chapter 9: the cultural geography of latin · settlement...

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GeoJournal As you read this chapter, use your journal to list and describe the cultural influences that have shaped life in Latin America. Note how both native and imported cultures have formed a uniquely Latin American way of life. Chapter Overview Visit the Glencoe World Geography Web site at tx.geogr aphy .glencoe .com and click on Chapter Overviews—Chapter 9 to preview information about the cultural geography of the region.

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  • GeoJournalAs you read this chapter, use your journal tolist and describe the cultural influences thathave shaped life in Latin America. Note howboth native and imported cultures haveformed a uniquely Latin American way of life.

    Chapter Overview Visit the Glencoe WorldGeography Web site at tx.geography.glencoe.comand click on Chapter Overviews—Chapter 9 to preview information about the cultural geography of the region.

  • Population Patterns

    A Geographic ViewA Flavorful MixMore than any other Caribbeanisland, Trinidad is a multiethnicstew. Africans and East Indians,each with about 40 percent of thepopulation, make up the base,while smaller groups add theirown flavor. Spanish and Frenchfamilies trace their roots to the18th century, when their ances-tors came to clear the land forplantations or to trade. . . . Portuguese, Chinese, and Syrian immigrants becamemerchants and shopkeepers.Today Trinidadians comparethe resulting mix to callaloo, a soup with many ingredients.

    —A. R. Williams, “The Wild Mix of Trinidad and Tobago,” National Geographic, March 1994

    The island country of Trinidad and Tobago reflects inminiature Latin America’s diverse population. In this section you willlearn how Latin America’s multiethnic population came about, howthe land shaped patterns of human migration, and what benefits andchallenges population growth and diversity bring to the region.

    Human CharacteristicsLatin America’s 525 million people—about 9 percent of the world’s

    population—live in 33 countries that span more than half of the Western Hemisphere. The region’s population includes Native Americans, Europeans, Africans, Asians, and mixtures of thesegroups. The bar graph on page 212 shows you the ethnic diversitythat characterizes Latin America today.

    Guide to ReadingConsider What You KnowThink about what you have readabout the physical geography ofLatin America. What geographic factors influence where people have settled in this region?

    Read to Find Out• What ethnic groups make up the

    population of Latin America?

    • How have geography and eco-nomics influenced the distributionof Latin America’s population?

    • How has migration affected theLatin American culture region?

    • In what ways does Latin America’scultural diversity present bothbenefits and challenges for itspeople?

    Terms to Know• indigenous

    • dialect

    • patois

    • urbanization

    • megacity

    • primate city

    Places to Locate• Ecuador • Caracas

    • Peru • Santiago

    • Bolivia • Patagonia

    • Guyana • Rio de Janeiro

    • Buenos Aires • Barbados

    C h a p t e r 9 211

    Woman at a Guatemalan market

    Trinidad’s Laventille neighborhood

  • 212 U n i t 3


    A Blending of PeoplesThe ancestors of Native Americans were the first

    people to settle Latin America. As a result, NativeAmericans today are known as an indigenous(ihn•DIH•juh•nuhs) group, people descendedfrom an area’s first inhabitants. Centuries ago threeNative American groups—the Maya of the YucatánPeninsula and parts of Central America, the Aztecof Mexico, and the Inca of Peru’s highlands—developed great civilizations with important citiesand ceremonial centers.

    Today many Native American cultural featuresstill remain in parts of Latin America. Most of LatinAmerica’s present-day Native Americans live inMexico, Central America, and the Andes region ofEcuador, Peru, and Bolivia. In areas where they area large part of the population, Native Americanpeoples have worked to preserve their traditionalcultures while adopting features of other cultures.

    Europeans first arrived in what is now LatinAmerica in the late 1400s. Since that time millionsof European immigrants have come to the region.Most of these settlers were Spanish and Portuguese.Over the years other European groups—Italians,British, French, and Germans—came as well. In mod-ern times so many Europeans settled in Argentina andUruguay that these countries became known as immi-grant nations. In Latin America today, descendants ofEuropean immigrants continue to follow many of theways of life their ancestors brought with them.

    Africans first came to Latin America in the 1500s.They arrived as enslaved people, brought forcibly byEuropeans to work sugar and other cash crop plan-tations in Brazil and the Caribbean islands. The laborof enslaved Africans helped build Latin Americaneconomies. By the late 1800s, slavery had finallyended in the region. Many Africans whose familieshad been in Latin America for generations remainedin parts of the region. They added their rich cultural









    0 20 40 60 80 100

    85% 15%

    6% 38% 55%

    10% 2% 67% 21%

    32% 6% 12% 49%

    11% 16% 73%

    30% 60% 9% 1%



    44% 56%

    45% 37% 15% 3%

    * Two or more ethnic groupsSource: World Almanac, 2001


    Ethnic Groups in Selected Latin American Countries


    Native American


    S Asian/SE Asian



    1. Interpreting GraphsWhich country has the larg-est percentage of people ofEuropean heritage in its population?

    2. Applying GeographySkills What factors helpedinfluence the ethnic variety in Latin America?

  • C h a p t e r 9 213

    influences to the food, music, arts, and religions ofLatin America.

    Asians first settled in Latin America during the1800s. They labored as temporary workers, andmany remained to form ethnic communities.Today the Caribbean islands and some countriesof South America have large Asian populations. InGuyana about one-half of the population is ofSouth Asian or Southeast Asian descent. Manypeople of Chinese descent make their homes inPeru, Mexico, and Cuba, and many people ofJapanese descent live in Brazil and Peru.

    Over the centuries there has been a blending of these different ethnic groups throughout LatinAmerica. For example, in countries such as Mexico,Honduras, and El Salvador, people of mixed NativeAmerican and European descent make up the largestpart of the population. In other countries, such asCuba and the Dominican Republic, people of mixedAfrican and European descent form a large per-centage of the population.

    LanguageLanguage is a major factor in bringing

    together the diverse ethnic groups of LatinAmerica. Most people in the region haveadopted the languages of the European countriesthat once colonized the region. Today Spanish isthe primary language of most countries of LatinAmerica. However, other languages also are spo-ken. For example, the official language of Brazil isPortuguese; of Haiti and Martinique, French; andof Jamaica, Belize, and Guyana, English.

    Not all Latin Americans, however, speak theseEuropean languages the same way as, or even in away similar to, the original European colonists. Eachcountry has its own dialects, forms of a languageunique to a particular place or group. Meanings ofwords and the words themselves often differ fromone place to another.

    In addition, millions of Latin Americans speakNative American languages. In Central America,Mayan dialects such as K’iche’ (kee•CHAY) are com-mon. Tupi-Guarani predominates in Paraguay andBrazil. Aymara is spoken in Bolivia, and Quechua(KEH•chuh•wuh) in Ecuador, Peru, and Bolivia.

    Many Latin Americans are bilingual, speakingtwo languages—a European language and anotherlanguage, either indigenous, African, or Asian. Other

    Latin Americans speak one of many Latin Americanforms of patois (PA•TWAH), dialects that blend ele-ments of indigenous, European, African, andAsian languages.

    Where Latin Americans Live

    In addition to having a diverse population, LatinAmerica today has a high rate of populationgrowth. By most estimates the region’s popula-tion will soar to about 800 million by the year2050—an increase of 55 percent. This high growthrate magnifies the challenges to human patterns of















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    Latin America: Languages

    1. Interpreting Maps Where are Native Americanlanguages spoken?

    2. Applying Geography Skills How might theareas where some languages are spoken relateto the region’s history of colonial settlement?

  • 214 U n i t 3

    settlement already presented by Latin America’sphysical geography.

    Latin America’s varied climates and landscapeshave an impact on where Latin Americans live. Tem-perature extremes, dense rain forests, toweringmountains, and arid deserts limit human habitationin many parts of Latin America. In fact, most of LatinAmerica’s population lives on only one-third of theregion’s land.

    About 350 million people live in South America,generally along the coasts. Another 138 million peo-ple live in Central America and Mexico, either alongCentral America’s Pacific coast or on the inland Mex-ican Plateau and Central Highlands. The Caribbeanisland countries are home to 37 million people.

    South America’s Populated RimRain forests, deserts, and mountains dominate

    South America’s interior. In these areas harsh liv-ing conditions and poor soil discourage humansettlement. As a result, most South Americans liveon the continent’s edges, an area sometimes knownas the “populated rim.” The coastal regions pro-vide favorable climates, fertile land, and easyaccess to transportation systems.

    South America’s eastern coast,from the mouth of the AmazonRiver in Brazil to the pampasaround Buenos Aires, Argentina, isLatin America’s largest populatedarea. A narrower strip of denselypopulated land stretches along thecontinent’s northern and westerncoast from Caracas, Venezuela, toSantiago, Chile.

