Noting that Jesus, in Spanish, is pronounced Hesoos… the name of a boy we met there…….


And yes – that is Kevin Rudd shaking hands with Mr George Walker Bush at an APEC conference in Lima while we were there. And yes – all the Aussies in the room did throw up in their mouths when they saw it… or at least roll their eyes and shake their heads…

A snippet:

‘Did you know the justification for the conquest of South America came down to the Pope?’ I asked the girls, hoping to share some of my newly gained knowledge. They shook their head. ‘Ok, get this: Jesus gave Peter responsibility over the souls of all men, who passed it on to the Pope and this legacy has passed from Pope to Pope ever since. And you see: since Jesus was God, and God created everything in the world, the Pope had a right to all the land and all the people of the world.’ I didn’t appear to be boring anyone so I continued. ‘King Ferdinand of Spain was mates with the Pope, and so a friendly exchange led to the Pope granted the right to the land of the Americas and the native peoples, to the Spanish empire.’ I was proud of my essay and happy to realise I actually had developed a good understanding of this topic. It was a satisfying to reflect on my development over the past few years. I’d gone from thinking Brazil was in Africa, to understanding the dynamics of the historical events and power plays involved in the division of colonialised areas of Portuguese-speaking Brazil, and the rest of the Spanish-speaking continent. Which, by the way, came from a treaty called the Line of Demarcation, negotiated after Portugal, outraged by at the Pope’s grant, threatened Spain with war.[1] At the time the Line of Demarcation was drawn 370 leagues west of the Cape Verde Islands but now it has moved inland to create the shape we find Brazil today

[1] Gonzalez, and Gonzalez, ‘Christianity in Latin America: A History’, p. 28. Recorded in the Treaty of Tordessilas in 1494; and a later agreement the Treaty of Sargossa in 1529.