The Jesuit Republic of Paraguay: A Utopian Christian State
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After a brief summary of the Jesuit's interests in Brazil and Paraguay, the problems which I intend to explore are: Why did the Jesuits enjoy such success in these reductions?; Why were the Spanish and Portuguese so intimidated by the Society's presence?: and Were the Spanish and Portuguese justified in destroying the reductions and expelling the Fathers from their lands? In dealing with this intriguing subject, I will begin with a brief summary of the formation and progress of the Jesuit Order, and examine the interests of the early Spanish and Portuguese colonists in Brazil and Paraguay. I will then make an in depth analysis of the missions themselves, and the friction they encountered both in the colonies and back in Europe. Finally I will describe their expulsion from the missions, and draw some conclusions, with the hope of finding answers to the questions which I have posed.