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Mexico and Mexicans in the Making of the United States

Mexico and Mexicans have been involved in every aspect of making the United States from colonial times until the present. Yet our shared history is a largely untold story, eclipsed by headlines about illegal immigration and the drug war. Placing Mexicans and Mexico in the center of American history, this volume elucidates how economic, social, and cultural legacies grounded in colonial New Spain shaped both Mexico and the United States, as well as how Mexican Americans have constructively participated in North American ways of production, politics, social relations, and cultural understandings. Combining historical, sociological, and cultural perspectives, the contributors to this volume explore the following topics: the Hispanic foundations of North American capitalism; indigenous peoples' actions and adaptations to living between Mexico and the United States; U.S. literary constructions of a Mexican "other" during the U.S.-Mexican War and the Civil War; the Mexican cotton trade, which helped sustain the Confederacy during the Civil War; the transformation of the Arizona borderlands from a multiethnic Mexican frontier into an industrializing place of "whites" and "Mexicans"; the early-twentieth-century roles of indigenous Mexicans in organizing to demand rights for all workers; the rise of Mexican Americans to claim middle-class lives during and after World War II; and the persistence of a Mexican tradition of racial/ethnic mixing-mestizaje-as an alternative to the racial polarities so long at the center of American life.
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Table of Contents

Preface Introduction: Mexico and Mexicans Making U.S. History John Tutino Capitalist Foundations: Spanish North America, Mexico, and the United States John Tutino Between Mexico and the United States: From Indios to Vaqueros in the Pastoral Borderlands Andrew C. Isenberg Imagining Mexico in Love and War: Nineteenth-Century U.S. Literature and Visual Culture Shelley Streeby Mexican Merchants and Teamsters on the Texas Cotton Road, 1862-1865 David Montejano Making Americans and Mexicans in the Arizona Borderlands Katherine Benton-Cohen Keeping Community, Challenging Boundaries: Indigenous Migrants, Internationalist Workers, and Mexican Revolutionaries, 1900-1920 Devra Weber Transnational Triangulation: Mexico, the United States, and the Emergence of a Mexican American Middle Class Jose E. Limon New Mexico, Mestizaje, and the Transnations of North America Ramon A. Gutierrez Bibliography Contributors Index

About the Author

John Tutino teaches the history of Mexico and the Americas in the History Department and School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University. His previous books include Making a New World: Founding Capitalism in the Bajio and Spanish North America and From Insurrection to Revolution in Mexico: Social Bases of Agrarian Violence, 1750-1940.


"Mexico & Mexicans in the Making of the United States is long overdue [...] Beginning in the colonial era, this collection of essays successfully argues that Mexico and Mexicans have been a too-long ignored factor in the political, economic, and social history of the United States. Essays on labor history, American literature, racial categorization, and middle-class Mexican Americans all demonstrate that the United States has been "made" by Mexico and Mexicans in myriad ways. An ambitious work, Mexico and Mexicans engages with Western, American Indian, and Chicano historiography along the way. " - Journal of American Ethnic History

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