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Latin America

Latin America is a group of countries and dependencies in the Western Hemisphere where Romance languages such as Spanish, Portuguese, and French are predominantly spoken. Some territories such as Quebec, where French is spoken, or areas of the United States where Spanish is predominantly spoken are not included due to the country being a part of Anglo America. Haiti is sometimes included and sometimes excluded whereas Puerto Rico is always included despite belonging to the United States. The term is broader than categories such as Hispanic America which specifically refers to Spanish-speaking countries or Ibero-America which specifically refers to both Spanish and Portuguese-speaking countries. The term is also more recent in origin.


The term "Latin America" was first used in an 1856 conference with the title "Initiative of America. Idea for a Federal Congress of the Republics" (Iniciativa de la América. Idea de un Congreso Federal de las Repúblicas),[6] by the Chilean politician Francisco Bilbao. The term was further popularised by French emperor Napoleon III's government in the 1860s as Amérique latine to justify France's military involvement in Mexico and try to include French-speaking territories in the Americas such as French Canada, French Louisiana, or French Guiana, in the larger group of countries where Spanish and Portuguese languages prevailed.


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