Uses cultural representations to investigate how two religious minority communities came to be incorporated into the Mexican nation. Liminal Sovereignty examines the lives of two religious minority communities in Mexico, Mennonites and Mormons, as seen through Mexican culture. Mennonites emigrated from Canada to Mexico from the 1920s to the 1940s, and Mormons emigrated from the United States in the 1880s, left in 1912, and returned in the 1920s. Rebecca Janzen focuses on representations of these groups in film, television, online comics, photography, and legal documents. Janzen argues that perceptions of Mennonites and Mormons—groups on the margins and borders of Mexican society—illustrate broader trends in Mexican history. The government granted both communities significant exceptions to national laws to encourage them to immigrate; she argues that these foreshadow what is today called the Mexican state of exception. The groups’ inclusion into the Mexican nation shows that post-Revolutionary Mexico was flexible with its central tenets of land reform and building a mestizo race. Janzen uses minority communities at the periphery to give us a new understanding of the Mexican nation.
“This subject matter has never been studied in this fashion before, nor with such theoretical sophistication. Not only is the book compelling, but it’s also illuminating.” — Pedro A. Palou, Tufts University
About the author
Rebecca Janzen is Assistant Professor of Spanish at the University of South Carolina and the author of The National Body in Mexican Literature: Collective Challenges to Biopolitical Control.
You can read books purchased on Google Play using your computer's web browser.
eReaders and other devices
To read on e-ink devices like the Sony eReader or Barnes & Noble Nook, you'll need to download a file and transfer it to your device. Please follow the detailed Help center instructions to transfer the files to supported eReaders.