The Mexican Revolution
Conflict and Consolidation, 1910-1940
Publication Year: 2013
In 1910 insurgent leaders crushed the Porfirian dictatorship, but in the years that followed fought among themselves, until a nationalist consensus produced the 1917 Constitution. This in turn provided the basis for a reform agenda that transformed Mexico in the modern era. The civil war and the reforms that followed receive new and insightful attention in this book.
These essays, the result of the 45th annual Walter Prescott Webb Memorial Lectures, presented by the University of Texas at Arlington in March 2010, commemorate the centennial of the outbreak of the revolution.
A potent mix of factors—including the concentration of wealth in the hands of a few thousand hacienda owners, rancheros, and foreign capitalists; the ideological conflict between the Diaz government and the dissident regional reformers; and the grinding poverty afflicting the majority of the nation’s eleven million industrial and rural laborers—provided the volatile fuel that produced the first major political and social revolution of the twentieth century. The conflagration soon swept across the Rio Grande; indeed, The Mexican Revolution shows clearly that the struggle in Mexico had tremendous implications for the American Southwest. During the years of revolution, hundreds of thousands of Mexican citizens crossed the border into the United States. As a result, the region experienced waves of ethnically motivated violence, economic tensions, and the mass expulsions of Mexicans and US citizens of Mexican descent.
Published by: Texas A&M University Press
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Title Page, Copyright
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The Mexican Revolution is one of the seminal chapters in the history of Mexico. More than any other single event, the revolution was responsible for creat-ing the modern Mexican nation-state by contributing to a greater degree of democratization, land reform, anticlericalism, and other far-reaching changes in Mexican society. In addition, the civil war, which began in 1910 and lasted ...
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This fine collection of essays provides an essential understanding of the twenti-eth century’s first monumental social and political upheaval. The deeper nature of the revolution—the altering of class relationships, immigration and its influ-ence on the border population, the survival strategies of the oligarchy, the fate of revolutionary peasants and workers, the depth and extent of nationalism, ...
1. Decade of Disorder:
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I listened again to this list with a profound interest at the mixture of names, for the names bear the marks of the several national stocks from which these men came. But they are not Irishmen or Germans or Frenchmen or Hebrews any more. They were not when they went to Veracruz; they were Americans, every one of them, and were no different in their Americanism ...
2. “Wire Me before Shooting”:
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The Rio Grande region has a long history of rustling, smuggling, banditry, and revolutionary activity. By the early twentieth century, however, Mexico had experienced a lengthy period of relative stability under Porfirio Díaz while, on the Texas side of the river, the area seemed to be leaving behind its troubled past and pursuing economic development. Officials at the local, state, and federal ...
3. The Rhetoric and Reality of Nationalism:
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Monterrey, northeast Mexico’s most important city and one of the Huerta government’s few remaining bastions, was under siege by Constitutionalist forces on April 21, 1914, when news reached the city that US marines had landed at Veracruz. A patriotic, anti-US response was immediately set in mo-tion. General Wilfredo Massieu, commander of the federal forces in the city, ...
4. Creating a Schizophrenic Border:
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When Álvaro Obregón came to the presidency of Mexico on December 1, 1920, Mexico was just emerging from the devastation of a ten-year civil war, and disorders continued in the countryside. As a Sonoran from northern Mexico, he was intensely aware of the significance of the United States, and he wanted its respect for his citizens there, as well as respect and respectability for his ...
5. Revolutionary Mexican Nationalism and the Mexican Immigrant
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My study of the Mexican Revolution began very early in my career as a his-torian. It was at the age of six during the first grade, but this was not part of the first-grade curriculum of Sister Anne Marie at Saint Michael’s Elementary School in Los Angeles, California, during the 1950s. Rather, my grandfather Francisco Balderrama Terrazas presented the Mexican Revolution as a his-...
6. From the Caudillo to Tata Lázaro:
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On September 1, 1928, President Plutarco Elías Calles delivered to Mexico’s assembled congress his final informe, the annual state-of-the-nation address. The speech came with much anticipation. Only six weeks before, a Catholic assassin had killed Calles’s predecessor, General Álvaro Obregón, who had just been elected to a second term in office. As the Constitution of 1917 had abolished ...
7. Revolution without Resonance?
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At first blush, a reassessment of the Mexican Revolution in the impoverished southern state of Chiapas would seem to be a dry, rather pointless exercise. After all, Chiapas has been geographically and politically marginal to Mexico for most of its existence. During the violent decade of 1910–1920, Chiapas was relatively calm for the first four years. When the revolution finally came to ...
8. Back to Centralism, 1920–1940
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In this era of change, of a profound review of our history, we have to ask ourselves once again about the actions of the victors and the vanquished, the former consecrated in officially sanctioned history, and the latter still seeking their place in it. All of them come together, however, to demonstrate again the richness of Mexican history, which can reveal the existence of several truths as ...
9. The Mexican Revolution:
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Few countries cultivate history with such enthusiasm as Mexico.As the opening epigraph to this chapter suggests,1 the Mexican Revolution was one of the titanic revolutions of modern history. It was a jumbled combination of several popular uprisings that destroyed a prolonged dictatorship and gave rise to significant political, social, and economic reforms. It was complicated, ...
About the Contributors
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Carlos Martínez Assad is on the faculty of the Social and Political Sciences Department, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México. He received his PhD in political sociology at the École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales, University of Paris, France. ...
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Further Reading, Back Cover
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Page Count: 264
Illustrations: 20 b&w photos. 2 maps. Index.
Publication Year: 2013
Series Title: Walter Prescott Webb Memorial Lectures, published for the University of Texas at Arlington by Texas A&M University Press