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Is Latin America Western?

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Poll Question: Is Latin America Western?
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29 [50.88%]
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5 [8.77%]
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1 [1.75%]
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16 [28.07%]
6 [10.53%]
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  Quote pebbles Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: Is Latin America Western?
    Posted: 25-Mar-2009 at 22:01
Originally posted by pinguin


 
However half the programs on TV I have seen in my life ( how many thousand hours? ) come from the U.S. I can see the way Americans think just looking at how they are on TV.

 
 
 
Top-rated sit-coms like " 3's Company " & " Friends " are actual reflection of White social scene in America.They like to have White neighbors who they would visit each other's home and party with etc.
 
My 80 years old mother complains there are too many Black faces on America TV and Hollywood films.She now prefers watching classic movies on cable TV.
 
 
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  Quote Guests Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25-Mar-2009 at 22:08
Originally posted by pinguin

I am exagerating, of course. But one of the main complains Latinos always made is that Americans don't have idea of geography. For instance, Bush confussed Slovenia with Slovakia. Shocked

Things I heard in Mexico:
"The Netherlands, that's another name for Denmark, isn't it?"
"Did you come to Mexico by train?"
"So, in what part of the United States are the Netherlands located?"
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  Quote Panther Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25-Mar-2009 at 22:34
Oh well now, if you all are going too bring geography into this, then what can i really say? It's embarrassing Embarrassed
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  Quote pebbles Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25-Mar-2009 at 22:58
Originally posted by pinguin

 
Originally posted by pebbles

 
 
 It was explained to me by one half-Armenian & half German person that Whites view " Spanish " population as 1/2 European and 1/2 non-European.It appears American-Whites are aware of not all Spanish-speaking people in the Hispanic-world have European origins.
 
 
 
 
Indeed. However, they should be aware, too, that half the population of the U.S. have not European origin either Wink.
 
Americans and Europeans, used as they are in regimes of segregated minorities, don't realize people mix.
 
 
 
 
At least the Asians are comfortable to the Asian identity and feel free of acknowledging own non-European origin.We don't pretend to be European descent or talk to foreigners as if we're " the Western people ".The problem with Latin Americans is the superficial Mestizos category has a percentage of indigenous origin,these indviduals hide own heritage to fudge as Spanish and talk to people as if they are " the Spanish " Confused.It would be perfectly fine if they just regard themselves by nationality.
 
Referencing below AE thread link,me and OP have suspected some Hispanics aren't really European descent.It's backed up by another poster's reading source pointed to "acculturation " of indigenous people.
 
 
America's Whites do know there are mixed people in the society.They have " a drop rule " for the Black population here and Amerasian children are well accepted by Whites.
 
 
 
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  Quote Majkes Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25-Mar-2009 at 23:02
Originally posted by Byzantine Emperor

Can someone tell me what the purpose of this thread is at page 11?  I do not see anyone being convinced that Latin America is or is not "western." 
 
Nor do I see being persuasive any other arguments about other places or people that are held up as being this or that characterization, when it is those who hold most dearly to their conceptions of themselves doing the arguing.  It is an endless circle.
 
 
To be honest I've seen more idiotic threads here discussed on 11 pages or more e.g. "Were Moors black?" 
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  Quote pebbles Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25-Mar-2009 at 23:16
 
Categorize countries by world class & Western standard as world benchmark are the " brainchild " of post-WW 2 superiority view of racist US political establishment.
 
If suggest,Japanese would reject Japan is a second-world nation or belongs to this grouping along with predominately " Slavic " Russia & Eastern Europe. 
 
 
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  Quote Guests Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26-Mar-2009 at 00:21
Originally posted by Majkes

... 
To be honest I've seen more idiotic threads here discussed on 11 pages or more e.g. "Were Moors black?" 
 
Idiotic? Maybe. But at least It has been more fun.
 
Anyways, most people in the inquire answered yes to the question if Latin America was part of the Western Civilization. So, I am happy they realize we are not playing when Latinos say who they are.
 
 
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  Quote Guests Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26-Mar-2009 at 00:27
Originally posted by pebbles

...  
At least the Asians are comfortable to the Asian identity and feel free of acknowledging own non-European origin.We don't pretend to be European descent or talk to foreigners as if we're " the Western people ".The problem with Latin Americans is the superficial Mestizos category has a percentage of indigenous origin,these indviduals hide own heritage to fudge as Spanish and talk to people as if they are " the Spanish " Confused.It would be perfectly fine if they just regard themselves by nationality.
 
