals, conservatives and even further traditionalists or independents for what they want to believe as the best way to confederate a colony. These comparisons of slavery and church helped me further deepen my understanding of independence because of the surface info introduced in this reading.


What other parallels can we draw from Latin American independence and the independence of Canada and the United States?

3 Replies to “Independence Past and Present”

  1. I agree with your comments regarding Dawson and how it is impossible to situate the different independence movements in a single chapter. Each country should have it’s own course, but that would be impossible.
    I find interesting the parallels you draw between Latin American independence movements and Canada. I had never thought of how similar these independence movements were and how different the outcomes of each came to be. It is interesting to see how independence movements and the different powers involved shape the way in which a country develops and develops its institutions.

  2. I also thought the Haiti connection was eye-opening. I had not thought that the revolt had a large impact either. But then the text described that the French Empire was extremely powerful and the revolution was carried out by slaves.

  3. Your thoughts on the parallels between Canadian and Latin American independence are really Interesting. I have studied colonialism in Latin America a little bit in the last year, but i have never thought of this. In particular I found your thoughts on the role of the church in both cases very interesting. Seen as an “educating” force in both cases, they also had similar destructive qualities. and although the outcomes were staunchly different, one more similarity is in the same level that the indigenous peoples of Latin America were ignored during independence as they were ignored in Canada and the US .

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