The Columbian Exchange Impacts Free Writing Sample

Columbian exchange is the process by which ideas, information, crops, goods, animals, and viruses have been transferred to Americans from Africa, Asia, and Europe and vice versa. It all started with an Italian explorer, Christopher Columbus, and his voyages in 1492. The consequences strongly modified and shaped people, their style of life, and history itself. The Columbian exchange is a very ambivalent historical event, which caused a lot of consequences both for the New World and the Old World.

Columbian exchange made a great contribution to the Europeans’ lives, giving them many goods and raising their economy, however, it was not beneficial for the Native Americans. One of the main reasons for that was that it brought a great number of deadly diseases to The New World, such as measles, cholera, smallpox, typhus, and many others. Native Americans had no immunity to the infections because people had never encountered them before. Furthermore, it brought a great rate of mass violence, and as a consequence of that, Americans suffered from psychological and physical stress.

As it was mentioned, many diseases were brought to America from Eurasia and Africa. One of those was smallpox, which causes fever, vomiting, and a skin rash. It came from domesticated animals, such as cattle, pigs, and camels. This disease was not too dangerous to Africans and Europeans: they had a strong immunity to them because of the constant contact with these animals. However, contact with them was new to Indigenous peoples of the Americas. Until 1492, all domestic animals they had, were ducks, turkeys, and lammas, which did not spread any dangerous diseases. That is why people did not have any immunity to be able to resist new viruses. In addition, people did not have any time and inner power to build resistance to this disease, because of the amount of stress, which was caused by violence. Smallpox killed thousands of people. This virus spread easily in crowded places, especially among kids who were exposed to it. Even thousands of years later, smallpox turned into epidemics. The intimidating fact is, that the Native American population decreased by 99 percent because of these tragedies.

Furthermore, there were many things America exported in the Columbian exchange: crops, tobacco, and coffee. For instance, one of the exported American crops was the potato. It was transported to Africa and became an important product there. Farmers from Asia also adopted it to grow in mountainous areas. Then this crop was adopted by Britain, Ukraine, Russia, China, and India, and caused population growth. This crop may not have had a drastic impact on the world, however, it fed a lot of people and helped them survive. In America, this crop was domesticated about 8000 years ago and nowadays, potato is a crucial worldwide food.

The Columbian exchange brought multiple benefits to Europe. First and foremost, this exchange caused population growth in Europe, due to the transportation of crops from America to the rest of the world (corn, potatoes, cassava, tomatoes, peanuts, pumpkins, pineapples, chili peppers, etc.). In addition, some of the popular drugs were imported, coffee, sugar, and tobacco to many countries and people. The Columbian exchange was very beneficial to the Old World, increasing its population, culture, and economy.

In conclusion, The Columbian exchange is a very ambivalent historical event, which caused a lot of consequences both for the New World and the Old World. On the one hand, it spread many diseases to Indigenous Americans and caused a decrease in population. On the other hand, it brought new species there and transferred many precious crops to the rest of the world.

Women’s Limited Choices: O’Connor’s Position

The short story written by Flannery O’Connor is one of her most famous works. A Good Man Is Hard to Find is an excellent example of southern gothic, combining dialogues about everyday things and Christian values. It is characterized by many questions raised, allowing scholars to explore the work in detail. Most often, attention is paid to the clash between the Misfit and Bailey’s mother, infused with the themes of compassion and Christianity. However, no less important is the author’s display of the American reality of the early 1900s. In particular, the role of women in history and the limited choice that was inherent in this era deserve attention. This essay aims to analyze O’Connor’s work and examine the author’s position regarding the possibility of women’s choices.

The women’s situation in the story deserves special consideration because of the roles of female characters. Although it is shown in the third person, the main protagonist is Bailey’s unnamed mother, referred to as “grandmother.” The choice of such a central character allows the author to demonstrate the worldview of an experienced woman who somewhat adapted to limitations. The reader observes the development of events from her perspective, being able to follow the course of her thoughts. In addition to the grandmother, Bailey’s wife is also present in the story, devoid of a name and any prominent features and occupying a passive position in the narrative. Finally, another female character is the nameless wife of the owner of The Tower.

The very fact that all three female representatives have no names allows the author to demonstrate their position in society. They are devoid of any opinion and not worthy of men’s time in most cases. The owner of the barbeque place, Red Sammy Butts, treats his wife like an ordinary waitress, not giving her any particular attention or demonstrating a connection with her. Moreover, he communicates with her exclusively through orders: “Red Sam came in and told his wife to quit lounging on the counter and hurry up with these people’s order” (O’Connor 5). By such behavior, the author tries to convey to the reader that women in the shown society cannot even express their thoughts.

