"Together, these thirteen essays and Matthew Butler's introduction make an outstanding contribution to the study of twentieth-century Mexico and the politics of religion during the tumultuous 1910-1940 period. This book amounts to the first far-reaching entry into the history of church and religion in Mexico then that goes beyond the Cristero Rebellion and a teleological, top-level narrative of nation-building and 'defanaticization.' The roots and many branches of anti-clericalism are at the center of the book, and the perspectives are novel, often based on skillful use of hitherto untapped civil and ecclesiastical archives. Especially valuable is the attention to the southern states of Oaxaca, Campeche, Chiapas, and Tabasco, and to counterpoints of beliefs and practices, laws and their implementation, church and state, centers and peripheries, leaders and their constituencies, priests/politicians/teachers/lay catechists, Catholics/Protestants/Spiritists/ atheists in ways that break through familiar ways of thinking about tradition and modernity. The result is a more complex, synoptic understanding of a deeply contested history of religion and religious institutions in Mexico's public life." - William B. Taylor, Muriel McKevitt Sonne Professor of History, University of California, Berkeley
While Mexico's spiritual history after the 1910 Revolution is often essentialized as a church-state power struggle, this book reveals the complexity of interactions between revolution and religion.
Meet the Author
Matthew Butler is Lecturer in Latin American Studies, Queen's University Belfast.
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