The Hispanidad (Spanish: Hispanidad) is the community formed by all the people and countries that share a common Hispanic heritage and cultural pattern.
The 20 nations that are included are all Spanish-speaking countries. The community can be classified into three geographic areas:Hispanic Europe (Spain), Hispanic America (Spanish-speaking America), Hispanic Africa (Spanish-African territories, Equatorial Guinea). A few countries in the Asia-Pacific region also have historical Spanish influence, although they no longer have Spanish as their official language.
Various countries celebrate October 12 as the Día de la Hispanidad ("Day of Hispanicity" or "Hispanic Day") is celebrated as a national holiday. Since 1987 Spain has celebrated this holiday as its Fiesta Nacional de España. In the other nations of the community, the day is also celebrated as a commemoration of the date in 1492 when Christopher Columbus discovered America, marking the beginning of the diffusion of Spanish language and culture as well as its lasting impact on the New world.
Hispanidad or Spanish linguistic and cultural diffusion began on 12 October 1492 when Christopher Columbus initiated its European colonization of the Americas in the name of the Catholic Monarchs of Spain. The kingdom of Castile (Castilla) built a global empire, spreading its culture and language in the Americas and biologically and culturally mixing with the Indigenous peoples and ultimately, the African slaves, altering the composition of the hemisphere. The penetration and reach of Spain at this time also extended into other European nations.
n 1713, the Real Academia Española was established to regulate written and spoken Spanish language throughout the empire so that it could be understood by all Hispanics. At the beginning of the 19th century, the American colonies' dissatisfaction with the Spanish government and Napoleon's invasion of Spain created an opportunity for revolution in America. All of the Spanish colonies obtained independence at this time, except Cuba, Puerto Rico and the Philippines. These three countries then became colonies of the United States after the Spanish-American War.
At the beginning of the 20th century, Hispanicity was moribund. Zacarías de Vizarra, Faustino Rodríguez-San Pedro and Ramiro de Maeztu revived interest in the concept in Spain and the Americas, changing its name to Dia de la Raza or "Day of the [New] Race". This was already a national celebration in many Hispanic countries, in honor of the meeting of Europeans and Amerindians, their mixing and the emergence of the mestizo race. Shortly thereafter, the first pan-Hispanic organizations such as the Asociación de Academias de la Lengua Española began. With the restoration of democracy in Spain, all the Hispanic nations began to converge with, for example, the creation of the Cumbre Iberoamericana in 1991. Since then, the number of Hispano-American, Ibero-American, Pan-Latin American organizations has increased.
Currently, Hispanicity is a cooperative venture. Spain has created a base of support for Hispanic America and the Philippines due to heavy investments in these zones. Latinos or Hispanic choose to immigrate to Spain, because of its cultural, linguistic and ancestral affinity.
Hispanics In The World
Spanish, as a mother tongue, is spoken by more than 333 million people (second only to Chinese). The total number of Spanish speakers is more than 500 million people. Mexico contains the largest number of Spanish speakers.
In Europe, Hispanics reside primarily in Spain as it is the origin of Hispanicity, although there are small communities spread throughout Europe. The native-born population is more than 44 million, plus a large immigrant Hispanic community from Hispanic America and Equatorial Guinea.
The majority of Hispanics live in Hispanic America, coinciding with recognized international borders. The number surpasses 300 million. Countries with great majority Hispanic population include Argentina, Bolivia, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador,Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Puerto Rico, Uruguay and Venezuela.
The United States and Belize, while not officially counted as Hispanic nations, do each have a large Hispanic population. The United States has more than 50 million Hispanic residents or about 16% of its total population. 43% of Belizeans commonly speak Spanish at home.
Hispanics in the African continent are concentrated in overseas territories of Spain, which are Canary Islands, Ceuta, Melilla and Plazas de Soberanía). Moreover, Equatorial Guinea has Spanish as its official government language, although the people speak their respective native languages. In Morocco and Western Sahara, some people maintain Hispanic characteristics, although these countries are more so influenced by Arab and/or Berber languages and cultures. Altogether in Africa, two million speak Spanish.
Some countries in the Asia-Pacific region received influence from the Hispanic world while they were governed by the Spanish Crown via Mexico City and Madrid. The Philippines, Guam, and the Caroline Islands are among those in this region that received some influence from Spain and Mexico.
In the Philippines, there is a small but important Hispanic population. They are mostly concentrated in Cebu, Metro Manila, Zamboanga, Iloilo, and Davao. Spanish was one of the official languages of the Philippines until 1973 when the dictator Ferdinand Marcos had it removed. However the language is currently being reinstated in the country and it is considered as an optional language on the Philippine Constitution. Spanish in the Philippines is natively spoken by 5,000 people but around 500,000 to 2,500,000 people speak it as their second or third language alongside English and Filipino. In addition, Chavacano, a Spanish-based creole language in the Philippines has approximately 600,000 native speakers. In contrast with people from the Hispanic world, the prevalence of Hispanic given names and surnames among the majority of Filipinos does not indicate Spanish ancestry. It was implemented due to a decree by the Spanish crown for the systematic distribution of family names and the imposition of the Spanish naming system on the inhabitants of the Philippines for proper recording and to help ease the collection of taxes (see Alphabetical Catalog of Surnames).