➯ [Read] ➫ Opening Mexico: The Making of a Democracy By Julia Preston ➻ – Dailytradenews.co.uk


Opening Mexico: The Making of a Democracy quotes Opening Mexico: The Making of a Democracy, litcharts Opening Mexico: The Making of a Democracy, symbolism Opening Mexico: The Making of a Democracy, summary shmoop Opening Mexico: The Making of a Democracy, Opening Mexico: The Making of a Democracy 78202985 The Story Of Mexico S Political Rebirth, By Two Pulitzer Prize Winning Reporters Opening Mexico Is A Narrative History Of The Citizens Movement Which Dismantled The Kleptocratic One Party State That Dominated Mexico In The Twentieth Century, And Replaced It With A Lively Democracy Told Through The Stories Of Mexicans Who Helped Make The Transformation, The Book Gives New And Gripping Behind The Scenes Accounts Of Major Episodes In Mexico S Recent PoliticsMexico S Institutional Revolutionary Party, Led By Presidents Who Ruled Like Mesoamerican Monarchs, Came To Be Called The Perfect Dictatorship But A Massacre Of Student Protesters By Government Snipers Ignited The Desire For Democratic Change In A Generation Of Mexicans Opening Mexico Recounts The Democratic Revolution That Unfolded Over The Following Three Decades It Portrays Clean Vote Crusaders, Labor Organizers, Human Rights Monitors, Investigative Journalists, Indian Guerrillas, And Dissident Political Leaders, Such As President Ernesto Zedillo Mexico S Gorbachev It Traces The Rise Of Vicente Fox, Who Toppled The Authoritarian System In A Peaceful Election In July Opening Mexcio Dramatizes How Mexican Politics Works In Smoke Filled Rooms, And Profiles Many Leaders Of The Country S Elite It Is The Best Book To Date About The Modern History Of The United States Southern Neighbor And Is A Tale Rich In Implications For The Spread Of Democracy Worldwide


10 thoughts on “Opening Mexico: The Making of a Democracy

  1. says:

    Opening Mexico has bumpy stretches in the first hundred pages where the author attempts to provide a historical context for movement to democratize Mexico which the author feels began in the 1960s Once the narrative arrives at the 1968 student riots that preceded the summer Olympics the book dramatically improves It improves even in the 1990s the period during which the author was resident in Mexico Opening Mexico is a book that gets steadily better as it goes along Do not get discouraged Opening Mexico is perfectly suited to someone like myself who has according to the tabulation in my Goodreads database read the grand total of six books on Mexican history over a fifty year period It provides the details behind all the stories about Mexico that have made headlines in the Anglo Saxon world since 1960 in a format that can be understood by someone with no background knowledge on the country Opening Mexico clearly merits four stars It may indeed merit five but I do not know enough about the topic to be absolutely sure that it merits the top rating.


  2. says:

    I really loved this book It s a pretty technical and in depth look at the various forces that led to the PRI being ousted from its 72 year reign in Mexico in the 2000 elections It shows a lot of different angles and discusses how different social, political, economic, and cultural factors came together to demand change and lead to a peaceful transfer of power But it was most interesting because I lived in Mexico from 1993 2000, and was in the capital of Guanajuato state when Vicente Fox the governor of Guanajuato won the election I remember bits and pieces of this happening from my teenage years, but it s so nice to know the full story of why things happened the way they did Further, since I attended a private school, I was acquainted with several of the influential families in the PRI, and so it was almost trippy to hear about people s parents and grandparents and how they figured in to the dynamic This book is also interesting because it was published in 2004 four years into Vicente Fox s regime, and two years before Felipe Calderon took office and really cracked down on the drug cartels and organized crime within Mexico, which spurred a bloodbath that continues to this day The book has such a hopeful tone for the prospect of peace and democracy and the gradual decrease of crime and increase of economic stability, and while some of that is happening, it is definitely interesting to read with the benefit of hindsight Overall, a very well written and in depth detailing of a fascinating period in North American history.


  3. says:

    I fear I am too limited in my tastes.I initially avoided reading this book because it didn t fit with my preference for things that somehow directly influence the world that I live in History of of American, Western, Europe, Religion and the like.However, I was quickly drug into the epic human drama by the painful, tragic, but darkly fascinating events of the Tlatelolco massacre in 1968 From then on, as the tale of good and evil, corruption and vice, power and dissent unfolded, I realized the book was teaching me about the political process and pathway towards positive change than anything I have read before In much the same way learning a new language teaches you as much about your own language, so too does this book teach about any democratic struggle while ostensibly telling the tale of Mexico s painful evolution toward democracy.I feel like I understand the whole world just that much better now.


