This paper critiques the largely Anglophone "New Cultural History" (NCH) written on post-revolutionary Mexico, calling for a more robust theoretical and methodological approach to the state than scholars have thus far employed. Earlier trends, each of course inflected with the politics of their times, remained fastened upon the purportedly unified force of Mexican officialdom. Revisionist narratives tended to abstract the state from social and cultural belief and practice. As such, scholars' grasp of social change was weakened by their failure to see politics, culture, and society as interrelated processes. Nevertheless, the closer examination of popular culture stressed by some contemporary historians-an undeniably important analytical tack-still does not obviate the need for a solid, at times even central, focus on processes of state-formation. Herein, I review some of the critical contributions to a growing multidisciplinary field of state/culture studies, and from critical human geography, and suggest ways their insights might be useful for historians and historical geographers focusing on the post-revolutionary Mexican state.
- Historical geography
- Political power
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Geography, Planning and Development
- Sociology and Political Science