Mortality Crises in the Jesuit Missions of Paraguay, 1730-1740
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Scholars of the European-Native interface in the Americas after 1492 generally stress demographic change among the indigenous populations of the Americas as one of the more important consequences of sustained contact between the Old and New Worlds. However, many discussions of the process of demographic change during the first centuries after 1492 do not benefit from detailed sources that enable a detailed analysis of mortality crises that decimated native populations. A mortality crisis is generally defined as x3 normal mortality, and the general assumption is that recurring mortality crises decimated the native populations, causing drastic population declines.