    South America’s populated rimdoes not encircle the entire conti-nent, however. For example, theeastern coast between the Amazon’smouth and Caracas has a hot, rainyclimate and is sparsely populated.Another area of low populationdensity lies to the far south in theAndes and Patagonia, where the cli-mate and land are harsh.

    With the exception of NativeAmericans, few South Americanslive in the continent’s inland areas.To draw people away from the

    densely populated coast, the Brazilian govern-ment in 1960 moved the capital from coastal Riode Janeiro to Brasília, a planned city built in thecountry’s interior.

    Population DensityAs the population density map on page 184

    shows, population density varies greatly through-out Latin America. One important factor in acountry’s population density is its area. SouthAmerican countries, with their relatively largeland areas, tend to have low population densities.In Ecuador, the most densely populated country inSouth America, an average of only 118 peopleshare a square mile (46 people per sq. km). Brazilhas a large population, but its enormous land area,over 3.3 million square miles (8.5 million sq. km),results in a population density averaging only 52people per square mile (20 people per sq. km).

    Caribbean countries, in contrast, combine smallland areas with large populations that tend togrow at rapid rates. These factors make theCaribbean countries some of the most denselypopulated in Latin America. The tiny island nationof Barbados has the highest population density in

    Latin AmericanImmigration These floral arrangers, in the state of São Paulo,Brazil, are part of a community of Japanese Brazilians.

    Movement Why have Asian and European immigrants settled inLatin America?

  • C h a p t e r 9 215

    the Caribbean, with an average of 1,620 people persquare mile (698 people per sq. km).

    Population density also varies within countries.With 99.6 million people, Mexico is the world’s mostpopulous Spanish-speaking country, and it is thesecond most populous country in Latin America,after Brazil. Mexico’s population and its land area of756,000 square miles (1.9 million sq. km) give it apopulation density of 132 people per square mile (51people per sq. km), making Mexico seem relativelyuncrowded. This overall density rate is only anaverage, however. In metropolitan Mexico City,more than 18 million people live within an area of597 square miles (1,547 sq. km). That makes the pop-ulation density of Mexico City a staggering 30,150people per square mile (11,641 people per sq. km)!

    MigrationMigration has been a major force shaping popu-

    lation patterns in Latin America. As a geographywriter recently observed,

    “ Migration is . . . everyone’s solution,everyone’s conflict. . . . Unlike the flightof refugees, which is usually chaotic,economic movement is a chain thatlinks the world. Migration . . . continuesto push us toward change.”Michael Parfit, “Human Migration,” National Geographic,

    October 1998

    In past centuries Europeans, Africans, andAsians migrated to Latin America in large num-bers, either voluntarily or involuntarily. Todaypeople from places such as Korea, Armenia,Lebanon, and Syria come to Latin America seekingeconomic and political opportunities.

    Migrating NorthIn addition to receiving an inflow of migrants

    from foreign countries, Latin America also experi-ences an outflow of people to different parts of theworld. For many Latin Americans, the desire forimproved living conditions, political freedom, oran escape from political unrest leads them tomove north to the United States. Latin Americanscome to the United States primarily from Mexico,Central America, and the Caribbean islands.Immigrants from Latin America live in every stateof the Union, with large numbers in California,Texas, New York, Illinois, and Florida. Many LatinAmerican immigrants go through the process oflegally entering the United States; others enterillegally. All of these immigrants bring elements oftheir culture with them. Most retain close ties withfamily and friends in their home countries, andmany intend to return when economic conditionsthere improve.

    Internal MigrationInternal migration, or movement within a

    region or country, also has shaped Latin America

    MarketStreet in La Paz A crowded street in La Paz,Bolivia, shows the effects of rapid urbanization.

    Movement How does internal migration contribute to urbanization in the region?

  • 216 U n i t 3

    in recent decades. As in many parts of the world,migrants within Latin America usually move fromrural to urban areas because of better job oppor-tunities in the cities. This one-way migration alsooccurs because in many rural areas fertile land isin short supply or a small portion of the popula-tion controls access to the land. As the rural popu-lation rises, there is less fertile land to go around.Smaller farms can no longer support families.The result is continuing, rapid urbanization—

    the migration of people from the countrysideto cities as well as the change from a rural to anurban society that accompanies this movement.

    Growth of CitiesIn the past most Latin Americans lived in the

    countryside and worked the land. Today most live inurban areas. Four cities of Latin America—MexicoCity, Mexico; São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro, Brazil;

    More than $10,000$2,000 – $10,000Less than $2,000Labor migrationtrend

    Income and LaborMigration

    (per capita incomein U.S. dollars)

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    120°W 100°W 80°W 60°W 40°W





    N O R T HA M E R I C A


    Mexico City

    S˜ao Paulo


    Los AngelesNew York City



    San JuanHavana



    Latin America: Migration and Urbanization

    People in Latin America continue tolook to urban areas, both inside andoutside the region, for work and a bet-ter life. Most often people migrate toareas of higher economic prosperity.For example, people migrate fromMexico to the United States. However,migration also occurs within LatinAmerica. Migration has caused anincrease in the levels of urbanizationthroughout the region.

    Level of Urbanization

    1970 2001 2025*

    Argentina 78% 90% 93%

    Bolivia 36% 63% 76%

    Brazil 56% 81% 86%

    Guatemala 37% 39% 42%

    Mexico 59% 74% 82%

    Latin America 57% 74% 81%

    *Projected figures.Sources: World Population Data Sheet, 2001;United Nations Population Division; Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean

    Find NGS online map resources @

    1. Interpreting Maps Which countries receive asignificant inflow of labor migration?

    2. Applying Geography Skills Study the levelsof urbanization in Argentina and Guatemala. Howdo they compare with the region as a whole?

  • C h a p t e r 9 217

    Checking for Understanding1. Define indigenous, dialect,

    patois, urbanization, megacity,primate city.

    2. Main Ideas Create a web diagramlike the one below, and fill in impor-tant information about Latin Amer-ica’s people.

    Critical Thinking3. Analyzing Cause and Effect What

    factors account for the differencesin the way Spanish is spoken invarious Latin American countries?

    4. Drawing Conclusions Develop ahypothesis describing probablepopulation patterns in LatinAmerica in the year 2050. Defendyour hypothesis, using presenttrends as evidence.

    5. Making Inferences In what waysmight physical geography influ-ence the development of mega-cities in Latin America?

    Analyzing Maps6. Region Study the language map

    on page 213. What is the mostwidely spoken language in Central America?

    7. Population Density Con-sider the physical geogra-phy of Latin America. Writea paragraph suggestingsuitable locations for con-structing new cities torelieve population pressuresin Latin America’s existingcities. Consider the kinds ofresources required to sustainlarge populations.

    Applying Geography

    and Buenos Aires, Argentina—now rank among theworld’s 20 largest urban areas in population.

    The Urban SettingIn some Latin American countries, as cities have

    grown they have absorbed surrounding cities andsuburbs to create megacities, cities with more than10 million people. The region’s largest megacity isMexico City, with a current population of more than18 million. By 2015, the city is expected to have 19.2 million people. Mexico City’s rapidly growingpopulation already stresses the city’s ability to pro-vide safe drinking water, underground sewers, andutilities for new arrivals. Although the city has manyareas with comfortable homes, its challenge for thefuture is to provide adequate housing for many whonow live in cardboard shacks or makeshift housesmade from sheets of metal.

    Because of its size and influence, Mexico City is aprimate city, an urban area that dominates its coun-try’s economy, culture, and political affairs. Otherprimate cities in Latin America include Caracas,Venezuela; Montevideo, Uruguay; Santiago, Chile;Buenos Aires, Argentina; and Havana, Cuba. Manyprimate cities began near waterways during the colo-nial era. Today these cities serve as central locationsfor gathering, collecting, and shipping resources

    overseas. They are especially powerful magnets forrural migrants seeking a higher standard of living.

    Urban ChallengesMost rural Latin Americans migrate to cities to

    find a better life—higher incomes, more educationalopportunities, better housing, and increased accessto health care. In many cases people do not findwhat they seek. As a city’s resources are strained byrapid population growth, jobs and housing becomescarce. At the same time, many rural people lack theeducation and skills to obtain urban employment.Schools and health care centers are overwhelmed.

    Despite disappointments, most rural migrants donot have the resources to return to their villages.They remain in the cities, forced by poverty to live inneighborhoods with substandard housing, poorsanitation, and little opportunity for improvement.Families sometimes split apart under the stress,leaving large numbers of homeless children to fendfor themselves on the streets.

    Many of Latin America’s urban challenges arisefrom modern developments, such as the growth ofcities. Others, however, stem from social and eco-nomic issues deeply rooted in the past. In the nextsection you will read about the historical factorsthat still shape current ways of life in Latin America.

