Biological Exchange And Its Impact On The New World

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Europeans explored and settled in the Americas all throughout the 16th, 17th, and 18th centuries, and were generally successful. Although there were a number of factors that contributed to European successes in the New World, biological exchange was foremost. Biological exchange was the most significant force behind Europeans’ success in the Americas because it helped Europeans to wipe out Native American peoples, both physically and culturally, and to introduce European practices and resources that would help Europeans to flourish in the New World. Biological exchange was a significant factor in Europeans’ success in the New World in part because the widespread deaths of the Native Americans made it easier for Europeans to conquer and control them. Individual groups of Native Americans dwindled, leaving those who remained susceptible to English domination. In some cases, Europeans such as Cortés even used the mass deaths to place men loyal to them in leadership positions within the Native American peoples, which further compromised the strength of their nations (Jones, 54). Because the Native Americans were so easy to conquer, European explorers and settlers were able to easily establish lasting presences in the Americas. Historians estimate that as much as 95 percent of the Native American population died within a year of Columbus’s initial contact with the New World, and while there were certainly European acts of genocide against the Native Americans that added to
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