A Short Account of the Destruction of the Indies
Bartolomé de Las Casas was the first and fiercest critic of Spanish colonialism in the New World. An early traveller to the Americas who sailed on one of Columbus’s voyages, Las Casas was so horrified by the wholesale massacre he witnessed that he dedicated his life to protecting the Indian community. He wrote A Short Account of the Destruction of the Indies in 1542, a shocking catalogue of mass slaughter, torture and slavery, which showed that the evangelizing vision of Columbus had descended under later conquistadors into genocide. Dedicated to Philip II to alert the Castilian Crown to these atrocities and demand that the Indians be entitled to the basic rights of humankind, this passionate work of documentary vividness outraged Europe and contributed to the idea of the Spanish ‘Black Legend’ that would last for centuries.
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LibraryThing ReviewUser Review - Paulagraph - LibraryThing
A must read only because it's a classic and an important historical document. de las Casas intended to write a legal and moral argument, 16th century style, detailing the murder and mayhem perpetrated ... Read full review
LibraryThing ReviewUser Review - Cecrow - LibraryThing
On the list of humanity's infliction of cruelty upon itself, the Spanish conquest ranks not far behind the Holocaust. The Aztecs and Incans are most frequently cited, but many other peoples were ... Read full review