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The epoch of the sixteenth century for the life of Europeans, Americans, and other nationalities appeared to be prominent because of global changes in the sphere of cultural, religious, and industrial development. As it was stated by Eric Foner, the author of the book “Give Me Liberty! An American History”, this era brought considerable transformations to every sphere of people’s lives; he characterized it as ‘colonialism change in Europe’ making the nations feel various introductions in the political and structural system of the states.
Sixteenth Century Changes
The meeting between a European colonialism representative and an Indian from North America allows evaluating historical changes of the sixteenth century. In European countries, the period of colonialism in the XVI century left a print on social, political, economical, and cultural factors. It is necessary to underline the fact that in economics the states were focused on the raw materials searching being the background of successful industrial development of the country. The atmosphere of racial discrimination and social inequality resulted in the high development of slavery in almost all European countries. The population was rapidly increased, though class discrimination provided poor conditions for life level at this period. The era of nationalism observed in Europe made nations take strong political and religious positions dominating over others; this aspect became one of the strongest reasons for international contradictions. Racism worsened the conditions on the international level; pressures on the part of white people to representatives of Afro-American origin reduced the level of cultural unity. Besides, language and religious development were based upon the system of political cooperation.
North American Indians at the period of the sixteenth century felt a strong pressure on the part of cultural development of the native population. It should be noted that the principal form of religion was shamanism; people believed in two world existence. North American Indians’ reality perception was focused on the existence of material and spiritual aspects. Their culture had little space for self-expression though they differed by individuality and virtues outlined in artworks. Social status in the period of class discrimination was considered to be of great importance. It is necessary to note that Indians of North America as well as of other parts of the world paid special attention to the significance of religion stating that believes should form human life. The characteristic of this nationality during the XVI century can be demonstrated through language group divisions being based upon the dialects and style of communication. The atmosphere of the XVI century did not provide an obstacle for the ethical and cultural development of American Indians.
The meeting is based upon the cultural, political, and industrial comparison of European and American Indian nationalities has shown that the epoch left significant print information on basic religious, language, and social standards. The book “Give Me Liberty! An American History” by Foner managed to highlight the most important stages of history covering not only the USA, but also many European countries.
Foner, Eric. Give Me Liberty! An American History. Seagull Edition. W. W. Norton & Co. 2005.