A similar attitude is shown concerning other female characters. Bailey’s wife has little to no involvement in the story, either completely ignoring what is happening or remaining indifferent. Even when her life is in direct danger, she limply obeys the bandits: “Yes, thank you,” the mother said faintly” (O’Connor 12). Like the wife of the owner of The Tower, she never shows any independence and initiative. In this context, the most dynamic character is the grandmother, whose perseverance and age can most likely explain willfulness. However, even grandmother does not have any authority in this family since neither her son, his wife, nor her grandchildren obey her. Bailey reacts extremely harshly even to her innocent proposals: “She asked Bailey if he would like to dance but he only glared at her” (O’Connor 5). Grandmother, like other women, does not dare to argue with men, either agreeing with them or keeping silent about her opinion and mistakes.

Thus, each of the women demonstrated in history is an extremely limited person in her abilities. None of them have a name, with which the author symbolizes their low position in society and the lack of any influence on what is happening. Even a grandmother, who has some status due to her age, cannot affect the decisions of men with her activity, whether it be her son or a criminal. Consequently, O’Connor’s story demonstrates the women’s limited choice in early 1900s America. They were not allowed to speak their minds, which led to them being treated for the most part as silent servants. Thus, O’Connor says to the reader that in a society ruled by dominant patriarchy, women had little choice but to submit to the decisions of men or do things in secret.

Work Cited

O’Connor, Flannery. A Good Man is Hard to Find. The Avon Book of Modern Writing, 1953. Gothic Digital Series, Web.

“Out Of Paradise” By Adam Straus

Out of Paradise

The Museum of Art – DeLand, Florida, is a vital community visual arts museum committed to hosting several rotating master artist workshops, educational programming, reception, gallery talks, exhibits, and special events. The Museum is devoted to the fine arts collection, exhibition, and preservation (moartdeland.org, 2022).

Out of Paradise

The Museum has two separate galleries: the original Museum and the downtown gallery and museum store. Both museums are open to public members every day of the week except Mondays. Specifically, they are available from Tuesday through Saturday from 10:00 am to 4:00 pm and from 1:00 pm to 4:00 pm on Sundays. The museums are closed during new art installations and national holidays. The Museum charges a fee of $5 for general admission and a cost of $ 10 for special exhibitions. In addition to the individual admission fee, there is a $25 docent fee for every 10 to 15 guests in any group exceeding 10 people. Luckily, there are no charges for children aged 12 years and below and museum members (moartdeland.org, 2022).

Out of Paradise

The best visiting times are Tuesday through Friday, starting from 10:00 am to 3:00 pm. The Museum offers both group and self-guided tours that are generally 45 to 60 minutes in length. However, it can be adjusted to accommodate each group’s specific needs. These tours are booked at least two weeks in advance and are only available to any group comprising 10 or more guests. The maximum size group size is 60 guests at one time. More so, the Museum provides admission discounts for special exhibitions. The two museum galleries exhibit ancient and modern fine arts on a canvas (moartdeland.org, 2022).

Out of Paradise

Out of Paradise

The museum has special exhibits that are not part of the Museum’s permanent collection. Currently, there are two pieces of art: (1) “Where We Find Ourselves: The Photographs of Hugh Mangum, 1897–1922,” which is on view through June 12, 2022; and (2) “The Outsiders: Self-Taught Artists of the American South” which is on view through May 8, 2022 (moartdeland.org, 2022). There is an extra fee of $5 for non-members for each exhibit.

Adam Straus, an American artist, based in Riverhead, New York, is the artist behind the Out of Paradise masterpiece. The art is painted on canvas using oil and graphite and transferred into a wooden frame, measuring 34 x 50 x 2 inches. The exhibit features a beautiful skyline and landscape with visible features of clouds, mountains, plants, and animals. There is an illumination of a colorful bird is flying towards a flower to drink nectar. This presents flawless natural world scenes as they appear in real-life (moartdeland.org, 2022).

Out of Paradise

While this piece of art is effortless, one has to look past the paint on the canvas to see the story behind it. A prominent feature in this painting is a painted crack down the center of the canvas: it appears to be disrupting the image of nature. Straus must have used this crack to articulate his concerns about people’s effect on nature to the viewer. By doing so, we can relate to how humans are impacting the environment in many ways: deforestation, burning fossil fuels, pollution, and overpopulation. Straus also chose the correct wordings to name his piece: the painting of the art is coming out of paradise, but it shows we are running out of paradise.

While the painting looks very appealing, the background creates a certain mood of darkness. There is less contrast between light and dark colors creating an implied illusion of the background’s lack of color intensity. Nevertheless, Straus succeeds in catching moment scenes of the natural world, which allows one to choose this piece of art over another.

Reference

Museum of Art – DeLand. (2020). Home

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