Latin America From The Colonial Period To The End Of The Cold War

Submitted By jewishbobthebuilder
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Please write for only 90 minutes and do not use notes.
Describe and analyze the role of three of the following “ISMs” in shaping the development of Latin America from the Colonial Period to the end of the Cold War.
3. Communism
Capitalism /Industrialism*
2. Nationalism
1. Conservatism
* You may discuss capitalism independently of industrialism if it is appropriate for the time period.

Dan Cetlin
Mrs. Stevens
History II Honors
2 January 2014 Ever since Latin America was colonialized, it has struggled long and hard for suitable social, economic, and political reforms. To varying success, from the colonial period to the end of the cold war, every Latin American country was shaped by three major political ideologies that changed its course for better or worse. These ideologies are conservatism for causing a long, harsh social hierarchy; nationalism for uniting nations because of the hatred for American exploitation of their economies and properties; and communism for producing dictatorships that brought suffering to Latin America. During the colonial period, Latin America was structured with a rigid class system based on one's country of origin and race; this remained the social structure due to conservatism. Because Latin American countries were controlled by absolute monarchies in the east, there was no self-government, meaning that the majority of society had no control over the economy, had no political power, and had no social leadership. Being conservative, the officials repressed the natives in order to prevent change. The ideal for these Spanish conquistadores was to completely destroy all native culture and replace it with catholic values and traditions. The caste system exemplifies the conquistadores’ implementation of conservatism. By stripping everyone else of political, economic, and social power through the rigid social hierarchy, the rich conquistadores would get richer and the poor majority could not stop them. Additionally, their Christian traditions would be preserved if the native culture could not interfere. Conservatism shaped the colonial era of Latin America through the creation of a steep caste system and the forced application of Catholic beliefs. During the post-colonial era where most of Latin America received independence, a cultural nationalism grew substantially as a result of aggravation from U.S. intervention with Latin American governments and exploitation of Latin American labor and resources. Each Latin American country was developing a sense of loyalty and pride for themselves. As a result, this nationalistic view brought the people of Latin America closer to each other. In the early 1900's, the U.S. established the Roosevelt Corollary, allowing them to intervene with any Latin American country if they saw fit. This restricted the political and economic freedoms of Latin American nations. Additionally, the U.S. created the Panama Canal after orchestrating a revolution solely for economic gain. Latin America, having been exploited and intervened with by the U.S., was developing a sense of nationalism from their hatred of the U.S.; thus shaping the development of Latin America by bringing its people closer together. Communism was the keystone of the cold war and even though Latin America had no interest in it and would rather spend their time and money to deal with poverty, they were sucked into the cold war and in many cases suffered because of evil dictators that took advantage of the situation. Latin America was already