Bolivia

Brad Arnold, David Leach, Kyle Kempf, Vanessa Hilbert,
1. General Information
2. Food

3. Entertainment
4. History
General Information


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The country of Bolivia is located in South America and is about surrounded by Brazil, Paraguay, Argentina, Chile, and Peru (Country Reports). The capitol city of Bolivia is La Paz . La Paz is located on the Western coast near the Andes Mountains . Sucre is considered the constitutional capitol of Bolivia. There are 3 main rivers located in Bolivia. The Rio Beni is on the western coast and runs from just south of La Paz north into Brazil. The Rio Mamore is in the middle of the country and runs from just east of the Rio Beni beginning and also runs north into Brazil. The Paraguay River gives Bolivia Access to the Atlantic Ocean (Wikipedia). Three cities Sucre, Santa Cruz, and Trinidad are along the Rio Mamore. Cochabamba is in between the La Paz and The Rio Mamore.
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Bolivia is a fairly big country. Its total square mileage is 424,162 square miles (Country Reports). Bolivia is about the size of texas and california combined. The population of bolivia is 9,119,152 people (Country Reports). There are three main geographical areas in Bolivia. High Plateau, the temperate and semitropical valleys of the eastern mountain slopes, and tropical lowlands of the Amazon basin. The altiplano or high plateau is 500 miles long and 80 miles wide (Country Reports). The biggest lake in bolivia, Lake Titicaca lies half in bolivia and half in peru. The Salar de uyuni is the worlds largest salt flat. It lies in the southwest corner of the country (Wikipedia).

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The system of government in Bolivia is a republic (CIA). Bolivias current president is Evo Morales (Wikipedia). The main use of currency is the Boliviano or BOB (Go Currency). There are 1, 2, and 5 bolivianos and 10, 20, 50, and 100 banknotes(Go Currency). Bolivia has many exports and imports. Its main Exports are soy beans, natural gas, zinc, gold, and wood. its export partners are Brazil, Switzerland, the United States, Venezuela, Colombia, and Peru (Country Reports). The majority of Bolivians are Roman Catholic. Protestant is expanding very fast though (Wikipedia).

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Food in Bolivia

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In America, it is often easy to become consumed into the typical American diet. Unfortunately some people do not ever venture beyond the countries borders to discover a new and different variety of food. Bolivia is just one of the many countries that this variety can be found. Those expecting quesadillas and burritos to be part of the Bolivian cuisine may be disappointed because Bolivian food is very unlike Mexican food. Rather, Bolivia has a unique style of its own. Bolivia is located smack dab in the middle of South America. It is surrounded by countries of several different cultures. Because Bolivia is a melting pot, its food is amusingly complex and diverse. Bolivian food has several different origins. “The Incas, Quechuas, Guaranies, and all the natives from the region have left their recipes… Then the Spanish came and brought many other recipes…then different immigrations, and also their neighbors added to this marvelous variety of dishes” (Alvarez). The main meal in Bolivia is typically lunch. It is common to eat a “good breakfast, a massive lunch, and a small dinner” (Minister). The main part of the Bolivian diet is usually meat, but potatoes also play an important role and may appear at every meal. Bolivian food is important because it portrays the unique culture of this fascinating country.

Breakfast
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In America it is common to eat a large quantity of food at every meal. This is not so true in Bolivia. Because Bolivians eat such a large lunch, breakfast is not as important. Although it may be smaller, the breakfast in Bolivian is still nice and healthy. Breakfast is typically served around 8 or 9 a.m. (Bolivia). However, it is often eaten on the go while being rushed to work. For adults, “a roll with coffee” (pateman) suits their needs. Children commonly eat bread with jelly or cheese (pateman). For those who are not coffee goers, a variety of tea can be found on the breakfast menu. Apí, a sweet tea made from corn, lemon, cloves, and cinnamon, is a popular choice in Bolivia and other South American countries (Hamre). The Bolivians who have a big appetite often top their breakfast off with some type of pastry. Typically, this is a small croissant filled with sweets. A salteña is also a popular choice. The banana is another food that can finish off a good breakfast in Bolivia. Like in the U.S., the banana is a quick and easy snack in the morning. This first meal of the day may not be a feast, but it certainly holds Bolivians over until what they consider the most important meal.

Lunch
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In America, dinner is typically the most important and largest meal. In Bolivia, however, the glorified meal is lunch. This is true in many other South American countries as well. Lunch for Bolivians is expected to be a time designated for families to come together and enjoy each other’s company. It is not uncommon at all for employees to leave their place of work to join their family at home for lunch. When arriving at the dining place, it is common to use the expression Buen provecho, which is similar to Bon appétit (Bolivia). The lunch usually consists of a soup, a main dish, and possibly a dessert. The bulk of a main dish generally is made up of meat and potatoes. The most common meats in Bolivia are chicken and beef. However, pork is also very common. A specialty of the region is “trout fresh out of Lake Titicaca” (Alvarez). On some occasions, goat, llama and even guinea pig can be served. To add variation to the lunch, a soup can most likely be found at the table. Bolivian soups are “rich, nutritious, and satisfying” (Gomez). There is an uncountable selection of soups, but most have one thing in common: A lot of spices and herbs are used to cook them. These herbs add an extra kick to the soups and a number of other dishes. It is also common for the soups to contain corn, rice or noodles. Often, the soup is a very good source of carbohydrates. A popular soup among Bolivians is Chupe de Papaliza. This soup consists of “a potato called papaliza, broad beans, and squash” (Gomez). Because of its size, Lunch is seldom rushed. People relax and socialize while they finish drinking their beverage. Sometimes a visitor for lunch may still be visiting when dinner is served. Although the Bolivian lunch may not seem like a feast to the average American, the Bolivians definitely don’t leave with an empty stomach after. It is also respectful to leave nothing on your plate after you’re finished with a meal (Bolivia). So take your share!

