Mexico, NAFTA and the Hardships of Progress

Historical Patterns and Shifting Methods of Oppression


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About the Book

Since the 16th century, Mexico has in many ways been held captive by outsiders. In the modern era, outsiders have most often made their impact through control of the Mexican economy and helping to establish a ruling elite while millions of ordinary citizens face abject poverty. With the advent of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), Mexico’s leadership predicted a new wave of economic progress in the country. However, a devaluation of the peso showed that the Mexican economy was as problematical as before. This work first examines the sociopolitical history of the country, and how the events of the past continue to influence the government’s policies. Mexico’s post–NAFTA future is then explored, with particular emphasis placed on how economic policy could evolve in a period of free trade. A 2013 postscript concludes the work.

About the Author(s)

Richard Krooth lives in Berkeley, California.

Bibliographic Details

Richard Krooth
Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Pages: 396
Bibliographic Info: notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2013 [1995]
pISBN: 978-0-7864-7605-3
eISBN: 978-1-4766-0597-5
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Preface      vii

Introduction      1

Part I • A Portrait of Mexico Past&      21

1 From Inquisition to Independence      23

2 From Empire to the War of Reform      57

Part II • Return to the Past&      73

3 Revolution, Independence, and Imperial Impositions      74

Part III • Looking Forward: Old Ways, New Means&      111

4 Nationalism, Development, and Foreign Influence in the Late 1920s and the 1930s      113

5 Nationalism and Industrial Reform in the 1930s      137

6 Nationalization and Imperial Oil      146

7 A Historic Breakthrough      156

Part IV • From the Status Quo Ante to the Policy of Progress&      165

8 Mexico’s Historic Transformation      169

9 The Policy of Progress

I: The Lost Half-Century, 1940–94      186

10 The Policy of Progress

II: Reconquest and Proletarianization of the Land      200

Part V • From the Old Status Quo to a New Order&      217

11 Domestic Reorganization and the Emergent Zone of Influence      222

12 Free Trade and the Great U.S. Transformation      233

13 NAFTA: A Divisive Pact      249

14 The New Sphere of Influence      264

15 Political Boundaries, Unified Economy, and Maquiladoras      277

16 In the Domain of Each Nation      290

Part VI • Steps to Mexico’s Future      305

17 Democracy Led by a Few: Government Frame for the New Order      311

18 The War on Civil Society      324

19 Mexico in the Twenty-first Century      328

Postscript (2013)      335

Notes      341

Bibliography      367

Index      381

Book Reviews & Awards

“a very useful discussion and history of capital and labor relations in the two countries”—Choice.