Aired Monday September 27th, 2010 at 9:00 pm on KUED HD Ch. 7.1
Explore the compelling history of the first 100 years following the invasion of the New World by the Spanish Conquistadors. Hosted by Emmy Award-winning journalist Rubén Martínez and directed by Emmy Award-winning filmmaker Carl Byker, the 90-minute documentary tells the largely untold stories of what happened in the Americas after Columbus. KUED airs When Worlds Collide, Monday, September 27 at 9:00 p.m.
The story begins on the streets of Los Angeles in 2010 and travels to 16th century Latin America and Spain, where contact first occurred between Spanish conquistadors and native peoples. By the time the Spanish arrived, the indigenous civilizations had developed sophisticated societies, including advanced architectural, agricultural and textile practices that in many ways surpassed those of the Europeans. This epic odyssey traces the impact that these and many other "New World" innovations had on European civilization. Consequently, one of the most important outcomes of the era was the radical change that both worlds experienced, resulting in an entirely new "mestizo" or mixed culture, that became the heritage of more than 30 million Latinos today.
When World's Collide explores how indigenous peoples genetically engineered corn and how their foods became everyday ingredients in European kitchens. In Oaxaca, Mexico, indigenous people revolutionized the European textile industry by mass-producing a true red dye. Gold and silver from the Americas helped to establish the concept of modern capitalism.
The film also travels from the city of Granada in Spain to the ancient mountainous city of Machu Picchu, Peru; from the Cerro del Tepeyac of Our Lady of Guadalupe in Mexico to the Escorial, the breathtaking palace built by Philip II outside Madrid.
In a convent in Peru, historians discuss the first sons and daughters of Spanish men and Incan women. High in the mountains of eastern Mexico, the descendants of African slaves reveal a presence of not only two worlds, but three in the Americas. While in Potosi, Bolivia, art scholars consider 16th and 17th century artists of mixed ancestry to be among the greatest pluralistic achievements in human history.
"This film is a modern journey through the centuries that traces the roots of Latino culture," says Martínez. "Many fundamental aspects of our daily lives are the result of the enormous impact these two cultures had on each other, from religious traditions to culinary techniques to questions of identity."
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