The Eagle and the Virgin: Nation and Cultural Revolution in Mexico, 1920–1940

The Eagle and the Virgin: Nation and Cultural Revolution in Mexico, 1920–1940

by Mary Kay Vaughan
     
 

ISBN-10: 082233657X

ISBN-13: 9780822336570

Pub. Date: 03/13/2006

Publisher: Duke University Press Books

When the fighting of the Mexican Revolution died down in 1920, the national government faced the daunting task of building a cohesive nation. It had to establish control over a disparate and needy population and prepare the country for global economic competition. As part of this effort, the government enlisted the energy of artists and intellectuals in cultivating

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Overview

When the fighting of the Mexican Revolution died down in 1920, the national government faced the daunting task of building a cohesive nation. It had to establish control over a disparate and needy population and prepare the country for global economic competition. As part of this effort, the government enlisted the energy of artists and intellectuals in cultivating a distinctly Mexican identity. It devised a project for the incorporation of indigenous peoples and oversaw a vast, innovative program in the arts. The Eagle and the Virgin examines the massive nation-building project Mexico undertook between 1920 and 1940.

Contributors explore the nation-building efforts of the government, artists, entrepreneurs, and social movements; their contradictory, often conflicting intersection; and their inevitably transnational nature. Scholars of political and social history, communications, and art history describe the creation of national symbols, myths, histories, and heroes to inspire patriotism and transform workers and peasants into efficient, productive, gendered subjects. They analyze the aesthetics of nation building made visible in murals, music, and architecture; investigate state projects to promote health, anticlericalism, and education; and consider the role of mass communications, such as cinema and radio, and the impact of road building. They discuss how national identity was forged among social groups, specifically political Catholics, industrial workers, middle-class women, and indigenous communities. Most important, the volume weighs in on debates about the tension between the eagle (the modernizing secular state) and the Virgin of Guadalupe (the Catholic defense of faith and morality). It argues that despite bitter, violent conflict, the symbolic repertoire created to promote national identity and memory making eventually proved capacious enough to allow the eagle and the virgin to coexist peacefully.

Contributors. Adrian Bantjes, Katherine Bliss, María Teresa Fernández, Joy Elizabeth Hayes, Joanne Hershfield, Stephen E. Lewis, Claudio Lomnitz, Rick A. López, Sarah M. Lowe, Jean Meyer, James Oles, Patrice Olsen, Desmond Rochfort, Michael Snodgrass, Mary Kay Vaughan, Marco Velázquez, Wendy Waters, Adriana Zavala

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780822336570
Publisher:
Duke University Press Books
Publication date:
03/13/2006
Pages:
396

Table of Contents

List of Illustrations xii

Acknowledgments ix

Introduction / Mary Kay Vaughan and Stephen E. Lewis 1

I. The Aesthetics of Nation Building

The Noche Mexicana and the Exhibition of Popular Arts:
Two Ways of Exalting Indianness / Rick A. Lopez 23

The Sickle, the Serpent, and the Soil: History, Revolution, Nationhood, and Modernity in the Murals of Diego Rivera, Jose Clemente Orozco, and David Alfaro Siqueiros / Desmond Rochfort 43

Painting in the Shadow of the Big Three

Frida Kahlo / Sarah M. Lowe 53

Maria Izquierdo / Adrianna Zavala 67

The Mexican Experience of Marion and Grace Greenwood / James Oles 79

Mestizaje and Musical Nationalism in Mexico/ Marco Velazquez and Mary Kay Vaughan 95

Revolution in the City Streets: Changing Nomenclature, Changing Form, and the Revision of Public Memory / Patrice Elizabeth Olsen 119

II. Utopian Projects of the State

Saints, Sinners, and the State Formation: Local Religion and Cultural Revolution in Mexico / Adrian A. Bantjes 137

Nationalizing the Countryside: Schools and Rural Communities in the 1930’s / Mary Kay Vaughan 157

The Nation, Education, and the “Indian Problem” in Mexico, 1920–1940 / Stephen E. Lewis 176

For the Health of the Nation: Gender and the Cultural Politics of Social Hygiene in Revolutionary Mexico / Katherine E. Bliss 196

III. Mass Communication and Nation Building

Remapping Identities: Road Construction and Nation Building in Postrevolutionary Mexico / Wendy Waters 221

National Imaginings on the Air: Radio in Mexico, 1920–1950 / Joy Elizabeth Hayes 243

Screening the Nation / Joanne Hershfield 259

IV. Social Construction of Nations

An Idea of Mexico: Catholics in the Revolution / Jean Meyer 281

Guadalajaran Women and the Construction of National Identity / Maria Teresa Fernandez Aceves 297

“We Are All Mexicans Here”: Workers, Patriotism, and Union Struggles in Monterrey / Michael Snodgrass 314

Final Reflections: What Was Mexico’s Cultural Revolution? / Claudio Lomnitz 335

Contributors 351

Index 357

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