This website uses cookies to ensure you have the best experience. Learn more

Early European Perceptions Of Native American

584 words - 3 pages

Early European Perceptions of Native American
Initial European perceptions of Native Americans viewed them as uncivilized savages who, with time and effort, could be educated and assimilated into European culture. Christopher Columbus reported his opinion of the Indians in the following manner:
“They should be good servants and of quick intelligence, since I see that they very soon say all that is said to them, and I believe that they would easily be made Christians, for it appears to me that they had no creed. Our Lord willing, at the time of my departure, I will bring back six of them to your Highness that they may learn to talk (Hurtado 46)”.
This passage shows that Columbus believed the Indians intelligent and would be easily converted to European ways, but did not think them equal to Europeans. Columbus demonstrates his ethnocentricity by disregarding Native American religious beliefs, and by assuming ...view middle of the document...

This proves that the main objective of the Europeans was to assimilate the Native Americans into European culture by way of education. Europeans justified their conquest of the Indians because they believed they had a divine purpose to convert them to Christianity. Also Europeans believed they could "redeem the savages" in much the same way the Roman Empire had conquered and civilized the rest of Europe.
Indians did not come to be viewed as inherently different in regards to color until the mid-eighteenth century and the label "red" was not used until the mid-nineteenth century. Some causes of the changing perception were an increase of Europeans, bloody conflicts and atrocities, codification of laws designed to control Native peoples, and the view of Europeans began to unify as being "white."
The changing perception of Indians also caused a change in how Europeans dealt with them. In the beginning, Europeans intermarried with them, and used teachers and missionaries to convert them to European culture and religion. Later, education ceased and Europeans moved to subjugate the Indians through displacement on reservations and by war/genocide.
The Dawes Act of 1877 reverted back to assimilation of the Indians through education and the practice of farming. The reservation lands were divided up into individual sections for private ownership. Also the federal government came to believe that educating the Indian children would be the quickest and most effective manner to destroy Indian lifestyles. Boarding schools were established for Indian children to teach them American values and customs, while eroding their Native American beliefs.
At first contact, Europeans believed Indians could be assimilated into European culture. Then they shifted to the removal and reservation policy. In the late 1800s, Americans returned to assimilationist policies, and in the 20th century Indians have struggled to resist total assimilation by striving to maintain their cultural and religious beliefs.
Hurtado, Albert, Peter Iverson, and Thomas Paterson, editors. Major Problems in American Indian History: Documents and Essays. Houghton Mifflin Company Collegiate Division, 2000.

Other Essays Like Early European Perceptions Of Native American

Are Citizens Of European Countries Healthier Than American Citizens?

1776 words - 8 pages Are citizens of European countries healthier than American citizens?"Well, I've never lived in America although I have been there a few times now. And I feel that this more than qualifies me to answer this question about the good, the bad and the ugly sides of living in America and Europe!" this is a quote of a woman quoting her stance on where she'd rather live (Daisy). European citizens are healthier than American citizens, but the question is

North American Vs European Trends In The Research Of Religion

1697 words - 7 pages group.In comparing North American to European trends, there is one idea that is only prevalent in American writing, that idea is globalization. There was no discussion of globalization with any European sociologist; however, the American sociologists based their writings on it. For example, Robertson felt that religion is an essential part of the course of globalization. He outlines a global framework that includes different places all over the world

The Native American Graves Protection And Repatriation Act Of 1990 (NAGRPA)

695 words - 3 pages                                                     1. The debate of the reburial of excavated Native American sites has been going on for quite some time now. I believe that the wealth of

The Origin of Native American Man: a Look at Possible Migrations of Pre-Historic Man Into North America

1880 words - 8 pages used in determining the origin of Native American populations. Studies into how Y-Chromosomes could be used to distinguish different lineages go back as far as 1985 (Casanova et al. 1985). However, research using Y-Chromosome markers to study the origins of Native Americans did not occur until much later (Torroni et al, 1994). These early studies supported a single origin migration, with the possible origin being located in Mongolia. Recent

FRE In What Ways Did The Early Nineteenth-Century Reform Movements For Abolition And Women's Rights Illustrate Both The Strengths And The Weaknesses Of Democracy In The Early American Republic?