    Latin America’sPeople

    Who they are

    Where they live



    A freighter winds its waythrough the Panama Canal.


    218 U n i t 3

    THE PANAMA CANAL, a vital water-way connecting the Atlantic andPacific Oceans, has been an impor-tant trade route since the day itopened. About 14,000 ships pass

    through the canal’s system of locks andlakes each year. Using the canal, ships canavoid the treacherous waters around CapeHorn at the southern tip of South Americaand can shave 7,000 miles (11,265 km) offtheir trip. For most of the twentieth cen-tury, the United States controlled thecanal.This changed on the last day of1999, when control passed to thenation of Panama.Today the UnitedStates and other countries anxiouslywatch how Panama operates thisinternational shortcut between theworld’s largest oceans.

    Big Dreams and Political ShenanigansSpanish explorer Vasco Núñez de Balboawas the first to grasp the unique geo-graphic features of the land in CentralAmerica known today as Panama. In 1513,while exploring the isthmus, he climbed apeak and discovered a body of water asvast as the Atlantic, the ocean he had leftbehind. It wasn’t long before thoughtsturned to building a waterway to breachthe slender neck of land that connectsCentral and South America. The limitationsof manual labor, however, kept the idea in











  • the realm of dreams formore than 300 years.

    By the late 1800s, tech-nology had caught up withthe imagination.The first totry to build a waterway wasFrenchman Ferdinand deLesseps, who mastermindedthe Suez Canal. Cuttingthrough the mountainous

    terrain proved extremely difficult, and de Lesseps failed. But one ofhis engineers, Philippe Jean Bunau-Varilla, refused to quit. In 1901 hepitched the idea to U.S. President Theodore Roosevelt, who was will-ing to pay the engineer’s price if Colombia, of which Panama was apart, relinquished control of the proposed canal route.When Colombiarefused, Bunau-Varilla supported Panamanian revolutionaries and persuaded the United States to intervene.The presence of Americangunboats was enough to make Colombia give in. Panama became anindependent country. Bunau-Varilla, Panama’s new minister to theUnited States, negotiated a treaty giving the United States control of the land along the proposed route. In 1904 construction began.

    Engineering Wonder of the WorldNearly 75,000 laborers from around the world built what is stillregarded as one of the engineering wonders of the world. Instead oftrying to make a cut through the rugged hills to carry ships across atsea level, the American solution was to build a system of locks to liftships up to a newly created lake, and in the same way, lower themdown the other side.The volcanic soil, heat and rain, dense vegeta-tion, and disease-spreading insects conspired to make progresspainfully slow. Thousands of workers lost their lives, and costs grewto more than $380 million.The canal was completed in 1914.

    1500s First road built across isthmus

    1855 American business interests build railroadacross isthmus

    1881 French companybegins building a sealevel canal; projectabandoned in 1887

    1903 Backed by U.S.President TheodoreRoosevelt (cartoonabove), Panamabecomes independentcountry and signstreaty to createPanama Canal Zone

    1904 Work begins on the Panama Canal (back-ground photo)

    1914 First ship passesthrough canal

    1977 U.S. and Panama signPanama Canal Treaty,gradually transferringownership to Panama

    1999 Canal ownership transfers to Panama

    Canal enthusiast TheodoreRoosevelt operates a steamshovel at a canal work site.

    U n i t 3 219

    Looking AheadIn acquiring the Panama Canal, the Panamanians gained a sizableinvestment. Do you think Panama will find the resources to main-tain and operate the canal? How might the United States be affected by the change in command?

  • Guide to ReadingConsider What You KnowLatin American politics and socialconflicts often make news in theUnited States. How are Latin Americangovernments similar to or differentfrom the United States government?

    Read to Find Out• What contributions have Latin

    America’s Native Americanempires made to the region’s cultural development?

    • How has colonial rule influencedLatin America’s political and socialstructures?

    • How did most Latin Americancountries make the transition fromcolonialism to democracy?

    • What political and social factorscontinue to challenge the LatinAmerican culture region?

    Terms to Know• glyph

    • chinampas

    • quipu

    • conquistador

    • viceroy

    • caudillo

    Places to Locate• Mexico

    • Tikal

    • Tenochtitlán

    • Cuzco

    • Haiti

    • Cuba

    History andGovernment

    A Geographic ViewNative Rights ProtestDrawn machetes slapped against trouser legs. Dark eyes stared in anger. About 40 Tojolabal Indian menand women surrounded two men. . . .They talked angrily, and the phrasethat came through was, “This is ourland.” The sharp edges of the machetesgleamed. . . . These Indians might beZapatistas, rebel Indian farmersnamed for Mexico’s revolutionarywar hero Emiliano Zapata. . . .

    —Michael Parfit, “Chiapas: Rough Road to Reality,” National Geographic,August 1996

    In 1994 the Zapatistas attacked government troops andcaptured several towns in southern Mexico. One of their aims was torecover lands that Spanish conquerors had seized from their ances-tors four centuries earlier. They finally succeeded in pressuring theMexican government to introduce reforms giving Native Americansmore power in Mexico’s political system. Throughout Latin Americatoday people struggle with unresolved issues rooted in the past. Inthis section you will learn about Latin America’s long and often vio-lent history, which includes ancient Native American civilizations,European colonial rule, and struggles for independence.

    Native American EmpiresYears before Christopher Columbus arrived in the Americas in

    1492, three Native American empires—the Maya, the Aztec, andthe Inca—flourished in the area that is present-day Latin America.

    220 U n i t 3

    Zapatista protesters, Chiapas, Mexico

  • C h a p t e r 9 221

    The civilization of each empire left enduring markson Latin American cultures.

    The MayaThe Maya dominated southern Mexico and

    northern Central America from about A.D. 250to 900. They established many cities, the greatest ofwhich was Tikal, located in what is todayGuatemala. Terraces, courts, and pyramid-shapedtemples stood in these cities. Priests and noblesruled the cities and surrounding areas. The Mayabased their economy on agriculture and trade.

    Skilled in mathematics, the Maya developedaccurate calendars and used astronomical observa-tions to predict solar eclipses. They used glyphs,picture writings carved in stone, on temples tohonor their deities and record their history.

    For reasons that are still a mystery, the Mayaeventually abandoned their cities, which over timebecame lost beneath the vegetation of the rain for-est. Archaeologists continue to search for moreinformation about the ancient Maya. Researchershave uncovered the ruins of over 40 Mayan cities,but most of the glyphs remain untranslated. Todaymany temple ruins are popular tourist attractions.Descendants of the Maya still live in villages insouthern Mexico and northern Central America,where they practice subsistence farming.

    The AztecThe Aztec civilization arose in central Mexico,

    in the A.D. 1300s. The Aztec founded their capital,Tenochtitlán (tay•NAWCH•teet•LAHN), today thesite of Mexico City, on an island in a large lake. Tofeed the growing population, Aztec farmers grewbeans and maize on chinampas—floating “islands”made from large rafts covered with mud from thelake bottom.

    The Aztec developed a highly structured classsystem headed by an emperor and military offi-cials. High-ranking priests performed rituals towin the deities’ favor and to guarantee good har-vests. At the bottom of Aztec society were themajority—farmers, laborers, and soldiers.


    Gifts to the World’s TablesSeveral foods grown by the Aztec have become

    worldwide favorites. Corn, a staple food of Latin

    America, came from the maize cultivated by theAztec. The tomato, later used in Mediterraneancuisine, was unknown in Europe until the Euro-pean conquest of Latin America. From bitter cacaobeans, the Aztec made a concoction called xocoatl(chocolate), or “food of the gods.”

    The IncaDuring the time of the Aztec, the Inca estab-

    lished a civilization in the Andes mountain rangesof South America. At its height the Incan Empirestretched from what is today Ecuador to central







    CuzcoMachu Picchu

    Tenochtitl´an Chich´en Itz´a





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    2,5000 mi.

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    Native American Empires

    Find NGS online map resources @

    Aztec EmpireMaya EmpireInca Empire

    1. Interpreting Maps In which empire wasMachu Picchu located?

    2. Applying Geography Skills The Inca Empirestretched across lands that are part of whatpresent-day countries?

  • Colonial EconomiesThe European colonies in the Americas became

    sources of wealth for the home countries. SomeSpanish settlers prospered from the mining of goldand silver. The Portuguese discovered preciousmetals in Brazil and made use of brazilwood,

    222 U n i t 3

    Chile. The Inca built their capital, Cuzco, in whatis now Peru and ruled their lands through a cen-tral government headed by an emperor.

