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人教版高中英语必修三Unit1 节日详解——哥伦布日(Columbus Day)  

2014-02-23 20:29:21|  分类: 高中英语教材拓展 |  标签: |举报 |字号 订阅

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     哥伦布日为10月12日或10月的第二个星期一,以纪念哥伦布于1492年首次登上美洲大陆。

    克里斯托弗·哥伦布是意大利航海家,出生于热那亚。1476年移居葡萄牙。他相信地圆说,认为自欧洲大西洋沿岸西行,可达东方。1492年10月,哥伦布率船3艘,水手87人,横渡大西洋,到达巴哈马群岛中的圣萨尔瓦多岛,成为西方第一个发现美洲新大陆的人。1493、1498、1502年他先后三次航行到美洲大陆沿岸进行实地考察。但他至死都误认为他所到达的美洲大陆是印度,故称当地居民为“印第安人”。

    哥伦布日是美国于1792年首先发起纪念的。当时正是哥伦布到达美洲300周年纪念日,纽约市坦慕尼协会发起举办了纪念活动。1893年,芝加哥举办哥伦布展览会,再次举办了盛大的纪念活动。从此,每年的这一天,美国大多数州都要举行庆祝游行,教堂礼拜和学校活动以纪念这个具有历史意义的日子。

 Columbus Day, which is annually on the second Monday of October, remembers Christopher Columbus' arrival to the Americas on October 12, 1492. This holiday is controversial because the European settlement in the Americas led to the demise of the history and culture of the indigenous peoples.

The Christopher Columbus monument in Barcelona, Spain.

What do people do?

Officially, the people of the USA are invited to celebrate the anniversary of the discovery of their country with church services and other activities. In some towns and cities, special church services, parades and large events are held. Most celebrations are concentrated around the Italian-American community. The celebrations in New York and San Francisco are particularly noteworthy. In Hawaii Columbus Day is also known as Landing Day or Discoverer's Day.

Not all parts of the United States celebrate Columbus Day. It is not a public holiday in California, Nevada and Hawaii. Moreover, Native Americans’ Day is celebrated in South Dakota, while Indigenous People’s Day is celebrated in Berkeley, California. 

Public life

Columbus day is a public holiday in many parts of the United states, but is not observed or is not a holiday in some states. Government offices and schools are generally closed, but businesses may be open. The flag of the United States is displayed on Government buildings.

Background

Christopher Columbus is often portrayed as the first European to sail to the Americas. He is sometimes portrayed as the discoverer of the New World. However, this is controversial on many counts. There is evidence that the first Europeans to sail across the Atlantic were Viking explorers from Scandinavia. In addition, the land was already populated by indigenous peoples, who had 'discovered' the Americas thousands of years before.

Columbus Day originated as a celebration of Italian-American heritage and was first held in San Francisco in 1869. The first state-wide celebration was held in Colorado in 1907. In 1937, Columbus Day become a holiday across the United States. Since 1971, it has been celebrated on the second Monday in October. The date on which Columbus arrived in the Americas is also celebrated as the Día de la Raza (Day of the Race) in Latin America and some Latino communities in the USA. However, it is a controversial holiday in some countries and has been re-named in others.

Columbus Day celebrations are controversial because the settlement of Europeans in the Americas led to the deaths of a very large proportion of the native people. It has been argued that this was a direct result of Columbus' actions. It is clear that the arrival of the European settlers led to the demise of a large proportion of the history and culture of the indigenous peoples of the Americas. It has also been argued that Columbus should not be honored for discovering North America, as he only went as far as some islands in the Caribbean and never got as far as mainland America.

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