South American History

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South American History

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maj 29, 2007, 3:07 pm

I'm looking for well written (read captivating) accounts of South American history. I like my history as a story of people and not a textbook of wars and politics. Any suggestions?


jun 3, 2007, 7:15 pm

Nobody has any ideas? Perhaps the way I like my history isn't kosher. :-)
(Where's a cute smiley face when you need one?)

jun 3, 2007, 8:08 pm


I don't know if the way you like your history is kosher, but it is the way I like mine. I'll take journals or letters of those involved over an academic survey any day!

I have a more specific request. Does anyone know of any accounts, in English, of events surrounding the British campaign in and around Buenos Aires circa 1806?
(I've seen some interesting-looking stuff on the web, but the result of "translate this page" is more hilarious than useful.)

Redigeret: jun 3, 2007, 8:41 pm

>3 myshelves:, myshelves

Try the following:
Ian Fletcher. The Waters of Oblivion: the British Invasion of the Rio de la Plata.
Klaus Gallo. Great Britain and Argentina: from invasion to recognition, 1806-26.

You may also try to dig something, starting from Wikipedia, page "Battle of Montevideo 1807".

jun 4, 2007, 12:14 am


Thank you!!

jun 8, 2007, 8:10 pm

Thanks, too. I'll check on these.

jun 8, 2007, 9:06 pm

While not specifically about South America The River of Doubt was very exciting. It's about a Teddy Roosevelt's exploration of an uncharted river.

jun 9, 2007, 8:24 pm

sergerca--I have that one and am looking forward to reading it. I'm currently saving it for a 7 week trip through S. America starting next week!

jul 5, 2007, 3:22 pm

Try Aguirre:The re-creation of a Sixteenth Century Journey across South America by Stephen Minta. It crosses back and forth from Aguirre's actual journey to a modern one with some interesting comparisons. See my review.

11kristenkim03 Første besked:
aug 7, 2007, 7:02 pm

Some of my favorites include Death is a Festival, Caetana Says No, and Rebecca's Revival. These are from an earlier period, and none of them really have to do with war or politics. Happy reading!

sep 28, 2007, 11:38 am

Wow, River of Doubt looks really grand. I'll have to put that on a TBR list.

okt 12, 2007, 6:24 pm

I read River of Doubt on my trip and it was great! Highly recommended. I'll write a review on my site in a few days (I hope!). The trip I took was fantastic, too.

nov 26, 2007, 7:43 pm

You might look for autobiographies and other primary sources. Hearing directly from the sources is the best (ok, that's only my opinion) way of getting absorbed in history.

nov 27, 2007, 11:13 am

Any suggestions for autobios/primary sources ThePam? I still haven't yet gotten to River of Doubt, but I've at least downloaded it to my iPod ... so its coming up soon.

nov 27, 2007, 1:48 pm

#15 bfertig--where do you get books to download to your iPod? I'd love to be able to listen to audio books on my MP3 if the price were reasonable.

nov 27, 2007, 2:44 pm

skf, check out the Audiobooks group
Personally, I have a subscription to for something like $20/mo, for which I get 2 'credits'/mo, which generally amounts to 2 books/month. Download them, and throw 'em in iTunes.
There are other places too e.g. also, local libraries often have either audiobooks you can download or available via cd, which can then also be thrown into iTunes or whatever.

nov 28, 2007, 6:16 pm

I don't have any suggestions for South America if that's what you mean.

I can however suggest some for North America if you like: early explorers, fur traders, western emigrants, Civil War participants.

nov 28, 2007, 8:13 pm

go for it! N Am is good too!

nov 29, 2007, 7:47 am

Well Larpenteur's "Forty Years a Fur Trader" I thought was good. We did a group-read of that over on the Amazon db and it was generally well received.

And what's best is that it is also available FREE and on-line.

In fact, let me give you three of my favorite free sources of commentaries/diaries/autobiographies.

The first one is at American Journeys:

The second is The focus there is mountain men and fur traders.

And lastly there is I especially like them because of the depth of material they offer-- auto/biographies and everything else. For books and articles I find them better than Gutenberg because you can generally download their books in pdf form --which I find infinitely more readable than yucky text. Plus artwork isn't deleted.

If I can ramble on a little more... they also have something called 'flipbook' which I use to preview books to see if I even want to download them.

I'd be happy to tell you about the few books and articles I've read and would recommend, but I feel like I've over-rambled and I don't want to wear out my welcome... :