For years, I opened my 11th-grade U.S. history classes by asking students, “What’s the name of that guy they say discovered America?” A few students might object to the word “discover,” but they all knew the fellow I was talking about. “Christopher Columbus!” several called out in unison.
“Right. So who did he find when he came here?” I asked. Usually, a few students would say, “Indians,” but I asked them to be specific: “Which nationality? What are their names?”
In more than 30 years of teaching U.S. history and guest-teaching in others’ classes, I’ve never had a single student say, “Taínos.” So I ask them to think about that fact. “How do we explain that? We all know the name of the man who came here from Europe, but none of us knows the name of the people who were here first—and there were hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of them. Why haven’t you heard of them?”
This ignorance is an artifact of historical silencing—rendering invisible the lives and stories of entire peoples.
They [Europeans] took infants [Tainos] from their mothers’ breasts, snatching them by the legs and pitching them headfirst against the crags or snatched them by the arms and threw them into the rivers, roaring with laughter and saying as the babies fell into the water, “Boil there, you offspring of the devil!” Other infants they put to the sword along with their mothers and anyone else who happened to be nearby.
it Only requires name and email (optional comment). It will ask you to donate, but you can do what I did (cause I am broke and cannot afford to) and just go click yourself to the home page and your sig will still be counted- however if you can donate, do it. US money goes WAAYYYYY farther then.
Columbus Day is this Monday. Here’s a reminder that Columbus didn’t land on Plymouth Rock or anywhere in North America. He landed in the Caribbean and in his lifetime committed genocide in the Caribbean and in Central America. He is the cause for the colonisation of the Caribbean and Latin America and later the Caribbean and Latin American slave trade. In his lifetime and many years after North America wasn’t part of the picture. Stop erasing Caribbean and Latin Americans from Columbus Day history/discourse. Stop erasing the indigenous people of the Caribbean and Latin America. Centre us. We know more than anyone the aftermath and the history of Columbus because that is our history. Most of the indigenous people that Columbus oppressed are now Black and or Latino. It is also a form of anti blackness and racism against PoC Latinos to erase us from our own history. I encourage all Caribbean and or Latin Americans to take back Columbus Day history and discourse and make it about ourselves, the descendants of the indigenous people Columbus terrorised. Don’t let our ancestors get erased.
Anonymous Q: Are there still indians in the Dominican Republic? If yes, do they speak a language other than Spanish?
i’m glad you asked this question becuz i’m taking two classes - Women in the Caribbean and Dominican Identity — that have discussed this question in great detail. By Indians i assume you mean the indigenous of Quisqueya/Hayti (Hispaniola), or more specifically, the Arawak, Caribs, and Tainos.
Denise Oliver Velez of my WITC class is a cultural anthopologist and is convinced that Tainos are extinct. how she came to that conclusion i am still not clear on. Ligia Aldana, an Afro Colombiana for my DR ID class, gives Taino survival more benefit of the doubt through cultural transcendence and inter generational transmission.
*update* in terms of language, i’m not sure. but i do know that Taino language is alive in Dominican Spanish. for example, any words or names of places with -gua- (guagua-bus, aguacate-avocado, etc) are influenced by Taino language. huracan (hurricane) is also a Taino word.
Jamaica, the third largest island in the #caribbean gained it's
independence in 1962 from Great Britain ending a little more than 300
years of rule. *British rule (1655–1962)
The original inhabitants of Jamaica are believed to be the #Arawaks,
also called #Tainos. They came from South America 2,500 years ago and
named the island #Xaymaca, which meant “land of wood and water”.
Happy Independence Day Jamaica!
Here is to 53 years of #independence
1962 - 1953
If you are part of or support neo-Mexica revisionism or any neo-indigenous revisionism you are supporting erasure and violence towards Indigenous peoples.
Whether it be the Mexica Movement (which is NOT the only neo-Mexica group), neo-Taino “tribes”, Mayanism, Rainbow Warriors or whatever else; it is all appropriative, silencing, full of erasure and violent.
You do not become Indigenous by yelling that you are Indigenous the loudest.
You do not become Indigenous by the popularity of your ideas among non-Indigenous majority populations or by misleading Indigenous folks who are not familiar with the Peoples you falsely claim.
You do not become Indigenous by propaganda.
You do not become Indigenous by defining indigeneity so that it suits you.
You do not become Indigenous by self-imposing rules based on your interpretation of non-indigenous scholarship.
You do not become Indigenous by silencing the Indigenous peoples you are most directly violent towards.
If you want to be “enlightened” if you want to find your People and learn more about heritage down your family lines you do that respectfully through your People/Nation and them alone. You cannot get this from books. You cannot get this from those who strong arm their way into Indigenous spaces.
Christopher Columbus is no hero, and does not deserve the place in history he occupies. Nor does he deserve a Federal Holiday, to which we can thank the Knights of Columbus and President Franklin Delano Roosevelt (or as I like to call him, “Scumbag FDR”).
Everything taught to schoolchildren in America about him is a complete lie. Classroom songs are performed every year by elementary school kids about “the Nina, the Pinta, and the Santa Maria” (not the names of two of the three ships, by the way), “sailing across the ocean blue, etc.” and to “prove that the Earth was round.” All of this is extremely disingenuous at best, and at worst, completely ignores the atrocities he and his men committed. This essentially gives them a “free pass” for what they did to the native Taino people, sewing the seeds of subliminal white supremacy at the same time.
Puerto Ricans have AFRICAN ancestry. We’re literally a mix of Spanish conquistadors, African slaves, and Taínos. Any Puerto Rican that has anything against black people really needs to look at their fucking history.
Latinos (including Puerto Ricans!) and Black folk fucking created Hip-hop!! I’m talking the spoken form(Rap), the written or visual form(Graffiti), the aural form(DJing), and the physical form(Breaking).
Is this some bullshit white folk are trying to spread or what?