Watch a video!


bananas: united fruit company advertisement

Copyright New York Times

New York Times Book Review with great info on the United Fruit Company.

The banana became popular slightly after the Civil War in the United States and after the publication of Jules Verne’s ‘Around the World in Eighty Days’ in 1872 in Europe. It originally comes from Southeast Asia and all edible bananas are believed to be exact clones from one plant. The period we’re dealing with in the video is roughly 1500-present but focuses heavily on the late 19th- early 20th century.

Interesting Stuff:

15 Facts You Probably Didn't Know About Bananas modern banana plantation photo gallery

Study Questions

1. Why was the United Fruit Company (UFCO) known as ‘el pulpo’? Who referred to it as this?

2. Why were land reforms in Guatemala (1950s) of such concern to the United Fruit Company?

3. How are ethnicity and banana plantations linked? What communities formed around banana plantations?

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