Vasconcelos’ vision of Latin America as the birthplace of a new (5th) race that
Vasconcelos’ vision of Latin America as the birthplace of a new (5th) race that was destined for greatness seems a far cry from the events of the 1500s. The arrival of the Spaniards brought exploitation and misery to the populations of the natives residing in the Spanish controlled areas of the New World.The arrival of the Spanish and the subsequent mixing of bloodlines with those of the natives would soon create a new sub-culture of mixed race people known as “Mestizos”(Mixed). As time goes on, this new sub-class, small at first, will come to form the dominant cultural force in Latin America. The question is this…How did they get from European invaders/colonizers and natives… to a land of “Mestizos?” How do we arrive some 400 years later to a point where intellectual culture not only identifies itself with a brand new race, but also comes to envision itself as superior and destined for greatness?Directions: Read pages 4-11 of the Vasconcelos essay ""The Cosmic Race" and watch the video "I am a Mestizo." Question 1What is your initial impression of this document? Is it racist or progressive? Is it both? Is it neither? Explain.Question 2Consider the following quote from Vasconcelos"The white race has brought the world to a state in which all human types and cultureswill be able to fuse with each other. The civilization developed and organized inour times by the whites has set the moral and material basis for the union of allmen into a fifth universal race, the fruit of all the previous ones and ameliorationof everything past."This excerpt is considered controversial by many western scholars. The claim is that this essentially creates a justification for Imperialism. In your opinion, does this quote constitute a justification of imperialism? Why or why not?Question 3Choose one quote which you found to be the most impactful, for good or bad. Explain why you chose this quote. What was interesting/shocking/right/wrong about it?Question 4In the video "I am a Mestizo", identify one remnant or parallel between Vasconcelos' ideas about race and those of the speaker.Question 5Salvador Acevedo's notion of being mixed race (Mestizo), and thus existing in multiple cultures simultaneously, seems quite distinct to how the people of the United States view themselves. But that's just my opinion, what about you? Do you find this viewpoint significantly distinct to how the people think about themselves in the United States? How is Mr. Acevedo's view different? Or is it similar? Requirements: 5-6 sen

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