Referencing below AE thread link,me and OP have suspected some Hispanics aren't really European descent.It's backed up by another poster's reading source pointed to "acculturation " of indigenous people.
 
 
America's Whites do know there are mixed people in the society.They have " a drop rule " for the Black population here and Amerasian children are well accepted by Whites. 
 
Yes, I know.
 
However, what is more pathetic is when a Latino (me) said to North Americans (Canadians) I had Indigenous ancestry they correct me and said:
 
Impossible. You are smart ConfusedConfused LOL
 
I remember one day an American fellow ask me why I didn't migrate to the states to continue my studies. I said I was concerned by the way Americans treated Mexicans.
 
-How come? He said. You aren't Mexican!
 
-They are my people- I answered. 
 
And you can't imagine how upset he got. Confused
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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  Quote Guests Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26-Mar-2009 at 00:47
For everyone following this thread. Could you please be kind to comment in this thread?
 
 
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  Quote Styrbiorn Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26-Mar-2009 at 07:21
Originally posted by pinguin

For instance, Bush confussed Slovenia with Slovakia. Shocked

Who doesn't? The Slovaks call their own country Slovensko for Christ's sake. Tongue
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  Quote pebbles Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26-Mar-2009 at 08:26
Originally posted by pinguin

 
  
I remember one day an American fellow ask me why I didn't migrate to the states to continue my studies. I said I was concerned by the way Americans treated Mexicans.
 
-How come ? He said. You aren't Mexican!
 
 
 
 
 
America has a few derogatory labels for Mexicans not other Latin-Americans though.
 
 
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  Quote Reginmund Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26-Mar-2009 at 09:48
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Originally posted by goldenstar

It is a bit exaggerated to say it is the only viable model of civilisation, not a long time ago it was the civilisation that put the whole world 2 times in chaos and caused tens of millions of deaths because at this time the West was dominated by totalitarian regimes and brutal colonial powers self-proclaiming themselves democracies, in the sense of letting men (and not women) choose their politicians, even if they practised racist apartheids and conquered the world not differently from the Hitlerian or Stalinian governments they accused to be evil.

To avoid the same misunderstanding I’ve been the victim of before I’ll say right away that I don’t use the word “civilization” in a moral sense, to me “civilized” merely implies a relatively high level of development. From this POV it doesn’t make sense to say Nazi Germany or the colonial powers were uncivilized for causing tens of millions of deaths, on the contrary the fact that they were able to kill so efficiently merely speaks in favour of how advanced their civilization was. In the same way it doesn’t make sense to say a tribal society living in mudhut villages is civilized even if it has gender equality, respect for human rights, democracy etc.

Originally posted by goldenstar

But Western is not only a way to govern, it is especially an identity and a culture, rooted in European populations and their descendents in the New World, and I don't think the world is going to become Western in this sense as whole nations used to Romanise or Hellenise themselves.

The Graeco-Roman culture never pervaded so many societies on such a vast scale over so short a time. Today people speak Western languages, wear Western clothing and think Western thoughts from the Inuits of North America to the harbors of Shanghai. A mere two hundred years ago the picture was quite different.

Originally posted by Pebbles

Just a side note

 

US regards Russia Japan & Eastern Europe as " second-world " nations.

 

Eastern Europe and Russia, maybe, but Japan? That makes no sense. The country is as technologically advanced as the foremost Western nations, their economy is bigger than Germany’s and their society is arguably more well-organized than any in the West.

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  Quote pebbles Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26-Mar-2009 at 10:10
Originally posted by Reginmund

 

Originally posted by Pebbles

Just a side note

US regards Russia Japan & Eastern Europe as " second-world " nations.

 

 

Eastern Europe and Russia, maybe, but Japan ? That makes no sense.

The country is as technologically advanced as the foremost Western nations, their economy is bigger than Germany’s and their society is arguably more well-organized than any in the West.
 
 
 
I questioned it too back in the 1980's,Japan's " golden age " in post WW2.My elder brother explained it's because Japan is a " secondary-culture " adopts from an advanced civilization.
 
Japanese work twice as many hours so they could manipulate annual income per capita to present the image of first-world like that of N America & W Europe.In reality,their hourly pay is less than counterparts of the Western World.
 
Since 1990's,Japan is facing decline in moral values and deterioration in some social facets.
 
