Strayer_Nave_Lecture_Ch13_Political_Transformations_Empires_and_Encounters

Mar 30th, 2015
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Geography and winds: Europe had a decided advantage for access to the Americas as it was a short trip across the Atlantic and the winds were steady and favorable, unlike the shifting monsoon winds of the Indian Ocean.

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Robert W. StrayerWays of the World: A Brief GlobalHistory with SourcesSecond EditionChapter 13Political Transformations: Empires and Encounters,1450-1750Copyright 2013 by Bedford/St. Martin's I. European Empires in the AmericasA. The European Advantage1. Geography and winds: Europe had a decided advantage for access to the Americas as it was a short trip across the Atlantic and the winds were steady and favorable, unlike the shifting monsoon winds of the Indian Ocean.2. European marginality, land-hunger, and social drives: European weaknesses, such as being on the margins of the trade networks, being relatively poor, and needing more land to feed the population recovering from the Black Death all served as push factors to drive Europeans overseas and toward the Americas. Almost all social groups had some reason to favor expansion: The poor and the elites wanted to gain land wealth, merchants wanted markets and imports, the church wanted to spread the faith, knights wanted glory, and everyone wanted gold. 3. Organization and technology: The near-constant, interstate rivalry manifested itself in competition on the seas. These conflicts ensured that the states and trading companies had the organization to take on the project of overseas expansion. Europeans built upon technology gained from contact with the Muslim world to create an increasingly efficient fleet of ships. 4. Local allies: Europeans also found local allies, such as the Aztecs and the Inca, wh

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