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The early Atlantic world: The Canary Islands as a testing-ground for colonialism

Primary readings
Abreu de Galindo, Juan de, The History Of the Discovery and Conquest of the Canary Islands: Translated from a Spanish Manuscript, Lately Found in the Island of Palma. With an Enquiry into the Origin of the Ancient Inhabitants. To Which Is Added, a Description of the Canary Islands, Including the Modern History of the Inhabitants, ed. and trans. G. Glas (London, 1764). (version available on google books).
Christopher Columbus, The Four Voyages of Christopher Columbus, being his own log book, letters and dispatches with connecting narratives drawn from the Life of the Admiral by his son Hernando Colon and other contemporary historians, ed. and trans., J. M. Cohen (London, 1969). Extracts from journal available at:

Core readings
Stevens-Arroyo, Anthony M., ‘The Inter Atlantic Paradigm: The failure of Spanish Medieval Colonisation of the Canary and Caribbean Islands’, in J. Muldoon and F. Fernández-Armesto eds, The Medieval Frontiers of Latin Christendom, expansion, contraction, continuity (Aldershot, 2008), pp. 343-369.
Fernández-Armesto, Felipe Before Columbus : exploration and colonisation from the Mediterranean to the Atlantic, 1229-1492 (Philadelphia, 1987), Chapter 8, from the Canary Islands to the New World, pp. 203-222.

Further Readings
Hulme, Peter, Colonial encounters: Europe and the native Caribbean, 1492-1797 (London, 1986).

Key Questions
• Compare and contrast the conquest and colonisation of the Canary Islands with the Caribbean
• How different are the accounts of discovery and conquest?
• Compare and contrast the different descriptions of the Amerindians

Historiographical theme: colonialism and postcolonialism