MEXICO AND THE AMERICANS by Daniel James

MEXICO AND THE AMERICANS

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KIRKUS REVIEW

This concise, accurate and well written history of the struggle of the Mexican people for nationhood is written with one overwhelming fact in mind---Mexico- since 1800 anyway has been deeply influenced, guided, crippled and yet propelled, by the great ""gringo"" nation to her north. The story begins with colonial Mexico's struggle against Spain, and with the great Revolution of 1810 led by Miguel Hidalgo. Following close on his heels however comes the familiar Mexican dictator type, the ""caudillo"" who gains either local or national power with the help of an army and with an ignorant populace following. The rise of Benito Juarez, then this great democrat's undoing by the dictator Porfio Diaz, the events leading to unrest, and Woodrow Wilson's attempt to support conservatives in Mexico, form a great central part of the book. Then comes the second Revolution, the bloody days of Vilia and Zapata, the rise of leftist Obregon, and finally the economic whirlwind of the far leftist regime of Lazaro Cardenas in which foreign oil holdings were expropriated. FDR's ""good neighbor"" policy, the struggle against Fascist and Communist elements during the 30's and 40's, and the emergence of a democratic middle class brings the book to an optimistic conclusion. A very readable and very informative book, though one that demands some historical knowledge on the part of the reader.

Publisher: Praeger