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The term Hispanic (Spanish: hispano or hispánico) broadly refers to the people, nations, and cultures that have a historical link to Spain. It commonly applies to countries once under colonial possession by the Spanish Empire following Spanish colonization of the Americas, parts of the Asia-Pacific region and Africa, principally what are today the countries of Hispanic America where Spanish is the predominant or official language and their cultures are heavily derived from Spain although with strong local indigenous or other foreign influences. It is sometimes extended to the Philippines, Guam, etc., although Spanish is not dominant nor official, and their cultures are largely local indigenous but heavily influenced by Spain. It could be argued that the term Hispanic should apply to all Spanish-speaking cultures or countries, as the historical roots of the word specifically pertain to the Iberian region. It is difficult to label a nation or culture with one term, such as Hispanic, as the ethnicities, customs, traditions, and art forms (music, literature, dress, culture, cuisine, and others) vary greatly by country and region. The Spanish language and Spanish culture are the main distinctions.
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