Multicultural View of Christopher Columbus Story
How it works
Surely most people have read or been told the story of Christopher Columbus many times, but most likely it has never been taught through the multicultural perspective. We have learned the history of the discovery of the new land through Columbus’ life. Colombus has been celebrated for years, he even has a whole day dedicated to him where people celebrate his accomplishments, as he discovered the Americas, making it a great event in history that made America what it is now. Many students have been taught American history through the stories of the Europeans only. As a way for people to know the true history of America, we need to integrate multicultural education in American history. It is important to learn American history through a multicultural perspective because this allows us to have a better grasp on our history, like knowing the indigenous people that lived on the land before Columbus came to America, the massacres behind the conquest, and the ones who didn’t receive any credit in helping the conquistadores.
Many years before Columbus came to America, the land was inhibited by Native Americans. According to what we learn in history in 1492, Christopher Columbus discovered America, but contrary to what is commonly known, this date represents the principle of total submission, the brutal exploitation and extermination of millions of Indians. The entry of Christopher Columbus into the “new world”, meant the systematic annihilation of the inhabitants of the land and the destruction of the culture due to the inhuman exploitation to which they were subjected.
How it works
Howard Zinn argued that the discovery of America didn’t represent progress for the people who were already living on the land.1 When Colombus arrived, there were horrific slaughters and a lot of suffering that happened to the Indians. What happened to them isn’t ignored, but it is being brushed over by historians and many people are not being taught the truths behind what happened and this causes us to also just slide over history as well. There is a huge downplay in the violence of the attacks against the Indians. It is important to carefully indulge on the evidence that many historians provide for literature as they choose to provide certain information of the real history.
Not many people know the whole truth on what actually went on and what Columbus did and why we celebrate him till this day. People should really be questioning him on what he did when he finally “found the New World.” He enslaved thousands of natives for his own benefit, like forcing them to work for him by either providing him with new information about the land and helping him grow his fame of becoming the new hero.
Many have only learned about what Christopher Columbus and the other conquistadors were able to accomplished during the conquest. That leaves out the other important actors that also had a huge role during the conquest. According to Restall’s argument, many believe that only “a small handful of men” were able to conquer the Americas, when in reality many of the conquistadores were also indigenous and of African descent.2 Therefore, this shows how the conquest was not a victory for only the white Europeans but other actors have a part in it as well. It is important to see how Colombus was lying about the mission and how successful he was and didn’t give credit to the allies who helped.
Much of history is subjectively recorded and this affects the way we read and interpret it. This causes people to build a semi-truthful idea of what happened in the past.