Cabeza De Vaca Summary

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Cabeza de Vaca, like many other Spaniards, wanted to seek fortune in the new world, but things did not go as planned, and he eventually lost everything. Although he came to conquer in the name of Spain, he ended up living amongst the Native Americans in need for survival and became very close to them. Although originally the Spaniards were very narrow minded and believed the Indians were uncivilized and barbaric, Cabeza de Vaca shortly found out that they were not uncivilized, but quite the opposite. He saw that they were just as human as the Spaniards were and were no less than they were. His perception of humanity altered as a result of living with “the others.”
When de Vaca arrived on the mainland with the others, he fell sick and was presumed dead, so fourteen of the survivors left him and headed towards Mexico. He then became the first European merchant of record in Texas. He traded sea shells for bison skins and red ochre, but also, he received food for his treatment for the sick and injured Indians. Cabeza de Vaca was originally driven by the necessity for food; however, he ultimately became a renowned healer, and many Indians started to ask him for their blessings. …show more content…

He eventually made it back to Paraguay and tried to set policies aligned with his new perception of humanity that benefited the Indians, but they chained him up and sent him to Spain. Had Cabeza de Vaca not been an advocate for the Indians, he would have remained in Paraguay. The consequences of the shift in his thinking of humanity, that the Indians should be treated as well as the Spaniards, were false charges of mistreating the Indians and being unable to return to the Americas. He stayed in Spain until his death in

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