    Using precisely cut stones, Incan builders con-structed massive temples and fortresses. Theylaid out a network of roads that crossed highmountain passes and penetrated dense forests. Tokeep soil from washing away, Incan farmers cutterraces into the steep slopes of the Andes andbuilt irrigation systems to bring water to Pacificcoast deserts. The Inca also domesticated thealpaca and the llama, which they used for wool.With no written language, the Inca used oral sto-rytelling to pass on knowledge to each genera-tion. To keep track of financial records, Incantraders used a quipu (KEE•poo), a series of knot-ted cords of various colors and lengths. Each knotrepresented a different item or number.

    Empires to NationsBeginning with Christopher Columbus’s voy-

    ages from 1492 to 1504, Europeans explored andcolonized vast areas of the Americas. The majorEuropean powers of Spain and Portugal ruledhuge territories from Mexico to southern SouthAmerica. Later Great Britain, France, and theNetherlands colonized in the Caribbean area andparts of northern South America.

    European ConquestsFrom the West Indies, the Spaniards expanded

    into other parts of the Americas. Desiring riches,Spanish conquistador, or conqueror, HernánCortés in 1521 defeated the Aztec and claimedMexico for Spain. In 1535 another conquistador,Francisco Pizarro, destroyed the Incan Empire inPeru and began Spain’s South American empire.The Portuguese settled on the coast of Brazil.

    As a result of these conquests, European coloniesgradually arose throughout Latin America. InSpanish-ruled territories, for example, the con-querors set up highly structured political systemsunder royally appointed officials known asviceroys. The Roman Catholic Church became themajor unifying institution in both Spanish andPortuguese colonies. Missionaries from Europeconverted the Native Americans to Christianityand set up schools and hospitals.


    Rio de Janeiro

    Buenos Aires




    Panama City














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    European ColonialEmpires, 1790

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    Spanish landsPortuguese landsBritish landsDutch landsFrench lands

    1. Interpreting Maps What European countriesruled Guiana?

    2. Applying Geography Skills Compare this mapwith a political map. What present-day countriesemerged from the Viceroyalty of New Granada?

  • C h a p t e r 9 223

    a tree used to make red dye. Spanish and Por-tuguese colonists also built cities and towns thatserved as trade centers and seats of government.In the tropics their plantations grew coffee,bananas, and sugarcane for export to Europe. Incool highlands areas, they established farms andcattle ranches.

    The Spaniards and Portuguese used Native Americans to work on the plantations and ranches.As epidemic diseases and hardships drasticallyreduced the numbers of Native Americans, theEuropean colonists imported enslaved Africans tomeet the labor shortage. Despite European domi-nance many aspects of the Native American andAfrican ways of life survived, creating a blend of thecultures of three continents in Latin America.

    Gaining IndependenceIn the late 1700s, resentment against European

    rule spread throughout Latin America. Wealthycolonists of European origin wanted self-rule.Those Europeans lower on the social scale de-manded more rights. Native Americans and Africanssimply yearned for freedom from servitude.

    Encouraged by the revolutions in North Americaand France, many Latin Americans joined togetherto end European colonial rule.

    The first Latin American country to gain its inde-pendence was Haiti, located on the Caribbeanisland of Hispaniola. In the 1790s François Tous-saint-Louverture (frahn•SWAH TOO•SAN•LOO•vuhr•TYUR), a soldier born of enslaved parents, led arevolt by enslaved Africans. By 1804 Haiti had wonits independence from France. The first Spanish-ruled country in Latin America to win indepen-dence was Mexico. The independence movementthere began in 1810 and was led by a parish priest,Father Miguel Hidalgo. After a long struggle, Mex-ico became independent in 1821.

    Other territories in Latin America also soughtindependence. By the mid-1800s most of them hadachieved their goal under such leaders as SimónBolívar of Venezuela and José de San Martínof Argentina. However, only one country—Brazil—became independent without a violentupheaval.

    Except for Haiti, Caribbean island countrieswere the last territories in Latin America to achieve

    architecture of LATIN AMERICA

    Modern Architecture The dome and towers of thePalacio do Congresso (right) in Brasília, Brazil, reflectthe sleek, modern style of Brazilian architect OscarNiemeyer. The major government buildings in Brasíliawere planned and built in the 1950s and 1960s.

    Colonial Architecture Built in the 1500s, the chapelNuestra Señora de los Remedios (below) in Cholula,Mexico, is typical of Spanish colonial architecture. Colonial buildings often reflect a mixture of Europeanstyles with Native American and African influences.

  • 224 U n i t 3

    independence. Cuba, for example, did not win itsfreedom from Spain until 1898. British-ruledislands, such as Jamaica and Barbados, did notgain independence until well into the 1900s. Eventoday some islands remain under foreign control;for example, Martinique is a possession of France,the Cayman Islands of Great Britain, and Curaçaoof the Netherlands. In addition, Puerto Rico andsome of the Virgin Islands have political links tothe United States.

    Era of DictatorshipsLatin America’s wars for independence ush-

    ered in a period of political and economic insta-bility. During the 1800s some leaders in theregion wanted to build democratic institutionsand prosperous economies. However, they hadto contend with the legacy of indigenous and Euro-pean class structures, which stressed rank and priv-ilege. As a result, political and economic poweroften remained in the hands of a small group ofwealthy landowners, army officers, and clergy.Written constitutions were ignored, public dis-satisfaction led to revolts, and governmentsrelied on the military to keep order.

    In this chaotic situation, a new kind of leaderemerged—the caudillo (kow•DEE•yoh), or dic-tator. With the backing of military forces andwealthy landowners, caudillos became absoluterulers with sole authority to make decisions.

    Movements for ChangeDuring the 1900s Latin America experienced dra-

    matic political, social, and economic changes. AsEuropean rule declined, the influence of the UnitedStates increased in the region. For example, afterPanama became an independent country in 1903,the United States and Panama signed a treaty creat-ing the Panama Canal Zone. The formation ofindustries, the building of railroads, and the expan-sion of trade all brought new wealth to the upperclasses. These developments also created newmiddle and working classes in the cities. However,for the vast majority of Latin Americans, especiallyrural dwellers, progress was limited.

    As the gap between the rich and the poorwidened, unrest spread among farmers and work-ers. Conservative dictators and military govern-ments resisted demands for reform and crusheduprisings. In Cuba, however, a revolution in 1959set up a communist state under Fidel Castro.

    During the 1990s communism remained en-trenched in Cuba, but military dictatorships gaveway to democratically elected governments in a

    Latin America’s Independence Leaders

    François Toussaint-Louverture led enslaved

    Haitians in a violent revoltagainst French rule. He diedin a French prison in 1803.

    Father Miguel Hidalgocalled on Mexicans to

    fight for “Indepen-dence and Liberty” from Spain. He was executed in 1811.

    José de San Martín ofArgentina led his Latin

    American forces across theAndes to win indepen-

    dence for Chile and Peru.

    Called “the Liberator,” SimónBolívar of Venezuela won freedom for the

    present-day countries ofVenezuela, Colombia,

    Ecuador, Peru, and Bolivia.

    Student Web Activity Visit the Glencoe World GeographyWeb site at and click on Student WebActivities—Chapter 9 for an activity about the Panama Canal.

  • New President In his campaign, Vicente Fox(shown here with Rigoberta Menchú) promised bet-ter public education and more attention to the poor.

    Region What political issues are important in LatinAmerica today?

    C h a p t e r 9 225

    Checking for Understanding1. Define glyph, chinampas,

    quipu, conquistador, viceroy,caudillo.

    2. Main Ideas Create a web diagramlike the one below for eachNative American culture, andshow its major achievements.Then choose one achievementand explain why it was important.

    Critical Thinking3. Making Comparisons How was

    the social structure of the AztecEmpire similar to the social struc-tures of Latin America underEuropean colonialism?

    4. Drawing Conclusions Was the plantation system beneficial orharmful? Explain.

    5. Analyzing Information Accordingto Rigoberta Menchú, how candiversity bring unity? Do youagree or disagree with her assess-ment, and what steps would youtake to bring about unity?

    Analyzing Maps6. Region Compare the maps of

    Latin America and the colonialempires on pages 195 and 222.Which Spanish viceroyalty wasnamed for a geographic featureof Latin America?

    7. Development and HistoryOn a time line trace thedevelopment of indigenousand European empires inLatin America. Include atleast one achievement thatoccurred during each empire.

    Applying Geography

    number of countries. Today Latin American coun-tries are struggling to end corrupt politics and bringeconomic benefits to all their citizens. In Mexico, forexample, nearly 70 years of one-party rule ended inthe year 2000 when the candidate of the rulingparty PRI (Partido Revolucionario Institucional) lostthe presidency to Vicente Fox of the oppositionparty PAN (Partido Acción Nacional) in a genuinelydemocratic election.

