Brief Account of the Devastation of the Indies

Essay by LAcheatersHigh School, 10th gradeA+, April 2005

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Brief Account of the Devastation of the Indies

In 1542, Bartoleme de Las Casas wrote Brief Account of the Devastation of the Indies. His purpose for writing this was to inform his audience that slavery was wrong. He wrote about his first hand accounts. He wrote of the inhumanity towards innocent people that he himself witnessed.

I think that if I would have seen the same thing that Bartoleme saw, I would have written something as well. In his writings, Bartoleme said that the Indians very smart and peaceful people. They were thought to be uncivilized due to their clothing but they were not. They were very civilized, clean and intelligent people who were open to the Catholic religion without question. Even though the Indian were there first the Spaniards killed many for no reason at all except to acquire gold. The Spaniards took the lives and souls away from many Indians and deprived them of the Sacraments.

The Indians were described to be weak workers, it was said that they were like the sons of nobles. Through all of this the peaceful Indians still held no grudges against the people who terrorized their people.

I think this document was written because Bartoleme really felt strongly about slavery being wrong, but he was not a neutral party. In his writings, Bartleme wanted to influence his readers to go against slavery, he tried to persuade them. I do not think that he had any reason to be dishonest I just think he really wanted people to realize how wrong slavery was. This document tells of how uncivilized people used to be but I do not think that any of the issues Bartoleme discussed in Brief Account of the Devastation of the Indies are still relevant today.