Christian View of the Natives in the New World Essay examples

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Christian View of the Natives in the New World

Some would say that Christopher Columbus was a devout Christian. He believed that "his was a mission that would put Christian civilization on the offensive after centuries of Muslim ascendancy" (Dor-Ner 45). Columbus' original mission was to find a western route to the Indies. But when that failed, his mission became clear: convert these new people to Christianity. Throughout this paper I will show the view of the natives by Columbus and Christendom and how these views changed over a span of fifty years.

Columbus made it very clear that he was doing this not only for Ferdinand and Isabella, but also for the faith that he was subject to (Dor-Ner 150). He may not have always had the
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All of Columbus' wishes for a peaceful trade and conversion were destroyed. Dor-Ner sums up this event nicely when he says this: "As the inevitable conflict of races developed, each side would see the other as alien, less than human, and thus not worth the same consideration as one's own people (Dor-Ner 208).

Columbus' entire attitude changed. He started looking at them in a different way. He immediately came to the conclusion that these people would make excellent slaves. There was a kind of duality to his thinking. On one page of his journal he writes about how he believes that the natives could easily be made free and converted. A little further down he writes that they'd make good skilled servants. Within two days time he then wrote that "with fifty men you could subject everyone and make them do what you wished (Dor-Ner 152). You can see how quickly his attitude changed.

He didn't immediately begin to capture these people for slaves. Ferdinand and Isabella gave Columbus specific instructions for the second voyage not to injure them and to only try to convert them. Columbus still went searching for gold on the second voyage. It wasn't until the third voyage that he started sending slaves back to Spain. Columbus blatantly disobeyed the orders of the Crown. He desperately wanted to do something that could make up for the gold and riches that were never found.

With the return of the

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