The+Mexican+Revolution_lecture

The+Mexican+Revolution_lecture - Lecture 3 The Mexican...

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Lecture 3 The Mexican Revolution fvw
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Mobilization of the masses for social redistribution. Different from military coups and conflicts limited to the elites. Expansion of participation more than contestation. Is there a trade off between equality (and the rights of the majority) and liberty (and the rights of the minority)? Was the Mexican Revolution, the first social revolution of the xx century , a failed democratic transition, a civil war or all of the above? Official story of the revolution (and linkages with LA revolutions and left-wing exiles). SOCIAL REVOLUTION
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Porfirio Diaz (1876-1911): authoritarian rule & stability for economic development & export-led growth (based on FDI & his own clique). Elections, without competition (fraud rather than change in rules). 1910: recession triggers the rebellion of Northern landowning elites & middle classes against Diaz. Historical Background
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Northern Army was multi-class: northern bourgeoisie (Madero, Carranza), middle classes, workers, miners & agricultural laborers, cowboys (Villa) => heterogeneity expressed in demands—from liberal democracy to labor rights and peonage debt relief. Southern Army: peasants (Zapata) seeking a return to communal land tenure. Revolutionary armies Carranza Madero Villa Zapata
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The “revolutionary” armies of Villa as depicted in “The Underdogs” (p.61): “They were an unruly mob of parched, filthy, barely clad men, their heads covered by palm-leaf sombreros with tall cone-shaped crowns and immense brims that hid half their faces. Thus the mob were called big hats. And the big hats were returning as happy as when they had marched off before, plundering every town, every hacienda, every rancho, and even the most miserable hut they had found along the way.” Villa vs Zapata ( redistribution vs restitution based on Lerdo Law). Fighting the dictatorship =>mobilizing the poor to fight triggers social claims
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Can Madero be depicted as a moderate between the hardliners (such as Huerta who would kill him) and radicals who demanded the promised rights that led to their mobilization (Villa & Zapata). “The elections had given Madero an undisputed triumph. But his presence in the government had not in any way improved life for the campesinos . After the persecution that wiped out their villages and harvests, Daniel’s friends had decided to take the land and rebel against the government that had not delivered what it had promised in exchange for their support. They did not want a peace of lies; they could not go back to their people, after so much death and tumult, to say that the peons were still peons and the haciendas still belonged to the old owners.” (Lovesick, p.247-8).
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