    As Latin America entered the 2000s, NativeAmericans, farmers, and workers demanded morepolitical power and greater economic benefits. Aspokeswoman for Guatemala’s modern-day Mayapeople, Rigoberta Menchú, discusses the need forgreater inclusion in political processes:

    “ National unity must be defined in thecontext of the right of the whole societyto diversity, protected by and reflectedin a democratic state. Eventually gov-ernments will have to tackle the issueof the self-determination of diverse peo-ples within national boundaries. . . .Wemust accept that humanity is a beau-tiful multicolored garden.”Rigoberta Menchú (Ann Wright,trans.), Crossing Borders, 1998


  • Guide to ReadingConsider What You KnowLatin American foods and music arepopular in the United States andaround the world. How do peopletoday discover and learn about thecultural traditions of Latin America?

    Read to Find Out• What role does religion play in

    Latin American culture?

    • How have Latin Americans usedthe arts to express their history,their social struggles, and theircultural diversity?

    • How is Latin America’s culturaldiversity reflected in family life,leisure activities, and publiccelebrations?

    Terms to Know• syncretism

    • mural

    • mosaic

    • extended family

    • malnutrition

    • fútbol

    • jai alai

    Places to Locate• West Indies

    • Dominican Republic

    • Guatemala

    • Brasília

    • Chile

    Cultures andLifestyles

    A Geographic ViewShadows of the AncientsDoffing his mask, a member of Los Panchitos dance troupe takes a breatherfrom the vigorous street dancing. . . .With its origins deep in the past, thedance pokes fun at figures of the pres-ent. . . . The finger of ridicule points to a landowner who abuses peasantworkers, a judge who decides a casein favor of the rich. . . .

    —Michael E. Long, “Enduring Echoes ofPeru’s Past,” National Geographic, June 1990

    The past and present intermingle in the lives ofLatin Americans. Here, along Peru’s northern coast, a masked danceblends Native American and European influences, music and visualarts, religion and social criticism. This interweaving of diverse ele-ments is a hallmark of Latin American culture. In this section you willlearn how Latin Americans express their culture through religion, thearts, and everyday life.

    ReligionReligion has long played an important role in Latin American society.

    During the colonial era, most Latin Americans became Christians, andChristianity still has the most followers. In addition, other faiths arefound in the region. For example, scores of traditional Native Americanand African religions thrive, often mixed with Christianity and otherfaiths. Islam, Hinduism, and Buddhism, brought by Asian immigrants,are practiced in the West Indies and coastal areas of South America.Judaism has followers in the largest Latin American cities.

    226 U n i t 3

    Masked dancer at a Peruvian festival

  • C h a p t e r 9 227

    Roman CatholicismMost Christians in Latin America are Roman

    Catholics, and Roman Catholic traditions influ-ence daily life in the region. During colonial timesRoman Catholicism was the official religion of theSpanish colonies and Brazil. Roman Catholicclergy had accompanied European conquerorsand colonists to the Americas. They establishedRoman Catholicism throughout Latin America,converting many Native Americans to their faith.When European settlers arrived, the priests saw totheir spiritual needs as well.

    Before long, church leaders were playing animportant role in political affairs in the region,and the Roman Catholic Church had becomewealthy. When the fight for independence came,church officials backed the wealthy and powerfulclasses. During the late 1900s, however, RomanCatholics in Latin America began to support theconcerns of the poor and the oppressed. In recentyears many Roman Catholic clergy and laypeople

    have opposed dictatorships and worked to improvethe lives of disadvantaged groups. For example,the Church has been active in movements for landreform and for improvements in education andhealth care.

    ProtestantismVarious forms of Protestant Christianity came to

    Latin America with British and Dutch settlers inthe 1800s. In time American Protestant missionar-ies came and built hospitals, schools, and colleges.Protestants in the region were few in number untilthe late 1900s, when Protestantism grew rapidly.According to religious observers, many LatinAmericans were drawn to Protestantism because itgave laypeople a major role in religious life andemphasized personal religious experience.

    A Mixing of ReligionsThroughout Latin America a mixing of religions

    has occurred since the colonial era. Many Latin

    Roman Catholic 82.3%

    Sources: World Almanac, 2001; Britannica Book of the Year, 2000

    Other Christian .3%

    Non-Christian 3.5%

    Nonreligious 2.9%

    Protestant8.6 %

    Roman Catholic




    Other Christian






    Religion Number of Followers


    Latin America: Religions

    2. Applying Geography Skills Why are largeportions of Latin America’s population RomanCatholic?1. Interpreting Graphs What percentage of Latin

    Americans are Roman Catholic? Protestant?

  • 228 U n i t 3

    Americans today practice syncretism—a blend-ing of beliefs and practices from different reli-gions into a single faith. Some Latin Americans,for example, especially Native Americans, wor-ship at Roman Catholic churches on Sunday butpray to nature deities during the week. Amongthe descendants of enslaved Africans, belief inWest African deities is combined with RomanCatholic devotion to the saints. Called condombléin Brazil, Santería in Cuba, and voodoo in Haitiand the Dominican Republic, these African-based religions have thousands of followers inLatin America and among Latin American immi-grants to the United States.

    The Arts of Latin AmericaFor centuries, the arts and literature of Latin

    America were shaped by European styles.Today’s Latin American artists and writers havedeveloped styles that often reflect their diverseethnic heritages, blending European styles withthose of Native American cultures.


    Traditional ArtsNative Americans produced the earliest art

    forms in Latin America. They left a legacy of weav-ing, woodcarving, pottery, and metalwork. Theintricate, colorful handwoven textiles produced inGuatemala and the Andes regions reflect Mayansymbols and Incan weaving. The work of contem-porary goldsmiths, silversmiths, and jewelers ismatched only by the sophisticated metalworkfrom the pre-Columbian era, the time before thearrival of Columbus.

    Native Americans built temples decorated withcolored murals, or wall paintings, and mosaics, pic-tures or designs made by setting small bits of coloredstone, tile, or shell into mortar. Native Americansalso created the region’s earliest music and dance.

    During colonial times the arts were largelyinspired by European works. Most paintings hadChristian themes. Murals, however, mixed thebrightly colored abstract designs of the NativeAmericans with the more realistic European styles.

    music of LATIN AMERICA

    World Music: A Cultural Legacy Hear music of this region on Disc 1, Tracks 7–12.

    A wide mix of music traditions in Latin America comesfrom the native inhabitants (wind and percussion instru-ments), the Europeans (strings, vocal harmonies), andthe Africans (drums, varied rhythms).

    Instrument SpotlightPanpipes are one of the most common musical instruments from the Andeanregion of South America, datingfrom before the arrival of the Euro-peans. Often called zampona orsiku, panpipes are made of bambooin varying sizes and pitches. Individ-ual bamboo stalks are cut preciselyand lashed together in rows withstrips of bamboo and string. Thenotes of a given scale often alter-nate from one set of pipes toanother. For a complete melody tobe played, the two rows of pipes arestacked one on top of the other.

  • C h a p t e r 9 229

    Churches built in Spanish and Portuguese designsoften were enlivened by the ethnic details addedby Native American and African artists. Mean-while, Africans brought to the region the rhythms,songs, and dances that evolved into today’s LatinAmerican musical styles and dances, such ascalypso, reggae, and samba.

    Modern ArtsDuring the 1900s Latin American artists mixed

    European, Native American, and African artistictraditions. Many of them also focused on socialand political subjects. Diego Rivera, a well-known Mexican artist, created huge murals thatillustrated key events in Mexico’s history, espe-cially the struggles of impoverished farmers towin social justice. Other noted Latin Americanpainters included Mexico’s Frida Kahlo, knownfor her self-portraits, and Colombia’s FernandoBotero, who satirized the lifestyles of LatinAmerica’s upper classes.

    Latin American music combines Native American,European, and African influences to create uniquestyles. These musical styles include Braziliansamba, Cuban salsa, and Mexican mariachi.

    During the past 50 years, Latin American archi-tects, dancers, and writers also have won interna-tional recognition. The Brazilian architect OscarNiemeyer is known for the buildings he designed in

    the Brazilian capital of Brasília. Dance companiessuch as the Ballet Folklórico of Mexico fascinateaudiences worldwide with their performances oftraditional Native American and Spanish dances.Latin America also has produced outstanding nov-elists, such as Colombia’s Gabriel García Márquezand Chile’s Isabel Allende, who skillfully blendeveryday reality with the mythical and fantastic intheir writings. A continuing theme of Latin Ameri-can literature is cultural identity. The Argentine poetJorge Luis Borges wrote of this theme in his life:

    “ From a lineage of Protestant ministersand South American soldiers whofought, with their incalculable dust,against the Spaniards and the desertlances, I am and am not . . .”“Yesterdays,” Jorge Luis Borges:Selected Poems, Alexander Coleman,

    ed., Stephen Kessler, trans., 1999

    Everyday Life Latin Americans place great emphasis on social

    status and family life. They also cherish valuessuch as personal honor and individual freedom.

