Explores the wide-ranging impact of the Mexican Revolution on global cinema and Western intellectual thought.
The first major social revolution of the twentieth century, the Mexican Revolution was visually documented in technologically novel ways and to an unprecedented degree during its initial armed phase (1910–21) and the subsequent years of reconstruction (1921–40). Offering a sweeping and compelling new account of this iconic revolution, The Mexican Revolution on the World Stage reveals its profound impact on both global cinema and intellectual thought in and beyond Mexico. Focusing on the period from 1940 to 1970, Adela Pineda Franco examines a group of North American, European, and Latin American filmmakers and intellectuals who mined this extensive visual archive to produce politically engaged cinematic works that also reflect and respond to their own sociohistorical contexts. The author weaves together multilayered analysis of individual films, the history of their production and reception, and broader intellectual developments to illuminate the complex relationship between culture and revolution at the onset of World War II, during the Cold War, and amid the anti-systemic movements agitating Latin America in the 1960s. Ambitious in scope, this book charts an innovative transnational history of not only the visual representation but also the very idea of revolution.
“The Mexican Revolution on the World Stage is a first-rate, thoroughly researched work that opens a new area of inquiry in the field. It reveals how the visual archive of the revolution has been locally and globally used and abused to either ascertain or contest the significance of the revolution in differing contexts and periods by delving into the ideological complexities, even paradoxes, of cultural production.” — Zuzana M. Pick, author of Constructing the Image of the Mexican Revolution: Cinema and the Archive
“This book is a vital and compelling historical analysis of the contexts and contribution international filmmakers have made to the construction of the Mexican Revolution on film. The archival research is impressive and wide-ranging.” — Niamh Thornton, author of Revolution and Rebellion in Mexican Film
Adela Pineda Franco is Professor of Latin American Literature and Film at Boston University. She is the coeditor (with Jaime Marroquin Arredondo and Magdalena Mieri) of Open Borders to a Revolution: Culture, Politics, and Migration.
A conflict with Mexico, leading to territorial expansion of the United States, was not unwanted. California was Polk’s prime objective from the beginning of his administration, and this Mexican province was to be acquired by conquest in a war initiated on the Texas-Mexican border. To this end Polk sent several agents to Texas, but the man at the center of the war intrigue was Commodore Robert F. Stockton, independently wealthy, prominent in politics, and the head of great business enterprises.
Sufficient evidence exists to substantiate in every important particular the steps in Polk’s path of intrigue: his attempts to bribe Mexican officials; his efforts to encourage revolutionary forces in the Mexican provinces; his use of the threat of force to frighten Mexico into selling California; his attempt to initiate a war by proxy through the government of Texas and Anson Jones.
If Polk was unwilling to assume responsibility for aggressive war, Stockton was not; he arrived in Galveston with a squadron of naval vessels in May of 1845, prepared to finance an army of three thousand men from his personal funds to avoid the overt involvement of the government of the United States. But, says Price, for all the internationally dangerous implications of such a maneuver, the two men who played the chief roles in the war intrigue of 1845 are representative in their written and spoken expression of faith in American righteousness of action and in the American tradition of the divine mission.
Based on extensive research into the written and spoken words of the people who were involved, directly and indirectly, in the events, this analysis (which will be considered revisionist) of the origins of the War with Mexico is the result of the kind of objective approach to national history for which the author makes a plea in his preface and conclusion and in his interpretive comments throughout the work. The historian, Price believes, “has the extraordinary advantage of being able to examine mankind from that distance and elevation and detachment which so often reveals, as it is designed to reveal, the gulf between pretension and performance.”
In contrast with many current books that treat the war as a fundamentally American experience, Timothy J. Henderson's A Glorious Defeat offers a fresh perspective on the Mexican side of the equation. Examining the manner in which Mexico gained independence, Henderson brings to light a greater understanding of that country's intense factionalism and political paralysis leading up to and through the war. Also touching on a range of topics from culture, ethnicity, religion, and geography, this comprehensive yet concise narrative humanizes the conflict and serves as the perfect introduction for new readers of Mexican history.
The collection’s contributors examine international and everyday contests over political power and cultural representation, focusing on communities and groups above and underground , on state houses and diplomatic board rooms manned by Latin American and international governing elites, on the relations among states regionally, and, less frequently, on the dynamics between the two great superpowers themselves. In addition to charting new directions for research on the Latin American Cold War, In From the Cold seeks to contribute more generally to an understanding of the conflict in the global south.
Contributors. Ariel C. Armony, Steven J. Bachelor, Thomas S. Blanton, Seth Fein, Piero Gleijeses, Gilbert M. Joseph, Victoria Langland, Carlota McAllister, Stephen Pitti, Daniela Spenser, Eric Zolov
A diverse collection of more than eighty selections, The Mexico Reader brings together poetry, folklore, fiction, polemics, photoessays, songs, political cartoons, memoirs, satire, and scholarly writing. Many pieces are by Mexicans, and a substantial number appear for the first time in English. Works by Octavio Paz and Carlos Fuentes are included along with pieces about such well-known figures as the larger-than-life revolutionary leaders Pancho Villa and Emiliano Zapata; there is also a comminiqué from a more recent rebel, Subcomandante Marcos. At the same time, the book highlights the perspectives of many others—indigenous peoples, women, politicians, patriots, artists, soldiers, rebels, priests, workers, peasants, foreign diplomats, and travelers.
The Mexico Reader explores what it means to be Mexican, tracing the history of Mexico from pre-Columbian times through the country’s epic revolution (1910–17) to the present day. The materials relating to the latter half of the twentieth century focus on the contradictions and costs of postrevolutionary modernization, the rise of civil society, and the dynamic cross-cultural zone marked by the two thousand-mile Mexico-U.S. border. The editors have divided the book into several sections organized roughly in chronological order and have provided brief historical contexts for each section. They have also furnished a lengthy list of resources about Mexico, including websites and suggestions for further reading.
"The [drug smuggling] business goes on, the slaughtered dead pile up, the US agencies continue to ratchet up their budgets, the prisons grow larger and all the real rules of the game are in this book, some kind of masterpiece."—Charles Bowden, from the introduction
"Pablo Acosta was a living legend in his Mexican border town of Ojinaga. He smuggled tremendous amounts of drugs into the United States; he survived numerous attempts on his power—and his life—by rivals; and he blessed the town with charity and civic improvements. He was finally slain in 1987 during a raid by Mexican officials with the cooperation of US law enforcement. Poppa has turned out a detailed and exciting book, covering in depth Acosta's life; the other drug factions that battled with him; the village of Ojinaga; and the logistics of the drug operation. The result is a nonfiction account with enough greed, treachery, shoot-outs, and government corruption to fascinate true crime and crime fiction readers alike. Highly recommended."—Library Journal
Terrence E. Poppa, an award-winning journalist, was a finalist for a 1987 Pulitzer Prize for his investigations into the connection between crime and government in Mexico. He was featured in Standoff in Mexico, a PBS production about fraudulent elections in Mexico. Due to his unique insights into the world of Mexican drug trafficking, Poppa has been widely interviewed on radio and television, including Larry King Live and The O'Reilly Factor.