My paper examines the dynamic nature of colonial society that made the interconnected experiences of natives from all socioeconomic classes significant since nobles defended laborers in court, made labor arrangements with them, or exploited them in similar ways as the Spanish. Moreover, laborers grew adept at representing themselves in court as the colonial period wore on since their labor was in high demand and Spanish settlers encroached upon their land. In addition, the presence of African slaves influenced the argumentation of indigenous litigants. Plaintiffs made compelling arguments in which they defined their right to freedom based on the fact that they were not enslaved. The legal system functioned as a battleground for natives, but it also represented a form of control. However, the indigenous population chose to interpret the courts as a legitimate tool at their disposal and in the process transformed the colonial experience.
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