    FamiliesMost Latin Americans have a strong sense of loy-

    alty to family. Each person is part ofan extended family that includesgrandparents, aunts, uncles, andcousins as well as parents and chil-dren. Latin American parents andchildren often share their home withgrandparents and sometimes othermembers of the extended family.Compadres, or godparents, play animportant role in family life. Godpar-ents are people chosen by the motherand father to sponsor their new baby.Godparents are concerned with thechild’s religious and moral upbring-ing and help take care of the child ifsomething happens to the parents.

    Latin American society still dis-plays traces of machismo, a Spanishand Portuguese tradition of male

    Diego Rivera’s mural Teatro Insurgentes depicts leaders of theMexican Revolution.

  • supremacy, although women have made rapidadvances in public life in recent decades. LatinAmerican women are in charge of home life, mak-ing important financial and family decisions. Eachyear more women attend universities and holdjobs in a variety of professions. Many have beenelected as national legislators, as mayors of largecities, and as country leaders. For example, in1999, Panama elected Mireya Elisa Moscoso aspresident.

    Education and Health CareThe quality of education varies throughout Latin

    America. Children generally are required to completeelementary school, but they often do not because oflong distances to school and lack of money for cloth-ing and supplies. Also, many children drop out tohelp with family farming or to find jobs.

    Despite such realities many Latin Americancountries have made gains in education. Adult lit-eracy rates have risen steadily, governments nowdevote more funds to schools, and some countrieshave seen impressive gains in school attendance.University enrollment also is rising,as some public universities providehigher education at little or no cost tostudents. Although Latin Americahas lagged behind some otherregions in computer literacy, Internetusage is beginning to transform edu-cation in countries such as Chile andMexico.

    In Latin America, as in other regions,health care is linked to standards ofliving. As people become employedand better educated, health concernslinked to poverty, lack of sanitation,and malnutrition, a serious conditioncaused by a lack of proper food, becomemuch less severe. Today, despite a widegap between the rich and the poor, LatinAmerica overall is improving the healthof its people. Infant mortality rates for

    the region have fallen dramatically in recent years,and most people now have access to clean, treatedwater for drinking.

    Still, health conditions vary from country to coun-try. In lands with prosperous economies and highstandards of living, such as Chile, people haveaccess to better health care systems and are able tolive healthier, longer lives. By contrast, countrieswith less developed economies, such as Haiti, havelittle money to spend on health care. Consequently,disease is more prevalent and life expectancy is low.In most Latin American countries, the quality ofhealth care falls between these two extremes.

    Sports and LeisureThroughout Latin America fans are as passion-

    ate about fútbol, or soccer, as fans in the UnitedStates are about American football. In many LatinAmerican countries it is the national sport. Thou-sands of dedicated spectators crowd into hugestadiums to watch their teams play. Baseball, bas-ketball, and volleyball also have large follow-ings, especially in the West Indies. Many Latin

    ExtendedFamilies Family celebrations such as birthdays andweddings are important traditions within extended families.

    Region How do Latin Americans view families?

  • Checking for Understanding1. Define syncretism, mural, mosaic,

    extended family, malnutrition,fútbol, jai alai.

    2. Main Ideas Create a chart like theone below, and fill in the influencesthat contributed to each aspect ofLatin American culture.

    Critical Thinking3. Making Inferences Why do

    you think Roman Catholicism has remained the predominantreligion in Latin America?

    4. Drawing Conclusions Why do youthink Latin American arts imitatedthe arts of Europe?

    5. Making Generalizations On anoutline map, label the countriesof South America. What factorsdo you think determine theirpolitical boundaries?

    6. Making Inferences Why mightparties—fiestas and festivals—be so popular in Latin America?

    Analyzing Charts7. Place Study the graph showing

    religions on page 227. Which reli-gion in Latin America is second toRoman Catholicism in its numberof followers?

    8. Cultural Influences Make asketch map to show wherethe region’s arts originated.Include representativeexamples of various artforms and examples fromAfrica, Europe, and LatinAmerica. Provide notesabout each example’s ethnic origins.

    Applying Geography

    American baseball stars, including home-run hit-ter Sammy Sosa from the Dominican Republic,have gone on to play in the North American majorleagues. A favorite sport among many Mexicansand Cubans is jai alai (HY•LY), a fast-paced gamemuch like handball, played with a ball and a long,curved basket strapped to each player’s wrist.

    Watching television, listening to the radio, andattending movies, concerts, and plays are leisureactivities as popular in Latin America as they arearound the world. The most popular LatinAmerican leisure activity of all, however, may becelebrating. From impromptu gatherings of friendsto special family dinners to religious feast days, andpatriotic events, almost any social occasion is aparty—a fiesta, or festival.

    Perhaps the best-known festival is Carnival, cele-brated in the week before the Roman Catholicobservance of Lent, a 40-day period of fasting andprayer before Easter. In Rio de Janeiro, home of oneof the largest Carnival celebrations, teams from dif-ferent parts of the city compete to win the prize forthe best hand-decorated float. People make theirown brightly colored masks and elaborate cos-tumes and then parade to samba music throughthe streets. Today Carnival draws people fromaround the world to Latin America.

    Fútbol The Brazilian star Ronaldo breaks throughthe Italian defense during a tournament game.

    Region What other sports have large followings inLatin America?

    Influences Aspects of Culture

    C h a p t e r 9 231

    Cultures and Lifestyles

  • Learning the SkillTo determine a country’s over-

    all population density, divide thenumber of people within a coun-try’s boundaries by its land areain square miles or square kilo-meters. The map at right showshow population density differswithin Brazil.

    • Study the map keys to deter-mine what the colors andsymbols represent. Noticethat the map uses colors toshow population densitiesand symbols to show thepopulations of cities.

    • Look for patterns that mightexplain population densitypatterns. Ask yourself whatgeographical features areshared by areas with high orlow population densities.

    • Compare the map with otherregional information, such asnatural resources and physi-cal geography, to draw con-clusions about the possiblecauses and effects of popula-tion density patterns.

    Practicing the SkillUse the population density

    map to answer the questions.

    1. What does the dark orangecolor represent?

    2. What symbol representscities of more than 5,000,000people?

    Reading a PopulationDensity MapPopulation density measures how many people live within acertain unit area, such as a square mile or square kilometer.Population density may vary from place to place within a countryor region. A population density map shows you these variations.

    232 U n i t 3

    3. Which areas of Brazil havelow population densities?

    4. Which areas have the highestpopulation densities?

    5. Which two cities have themost people?

    6. Which cities have fewer than2 million people?

    7. Why do you think the eastcoast of Brazil is moredensely populated? The Glencoe Skillbuilder Interactive Workbook,

    Level 2 provides instruction andpractice in key social studies skills.





    kmAzimuthal Equidistant projection

    Per sq. mi.Per sq. kmOver 250




    Under 2

    Over 100




    Under 1

    Over 5,000,000

    2,000,000 –5,000,000



    Cities(Statistics reflect

    metropolitan areas.)

    60°W 50°W70°W







    B R A Z I L Recife


    Belo Horizonte


    S˜ao PauloCuritiba



    Rio deJaneiro


    Brazil: Population Density

    Compare the physical map ofLatin America with the populationdensity map. Write a paragraphexplaining how physical geogra-phy affects population density.

  • C h a p t e r 9 233

    Organizing Your NotesUse a graphic organizer like theone below to help you organizeimportant details from this section.

    Terms to Know• glyph• chinampas• quipu• conquistador• viceroy• caudillo

    Organizing Your NotesUse a time line like the onebelow to help you organize yournotes on key historical events dis-cussed in this section.

    Terms to Know• indigenous• dialect• patois• urbanization• megacity• primate city

    SECTION 1 Population Patterns (pp. 211–217)

    SECTION 2 History and Government (pp. 220–225)



    Patterns Migration

    Terms to Know• syncretism• mural• mosaic• extended family• malnutrition• fútbol• jai alai

    Organizing Your NotesCreate an outline using the for-mat below to help you organizeyour notes for this section.

    SECTION 3 Cultures and Lifestyles (pp. 226–231)

    Cultures and Lifestyles

    I. ReligionA. Roman CatholicismB. Protestantism

    Latin American History


    1600 1700 1800 1900 2000


    Key Points• Latin America’s people descended from indige-

    nous peoples, Europeans, Africans, and Asians.

    • Latin Americans speak Spanish, Portuguese,other European languages, indigenous lan-guages, and mixed dialects or patois.

