Q&A: do most Latin Americans speak Latin? ;

Q 1 —Why do we hear so little about countries in Central and South America?

Q 2 — Do citizens of all Latin American nations speak Spanish?

Q 3 — What was the Treaty of Tordesillas?

 

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  Q. Why do we hear so little about Latin American countries?  

For one thing, we Americans tend to get our news from a relative few sources, including local television as the most personal news…about our neighborhood, the city, county and state.     Local news bring us details about local sports teams, schools with leaky roofs, who is being arrested or has excelled in something.

The other major news source is cable news like CNN, MSNBC, FOX.  These news networks follow major events around the world—almost always from a standpoint of the United States involvement with the current “newsworthy nation.”    Friends or foes get the news coverage in order of their relative importance to Washington.

Mexico and Canada tend to get the most news coverage, being our immediate neighbors to the north and south.     Other nations, notably Venezuela, which usually has an adversary position with the United States—as one of the chief “bad boys” that are not on the favorites list.    Cuba held that position as thorn-in-the-side for more than half a century, and was rewarded with punative embargoes that tried to crush the island’s fortunes.

Why is it called Latin America?    Because it was dubbed with that name at various times in History, including by Napoleon and Jose Martí (a Cuban writer) and others for various conversational purposes.    The collection of nations included in the designation Latin America were originally settled by the European countries speaking Latin-based (Romance) languages: Spain, England, Portugal, France.       Some of the islands in the Caribbean were originally romance-language speakers after colonialization, although others speak Dutch or English..

The Spanish settled all of the South American continent except Brazil, which was and is Portuguese speaking.

The Treaty of Tordesillas, signed at Tordesillas on June 7, 1494, and authenticated at Setúbal, Portugal, divided the newly discovered lands outside Europe between Portugal and the Crown of Castile, along a meridian 370 leagues west of the Cape Verde islands, off the west coast of Africa.    Following is an excellent Wikipedia.org article about the Treaty of Tordesillas and its lasting influence on the division of the world between the Spanish and Portuguese.   https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Treaty_of_Tordesillas

Here is an excellent site that I found while researching the above material.  http://www.dosmanosnederland.com/en/index.php    The succinct  but thorough History of Latin America  contained here is highly recommended for the casual interest in the region, and provides a good review and timeline.

U.S. Business as usual in Latin America the age of Trumpism

Ever wonder what is going on down South…way down the continent?

No matter what havoc the US wreaks in the world, it is the same method of operation in Latin America…Imperialism is alive and well.      Our current leadership in Washington is fully involved in the often-nefarious goings-on, not missing a step in the affairs of the Central and South American countries.    The Latin American policies of former administrations: Obama, Bush, Clinton, Bush, etc., etc. back to the dark ages of U.S. history… are intact under Trump.

TeleSur is a Venezuela news site that daily features news of a myriad of developments from an other-than-Washington point of view.    As some of my blogging pals know, my education and background in Latin American History makes me keenly interested in that area of the world.

https://www.telesurtv.net/english/opinion/NicaraguaVenezuela-One-Enemy-One-Fight-For-Democracy-20180526-0024.html

[NOTE:  This particular link is to an opinion piece written for Telesur.   While it is <ahem…opinionated> I recommend it as informative and knowledgeable.]