David M. Lantigua

David M. Lantigua

Assistant Professor
Moral Theology/Christian Ethics


B.A., Classics and Religious Studies, University of South Florida, 2004

M.A., Religious Studies, University of South Florida, 2007

Ph.D., Theology, University of Notre Dame, 2012 

Research and Teaching Interests

David Lantigua is interested in the judicious theological retrieval of fundamental moral concepts and ecclesial practices from the Christian tradition to address contemporary social issues. He specializes in late scholastic moral and political thought emerging out of the Salamanca school and the debates concerning the Spanish conquests of the Americas. His research explores the contested legacy of Latin/o Christianity in current discussions of just war, empire, race, religious violence, international order and human rights. He is currently completing two books related to this research. His other research project on the image of God elaborates a constructive notion of human dignity in an effort to bridge a morality of virtue and rights for Christian social ethics. His research and teaching interests also include modern Catholic social doctrine, Latin American theology, and comparative religious ethics. 

David is on research leave for the 2017-18 academic year. 

Recent Publications


Bartolomé de las Casas and the Rights of Amerindians: A Brief History with Documents, Co-edited and cotranslated with Lawrence A. Clayton (MacMillan Publishing, under review)

With Darrell Fasching and Dell deChant. 2011. Comparative Religious Ethics: A Narrative Approach to Global Ethics, Second Edition. Malden, MA: Wiley-Blackwell.

Book Chapters

“The Sixteenth-Century Spanish Reception of Aquinas,” in The Oxford Handbook of the Reception of Aquinas, eds. Matthew Levering, Marcus Plested, and Charles Raith II (Oxford University Press, under contract)

2017. “Scholastic Theology, Justice, and the Conquest of the Americas,” in The Oxford Handbook of Latin American Christianity, eds. Susan Fitzpatrick-Behrens, David Orique, O.P., and Virginia Garrard-Burnett. Oxford University Press.

2016. “Faith, Liberty, and the Defense of the Poor: Bishop Las Casas in the History of Human Rights,” in Christianity and Freedom, Volume 1: Historical Perspectives, eds. Timothy Samuel Shah and Allen Hertzke, 176-209. New York: Cambridge University Press.

2015. “War and the Ethics of Evangelization: The Great Commission in Sixteenth-Century Spanish Political Thought,” in Reading Scripture as a Political Act: Essays on the Theopolitical Interpretation of the Bible, eds. Matthew Tapie and Daniel McLain, 169-193. Minneapolis: Fortress Press.

Journal Articles

2016. “The Image of God, Christian Rights Talk, and the School of Salamanca,” Journal of Law and Religion 31.1: 19-41.

2015. “The Freedom of the Gospel: Aquinas, Subversive Natural Law, and the Spanish Wars of Religion,” Modern Theology 31.2: 312-37.

With David Clairmont. 2013. “Between Inculturation and Natural Law: Comparative Method in Catholic Moral Theology,” Journal of Moral Theology 2.2: 60-88.


Born of Latino immigrants, David Lantigua graduated from the University of Notre Dame in 2012. As a doctoral candidate, he completed research in Spain and was also graduate fellow of the Notre Dame Institute for Advanced Study. Upon graduation, he became an Assistant Professor of Moral Theology/Ethics at The Catholic University of America where he and his family served as faculty in residence for four years. He enjoys playing fútbol with his three daughters and cheering for the US and Paraguayan national teams.