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This article addresses the ways in which an explicitly political text was transformed in translation. Specifically, it analyzes Harriet de Onís's English translation of El águila y la serpiente (1928), Martín Luis Guzmán's semi-fictional memoir of the Mexican Revolution. The first English translation, titled The Eagle and the Serpent and published by Alfred A. Knopf in 1930, was an abridged version that reduced Guzmán's broad commentary to a novel about Francisco "Pancho" Villa, who was then a highly visible figure in the U.S. imaginary. This paper analyzes the ways in which de Onís's choices as a translator and editor refashioned the text for the U.S. market.