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Colin Calloway describes the changes that occurred in the new world. He tries to explain the experiences of the native occupants of America and the intruders. He explores everything that occurred during this time, which include; war, diseases, clothes, farming, religion, food, and trade. He tries to show how the different cultures merged and how it affected both the natives and the new comers. Calloway believes that America was an Indian country. The Europeans migrated into America and lived with the Indians. The two groups share many things. They interacted in their daily activities like farming, worshipping, trading, living, and even hating each other.
The New World as Calloway describes is a world where people from different regions come together and start living together as they try to make their lives better. The most common form of interaction between the Europeans and the Indians was conflict. They were always in conflict about the natural resources. The Indians valued nature and would never destroy forest for farming. The Europeans tried to copy the military tactics used by the Indians they emulated their skills and the weapons they used. The Indians never used modern medicine to treat themselves. Instead, they used herbs from indigenous trees to treat themselves. The Europeans who settled in the Indian region adopted the use of these indigenous herbs.
The two parties tried to learn each other traditions and cultures. The Europeans struggled to learn the Indian language to be able to communicate fluently with each other. On the other hand, the Indians learnt Spanish and other European languages. This need to understand the other person’s language was a necessity caused by the need to emulate the others culture. The Indians were pagans who did not have a particular religion. The Europeans on the other hand were Christians and they felt the need to convert Indians into Christians. The missionaries taught the natives about Christianity and the need to serve and believe in the existence of a supernatural being.
Calloway tries to correct the belief that Native Americans had no culture. He argues that the Indians used to move from place to place and that they had their own cultural believes. The invasion of the Europeans was only an addition to the already existing culture.
The interaction between the Europeans and the Native Americans led to intermarriages. This meant that they had to appreciate each other’s values and culture in order to live in harmony. They interchanged their cultural values and this led to a completely different set of cultures that were because of two diverse cultures. The two competing cultures had to come together and form one culture that comprised of the two cultures giving rise to a new unique American culture.
The notion that the Europeans were the ones who taught the Indians farming and that they were the ones who introduce crops to the Native Americans is not true according to Calloway. Europeans had to seek the help of the Indians when they were trying to start farming in the region. They were forced to consult the Native Americans on how to go about cultivating and planting in the region. The natives understood the terrain better and they were the ones who knew the way around better.
The Europeans brought new crops to the region and they found crops that the Indians were already planting. This meant that the two groups had to learn to eat food that they were not eating before. This played a major role in changing the lives of the natives and that of the visitors.
Indians used to wear animal skin as clothes while the Europeans were wearing clothes. The Indians had to change their mode of dressing and start wearing clothes. The merging of the cultures meant that they had to evaluate themselves and adopt those aspects of their cultures that could benefit both cultures. The two cultures learnt trading skills from each other. The Indians used barter trade while the Europeans used currencies to trade.
A new world was created when the Europeans migrated to America. The Europeans had their own way of life, which was very different from the one they encountered when they arrived in America. The Native Americans on the other hand had their own way of life, which was simple. The Europeans were Christians while the Indians had no common denomination. Christianity became the main religion to the Indians who did not know about it before the arrival of the missionaries.
The two groups spoke different languages. They had to learn each other’s language to be able to communicate effectively. Children born in a marriage where the parents were intermarried had to learn both languages and appreciate both groups. This led to acceptance of each other and the initial hatred that was felt between the two groups disappeared.
The economy of the people who interacted improved. They shared ideas on farming trading and the new farming techniques. The Indians used to farm in small pieces of land but this changed when the Europeans came. They started large-scale farming creating employment opportunities for the locals. The Europeans learnt a lot from the Indians. They learnt how to hunt for wild animals and how to use the Indian weapons while hunting. The Europeans started tattooing their faces and body like the Indians. They ate the Indian food and this led to a very new America. The Indians started drinking tea something they did not do before.
New diseases were transmitted. The Europeans who moved into America transmitted diseases to the natives. Hospitals were built and this was a new thing in the region. The Indians had to abandon their herbs and start going to hospital whenever they were not feeling well. A new world was created in terms of the crops being cultivated. Corn, tomatoes, potatoes, and tobacco were discovered through the interaction of the two groups. These were included in the exports from America by the Europeans. The tactics that were later used by the Europeans were learnt from the Indians. The Indians fought using guerrilla tactics.
The interactions led to lots of changes in the environment. The Indians used to believe that destroying forests leads to death and that was the reason why they never cultivated forests. This changed after the arrival of the Europeans. They set up large ranches where they kept livestock and practiced farming. They believe that people died if they cut down trees was completely forgotten. Trees were fallen down for firewood and land used for farming. The placed changed from being a forest to ranches.
The Europeans, who settled there, improved the condition in the Indian town. Hospitals were built and infrastructure improved to allow free movement of goods and people. Schools were built and the Indian children were taught how to read and write. This was a new experience for the Indians who had never known how to read and write. This was a start of a new world for the Indians. They were now literate and this was a new beginning for them. The Indian lifestyle changed from being hunters and gatherers to being farmers and traders. Politics developed due to large population of people who had to have a leader to guide them. All these were because of the new world created through the interaction of the Europeans and the Native Americans