  4. says:

    A very readable except for the Notes, see below and interesting account of how Mexico transitioned from a perfect dictatorship to an imperfect democracy at the end of seventy years of single party rule Although the Epilogue includes observations through 2004, the climax of the book is the election of President Vicente Fox in 2000.One thirty page chapter covers from the time of Aztec rule to 1968, so you ll need another book or two for that period, but this is a great single volume read for 1968 2000 In describing how Mexico opened up to true democracy, the authors cover not just political machinations but also the media, drug cartels, corruption, the armed forces, labor unions and the intelligentsia You ll learn a lot.As a reader, I think the book could have used one read through by an editor sorry, Pulitzer Prize winning authors and I wish like I always do in these cases that references to the Notes at the end of the book had been super scripted in the main text You have to keep flipping back to see if there are notes instead of flipping back to look up a particular note you know is theregrrrrThat said, if you re curious about how Mexico finally elected a President from a different political party after 70 years and about all the other changes in the country associated with that election, you should enjoy this title.


  5. says:

    Yes, I now know a lot about democracy in Mexico than I used to.


  6. says:

    Written in the early 2000s by two New York Times reporters Julia Preston and Sam Dillon who had extensive experience in Mexico, this book examines the slow, slow climb into democracy that Mexico took The authors primarily focus on the 1980s and 90s, and the first few years of this century They begin with the 2000 presidential election of Vicente Fox the first non PRI Institutional Revolutionary Party President in the country s history Fox was the candidate of the rival PAN National Action Party party, a party that had known only limited success in local elections up to that time The election of Fox was Mexico s first peaceful transition of power from one political party to another Preston and Dillon then go way to revolutionary times and discuss Benito Juarez for a moment before moving onto the bloody decades of the 1910s and 1920s, where there was a succession of dictators who tried to kill each other off, and often succeeded They then quickly move to the chaos in 1968 Mexico City, involving student protests and the Summer Olympics President Gustavo Diaz Ordaz initiated a brutal crackdown on mainly peaceful student protesters Unfortunately, jumping around time periods so quickly like this led to some confusion for me as a slew of names was thrown forward in each time period, making it difficult to remember who was who Also, while the authors did review how the PRI started, it seemed rushed I think they would have benefited by a thorough discussion of the beginnings of the party and the forces that brought it to fruition Fortunately, once they get on comfortable territory, the narrative smooths out and their knowledge of recent Mexican history becomes apparent They examine different facets of Mexican life politics, drug related violence, kidnapping, the changing economy, arts and literature They also review, at length, print media This seemed to go on a bit too much for me I think it was that they were reporters and wanted to write about newspapers They did discuss the two major television networks, but not to the extent that they wrote about the various periodicals that were popping up And they devoted a whopping one sentence to discussing Mexican radio They do a good job of reviewing the presidencies of Carlos Salinas, Miguel de la Madrid, and Ernesto Zedillo Much of this was focused on how those presidents resisted democratic reform and used the PRI to dominate ordinary Mexicans By the time of Zedillo s presidency 1994 2000 , Mexicans were making serious pushes towards reforms one example combating kidnapping and making the government at least try to look for missing persons The authors play it pretty straight on Zedillo neither showing him to be a reformer and beneficent leader nor an authoritarian ruler in the mold of Diaz Ordaz They end by returning the Fox s election and examining the first half of his presidency, which they clearly were not impressed with Interspersed throughout the book are brief first person narratives from one or the other about interviews they conducted or assignments they were working on that helps give the reader an understanding as to why that particular topic was being discussed These are occasional, and if anything help bring a personal perspective to their reporting This was a very good primer on Mexico from about 1985 there was a chapter devoted to the devastating Mexico City earthquake of that year to 2000, especially where the partial degradation of the PRI is concerned Unfortunately, as a history book, it falls a bit short Grade C