Dinner
Dinner does not have the same meaning in Bolivia as it does in the United States. In the U.S., people prepare to fill hungry stomachs before heading to bed. In Bolivia, dinner is merely a snack due to their large meal at lunchtime. Unlike America, there is not a fine line between dinner foods and lunch foods. The same types of dishes are served, only in smaller quantity. Sometimes, it is hard to even consider a Bolivian dinner a meal. Farmers in Bolivia skip dinner completely. A breakfast and a late lunch are good enough for them. For wealthier families living closer to the city, dinner is typically served “around 8 or 9 p.m.” (Bolivia). A common dinner is “silpancho, which is pounded beef with an egg cooked on top” (pateman).



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Entertainment



Bolivian people involve themselves in many activities and exciting entertainment. Some of these include sports, art, festivals, music, dancing, movies, and a fun night life (BoliviaBella). All of these options allow the people to be able to choose there entertainment and keeps Bolivia a fun place to live and travel.
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Sports are of the main entertainment attractions in Bolivia. Soccer is clearly known to be the most popular of all sports (BoliviaWeb). They take a lot of intrest in their national team even though they are not the strongest team (Britannica). Volleyball, basketball, boxing, and bullfighting are also often played in recreation centers around Bolivia (Britannica). The middle and upper class people have increasingly started golfing, horseback riding, and playing tennis in many areas like La Paz, Cochabamba, and Santa Cruz (Britannica). Though there are many Bolivian fans that love watching soccer, there are not many true fans supporting other sports due to lack of facilities (Britannica) (Yahoo).


Night life in Bolivia can be whatever someone wants it to be. Many people enjoy eating out. Some of the restaurants have really authentic dishes and some of the chiefs are even food artists (BoliviaBella). They decorate and organize the dishes in order to make the experience more exciting (BoliviaBella). People also go out to Penas which are bars where tourists and locals folkloric dance (VirtualTourist). These dance parties can sometimes last almost all night (VirtualTourist). Another great thing Bolivian people do for night time entertainment is got to discos, clubs, and live music and dance performances (Alloxpat). As stated before there are many devoted fans of the national soccer team, so if there is ever a night game a large number of Bolivians can be found there supporting their team.


Another huge part of Bolivian entertainment is the different arts. People find entertainment in music and artwork. Most of the music in Bolivia is dance music, but some African American sounds exist because it was brought over during slavery (Goliathus). Some of the instruments that Bolivian artists use the charangoand the quena (Wikipedia). There are many different kinds of artwork in and out of museums in Bolivia. Artwork that would be viewed in museums include colorful paintings as well amazing ceramics (EBSCOhost). On the streets you could find beautiful carvings and weavings (EBSCOhost). Different regions in Bolivia have different colors and patterns represented in their weavings (EBSOhost).
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Festivals are huge in Bolivia. The biggest festival is the
and it occurs every year during the eight days before Ash Wednesday and is called the Carnaval de Oruro(BoliviaHostels). During the Carnival everyone does a dance called the “devils dance” and everyone gets dressed up in masks, dresses, and face paint (BoliviaHostels). There is folk music, art, and a lot of drinking during this festival (Wikiapedia). Other festivals that take place in Bolivia are the Virgen de la Candelaria, Carnaval de Santa Cruz, May Day, and San Roque (BoliviaHostels). All of the festivals involve a lot of fun games and partying with other locals and sometime tourists (Wikipedia).



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History of Bolivia


Bolivia is a country full of an interesting history and a rich past. There are many significant historical events of Bolivia. The three main eras of Bolivia are: Pre-Colonization, Spanish rule, and Modern-day Bolivia. The first known indigenous Indians of Bolivia were the Incas. The Incas dominated the majority of South America for a large period of time. Around the 1500’s, the Spanish conquistadors came and made their presence known to the Incas. Since the Incas had never seen white men, armor, or any of the materials they had, they incas1.jpgthought they were gods. They were hospitable to the Spanish Conquistadors because they did not want to upset the gods or make them angry. After many years of fighting, the Spanish Conquistadors were finally able to conquer and defeat the Incas. After the Incas were taken care of by the Spanish, they started colonizing and settling the land of Bolivia. The Spanish made the area of La Paz one of their colonies, which today is one of the highest cities on Earth and one of the most populated. La Paz had much silver and became one of the main places to import and export silver (nationsencyclopedia). After several years of colonization of the Spanish, the Struggle for Independence arrived in Bolivia. With many countries in South America fighting for independence from countries in Europe, Bolivia joined the fight. Although many some people wanted independence from Spain, many people remained loyal to the Spanish Crown. This delayed the process of becoming independent and made it very difficult to achieve. Despite all these obstacles to overcome, they were able to achieve independence from Spain(nationsencyclopedia). After gaining independence in the 1800’s Bolivia finally became a country. In 1825, Bolívar became the nation’s first president. Bolivia was named after their first president (nationsencyclopedia). After the war for independence, the mining economy was in decline. bolivia-volcanoes.jpgThis affected Bolivia’s economy greatly because was their biggest industry. But in the 1900’s, there economy boomed because of the “Silver Boom”. In 1932, Bolivia warred with Paraguay over the Chaco, the lowland area believed at the time to be rich in oil (nationsencyclopedia). They had an agreement in 1938. Along with their silver industry, their tin industry was a major part of their economy. The demand of tin was great during World War 2, and greatly helped the Bolivian economy (nationsencyclopedia). Throughout the next few decades, Bolivia’s government and economy remained stable.
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