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The Latin Americanist, September 2012 Alvarado, and revitalized the field. Alvarado’s success resulted not only from his creative incorporation of ecological factors, but he “judged the quality of control work by its success in practice, rather than adhering rigidly to preconceived doctrine.” (139) Carter explains how Alvarado, who eventually achieved international stature, “effectively depoliticized malaria control by severing its connection, as much as possible, to larger projects of social reform.” (139) Chapter five focuses on the Perón years, which were accompanied by a “new public health ideology.” (144) Building on the foundation of preceding decades’ knowledge, adding some crucial new technologies such as DDT and the use of motor vehicles, and finally, welcoming back international agencies such as the Rockefeller Foundation, the government’s public health efforts in this period were newly energized. Yet, as Carter significantly concludes, malaria control had limited effect on the overall living conditions of most Argentines in this poverty-stricken region. Eliminating malaria alone would not result in the “sweeping social transformation its proponents had once predicted.” (166) Thus, while the technological, focused campaigns were an effective way to eradicate malaria, they should not be confused with a holistic, social justice approach that remained (and still remains in many areas) frustratingly out of reach. Enemy in the Blood is exhaustively researched, well written, and provides detail about a compellingly important issue for Argentina as well as other poor countries. Questions of public health are always embedded in a complex of medical, social, cultural, and political factors. Carter’s examination of malaria control covers all these and adds important discussions of ecology and technology. The book will be of great interest to scholars not just in Latin American social history but also in the history of medicine, geography, and public health. It will not only have an impact on the field but could be assigned fruitfully in classes on Argentina, the history of medicine, and public health. Julia Rodriguez Department of History University of New Hampshire MAñANA FOREVER? MEXICO AND THE MEXICANS. By Jorge G. Castañeda. New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 2011, p. 293, $27.95. Given the historically complex relationship between Mexico and the United States, and the recent troubles derived from their common problem with illegal drugs, it is surprising the lack of materials published in the US about Mexico. This surprise is surpassed only by the lack of materials about the United States published in Mexico. Because this mutual disinterest is so evident and in the end catastrophic, any book that focuses on either country and the relationship with its neighbor—and they do appear from time to time—is always welcomed. Most often, however, these books are either 110 Book Reviews very specialized academic monographs or books, like the one reviewed here, that try to “explain” Mexico to Americans (although its author claims it tries “to explain Mexico to Mexicans” (xi) as well). Unfortunately, trying to avoid at all cost a “turgid academic debate” (xi), Mañana Forever ends up being a somehow simplified explanation of “the disconnect between Mexico’s national character and its current reality” (xii). Organized by contrasting chapters, one describing a trait of the Mexican character and the next disarticulating it to show that it is no longer functional in modern Mexico, the book relies too much on personal impressions and opinions and therefore raises the question of who has the authority to speak for (or explain) a nation and by what virtue. Furthermore , some of these opinions and impressions are so general (“Mexican fans don’t like to socialize collectively,” 5; “Mexican society is extremely difficult to organize,” 10; “Mexicans prefer to avoid choice and pursue all good things simultaneously,” 151) and stereotypical (“Mexicans love to see themselves as victims,” 69; “Mexican society is so individualistic, because civil society is so weak,” 207) that they seem frankly offensive. Other statements are simply not true, like Rita Macedo starring in Buñuel’s Los Olvidados or José Vasconcelos developing his concept of the cosmic race based on the “vision of mestizo Mexico” (73)—he had most likely South America in mind when he developed this theory. These contrasting chapters are organized in four pairs...

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Additional Information

ISSN
1557-203X
Print ISSN
1557-2021
Pages
pp. 110-112
Launched on MUSE
2019-01-25
Open Access
No
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