Colonialism and Science in the Americas

  • Ubiratan D’AmbrosioEmail author
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When the Europeans arrived with Christopher Columbus, they found the set of explanations and dealings with natural realities that constituted the scientific knowledge of the peoples of the newly found lands absolutely novel. They marveled at the constructions, urban organization, clothing, and ornamentation of these peoples, mistakenly called Indians. To explain and understand what they were witnessing, European knowledge was not appropriate. The surprise was total.

Viking traders, and probably some other European, Asian, and African navigators, had previously visited these lands. There is evidence of this in or about the tenth century, but the records of these visits did not reach what we call the official literature.

The Portuguese were the most advanced people in Europe in navigational knowledge. People interested in navigation would study at the court of King Dom Joào II, in Lisbon, and frequent the entourage of the Infante Henrique, his son in charge of the navigation projects....


Religious Order Cultural Dynamic Central Nation Colonial Time Scientific Expedition 
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© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Graduate ProgramUNIAN/Universidade Anhanguera de Sào PauloSào PauloBrazil