Encounters in the New World: A History in Documents / Edition 1

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From Columbus's voyage in 1492 to the publication of the autobiography of Olaudah Equiano, a former slave, in 1789, Jill Lepore, winner of the distinguished Bancroft Prize for history, brings to life in exciting, first-person detail some of the earliest events in American history in Encounters in the New World.

Providing fascinating commentary along the way, Lepore seamlessly links together primary sources that illustrate the powerful clash of cultures in the Americas. Through emotional eyewitness accounts — memoirs, petitions, diaries, captivity narratives, private correspondence — formal documents, official reports, and journalistic reportage, dramatic stories of the New World are revealed, including:
* A Jesuit priest's chronicle of life among his Iroquois captors
* Aztec records of forbidding omens
* John Smith's account of cannibalism among the British residents of Jamestown
* Memoirs by members of Cortes's expedition
* Reminiscences of an escaped slave

A special 16-page color cartographic section, including maps from both Europe and North America, provides a fascinating look at how the maps' creators saw themselves and the world around them.

A collection of documents illustrating encounters between Native American peoples and a variety of European newcomers from the fifteenth to the eighteenth centuries. Includes maps, journals, advertisements, and letters.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Students of American history will find plenty to chew on in this meaty, heavily illustrated entry in the new Pages from History series....Beginning with a full-color section, the pictures are...heavy on maps that chart the world's expansion in the European consciousness and including often fanciful scenes that in many cases are all that is left of vanished Native American cultures.... [Lepore] draws from a host of hard-to-find sources, and creates a ghastly, compelling picture of one of human history's pivotal moments."—Kirkus Reviews

"A wealth of primary source materials...an eye-opening look at the 'discovery' of the New World....Nearly every page features a black-and-white period reproduction, most with captions giving additional information...full-color reproductions of historical maps. In addition to offering valuable perspectives, this book will introduce readers to the challenges involved in understanding the past."—School Library Journal

"Presents primary source material—diaries, letters, maps, illustrations—and combines it with solid, in-depth examinations. Lepore provides essential background information and helps readers understand the context surrounding each document."—Horn Book

"The author does an excellent job of introducing these documents, filling in their historical context, and pointing out their salient features....This volume provides a balance to traditional texts by presenting the voices of people not often heard, who suffered from European colonization of the new world. Classroom discussions and individual reports will be enriched....Recommended."—Book Report

"Promises to be both useful and capable of holding student interest....Contains many clear, large, and easy-to-use charts, diagrams, and pictures. The sixteen-page map section is a delight that students will find fascinating....Well-edited and beautifully illustrated."—OAH Magazine of History

Children's Literature - Greg M. Romaneck
To state the obvious, history is the study of people's past. One of the most effective ways to understand the events of the past is to study documents from the time period under review. The use of primary source information allows the student to have a firmer understanding of distant people, events, and mysteries. It is with that aim in mind that this particular study evolves. Through a presentation of writings and maps drawn from the era of exploration the author attempts to tell the story of European encounters with Native American and African populations. Selections include letters, diary entries, portions of period texts, maps, and illustrations from the sixteenth to the eighteenth centuries. Through these documents we come to see the sharply contrasting views held by the Europeans and the people whom they conquered and enslaved. To the Europeans, the Native American and African populations were endemically inferior. Native populations were viewed by Europeans as fodder for conversion, exploitation, or destruction. For Native American and African people the Europeans were viewed in contrasting ways. In some instances the bearded white men were welcomed as gods. In other cases they were feared as devils. Through the writings of that distant time period the reader is afforded a glimpse into an age where people thought and behaved in a manner far removed from our own perspectives. Unfortunately, the presentation of the raw material of history, without adequate introduction and guidance can be a somewhat confusing approach to the subject. While this book does present some wonderful snapshots of a turbulent time period, it lacks cohesion. The student is left to synthesize a large body of information without adequate annotation and introduction from the author. Additionally, this review edition included a significant publishing error as pages 33-64 are duplicated in separate parts of the book. All in all, this text is well intended but requires historical amplification and more careful editing to serve a viable purpose in schools.
School Library Journal
Gr 7 Up-Lepore provides a wealth of primary-source materials to describe the arrival of Europeans in the Americas. The result is an eye-opening look at the "discovery" of the New World. Chapters are grouped thematically, rather than chronologically. An introduction by the author sets the scene for each account, offering insight into the text that follows. The passages range from single paragraphs to a few pages in length. Sources are cited in an appendix. The letters, particularly those written by Native peoples, clearly show the contrast between European and Native American ideas and interpretation of events. A discussion of early religious conflicts includes an eloquent speech by the Iroquois leader Red Jacket, given in 1828. The account of a slave-ship captain who discusses his "cargo" of goods in a chillingly businesslike manner is another of the many powerful selections. The author is careful to point out that not all firsthand accounts are true, citing Christopher Columbus and Jacques Cartier as examples. Nearly every page features a black-and-white period reproduction, most with captions giving additional information. The chapter "Mapping the World" includes full-color reproductions of historical maps. In addition to offering valuable perspectives, this book will introduce readers to the challenges involved in understanding the past.-Steven Engelfried, Deschutes County Library, Bend, OR Copyright 2000 Cahners Business Information.|
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780195154917
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
  • Publication date: 4/4/2002
  • Series: Pages from History Series
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 176
  • Sales rank: 591,521
  • Age range: 13 - 17 Years
  • Product dimensions: 9.90 (w) x 7.90 (h) x 0.60 (d)

Meet the Author

Jill Lepore

Jill Lepore is an Associate Professor of History at Boston University, where she also serves as Director of Undergraduate Studies for American and New England Studies. Her previous works include A is for American: Letters and Other Characters in the Newly United States (Knopf, 2002) and The Name of War: King Philip's War and American Identity (Knopf, 1998), Winner of the Bancroft Prize, Ralph Waldo Emerson Award, Berkshire Prize, and the New England Historical Association Prize, and a selection of the History Book Club.

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Table of Contents

What is a Document?
How to Read a Document
On the Turtle's Back
Why Europe?
Dealing with the Documents

1. Mapping the World

Ptolemy's Revolution
The Christian World
An Expanding World
America Emerges
Vanishing Maps
Lines and Circles

2. First Encounters

Prophecies, Plans, and Fantasies
First Impressions
Gods? Savages?
Dividing the Sexes
A Catalog of Nature
Indians Abroad

3. Conquest and Resistance

Montezuma, Quetzalcoatl, and Cortes
An Eight-Year Journey
Invading the Interior
The Great Debate
Missions and Presidios

4. Furs, Rivers, and Black Robes

The Peoples of the Longhouse
A New France
The Society of Jesus
New Worlds, New Women
Covenants of War and Peace

5. The English Arrive

Go West
Roanoke, the Lost Colony
Powhatan and His People
Founding Jamestown
Pocahontas and Her Legacy

6. Africans in America

Tips for Slave Traders
Ships of Death
For Sale
Africans' New Worlds
Two Views
Runaways and Rebels

7. Planting New England

Metacom's Rebellion
Manitou and the City on a Hill
Marking the Landscape
Praying Indians

Further Reading
Text Credits
Picture Credits

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