Political instability engulfed the young republic, which ran through a dizzying succession of presidents and dictators as struggles between federalists and centralists, and conservatives and liberals, divided the country. Moreover, Mexico waged a disastrous war with the United States, which resulted in the loss of half its territory.
Political instability persisted, and the conservative forces, with some encouragement from Napoleon III, hit upon the idea of inviting in a Habsburg to regain control. They found a willing volunteer in Archduke Maximilian of Austria, who accepted the position of Mexican emperor with the support of French troops. The ragtag Mexican forces defeated the modern, well-equipped French force in a battle near Puebla now celebrated annually as Cinco de Mayo.
A second attempt was more successful, and Ferdinand Maximilian Joseph of Habsburg became emperor. To defend the territory from invasion they armed the populace, including the Indians who had toiled for their entire lives on the haciendas. Thus began the War of the Castes. Far outnumbering the oligarchy and its constabulary forces, the peasants quickly gained control of most of the countryside.
They were able to capture several towns and even the city of Valladolid.
Dictionary of Christian Spirituality. Want to Read Currently Reading Read. The Caribbean coast is more expensive than the rest of Mexico, but you can still find lodging and food bargains. What principally distinguishes this regional cooking is the use of several ingredients acquired from other lands, such as achiote or annatto and bitter orange, from the Caribbean Islands, peas, which probably came from interacting with the English, and Edam cheese through historical trade with the Dutch. Saiman, Lisa; Daley, Charles L.
Planting season arrived, and, rather than press their advantage and take the capital, the Maya put down their weapons to return to their corn fields. This gave the non-Indians time to regroup, swear fealty to Mexico, and call for an army from the Mexican government.
Eventually the Maya rebels were driven back into what is now Quintana Roo, where they were largely left on their own, virtually a nation within a nation, until a Mexican army with modern weaponry finally penetrated the region at the turn of the twentieth century. With foreign investment came the concentration of great wealth in few hands, and social conditions worsened.
He is buried in Paris. Madero became president, but Victoriano Huerta promptly betrayed and executed him. They eventually put Huerta to flight and began hashing out a new constitution. Carranza, who was president at the time, betrayed and assassinated Zapata. He, in turn, was assassinated when he tried to break one of the tenets of the revolution—no reelection. There had been some land redistribution, but other measures took a back seat to political expediency. He implemented a massive redistribution of land and nationalized the oil industry.
He instituted many reforms and gave shape to the ruling political party now the Partido Revolucionario Institucional, or PRI by bringing under its banner a broad representation of Mexican society and establishing the mechanisms for consensus building. In , the government violently repressed a democratic student movement during a demonstration in the Tlatelolco section of Mexico City.
An unknown number of people died, and though the PRI maintained its grip on power, it lost its image as a progressive party. In putting together these kinds of projects, the government weathered several periods of social unrest caused by periodic devaluations of the peso. There was much criticism, too, for how the government handled the relief efforts.
Throughout these years the opposition parties were growing. The fraud was barely disguised; the PRI unplugged the election computers and claimed that it was a system failure.
These policies led to divisions within the party between factions of reformists and hardliners. After that assassination and the crippling economic crisis that came in , soon after Salinas de Gortari stepped down, nothing could be the same. The replacement president, Ernesto Zedillo, spent his 6 years in office trying to stabilize the economy and bring transparency to government. In he shepherded the first true elections in 70 years of one-party rule.
Many Mexicans voted for him, not from support for his conservative views, but just to see if the PRI would let go of power. It did, and Fox ran the show for the next 6 years. His efforts to build a coalition with segments of the PRI failed to work, and little was accomplished during his last 3 years in office.
The Mexican electorate felt widespread disappointment with his administration, especially regarding the efforts to combat corruption. But they also felt that the government had become more transparent. The final ruling of the elections tribunal was unpopular. Time will tell how well he handles the political situation, but in the first year of his presidency he has shown himself to be a more capable politician than his predecessor.
On the long ride back, Cacho says that she was repeatedly threatened and had the barrel of a pistol stuck in her mouth.
The officers deny it. An onslaught of criticism has ensued and continues to pour out of the media. This has been the main plank of the Zapatistas, who have gradually morphed from armed combatants to broad political movement. The government was forced into negotiations with the EZLN, a position that brought it little if any political capital. Its tactic was to make some easy concessions and to stall on other demands. But despite these differences, some generalizations can be made. But the basis of Mexican food is simple—tortillas, beans, chiles, squash, and tomatoes—the same as it was centuries ago before the arrival of the Europeans.
In many households, the tortilla takes the place of fork and spoon; Mexicans merely tear them into wedge-shaped pieces, which they use to scoop up their food.
A more recent invention from northern Mexico is the flour tortilla. The original name for this dish would have been tortilla enchilada, which means a tortilla dipped in a chile sauce. The makers of tequila are, with one exception, still all based in the state of Jalisco. They have formed an association to establish standards for labeling and denomination. Blanco is white tequila aged very little, usually in steel vats. Reposado reposed is aged in wooded casks for between 2 months and a year. The enchilada began as a very simple dish: A tortilla is dipped in very hot oil and then into chile sauce usually with ancho chile , then quickly folded or rolled on a plate and sprinkled with chopped onions and a little queso cotija crumbly white cheese and served with a little fried potatoes and carrots.
You can get this basic enchilada in food stands across the country.
I love them, and if you come across them in your travels, give them a try. In restaurants you get the more elaborate enchilada, with different fillings of cheese, chicken, pork, or even seafood, and sometimes prepared as a casserole. The tortilla can be served either soft or fried. Flautas and quesadillas except in Mexico City, where they are something quite different are species of tacos.
FRIJOLES In private households, pink or black beans are served at least once a day, and among the working class and peasantry, with every meal if the family can afford it. Mexicans almost always prepare beans with a minimum of condiments, usually just a little onion and garlic and a pinch of herbs. Beans are meant to be a contrast to the heavily spiced foods in a meal. Sometimes they are served at the end of a meal with a little Mexican-style sour cream.
Mexicans often fry leftover beans and serve them on the side as frijoles refritos.
Every region in Mexico has its own traditional way of making tamales. In some places, a single tamal can be big enough to feed a family; while in others, they are barely three inches long and only about an inch thick. Some are blazing hot with little flavor; some are mild but have a rich, complex flavor.
They can be pickled, smoked, stuffed, or stewed. The truth is that most restaurants and bars buy ice made from purified water. This ice is made by the same kind of machinery all across Mexico. It produces ice cubes that have a rough cylindrical shape with a hollow center. Plain block ice carries no such guarantee. Likewise, almost all restaurants that cater to middle-class Mexicans use filtered water and disinfect vegetables, but street vendors and market stalls may not.
Soft drinks come in more flavors than in any other country I know. Pepsi and Coca-Cola taste the way they did in the United States years ago, before the makers started adding corn syrup. The coffee is generally good, and hot chocolate is a traditional drink, as is atole—a hot, corn-based beverage that can be sweet or bitter. Of course, Mexico has a proud and lucrative beer-brewing tradition. A lessknown brewed beverage is pulque, a preHispanic drink made of the fermented juice of a few species of maguey or agave.