    • Latin America’s population is mostly concen-trated in coastal areas.

    • Urbanization has created an imbalance in LatinAmerica’s population density.

    • The region has some of the world’s largest cities.

    Key Points• The Maya, the Aztec, and the Inca developed

    complex civilizations before Europeans arrived.

    • Spanish and Portuguese colonization had lastingeffects on Latin America’s culture.

    • Most Latin American countries achieved inde-pendence during the 1800s.

    • Most Latin American countries developeddemocratic self-rule in the twentieth century.

    • The political, economic, and cultural legacy ofcolonialism still challenges Latin America.

    Key Points• Religion plays an important role in Latin

    American life.

    • Educational quality varies throughout the region.

    • As each country improves its economy, nutrition,and sanitation, people’s health improves.

    • Latin American traditional arts, music, and liter-ature reflect the region’s cultural diversity.

    • Deep divisions between economic and socialclasses still characterize Latin American life.

    • Latin Americans value family activities, sports suchas fútbol and jai alai, and holidays and festivals.

  • Critical Thinking1. Categorizing Information Define the

    types of migration that occur in the region.

    2. Making Comparisons Compare social andfamily life in Latin America and the UnitedStates.

    3. Identifying Cause and Effect Use a dia-gram like the one below to fill in three lastingeffects of colonialism.

    Reviewing Key TermsWrite the key term that best matches eachdescription. Refer to the Terms to Know in theSummary & Study Guide on page 233.

    1. native; original inhabitant2. two popular sports in Latin America3. designs made by setting small pieces of

    colored stone, tile, or shell into mortar

    4. grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins 5. two language variations6. a city that dominates its country’s

    economy and government

    7. knotted cords used for keepingaccounts

    8. Spanish or Portuguese conqueror9. government officials appointed by

    European monarchs

    10. a city with more than 10 millioninhabitants

    11. mixing of diverse religious traditions12. wall painting13. Mayan picture writing 14. migration from rural areas to cities15. condition caused by lack of food

    Reviewing FactsSECTION 1

    1. Where is most of South America’spopulation located?

    2. Why is the region’s population den-sity unbalanced?

    SECTION 23. Name three indigenous Latin

    American empires.

    4. What fueled the movement forLatin American independence?

    SECTION 35. What ancient art form inspired

    the region’s painters?

    6. What sports are most popular inLatin America?

    Locating PlacesLatin America: Political Geography

    Match the letters on the map with the places of Latin America. Write your answers on a sheet of paper.

    1. Caracas2. Brasília3. Port-au-Prince4. Santiago

    5. Montevideo6. Bogotá7. Quito8. Havana

    9. Mexico City10. La Paz, Sucre11. Buenos Aires12. Lima

    60°W80°W 40°W100°W120°W
















    H E

    Azimuthal Equidistant projection








    234 U n i t 3

    Cultural Effects of Colonialism

  • C h a p t e r X 235

    Do not quickly choose the first answerthat makes sense—your answer willmost likely be incorrect. This question

    asks you to identify which statement is not true.Eliminate any answer choices you know to be truebefore selecting the correct answer.

    Self-Check Quiz Visit the Glencoe WorldGeography Web site at tx.geography.glencoe.comand click on Self-Check Quizzes—Chapter 9 toprepare for the Chapter Test.

    Using the Regional AtlasRefer to the Regional Atlas on pages 182–185.

    1. Place What features draw a large popula-tion to the Buenos Aires area?

    2. Human-Environment Interaction Studythe physical and population density maps.Why are parts of Argentina and Boliviauninhabited?

    Thinking Like a GeographerTrace the diffusion and exchange of foods betweenthe Americas and other parts of the world. Describethe foods involved, their place of origin, and theireffects on the places to which they spread.

    Problem-Solving ActivityContemporary Issues Case Study Using theInternet, research a democratic country in LatinAmerica. Then write a report that discusses thespread and adaptation of democracy to thatcountry. Also, explain how other countries in the region might learn from its experience. Use photos, charts, and other graphics in your report.

    GeoJournalDescriptive Writing Using the information youlogged in your GeoJournal, write a paragraphdescribing European or African influences on theart or religion of a particular Latin American coun-try. Use additional resources to make your descrip-tions as vivid and accurate as possible.

    Technology ActivityCreating an Electronic Database

    Use reliable sources to gather population datafor the past 10 years for three Latin Americancountries. Choose one category of information,such as literacy rates, population under age 18,or male/female ratio. Create an electronic com-puter database, and then use computer softwareto design and draw a graph or chart. Presentyour conclusions orally to the class, using thegraph or chart to illustrate your findings.

    C h a p t e r 9 235








    Choose the best answer for each of the follow-ing multiple-choice questions. If you havetrouble answering the questions, use theprocess of elimination to narrow your choices.

    1. Latin American peoples speak a varietyof languages. Which of the followingstatements is NOT true?

    A Millions of Latin Americans speak NativeAmerican languages.

    B Portuguese is the official language of mostLatin American countries.

    C French is the official language in someLatin American countries.

    D Many Latin Americans are bilingual.

    2. Diego Rivera was a Mexican artist whowas well known for his creation of

    F folk dramas.G woven tapestry.H political and social satires in poetry.J large murals of historic events.

    This question is factual. Try to recallwhat you know about Rivera, consider-ing that he was a popular modern

    artist and important political activist.

    Glencoe World Geography—Texas EditionTable of ContentsGeography Skills for LifeReading for InformationTEKS & TAKS Preview: A Guide for Students and ParentsNational Geographic Reference AtlasWorld: PhysicalWorld: PoliticalUnited States: PhysicalUnited States: PoliticalCanada: Physical/PoliticalMiddle America: Physical/PoliticalNorth America: PhysicalNorth America: PoliticalSouth America: PhysicalSouth America: PoliticalAfrica: PhysicalAfrica: PoliticalEurope: PhysicalEurope: PoliticalAsia: PhysicalAsia: PoliticalOceania: Physical/PoliticalPacific Rim: Physical/PoliticalOcean FloorWorld Land UseWorld Gross Domestic Product CartogramWorld Population CartogramArctic Ocean: PhysicalAntarctica: Physical

    National Geographic Geography Skills HandbookThinking Like a GeographerFrom Globes to MapsCommon Map ProjectionsReading a MapTypes of MapsGraphs, Charts, and DiagramsGeographic Dictionary

    Unit 1: The WorldChapter 1: How Geographers Look at the WorldSection 1: Exploring GeographySection 2: The Geographer's CraftChapter 1 Summary & Study GuideChapter 1 Assessment & Activities

    Chapter 2: The EarthSection 1: Planet EarthSection 2: Forces of ChangeNational Geographic Viewpoint: A Global Concern: Invasive SpeciesSection 3: Earth's WaterChapter 2 Summary & Study GuideChapter 2 Assessment & Activities

    Chapter 3: Climates of the EarthSection 1: Earth-Sun RelationshipsSection 2: Factors Affecting ClimateSection 3: World Climate PatternsChapter 3 Summary & Study GuideChapter 3 Assessment & Activities

    Chapter 4: The Human WorldSection 1: World PopulationSection 2: Global CulturesSection 3: Political and Economic SystemsSection 4: Resources, Trade, and the EnvironmentChapter 4 Summary & Study GuideChapter 4 Assessment & Activities

    Unit 2: The United States and CanadaNational Geographic: Regional AtlasWhat Makes the United States and Canada a Region?Country ProfilesGlobal Connection: Ice Hockey!

