By John Thornton

This booklet exhibits how very important the African position used to be in shaping the Atlantic international that built after the navigational breakthroughs of the 15th century. The measure of African initiative displayed during this interval is under pressure, either by way of African elites in facing the hot viewers and buying and selling companions and, even through African slaves within the New global. flippantly divided into sections on Africa and Africans within the New international, this examine stresses cultural and institutional backgrounds to Africa and African slaves. even supposing the e-book is meant to assist Africanists know the way Africans fared within the Americas, its major goal is to provide readers accustomed to Afro-American historical past a fuller and extra dynamic imaginative and prescient of Africa, to allow them to see the African slave as an African and never simply as a laborer.

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Louis de Armond "Frontier Warfare in Colonial Chile," Pacific Historzcal Revzew 23 (195 4 ): 125-32; R~bert C. Padden, "Cultural Change and Military Resistance in Araucanian Chile, 1550-1730," Southwestern journal of Anth;opology (~957): 103-21. "' See the admirable discussion in Phillip Powell, Soldiers, Indzans and Szlver: The Northward Advance of New Spain, 1550-1600 (Berkeley, 1952). t and Stuart Schwartz, Early Latin America: A Hzstory of Coloma/ Spamsh Amenca and Brazzl (Cambridge, 1983), pp.

94 The success of the Madeira venture encouraged others and showed that even uninhabited islands, especially if they lay in tropical or subtropical zones, could be of economic value and could fairly quickly repay the efforts of populating them. Not all the islands were as successfully exploited as Madeira was, although some, such as Sao Tome, became very profitable indeed. But s Letter of Privilege to Sao Toml! settlers, 24 September 1485, MMA 1:50-1. Alberto I ria, 0 Algarve e a 1/Jza da Madeira no sec11lo XV (Lisbon, 1974).

16. 9• Magalhaes-Godinho, Descobrimentos 1:282-6. 9' Da Mosto, "Mondo Novo" (ed. Gasparrini-Leporace), p. 17. , p. " 94 Magalhiies-Godinho, Descobrimentos 1:426-50. 8 86 The birth of an Atlantic world 35 they did serve as bases for ventures along the African coast (such as the Cape Verdes and Sao Tome) or for further Atlantic navigation (as the Azores would for the Brazil and India fleets). More than that, however, the prospect of finding uncharted and uninhabited islands in an Atlantic seemingly full of them encouraged sailors to look west into the Atlantic as well as south to Africa for their fortune.

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