 
 
 
 
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  Quote goldenstar Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26-Mar-2009 at 16:03
Originally posted by Reginmund

To avoid the same misunderstanding I’ve been the victim of before I’ll say right away that I don’t use the word “civilization” in a moral sense, to me “civilized” merely implies a relatively high level of development. From this POV it doesn’t make sense to say Nazi Germany or the colonial powers were uncivilized for causing tens of millions of deaths, on the contrary the fact that they were able to kill so efficiently merely speaks in favour of how advanced their civilization was. In the same way it doesn’t make sense to say a tribal society living in mudhut villages is civilized even if it has gender equality, respect for human rights, democracy etc.


It is an other concept of civilisation, I tend to think the most objective criteria to call a nation civilised is not only technological advances and the best organisation to mass exterminate human beings, but moral and human values, like democracy and human rights for instance.

The Graeco-Roman culture never pervaded so many societies on such a vast scale over so short a time.

Egypt and the rest of the Middle-East dominated by Greek dynasties quickly Hellenised themselves though, Carthage and Numidia were influenced by Greece as well. In the huge territory Rome conquered, the whole Mediterranea and surrounding areas, the locals have been Romanised and adopted the civilisation of their conquerants. This legacy is reflected by the Latin languages of Spain, Portugal, France, Belgium, which were once Celtic speaking, not to mention Romania.

Today people speak Western languages


How do people speak Western languages? People speak their native tongues, and many people can speak English as a second language because it appears to be one of the easiest tongue of the world and is universally intelligible.

You're using a writing system originating from the ancient Arab World to communicate on the net right now, even when you write in Norwegian in everyday life, at school or university, at work, it doesn't mean you're Middle-Easternised.

wear Western clothing and think Western thoughts from the Inuits of North America to the harbors of Shanghai. A mere two hundred years ago the picture was quite different.



Chinese are not adopting Western culture, and it is logical the Inuits are "Westernised" because they are living under a Western government in a Western society. Americas and Oceania are exceptions because they're mostly inhabited by European people, but Africa and Asia follow their own cultures, especially Islamic societies.

You can say the world is Westernised because people use cars, besides the concept of transporting human beings and goods by wheeled vehicles existed in the Middle-East since ancient times, and having added a motor to make it easier and less archaic doesn't change the basis of the concept.

But if you base your reasoning that people are Westernised on a simple element as clothing, which are not seen as Western clothes as said above because they now became standard in the world and are only Western varieties of clothes that always existed long before (trousers, tee-shirts, skirts, and so on), not to mention they're mostly made with cotton, an other thing brought to Westerners by the Muslim Arabs, then one can say Westerners have a Middle-Eastern life-style since the concept of mass grouping humans to inhabit in a common sedentary settlement called city is purely Middle-Eastern, same for your house and your town's shops and buildings, because they contain glasses everywhere.

An other major argument is the Middle-Eastern religion of Christianism, and its moral values, they shaped the European society and still dominate Europe and the West to this day, not to mention Algerian Saint Augustine whose theology is the basis of the teachings of the various branches of European Christianity (Orthodoxism, Catholicism, Protestantism including Norwegian Lutherism).

Sugar is found in every basic dish and noone could accept to be deprived from it, using sugar is also a concept brought into Europe by Middle-Easterners, just like drinking coffee ,  Western people drink coffee every morning at home, at work, in coffee shops, same for the act of using Arabic algebra constantly in everyday life for everything from calculating how much flour is needed to bake a certain number of cookies to figuring out how long it will take to travel by car at a certain speed to a destination that is a specific distance away.

The earliest traces of books, writing, sciences, mathematics, and banking, are found in countries like Iraq. The simple acts of writting something, educating yourself by reading books, in other words the basis of your life, is influenced by the Middle-East.

Western economy, industry, sciences, all work with mathematical branches adopted from the Midlde-East, and just like Latin letters are found everywhere in Western cities while they're derivated from Semitic scripts from Lebanon and Palestine
(same for the Cyrillic alphabet in Eastern Europe), the Arabic numerals are found everywhere in the West and Europe too (in the whole world actually, as a result of European colonisation), but were created in North Africa during the Middle-Ages. Arabic numerals are based on the system of the civilisation of the Indus Valley (today Pakistan, and a part of India), adopted by Middle-Eastern Arabs but changed in their current form (0,1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9) by Maghrebi Arabs.

