In this extraordinary new book, Andrew Konove traces the history of illicit commerce in Mexico City from the seventeenth century to the twentieth, showing how it became central to the economic and political life of the city. The story centers on the untold history of the Baratillo, the city's infamous thieves' market. Originating in the colonial-era Plaza Mayor, the Baratillo moved to the neighborhood of Tepito in the early twentieth century, where it grew into one of the world's largest emporiums for black-market goods. Konove uncovers the far-reaching ties between vendors in the Baratillo and political and mercantile elites in Mexico City, revealing the surprising clout of vendors who trafficked in the shadow economy and the diverse individuals who benefited from their trade.
Publisher: University of California Press
Number of pages: 304
Weight: 454 g
Dimensions: 229 x 152 x 25 mm
"In this study of `illicit commerce' in Mexico City between the seventeenth and twentieth centuries, Konove focuses on the development and functioning of Baratillo, `the city's infamous thieves' market'. He claims that the vendors in this market have long enjoyed ties with the capital's political and mercantile elites." * Survival: Global Politics and Strategy *
"Black Market Capital offers a number of contributions to our understanding of urban life in Mexico. . . . challenges some commonly held historical interpretations of Mexican and Latin American history." * Journal of Interdisciplinary History *