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Social Studies Middle School High

Spanish Colonization and Columbus Day

In 1492, Christopher Columbus sailed to America and claimed the land for Spain. This event became an American holiday 400 years later, but some people think it shouldn’t be a holiday at all. To some, Columbus represents the beginning of European colonization. Today, Columbus Day is a time for celebration and protest across Latin America. In countries spanning Central and South America, people commemorate the holiday by celebrating both their Spanish and indigenous heritages. In addition, leftist leaders have used Columbus Day as an opportunity to show support for native people and customs. Listen to learn more about the many different meanings of this holiday outside the United States.

Colonialism Europe South America

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National Public Radio © 2010 National Public Radio, Inc. Used with the permission of NPR. All rights reserved.

AIR DATE: 10/11/2010

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