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Exactly five hundred years ago, Antón Montesinos preached the unforgettable sermon as a voice crying in the desert of the Caribbean against the Spanish abuses of the Taínos on Española. I was relieved to see that a collaborative effort to commemorate this paradigmatic event on the Fourth Sunday of Advent in 1511 is very much underway. The conference is scheduled for December 2-4, 2011, in Washington, D.C. If all goes according to plan, the conference, which focuses on the legacy of Montesinos and the sixteenth-century Spanish Dominicans for human rights, should be a monumental achievement setting the stage for a new era of inquiry focusing on these incredible figures. At this point, George Mason University’s School for Conflict Analysis and Resolution and the Berkley Center for Religion, Peace, and World Affairs at Georgetown University are linked to the conference. The deadline for paper proposals or panels is October 15. See more details here: http://humanrights500.org/.

I am also pleased to report that José Cardenas, David Orique, O.P., Larry Clayton, and myself are organizing a panel on Las Casas. So, if you can make it to this important conference, I hope to see you in Washington. Ego vox clamantis in deserto!

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