Cartas de América #15: if you want slavery abolished, you gotta do it yourself

Earlier this year, I told you about a project I’m working on for which the working title is Repent! (And Have It Notarized.) C’mon, that’s a way better dissertation title than “‘Ni un sólo maravedí que suyo sea’: the theology of restitution in New Spain,” right? Anyway, here’s a quick refresher: in 1552, Bartolomé deContinue reading “Cartas de América #15: if you want slavery abolished, you gotta do it yourself”

Cartas de América #14: reading liberation theology during finals week

The second book I read after my comprehensive exams ended was Teología de la liberación by Fr. Gustavo Gutiérrez, O.P. (The first was the latest Miss Kopp adventure.) It seemed ludicrous that I’d gotten this far as a student of Latin American Catholicism without reading it. But like many people, like many of you I bet,Continue reading “Cartas de América #14: reading liberation theology during finals week”

Writing in Public (on Purpose) at W&L | Scholars— Lab

You know how sometimes a friend will comment on an old profile picture on Facebook so that it’s at the top of everyone’s news feed and suddenly all your college friends know what you looked like when you were 14 and a mess? Well, having had a blog and a public Twitter since I wasContinue reading “Writing in Public (on Purpose) at W&L | Scholars— Lab”

Cartas de América #12: thoughts from the roof of the Trocadero Hotel

On October 19, 1901, Alberto Santos=Dumont (he was fond of using an equals sign, not a hyphen, to honor his Brazilian and French heritage equally) climbed to the roof of the Trocadero Hotel. He’d only been flying for nine minutes when he made it to the Eiffel Tower, suspended in glory by hydrogen gas andContinue reading “Cartas de América #12: thoughts from the roof of the Trocadero Hotel”

Cartas de América #11: ¡viva la religión y muera el mal gobierno!

On December 12, 1794, the feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe, a Dominican friar named fray Servando Teresa de Mier approached the pulpit to rewrite history. For this he was investigated by the Inquisition, sent to Spain to be put on trial, was sentenced to ten years’ exile, and was banned from preaching and confessingContinue reading “Cartas de América #11: ¡viva la religión y muera el mal gobierno!”

Cartas de América #10: a dispatch from my twelve-year-old self

One summer when I was twelve I went to nerd camp in México. There were soccer games and awkward dances and from what I remember, there was a lot of rain, too. I was taking intro to archaeology at Universidad de las Américas Puebla (not to be confused with that other School of the Americas).Continue reading “Cartas de América #10: a dispatch from my twelve-year-old self”

in ictu oculi

In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed. in momento in ictu oculi in novissima tuba canet enim et mortui resurgent incorrupti et nos inmutabimur —1 Corinthians 15:52 One of the side effectsContinue reading “in ictu oculi”

Cartas de América #8: in which even my Latin America newsletter is about Virginia

I didn’t want to take a deep dive into history or current events this time. I just wanted to celebrate that little corner of América today. RFK Stadium when Jaime Moreno was everybody’s hero. The Wafle Shop spelled just like that. Four Mile Run where you don’t need a goddamn permit to play soccer. BilingualContinue reading “Cartas de América #8: in which even my Latin America newsletter is about Virginia”

Como atrapar al universo en una telaraña

Tomás Saraceno’s Como atrapar al universo en una telaraña installed the world’s largest spider web in the second floor of the Museo de Arte Moderno de Buenos Aires. And it’s breathtaking. Literally, they tell you when you enter que es prohibido soplar. The delicate silk threads are separated from museumgoers by courtesy alone. It’s vivifying,Continue reading “Como atrapar al universo en una telaraña”

Save the People

When wilt thou save the people? O God of mercy, when? Not kings and lords, but nations! Not thrones and crowns, but men! Flowers of thy heart, O God, are they; Let them not pass, like weeds, away, Their heritage a sunless day. God save the people! Shall crime bring crime for ever, Strength aidingContinue reading “Save the People”