The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 52, July 1948 - April, 1949

Book Reviews

cations of these changes, with their impacts on the living con-
ditions of that vast majority of Mexicans who depend on the land
for an existence. Housing, diet, clothing, health, and Indianism,
in its relation to the general standard of living, are each con-
sidered in turn. But he does not stop here, for this tells only part
of the story. He continues with the best general description of
social institutions which has yet been given us. Marriage and
family institutions, the educational program with its hopes and
failures, the religious question in the rural scheme of life, and
the existing governmental system are all considered and described
in detail sufficient to give an integrated picture. Even the Sinar-
quista movement, with its emphasis on recruitment of peasants,
is considered in its proper place.
Whetten is fully cognizant of the stumbling pace at which the
revolutionary program is being advanced, and he presents ample
evidence of the revolutionary leaders' failure to fulfill the prom-
ises which have been made periodically since 191o. He recognizes
and dwells on the difficulties and deficiencies of the ejido system.
He sees, nevertheless, many evidences of an improvement since
1910. Part of his general conclusion (pp. 563, 565) is worth
quoting:
When the achievements and failures of the Revolution are balanced
against each other and when they are considered with reference to
the likely alternatives that would have prevailed, one is led to the
conclusion that, despite all the mistakes that have been made and
the injustices that have been committed, there is still a net positive
balance in favor of the revolutionary program. In spite of the
defects in the organization and administration of the programs, the
author is of the opinion that the masses of the population are much
better off than they would have been under the feudal type of organ-
ization which prevailed prior to 1910.
CHARLES C. CUMBERLAND
Rutgers University
The Constitutions of the Americas. Edited with an introduction
by Russell H. Fitzgibbon (editor-in-chief), Cullen B. Gos-
nell, William A. Strozier, and William B. Stubbs. Chicago
(The University of Chicago Press), 1948. Pp. xx+847. Bib-
liography, index. $ o.oo.
English translations of the fundamental laws of all the inde-

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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 52, July 1948 - April, 1949. Austin, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101121/. Accessed December 27, 2014.