1724 words - 7 pages Life for the American woman in the 19th century was full of conflicts and struggles. Women suffered from a lot of discrimination, and were not allowed to vote, attend universities, speak in public, or own property, and were essentially forced to fight for their place within society. Regardless of these difficulties, women gathered strength in numbers and succeeded in establishing permanent social changes.Writing was a popular form of expression

Native American Essay

550 words - 3 pages From as early as the time of the early European settlers, Native Americans have suffered tremendously. Native Americans during the time of the early settlers where treated very badly. Europeans did what they wanted with the Native Americans, and when a group of Native Americans would stand up for themselves, the European would quickly put them down. The Native Americans bow and arrows where no match for the Europeans guns and cannon

Into The Wild

462 words - 2 pages The Meeting of CulturesCh. 1Due:M.C. Test:In this chapter, we see how invading Europeans affected Native American culture. I.B. and A.P. find the collision of cultures a fascinating subject. This chapter sets the groundwork for understanding the tensions that emerge among ethnic groups throughout American History.Chapter Summary:Before European explorers arrived in the Americas, Native Americans had developed many forms of social organizations

Native American Music

3345 words - 14 pages American Music: Then and Now, the blues has commonly been attributed to the influence of African American folk songs and gospel music, however it shares similarities with Native American tribal music as well. From a structural and technical standpoint, these commonalities include a four-beat measure in early blues music, specific rhythms and phrasing of lyrics that mirror aspects of Native American powwows, stomp songs, and other forms of tribal music

Native American Prejudice

1045 words - 5 pages were alowed to occupy it by the grace of the 'Great Spirit', in return the tribes took care of the land the used. Usually Native Americans harbored a great respect for the land they were allowed to use . When the European leaders attempted to purchase this land from the tribes the Native American leaders often thought they did not have the authority to sell the land. In their view the land wasn't theirs to sell. Often times, payment offered was

Native Americans and European Cultures

1824 words - 8 pages them, or reading your newspaper on such subjects. You say, for example, "Why do not the Indians till the ground and live as we do?" May we not ask with equal propriety, "Why do not the white people hunt and live as we do?" -Old Tassel (Cherokee) The above quote was said by a Cherokee Indian and I found it to be a perfect depiction of the different values amongst Native Americans and European settlers of the early twentieth century. I’ve had

The Debate over Fish Fertilizer: the Trouble with Rewriting Mythology

1002 words - 5 pages American “history” is riddled with bits of myth and folklore. Some of the fictions are obvious, like the old tale, “George Washington never told a lie”. The reality or fallacy of others, however, remains shrouded. Take, for example, the story of the Pilgrims. The legend goes something like this: In 1620, the Mayflower landed at Plymouth Rock, and in 1621, the Pilgrims were met by a local native named Squanto. This native, who spoke English

Related Papers

Failures Of Early American Higher Education

1509 words - 7 pages The Failures of Early American Higher Education The intention of colleges in the United Stated during the 18th and 19th centuries was to create a system that would serve in loco parentis (in place of the parent). In the early years of American higher education, college professors sought to be disciplinarians, who played a parental role. However, the students at these institutions often behaved in a disruptive manner towards teachers, as well

Th Portrayal Of Native American In Today's Mainstream Society

1920 words - 8 pages synthesis of Native American Culture and European culture established a new America. Loewen state; “Just as the American societies changed when they encountered whites, so Europeans societies changed when they encountered Natives” ( Loewen 106). When two cultures mix together a new culture is formed. Today’s society still continues to have some elements of the Native culture. It is stated that “Our regional cuisines—the dishes that make American food

Use Of Native American Mascots Should Be Banned

809 words - 4 pages In his Sports Illustrated article, “The Indian Wars,” S.L. Price argues that there is no easy answer to whether or not the use of Native American mascots by high school, college, and professional sports teams is offensive. “It's an argument that, because it mixes mere sports with the sensitivities of a people who were nearly exterminated, seems both trivial and profound -- and it's further complicated by the fact that for three out of four

Use Of Native American Mascots Is Not Racist

639 words - 3 pages Issue of whether to keep Mascots in schools or not, started in late 1970’s and from then this debate is going on. Most of the schools have Indian Mascots in place for half a century and suddenly it become problem to use Indian Mascots. Over 500 Native American organizations also announced their support for the removal of those mascots and over 1200 schools across the United States have changed the name of their sports teams and some school