    Chapter 5: The Physical Geography of the United States and CanadaSection 1: The LandSection 2: Climate and VegetationChapter 5 Summary & Study GuideChapter 5 Assessment & Activities

    Chapter 6: The Cultural Geography of the United States and CanadaSection 1: Population PatternsNational Geographic Geography and History: Give-and-Take Across the BorderSection 2: History and GovernmentSection 3: Cultures and LifestylesChapter 6 Summary & Study GuideChapter 6 Assessment & Activities

    Chapter 7: The United States and Canada TodaySection 1: Living in the United States and CanadaSection 2: People and Their EnvironmentNational Geographic Viewpoint: United States's Wetlands: Under SiegeChapter 7 Summary & Study GuideChapter 7 Assessment & Activities

    Handbook of Texas GeographyNational Geographic: Texas: AtlasSection 1: Natural Regions of TexasNational Geographic Viewpoint: Texas's Water Woes: A Supply Running DrySection 2: People and CulturesNational Geographic Geography and History: Border That Divides and Unites

    Unit 3: Latin AmericaNational Geographic: Regional AtlasWhat Makes Latin America a Region?Country ProfilesGlobal Connection: Food Crops

    Chapter 8: The Physical Geography of Latin AmericaSection 1: The LandSection 2: Climate and VegetationChapter 8 Summary & Study GuideChapter 8 Assessment & Activities

    Chapter 9: The Cultural Geography of Latin AmericaSection 1: Population PatternsNational Geographic Geography and History: Passage Through PanamaSection 2: History and GovernmentSection 3: Cultures and LifestylesChapter 9 Summary & Study GuideChapter 9 Assessment & Activities

    Chapter 10: Latin America TodaySection 1: Living in Latin AmericaSection 2: People and Their EnvironmentNational Geographic Viewpoint: Brazil's Rain Forests: Biodiversity at RiskChapter 10 Summary & Study GuideChapter 10 Assessment & Activities

    Unit 4: EuropeNational Geographic: Regional AtlasWhat Makes Europe a Region?Country ProfilesGlobal Connection: Architecture

    Chapter 11: The Physical Geography of EuropeSection 1: The LandSection 2: Climate and VegetationChapter 11 Summary & Study GuideChapter 11 Assessment & Activities

    Chapter 12: The Cultural Geography of EuropeSection 1: Population PatternsNational Geographic Geography and History: Yugoslavia: Then and NowSection 2: History and GovernmentSection 3: Cultures and LifestylesChapter 12 Summary & Study GuideChapter 12 Assessment & Activities

    Chapter 13: Europe TodaySection 1: Living in EuropeSection 2: People and Their EnvironmentNational Geographic Viewpoint: Germany's Forests: In the Path of Acid RainChapter 13 Summary & Study GuideChapter 13 Assessment & Activities

    Unit 5: RussiaNational Geographic: Regional AtlasWhat Makes Russia a Region?Country ProfilesGlobal Connection: Nutcracker

    Chapter 14: The Physical Geography of RussiaSection 1: The LandSection 2: Climate and VegetationChapter 14 Summary & Study GuideChapter 14 Assessment & Activities

    Chapter 15: The Cultural Geography of RussiaSection 1: Population PatternsSection 2: History and GovernmentNational Geographic Geography and History: Russia's Iron RoadSection 3: Cultures and LifestylesChapter 15 Summary & Study GuideChapter 15 Assessment & Activities

    Chapter 16: Russia TodaySection 1: Living in RussiaNational Geographic Viewpoint: Russia's Supertrawlers: Factories at SeaSection 2: People and Their EnvironmentChapter 16 Summary & Study GuideChapter 16 Assessment & Activities

    Unit 6: North Africa, Southwest Asia, and Central AsiaNational Geographic: Regional AtlasWhat Makes North Africa, Southwest Asia, and Central Asia a Region?Country ProfilesGlobal Connection: Religions

    Chapter 17: The Physical Geography of North Africa, Southwest Asia, and Central AsiaSection 1: The LandSection 2: Climate and VegetationChapter 17 Summary & Study GuideChapter 17 Assessment & Activities

    Chapter 18: The Cultural Geography of North Africa, Southwest Asia, and Central AsiaSection 1: Population PatternsNational Geographic Geography and History: Black Gold in the Persian GulfSection 2: History and GovernmentSection 3: Cultures and LifestylesChapter 18 Summary & Study GuideChapter 18 Assessment & Activities

    Chapter 19: North Africa, Southwest Asia, and Central Asia TodaySection 1: Living in North Africa, Southwest Asia, and Central AsiaSection 2: People and Their EnvironmentNational Geographic Viewpoint: Turkey's Atatürk Dam: Diverting a River's FlowChapter 19 Summary & Study GuideChapter 19 Assessment & Activities

    Unit 7: Africa South of the SaharaNational Geographic: Regional AtlasWhat Makes Africa South of the Sahara a Region?Country ProfilesGlobal Connection: Roots of Jazz

    Chapter 20: The Physical Geography of Africa South of the SaharaSection 1: The LandSection 2: Climate and VegetationChapter 20 Summary & Study GuideChapter 20 Assessment & Activities

    Chapter 21: The Cultural Geography of Africa South of the SaharaSection 1: Population PatternsSection 2: History and GovernmentSection 3: Cultures and LifestylesNational Geographic Geography and History: Conflict in Central Africa: Hutu versus TutsiChapter 21 Summary & Study GuideChapter 21 Assessment & Activities

    Chapter 22: Africa South of the Sahara TodaySection 1: Living in Africa South of the SaharaSection 2: People and Their EnvironmentNational Geographic Viewpoint: Southern Africa's Dilemma: Renew the Ivory Trade?Chapter 22 Summary & Study GuideChapter 22 Assessment & Activities

    Unit 8: South AsiaNational Geographic: Regional AtlasWhat Makes South Asia a Region?Country ProfilesGlobal Connection: Textiles

    Chapter 23: The Physical Geography of South AsiaSection 1: The LandSection 2: Climate and VegetationChapter 23 Summary & Study GuideChapter 23 Assessment & Activities

    Chapter 24: The Cultural Geography of South AsiaSection 1: Population PatternsSection 2: History and GovernmentNational Geographic Geography and History: Mountain Madness: Struggle for KashmirSection 3: Cultures and LifestylesChapter 24 Summary & Study GuideChapter 24 Assessment & Activities

    Chapter 25: South Asia TodaySection 1: Living in South AsiaSection 2: People and Their EnvironmentNational Geographic Viewpoint: India's Green Revolution: Success or Failure?Chapter 25 Summary & Study GuideChapter 25 Assessment & Activities

    Unit 9: East AsiaNational Geographic: Regional AtlasWhat Makes East Asia a Region?Country ProfilesGlobal Connection: Electronics

    Chapter 26: The Physical Geography of East AsiaSection 1: The LandSection 2: Climate and VegetationChapter 26 Summary & Study GuideChapter 26 Assessment & Activities

    Chapter 27: The Cultural Geography of East AsiaSection 1: Population PatternsNational Geographic Geography and History: A Tale of Two ChinasSection 2: History and GovernmentSection 3: Cultures and LifestylesChapter 27 Summary & Study GuideChapter 27 Assessment & Activities

    Chapter 28: East Asia TodaySection 1: Living in East AsiaSection 2: People and Their EnvironmentNational Geographic Viewpoint: China's Three Gorges: Before the FloodChapter 28 Summary & Study GuideChapter 28 Assessment & Activities

    Unit 10: Southeast AsiaNational Geographic: Regional AtlasWhat Makes Southeast Asia a Region?Country ProfilesGlobal Connection: Cuisine

    Chapter 29: The Physical Geography of Southeast AsiaSection 1: The LandSection 2: Climate and VegetationChapter 29 Summary & Study GuideChapter 29 Assessment & Activities

    Chapter 30: The Cultural Geography of Southeast AsiaSection 1: Population PatternsSection 2: History and GovernmentNational Geographic Geography and History: The Long War: America in VietnamSection 3: Cultures and LifestylesChapter 30 Summary & Study GuideChapter 30 Assessment & Activities

    Chapter 31: Southeast Asia TodaySection 1: Living in Southeast AsiaSection 2: People and Their EnvironmentNational Geographic Viewpoint: Southeast Asia's Reefs: Coral in PerilChapter 31 Summary & Study GuideChapter 31 Assessment & Activities

    Unit 11: Australia, Oceania, and AntarcticaNational Geographic: Regional AtlasWhat Makes Australia, Oceania, and Antarctica a Region?Country ProfilesGlobal Connection: Eucalyptus

    Chapter 32: The Physical Geography of Australia, Oceania, and AntarcticaSection 1: The LandSection 2: Climate and VegetationChapter 32 Summary & Study GuideChapter 32 Assessment & Activities

    Chapter 33: The Cultural Geography of Australia, Oceania, and AntarcticaSection 1: Population PatternsSection 2: History and GovernmentNational Geographic Geography and History: Journey to the Bottom of the WorldSection 3: Cultures and LifestylesChapter 33 Summary & Study GuideChapter 33 Assessment & Activities

    Chapter 34: Australia, Oceania, and Antarctica TodaySection 1: Living in Australia, Oceania, and AntarcticaSection 2: People and Their EnvironmentNational Geographic Viewpoint: Antarctica's Melting Ice: Is Global Warming at Fault?Chapter 34 Summary & Study GuideChapter 34 Assessment & Activities

    AppendixHonoring AmericaTAKS Preparation HandbookGlossaryGazetteerSpanish GlossaryIndexAcknowledgments

    Feature ContentsNational Geographic Global ConnectionNational Geographic Geography and HistoryNational Geographic Viewpoint: Case Study on the EnvironmentSkillBuilderMap & Graph SkillBuilderCritical Thinking SkillBuilderTechnology SkillBuilderStudy & Writing SkillBuilder

    Geography Lab ActivitiesWorld CultureMapsGraphs, Charts, and DiagramsPrimary Sources

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