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Spanish Colonization Research Papers

Spanish colonization was an important part of white settlement of the Americas. The rational behind it and the process makes for an interesting research paper topic for a history, philosophy or colonial studies course. Have Paper Masters custom write a project for you on any aspect of Spanish colonization.

The Spanish colonization of the native societies of the Americas was a resolutely legitimated process. Throughout the sixteenth century, Spanish monarchs, administrators, and intellectuals wrestled with the principles-moral, philosophical, religious—evoked by the Conquest. As they argued for and against the legitimacy of this enterprise, they laid down important cornerstones of a modern theory of just war and just interventions.Spanish Colonization

Interestingly enough, the contemporary world scene echoes such sixteenth-century preoccupations with the moral dimensions of international, armed intervention. The inter-state conflicts that defined warfare during the last centuries are now atypical. Instead, over the last decade or so, humanitarian ends have been given renewed importance as the principal justification to settle domestic conflicts through for the deployment of external military force. This is often undertaken with the sanction of international bodies such as the UN.

A research paper on Spanish colonization most likely will ask you to conduct a thought experiment regarding a council composed of the following:

  • Francisco de Vitoria
  • Juan Ginés de Sepúlveda
  • The Dominican Friar Bartolomé de Las Casas

These signal figures of the sixteenth century debates over the Spanish conquest have been whisked through time to weigh-in on a contemporary intervention of your choice. Each of these individuals held markedly distinct positions in their time and would assuredly hold to these same general principles in our day and age. Given these positions, please reconstruct a debate between the three thinkers over what makes a particular contemporary intervention just or unjust. You may want to conclude by presenting your own thoughts about the relationship between these sixteenth-century readings and more recent philosophical positions relating to the legitimacy of intervention.

The aim of this research paper is to demonstrate your understanding of the different positions staked out by Vitoria, Sepulveda, and Las Casas. You don’t need to undertake in-depth research on the contemporary case study, just enough to be able to anchor your “translation” of early modern theory to the present day. That said: some of you may want to dig into certain dimensions of this issue.

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