although in most cases
it is only one person who receives credit for
the production of a book, nothing could be further from the truth. A book is
rarely a solitary endeavor; it is the result of a collective effort and a willing-
ness to create.
This modest undertaking might have never materialized without the
patience, cooperation, support, and understanding of many people and in-
stitutions. I would like to thank the administration of Southwestern Univer-
sity which graciously extended its support in the form of grants of funds and
time. I have also received support from Gene and Trudy Yeager in the form
of invitations to lecture and the opportunity to do additional research at the
Howard Tilton Library.
I want to single out and thank Sara Castro-Klarén, who encouraged me
to present my work publicly at a symposium on human rights at Johns
Hopkins University. She read the original manuscript and made invaluable
suggestions about its content and its potential for publication. I also want to
acknowledge the help and support I received from one of the maestros of
Indoamerican colonial history from the inception of this project, Colin Mac-
Lachlan of Tulane University.
At different times, I have received support and critical suggestions from
Richard E. Greenleaf, James Boyden at Tulane, Ida Altman at the Univer-
sity of New Orleans, and Peter Klarén at George Washington University.
I have contracted a profound debt of gratitude with Walter D. Mignolo
of Duke University, who is one of the editors of the Latin America Other-
wise series at Duke University Press, for taking a chance and offering me
the opportunity to submit the original manuscript for evaluation. I feel
fortunate to have this work published by Duke University Press and I am
particularly indebted to my editor, Valerie Millholland, who has graciously
guided me through the task of preparing the manuscript and navigating this
delicate process. I would also like to thank Duke’s assistant editor Miriam
Angress for her support and cooperation. I am indebted to Lynn Walterick,
my copyeditor, and to Katharine Baker, who, as assistant managing editor,
helped me to navigate the complex editorial process. My appreciation also
goes to the critical readers of the manuscript for their valuable suggestions,
which have contributed to make it a better work.