Shedding new light on Hispanic Heritage with Robert Goodwin

  • Heritage
  • Washington, D.C.
  • Wed, January 22, 2020
  • 6:30 pm
Shedding new light on Hispanic Heritage with Robert Goodwin

Robert Goodwin presents his latest historical essay “América, The Epic Story of Spanish North America,” in conversation with Richard L. Kagan.

Shedding new light on Hispanic Heritage attempts to delve into some aspects of the Hispanic influence spanning from the time of exploration through the 20th century, and explore future collaborations in the field of heritage protection. The program starts with opening remarks by National Park Service Director David Vela and Spanish Ambassador Santiago Cabanas to be followed by a conversation between Richard L. Kagan and Robert Goodwin about his latest book.

América, The Epic Story of Spanish North America

Robert Goodwin’s América is as much the story of how the Spaniards who first explored North America reported their adventures and told their tales as it is a history of the almost two-thirds of the modern “Lower Forty-Eight” that was once marked on European maps as part of the Spanish empire. In it you will meet such characters as the Royal Inca historian who wrote a quasi fictional account of the discovery of Florida while living in a tiny village deep in the heart of southern Spain, the general legal counsel to the expedition that finally settled New Mexico who wrote an epic poem about his adventures in imitation of Homer, or the swashbuckling figure of Bernardo de Gálvez who has been described as the great Spanish hero of American Independence.

Here too, you will meet the African explorer known to posterity simply as Esteban who was the first person from the Old World –indeed the first person in recorded history– to visit most of the territory that would eventually comprise, the southern slave states.

About Robert Goodwin

Dr. Robert T. C. Goodwin was born and educated in London and was awarded his PhD by the University of London for his thesis on Golden Age Spain. His first major book, Crossing the Continent 1527–1540: The Story of the First African-American Explorer of the American South, was published in 2008. He is currently a full-time writer and historian and is a Research Associate at University College. He divides his time between London and Seville.

Goodwin has been described as an author who writes about real historical events and people, but in a way that will appeal as much to readers who usually prefer novels as it will to habitual readers of history books.

About Richard L. Kagan

Richard L. Kagan is Arthur O. Lovejoy Professor Emeritus of History and Academy Professor of History at the Johns Hopkins University, where he taught from 1972 until his retirement from full time instruction in 2013. A graduate of Columbia University (BA. 1965) and Cambridge University (Ph.D., 1968), his honors include Comendador in Spain’s Orden de Isabela la Católica; Member, American Philosophical Society; and Corresponding Member, Real Academia de la Historia, Madrid, Spain.

Kagan specializes in the history of Spain and its empire, along with the cultures and societies of the broader Mediterranean world. Cartography is another interest, Spanish art and architecture as well, along with the history of collecting and cultural relations between Spain and Spanish America and the U.S.

Author of numerous books and articles, his most recent being The Spanish Craze: America’s Fascination with the Arts and Cultures of the Hispanic World, 1779-1939.

About David Vela

A 28-year career veteran of the National Park Service, Vela serves as deputy director, exercising the authority of the director of the National Park Service. In this role he leads the more than 20,000 National Park Service employees who protect, preserve, and share America’s 419 national parks with the American people and who manage the NPS programs that help communities across the nation preserve local history and create close-to-home recreational opportunities.

The evening will conclude with a reception party offered by the Cultural Office of the Spanish Embassy.


Venue map

Former Residence of the Ambassadors of Spain, 2801 16th St NW, Washington, DC, 20009


Free, RSVP


Presented by the Cultural Office of the Embassy of Spain in Washington, D.C.



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