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Human Rights and Indian Rights: Las Casas to Standing Bear
How did the idea of universal human rites, including the rites of indigenous peoples, come into Western consciousness and law? This talk cites the contribution of Bartolome de las Casas, whose arguments lead to the New Laws governing Spanish colonization.; of Judge Dundy’s verdict in the famous trial of Crook vs. Standing Bear (1879) which asserted the “personhood” of native peoples; and the “participant observation” research of Francis La Flesche, which fostered the recognition of the integrity of Native culture. Many other factors entered into the development of the current understanding of human rights; but the Western need to incorporate non-Western cultures into the existing framework of Western thinking played a significant part.
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The Johnny Carson Fund at the Nebraska Cultural Endowment
The Adah & Leon Millard Foundation