  7. says:

    poca politica, mucha adminstracion quoting Porfirio Diaz, 45 The symbol of this irreverent new politics post earthquake was Superbarrio, a masked figure in a spangled red costume and cape, a hybrid between Superman and a show wrestler 114 The DFS federal security directorate had stumbled into the drug business almost by accident In 1976, after a leftist rebel group kidnapped his sister, President elect Jose Lopez Portillo had given the DFS the authority to wipe out the insurgents by any means necessary During raids on narcotics warehouses thought to be guerrilla safe houses, they came into contact with drug traffickers, and soon they were protecting them from arrest in exchange for a healthy cut of their profits 328 In time, Mexico s long suffering people grew outraged For nearly two decades, pollsters had consistently found the average citizen s main concern to be Mexico s troubled economy by 1998 public insecurity had become the country s number one worry Behind much of the public irritation were abuses associated with the constitutional writ known as the amparo, the procedure by which Mexicans appeal sentences, file habeas corpus petitions, seek injunctions, and contest the constitutionality of laws Anyone targeted with a criminal investigation could, if sufficiently wealthy to muster the legal fees, file an amparo suit requesting a federal judge to shield him or her from arrest 387 8 Not since Emiliano Zapata had the Mexican Left had a appealing figure than Subcommandante Marcos Many of his writings were framed as dialogues with a beetle he called Don Durito, Mr Hardhead 449


  8. says:

    Opening Mexico does a great job of giving a one book overview of the enormous changes in the Mexican political system in the last fifty years or so and how they came about Mexico transformed from an impregnable, one party, totalitarian state that controlled nearly every aspect of public life into a thriving, multi party republic in a process that was difficult but relatively though certainly not entirely bloodless It is fascinating to read about the combination of grassroots struggle and top down glasnost like reform that brought this off.It s surprising to me how little of this story has become part of the political dialog in the United States compared to things like the fall of the Berlin Wall, Yeltsin standing on a tank, the Tienanmien massacre, glasnost perestroika, how many aspects of this Mexican revolution have become commonplace parts of the discussion here


  9. says:

    I really loved reading this book it introduced me to contemporary Mexican political history and it s fascinating Written in journalistic prose, you ll meet the recent presidents of Mexico and learn all about the struggle for power among the parties I remember visiting Mexico in 1977 or 78 and being surprised by a small rally of serious looking young people carrying red flags in a small Saltillo plaza Now I know that this was after the PRI allowed a bit openness by other political parties It s very cool to find a book that helps me make sense of an event that occurred so many years ago.


  10. says:

    Lord Acton gave the greatest insult ever to journalists and historians when he wrote to them not to rulers that Power corrupts Absolute power corrupts absolutely While journalists and historians have removed the focus from themselves as people who buy ink by the gallon are wont to do, with aphorisms , it still fits The authors are journalists playing historians.The book jacket reads that Julia Preston and Samuel Dillon are Pultizer Prize winning reporters for THE NEW YORK TIMES That sums it up nicely I grew up reading that paper and was sick of it in under a decade, well before high school, and am old enough to have bad memories of the reporting outside of the science and art pages than good ones.They suck up to power while focusing on the scurrilous in discussing candidates they always assumed would be out of power and display consistent disappointment and good will towards nasty progressive radicals Therefore, in the first chapter, Vincente Fox is a bumbling overconfident amiable dunce henpecked by his mother, linked romantically to a catty weepy employee of his, and is transphobic, while his PRI predecessor Ernesto Zedillo is a heroic natural leader untouched by corruption there s an arguable case to be made for all of that, even, controversially, the last, but when presented so slavishly , and Cuauht moc Cardenas of the Party of Democratic Revolution is not a caudillo in waiting eager for blood but merely disappointing in his grim gracelessness and lack of commitment to democracy and rights when he is compared to Castro, it is to criticize his choice of the moment in fashion, not to highlight the Totonec horror his regime might bring and somehow inspiring and responsible for Fox s victory than Fox, despite finishing third in the race with a mere 17 percent of the vote.While the 1985 earthquake gets equal billing with the 1968 suppression of Marxist student revolts, the authors harp on the Marxists as inspirational even as ad hoc groups of private citizens nd private economy firms and Catholic divines defying bans on going out in public in their official capacities were the ones who broke the seeming monopoly of the Party of Institutional Revolution or PRI on coordinated social action.Add to that the occasional glaring error for example, on the first page of chapter two that Fox s election was the first peaceful transition of power between politicians from different parties not since the PRI took over to become the world s longest ruling party, but in all of Mexican history that s untrue several different ways, from when Santa Anna let a vice president representing different interests rule to some of the earliest post Peace of Iguala transitions, to the Bourbon succession to the Hapsburgs and this is what non fans of the New York Times would expect.The book is relatively well researched, and the authors do know all that was considered fit to know about the country, so I do not give it a one But if you are familiar with literature or films about foreign service officers fleeing some nation in turmoil exclaiming something about no one being able to see it all coming well, those sorts of characters are the authors Self confidence should be earned, or at least entertaining.


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