Bad Mexicans: Race, Empire, and Revolution in the Borderlands

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Writing histories of radical leftist groups and how they have helped to inspire revolutions can be a little tricky because it is important to balance the extent to which a small group inspires a larger revolution and how much was due to the impact of events already on the ground.

The 1910 Mexican Revolution took the country from rule by one man, Portofino Diaz, to rule by a single party for the next ninety years. This book focuses on a group of leftist rebels, mostly intellectuals, who felt marginalized under Diaz and printed their thoughts in a revolutionary publication. The author would have the reader believe that this group, which was tracked across three countries, shut down multiple times, and constantly short on funds, had a major impact on the Mexican Revolution.

It is interesting to read about the history of leftist revolutionary groups, with the infighting, the ideas, and the belief that a few people could wield supreme power. This book is better when it examines the role that the United States played in either hunting down the few rebel writers or deciding not to hunt them down.


Reviewed By:

Author Kelly Lytle Hernández
Star Count 3/5
Format Hard
Page Count 384 pages
Publisher W. W. Norton & Company
Publish Date 10-May-2022
ISBN 9781324004370
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Issue July 2022
Category History
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