Latin American Studies Conference To Examine Church-State Issues

March 23, 2000

Scholars from colleges and universities throughout the United States will explore church-state issues in Latin America and the U.S. during the 12th annual Joseph F. Velez Latin American Studies Conference at Baylor University. "Salvation and Sovereignty: Church and State in the Americas" will run Thursday and Friday, March 30-31.

"The relationship between the church and government always has been important in Latin America, but we have many issues regarding church and state in the U.S. The Branch Davidian controversy with the federal government is a prime example," said Dr. Joan Supplee, director of Latin American Studies and associate professor of history.

The conference will begin on Thursday with the keynote lecture slated to begin at 8 p.m. on the fifth floor of the Cashion Academic Building. Dr. Jose Luis Gómez-Martínez, professor of Hispanic Thought at the University of Georgia, will deliver the address titled "Intercultural Philosophy: Toward a Liberating Discourse."

"Dr. Gómez-Martínez is one of the nation's top experts on philosophy and the theology of liberation in Latin America," Dr. Supplee said. "We also have some of the most distinguished experts in Latin American studies presenting papers."

Panel discussions will begin at 8 a.m. Friday, March 31, in various rooms on the second and third floor in the Bill Daniel Student Center. Topics include "Human Rights and Literature in Latin America," "The Embattled Church: Politics and Violence in Central America," "The Catholic Church and the Construction of the Modern Mexican State," "Recasting the Patronato Real: Church as Political Actor in the Modern World," "The Church and Conscience: Liberation Theology and Its Antecedents," and many others.

Conference sessions and lectures are free and open to the public. For a complete conference schedule or for more information, contact Dr. Supplee at (254) 710-6294.

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