de Moirans, Epifanio Books

Dr. Edward R. Sunshine received his Ph.D. from the Graduate Theological Union, Berkeley, California, and is currently Associate Professor of Theology in the Department of Theology and Philosophy at Barry University. He teaches and writes in various areas of Christian Ethics, including sexual and social morality, marriage and family, and Catholic social teaching.

Just Defense of the Natural Freedom of Slaves
2007 0-7734-5504-3
Awarded the Adele Mellen Prize for Distinguished Contribution to Scholarship

This book offers a critical Latin text with English, facing-page translation of Epifanio de Moirans's Servi Liberi seu Naturalis Mancipiorum Libertatis Iusta Defensio. The events described in Servi Liberi occurred in Havana, Cuba toward the end of 1681 and the beginning of 1682. It was then that the author, de Moirans, a Frenchman from Burgundy, along with Francisco José de Jaca, a Spaniard from Aragon and fellow Capuchin, did what was most impossible and subversive at the time: he condemned the very institution of slavery. The only extant copy of Servi Liberi is in Seville’s Archivo General de Indias, which, though formerly a stock exchange, became the official depository for Spanish colonial documents over two hundred years ago. Servi Liberi has survived because of the Archive; had it perished, we would have no knowledge of these events, no awareness of these campaigns, and no idea of how two Capuchins struggled with all the established political, economic, and religious interests of their time to change the widespread and destructive practice of slavery.