By Daniel K. Lewis
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Additional resources for A South American Frontier: The Tri-border Region (Arbitrary Borders)
As the conflict developed, the cultural, social, and material distinctions took precedence over the official borders of the region. In the territories of the Paraguay and Upper Paraná river basins, isolation and existing practices led to a blending of American and European traits. This blending created a unique society that set the area apart from the rest of Spanish and Portuguese America. With Spanish authorities focused on the complex and rich central Andes, and the Portuguese presence concentrated on Brazil’s Atlantic coastline, the blended communities in and near what would become the tri-border region became accustomed to autonomy.
We have gone farther inland by land toward the west or northwest, where we found so many people that it seems to me that we are too few to attack them. . All the Indians who live along the banks of [the Paraná] farther up are not people who cultivate the soil or live in organized towns. Great care has to be taken with them, especially when trading. . * * Domingo Martínez de Irala, “Memoria” (1541). In John H. , New Iberian World: A Documentary History of the Discovery and Settlement of Latin America to the Early 17th Century.
The locals assumed authority over what would one day be the tri-border region. 31 4 Jesuits and the Guaranís Jesuits and the Guaranís he borders that defined the Triple Frontier after the first generation of the colonial era came as a result of arbitrary imposition and local realities. Europeans, concerned with the privileges of colonial enterprise, imposed authority in an effort to monopolize the profits that the indigenous labor and international commerce might produce. These impositions existed in legal theory.
A South American Frontier: The Tri-border Region (Arbitrary Borders) by Daniel K. Lewis