Spencer MacCallum to Mises Hispano’s staff


El antropólogo Spencer MacCallum (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spencer_MacCallum), a sus 82 años, escribió este email (con motivo de que nos interesa traducir su obra al español). Me ha parecido una carta muy emotiva y digna de compartir (me autorizó a hacerlo), en ella me cuenta algo de su biografía, no su CV, sino su vida, con sencillez de un hombre sabio.




From: Spencer MacCallum
Date: 2014-10-19 10:09 GMT-05:00
Subject: Spencer MacCallum
To: Fabricio Terán

Hola Fabricio,

Apologies for not replying immediately; our computer was down for a week.

I am amazed and overwhelmed! For years, I had wished for Spanish translations of some of my articles. Living in Mexico, I have often wanted to share ideas with friends here but have hardly been able to do so because all my writing is in English. My Spanish is shaky still — okay for casual conversation, but not good for philosophical or other serious ideas. I am delighted now to be able toshare with the Hispanic world an inspiring and somewhat different perspective on history and the free market. I am indeed overwhelmed at your generosity and interest.

One possible problem with the translations:  Most of my writings have beenrevised since they were published, so that you may be working  from copythat is not the latest. I just remark on this so that you will be aware of it.I’m sending you, separately, updated copies of what I think are some of my best articles. You may do with them as you wish.

And thanks for offering to communicate in English. But if you wish to write in Spanish, please do so. Reading Spanish is somewhat easier for me than writing or speaking.

I didn’t know much of what was happening in the Hispanic world with respect topersonal and economic freedom until I had a chance to visit the Universidad Francisco Marroquin last year. It was an inspiring visit, and I now think that Latin America may be where the future of freedom lies. Again, it is wonderfulwhat you are doing!

From the website which was new to me [www.MisesHispano.org], I see that you are from Guayaquil. Sixty-five years ago, when I was a boy, I worked as a deckhand on an Ecuadorian banana boat (Tropical Fruit Company) from New Orleans to Guayaquil and then traveled overland to see a bit of Peru and Chile. It was a grandexperience, and I can imagine how greatly Guayaquil must have changed since then.

I am working now on the Spencer Heath Archive, an archive of my grandfather’s writings. He was a patent attorney (who did not believe in patents but onlypracticed defensively, to keep others from going to the Patent Office first andkeeping his clients from using their own inventions), an engineer and an industrialist (producing 75 percent of the airplane propellers used by the Allied governments in the first world war, then developing the first engine powered andcontrolled, variable and reversible pitch propeller), and he had a wide range of interests, from philosophy of science, physics, biology, poetry, and outlining a new science of social organization. I don’t know if any libertarians in your part of the world would be interested, but I’ve just comeacross a very short item from an unpublished manuscript in which he interprets Jesus’ message as an intuitive anticipation of our modern economic system. I attach this item for your possible personal interest. I find the manuscript intriguing and possibly having inspirational value for religiously oriented people who had not before been introduced to libertarian ideas.

I don’t know if I would be an appropriate person to include on your honorary board for Mises Hispano, but if you think it might help promote the cause of freedom, I’ll be glad to accept the honor now or any time in the future andwill leave that decision entirely up to you.


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