If you add the fact Europeans grow food by cultivating their lands to survive, and the fact they practise animal husbandry to drink milk and eat meat and eggs, or to make clothes with then you can say Europeans are totally Middle-Eastern, no matter how many centuries lasted since their ancient ancestors adopted such foreign habits from other civilisations.


I still doubt you feel Middle-Easternised in every day life, and
If you're a woman, you probably take care of your body and use cosmetics, an other idea influenced by Middle-Eastern women, and I doubt Western women feel they're being Middle-Easternising themselves every 3 weeks when they remove their body hair through sugaring, the most common method of epilation, originating from the Middle-East too. By the way, I do not feel I am becoming Italian when I make pizza or spaghetti at home, but if you trace the exact origins, then yes it is Italian, even if some sources say Muslims introduced pasta in Sicily in the Middle-Ages.





Edited by goldenstar - 26-Mar-2009 at 18:29
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  Quote Guests Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27-Mar-2009 at 00:51

Indeed. Europe and the West hardly recognizes how much is indebt with the Middle East. Just imagine how would be the Western Civilization without the alphabet spread by the Phoenicians, the numbers of the Arabs, the religion of the Jews, the music of the Middle East, or the Arab literature.

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  Quote pebbles Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27-Mar-2009 at 02:52
Originally posted by pinguin

 
 
Indeed. Europe and the West hardly recognizes how much is indebt with the Middle East.
 
 
 
 
That's not true ...
 
European people have always give full-fledge recognition of Middle-Eastern contributions to the Western Civilization.
 
religion = Judeo-Christian
1-10 = Arabic numbers
literature = tales from 1001 Arabian Nights (  in publication indefinitely ) etc
science = chemistry etc
 
 
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  Quote Guests Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27-Mar-2009 at 03:04
I don't express myself well, then.
What I meant is that the West gives quite a lot more merit to the Greek-Roman world than to the contributions of the Middle East, or even China.
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  Quote Majkes Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27-Mar-2009 at 18:11
Originally posted by pinguin

I don't express myself well, then.
What I meant is that the West gives quite a lot more merit to the Greek-Roman world than to the contributions of the Middle East, or even China.
 
Becasue West is built rather on Greek-Roman heritage than Chinese-Arabian so there is nothing strange they give more credit to Greeks and Romans. The fact that West adopted many things from Arabs or Chinese doesn't change that Greece and Rome were most important ancient cultures for Western civilisations.
E.g. we study Roman law and Greek philosophers.
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  Quote pebbles Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28-Mar-2009 at 03:00
 
Mod Team: Should we move this thread to History of the Americas subforum,where it belongs ?
 
 
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  Quote Emilia Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28-Mar-2009 at 19:53
Hello.  I am the person who actually wrote the article.  I'm pleased to see that it has generated such a huge amount of discussion!
 
I'll stand by my original thesis: I do believe Latin America is Western, overall.  I compare it to my own country, Canada (of course that's not the greatest analogy, as Canada is a single nation rather than an entire region).  I believe Canada is overall a Western country culturally.  However, there are parts of this country that are definitely not Western, even though everybody has been touched by one way or another by Western civilization.  For example, in the northern territory of Nunavut (that I've actually visited), the majority of population are Natives who in many case speak their original language on a daily basis.  So I'm compare that with many countries in Latin America (Mexico, Peru, Bolivia, etc.) having an important Native component.  But the region as a whole is culturally Western.
 
I would also say that if Latin America were not Western (again, as a whole), it would have ended up like the Philippines (if I haven't posted it on this forum, you can look it up under "Race mixing and Westernization in Latin America and the Philippines), where the people, yes, have been influenced by the Spanish conquest but have kept their native language.  Almost no Filipinos speak Spanish as a mother tongue, whereas the majority of Latin Americans speak Spanish, not even a creole, as their first language.  Certainly the Philippines has been impacted by Spain; ex. most Filipinos are Catholic, perhaps even better Catholics than Westerners (at least Filipinas aren't going half-naked to church, which was a concern of a priest in the Colombian city of Barranquilla Smile).  But Filipinos have kept their original heritage.  Most Latin Americans have not.  I think if Latin American mestizos (the majority of the region's population) spoke a native language, for instance, rather than Spanish as their mother tongue, for example, I might even consider them to be at least partially non-Western.  But they don't, so I don't.
 
Hope that clarifies things.
 
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