A quick follow up. Just one last bit on liberation theology... for now.
Joe Cecil, in his excellent collection of Progressive Catholic Reflections, has written a brilliant essay on liberation theology, summarizing in a few pages what it is, and what the principal criticisms of it are (including a critique by Michael Novak - even if it's good theology, is it bad economics?). Like everything that Joe writes, it is clear, logical, poignant, and written through the eyes of faith. A Franciscan friar in his heart, I think he'll always be.