Simon Bolivar Term Paper

Pages: 10 (3362 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: 10  ·  File: .docx  ·  Topic: Literature - Latin-American


He believed he could get its independence and then work for a way to consolidate it with Venezuela in the future. Once New Granada had been liberated, Bolivar once again turned his attention to Venezuela and also to Ecuador (Bushnell & Fornoff, 2003). The two-pronged attack was successful over time. In the end, Bolivar created what was then called the Gran Columbia, which included much of Columbia, Venezuela, Ecuador, Panama, and northern Peru (Bushnell & Fornoff, 2003). That was not enough for Bolivar, who then turned his attention toward the liberation of the rest of Peru (Arana, 2013). That took some time to accomplish, but did take place. When it occurred, the Congress of Upper Peru created the Republic of Bolivia (Harvey, 2000). Bolivar is one of the few men in history to have a country named for him, which was a huge honor (Arana, 2013; Bushnell & Fornoff, 2003; Mijares, 1983; O'Leary, 1970).

The liberation of countries from Spain appeared to be Bolivar's mission in life. While some of what he was doing may have been for glory, most of it seemed to stem from a true desire to help the people of his native land. That desire just expanded further and further, until Bolivar was helping a number of Latin American countries get through difficult times and come out on the other side as free people who could make their own rules and set their own goals. Many of them honored Bolivar for all he had done for their countries, and statues and other monuments to him remain in many countries today (Arana, 2013). His legacy as The Liberator is a significant part of history.

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TOPIC: Term Paper on Simon Bolivar in Order to Assignment

Another notable part of Bolivar's life is the letter he wrote from Jamaica. This was a letter in response to another letter he had received from Henry Cullen (Arana, 2013). The letter addressed the Second Republic of Jamaica and why it fell, based on the context of that nation's independence (Arana, 2013). In order have a full understanding of that letter, it is very important to know the historical context behind it. Bolivar arrived in Kingston, Jamaica when he was 32 years of age (Lynch, 1983). He was still relatively new to the fight for independence at that time, having only been leading that fight for three years (Lynch, 1986). During those short years, though, the fight had become very intense in its level of military activity. His desire to take back Venezuela from the Spanish Monarchy at that time was very strong, but his military opponents were stronger. Bolivar's plan failed, and he was not able to liberate Venezuela at that time. He decided to try again, but the people who had previously been dedicated followers would no longer agree to back him (Arana, 2013). Bolivar felt confused and misunderstood, so he exiled himself in Jamaica (Bushnell & Fornoff, 2003).

While he lived in Jamaica he spent a great deal of time thinking about what to do next. He considered the future of the Americas and what his role in it should be, as well as what might have gone wrong in his previous campaign and what changed in the hearts and minds of his followers that they refused to follow him any longer (Harvey, 2000). With the unique situation of the world's politics as a backdrop, Bolivar considered many of the issues he would have to face if he chose to try liberation again. History tells the reader that Bolivar did try again, and with much more success, but his time in Jamaica was an introspective time where many areas of his life were carefully considered in an effort to decide what the best move would be (Bushnell & Fornoff, 2003; Bushnell & Macaulay, 1994). It was during that time and in that frame of mind that he wrote the Jamaican Letter as a response to Cullen and an expression of his own thoughts (Arana, 2013).

The letter specifically analyzed the historical successes that had been seen up until the failure to liberate Venezuela (Mijares, 1983). He wrote about the balance of force seen in various nations, and how that affected whether a country was able to be liberated or not (Arana, 2013). Then Bolivar moved on in his discussion, from the balance of force to the importance of independence. He not only wrote about the value of that independence, but about the reasons for it and the necessity of it (Lynch, 1983). Instead of writing about it as though it was something that was only desired, he wrote about it as though it was a necessity. That changed the focus and tone of the letter completely, from information about an issue to understanding of the deeper issues surrounding the need to have more independence. There was also a call for Europe to step in and help out, as well as speculation on his part as to what would happen to Venezuela, Central America, Mexico, and other areas where liberation was believed to be needed (Arana, 2013; Bushnell, 1970).

The letter was addressed to Cullen, but it was also believed to be written to catch the attention of Britain (Bushnell & Macaulay, 1994). Bolivar wanted Britain as a strong ally in the liberation of the nations he had focused on and the unification of the countries that made up the Americas (Arana, 2013). Britain eventually did respond to Bolivar's call for aid, but not in the time period he had hoped for. By the time the offer for aid came in, Bolivar decided he preferred to get help from Haiti (Lynch, 1983). Why that took place was really not clear, because Britain was a stronger ally. Perhaps Bolivar believed that Haiti would be better suited to assist him based on location, or he may have lost trust in Britain based on the lack of reply on his preferred timeline (Bushnell & Fornoff, 2003). It is not known and will likely never be known why this particular choice was made, but it was something Bolivar felt strongly about. Because of that, Britain did not get involved with Bolivar's clashes with other military leaders and his fight to free specific nations.

Historic Significance

The historic significance of Simon Bolivar is worth noting. Not only did he help people out of oppression, but he kept doing it, relentlessly, until it was not possible to do it any longer. During that time he made many enemies and even more friends and allies. He had a country named after him, was president of a nation, and led a number of countries and their people to freedom and peace (Arana, 2013). Those are things that many aspire to do, but that few are actually able to accomplish. Bolivar's historic significance is seen in two ways. First, through what he did, and second, through why and how he did it. These have to be considered, because it is not just about one thing or the other. It is about the entire event or person. There are many reasons behind why a person takes a particular action, and those reasons often help a person understand why those actions were taken. This is the case with Bolivar, and one of the easiest places to see it in action is through his Jamaican Letter. When he wrote it, he was in exile. He was unsuccessful and his followers would not support him (Bushnell, 1970; Bushnell & Fornoff, 2003).

A lesser man might have just given up and decided that it was not necessary to continue on any further. After all, he had tried. He had done the best he could do at the time, and he had been defeated by a worthy opponent. Many people would consider that a victory of sorts, especially since Bolivar was the only one stepping up trying to do something. The effort was laudable and important, but Bolivar did not see it that way. He had such love for his native land and he had a vision for what he believed to be right (Arana, 2013). He spent his time in Jamaica considering not the fact that he had been defeated, but how and why he was defeated. In order to be victorious the next time, he had to determine why his previous attempt did not work (Harvey, 2000). His letter was to ask for help, but it was also to address how strongly he still felt about the issues he faced and the issues various countries faced. The speculation as to what might happen to these countries in the future was an important part of the letter, too, as it addressed the worries and fears Bolivar had if he was not able to succeed with his plans (Arana, 2013; Bushnell & Fornoff, 2003; O'Leary, 1970).

Both his dedication to his cause and his military and political abilities make his life and accomplishments historically significant. It is not about the country named after him or the numerous statues and… [END OF PREVIEW] . . . READ MORE

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How to Cite "Simon Bolivar" Term Paper in a Bibliography:

APA Style

Simon Bolivar.  (2014, February 9).  Retrieved August 4, 2021, from

MLA Format

"Simon Bolivar."  9 February 2014.  Web.  4 August 2021. <>.

Chicago Style

"Simon Bolivar."  February 9, 2014.  Accessed August 4, 2021.