Crafting Mexico: Intellectuals, Artisans, and the State after the Revolution (Hardback)
  • Crafting Mexico: Intellectuals, Artisans, and the State after the Revolution (Hardback)
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Crafting Mexico: Intellectuals, Artisans, and the State after the Revolution (Hardback)

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£99.00
Hardback 424 Pages / Published: 09/09/2010
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After Mexico's revolution of 1910-1920, intellectuals sought to forge a unified cultural nation out of the country's diverse populace. Their efforts resulted in an "ethnicized" interpretation of Mexicanness that intentionally incorporated elements of folk and indigenous culture. In this rich history, Rick A. Lopez explains how thinkers and artists, including the anthropologist Manuel Gamio, the composer Carlos Chavez, the educator Moises Saenz, the painter Diego Rivera, and many less-known figures, formulated and promoted a notion of nationhood in which previously denigrated vernacular arts-dance, music, and handicrafts such as textiles, basketry, ceramics, wooden toys, and ritual masks-came to be seen as symbolic of Mexico's modernity and national distinctiveness. Lopez examines how the nationalist project intersected with transnational intellectual and artistic currents, as well as how it was adapted in rural communities. He provides an in-depth account of artisanal practices in the village of Olinala, located in the mountainous southern state of Guerrero. Since the 1920s, Olinala has been renowned for its lacquered boxes and gourds, which have been considered to be among the "most Mexican" of the nation's arts. Crafting Mexico illuminates the role of cultural politics and visual production in Mexico's transformation from a regionally and culturally fragmented country into a modern nation-state with an inclusive and compelling national identity.

Publisher: Duke University Press
ISBN: 9780822346944
Number of pages: 424


MEDIA REVIEWS
"Crafting Mexico is an important and original contribution to the literature on
visual arts in national ideologies. The detailed history, sophisticated analyses, intriguing case studies, and wonderful black and white and color photographs make this book essential to the library of anyone interested in Mexican popular art. " - Michael Chibnik, Journal of Latin American and Caribbean Anthropology
"Crafting Mexico is a major contribution to the growing literature on nation, revolution, and indigenismo in postrevolutionary Mexico. . . . This fascinating and richly illustrated book is a fitting testimony to over a decade of exhaustive research and careful writing. It will surely serve as a model for future work." - Stephen E. Lewis, The Americas
"Crafting Mexico is an impressive work of cultural and intellectual history
that is unique in analyzing the intersection of grassroots practices with
intellectual currents. It should gain an audience among scholars of state
formation beyond Mexico or Latin America." - Robert F. Alegre, History: Reviews of New Books
"Rick A. Lopez tells the fascinating story of how folk art produced by anonymous potters, weavers, and wood carvers became a `proud symbol of Mexico's authentic national identity' (p. 2). His excellent monograph advances our understanding of Mexico's cultural revolution-the state policies, artistic movements, and commercial developments that transformed a regionally fragmented postwar society into a unified nationstate with an ethnically inclusive national identity." - Michael Snodgrass, American Historical Review
"Crafting Mexico reminds us that quality scholarship does not resort to sweeping generalizations but rather assesses what is often a complex situation case by case. It is an impressive interdisciplinary study that adds much to our appreciation of modern Mexican culture and society." - Andrew Grant Wood, Hispanic American Historical Review
"Crafting Mexico covers much new territory. Its linkage of local, national, and transnational history is exemplary."-Mary Kay Vaughan, co-editor of The Eagle and the Virgin: Nation and Cultural Revolution in Mexico, 1920-1940
"In recent decades, historians of twentieth-century Mexico have reshaped the way we understand state and nation formation-particularly popular constructions of the national-and the role that foreign actors have played in brokering Mexico's distinctive, transnational process of becoming modern. Crafting Mexico represents a culminating moment in these inquiries. Better than any study I know, it wrestles with the complex process whereby Mexico transformed itself from a fragmented society, driven by regional loyalties, linguistic and cultural particularism, and caudillo politics, into one of the hemisphere's most unified nations. Part of the answer, Rick A. Lopez argues masterfully, lies in a surprisingly contingent aesthetic and political process that embraced foreign and local actors, cosmopolitan intellectuals and indigenous crafts producers, and a panoply of state and private initiatives. Deftly integrating analytical and spatial dimensions, and bridging temporal boundaries, Crafting Mexico is a substantial achievement."-Gilbert M. Joseph, co-editor of Fragments of a Golden Age: The Politics of Culture in Mexico since 1940
"Crafting Mexico is a major contribution to the growing literature on nation, revolution, and indigenismo in postrevolutionary Mexico. . . . This fascinating and richly illustrated book is a fitting testimony to over a decade of exhaustive research and careful writing. It will surely serve as a model for future work." -- Stephen E. Lewis * The Americas *
"Crafting Mexico is an important and original contribution to the literature on
visual arts in national ideologies. The detailed history, sophisticated analyses, intriguing case studies, and wonderful black and white and color photographs make this book essential to the library of anyone interested in Mexican popular art. " -- Michael Chibnik * Journal of Latin American and Caribbean Anthropology *
"Crafting Mexico is an impressive work of cultural and intellectual history
that is unique in analyzing the intersection of grassroots practices with
intellectual currents. It should gain an audience among scholars of state
formation beyond Mexico or Latin America." -- Robert F. Alegre * History: Reviews of New Books *
"Crafting Mexico reminds us that quality scholarship does not resort to sweeping generalizations but rather assesses what is often a complex situation case by case. It is an impressive interdisciplinary study that adds much to our appreciation of modern Mexican culture and society." -- Andrew Grant Wood Hispanic * American Historical Review *
"Rick A. Lopez tells the fascinating story of how folk art produced by anonymous potters, weavers, and wood carvers became a `proud symbol of Mexico's authentic national identity' (p. 2). His excellent monograph advances our understanding of Mexico's cultural revolution-the state policies, artistic movements, and commercial developments that transformed a regionally fragmented postwar society into a unified nationstate with an ethnically inclusive national identity." -- Michael Snodgrass * American Historical Review *

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