Week Two Readings pt. 2

The second reading by Felipe Guaman Poma de Ayala is shown to be an interesting perspective on the Spanish victory over the Incas in what is now called Peru. The reading also provides a detailed progression on why so many men went to the new world and how they were able to succeeded in conquest so easily. Poma de Ayala reading is also a good account on the treatment of the fallen natives, especially in the case of Atahualpa, the last ruler of an independent Inca people.

First off, the beginning of the reading gives an account on why men went to the world. Poma states that the notes left by Columbus went into detail about the great riches of silver and gold that were just waiting to be found in the New World. It was also noted that previous travellers coming back from the New World being dressed in fine garments made of silver and gold. Factors like that would probably be a big push for Spaniards in lower or middle classes to actually come into wealth and move up in the societal ladder which was almost impossible due to the government structure that was in Spain or “Castle” at the time.

The second and last part of the reading details the conquest of the Inca’s but the Spaniards and how they justified to themselves that killing these people were a noble and needed thing to do. Aside from being motivated but silver and gold, the force for religious conversation and stomping out alternative religious belief was deemed as needed or that God wanted this to happen to expand the Christian faith. It would also be worth noting that use of religion to justify violence was not a new thing among the Spaniards. The Inquisition was just getting started at this point and years earlier, the Christian rulers of Spain successfully convince there people that God needed remaining Muslim forces (who in control for most of the country during the Middle ages) had to be pushed out of the country.

Finally, the fall of Atahualpa forces was a show case the quick about the quickness of Spanish conquest. Poma notes that the Spanish soldiers killed the Inca troops like ants and that when they won the battle they just dragged Atahualpa off his throne and thus ending the Inca rule in what is now called Peru. Poma notes that Atahualpa look “sad and disconsolate and dispossessed” and with this look radiating from Atahualpa, a historical image recounting the Spanish conquest over the Inca’s was formed.

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