The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 43, July 1939 - April, 1940 Page: 548
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Southwestern Historical Quarterly
The religious question has been temporized, the agrarian movement
reawakened, labor growth promoted, oil expropriation personally
supervised, political parties reorganized, and nationalistic devel-
opment encouraged. Manifesting unusual sincerity and dynamic
industry, Mexico's new conqueror has personally directed the forces
of social unrest and economic insecurity into channels of legisla-
tive and administrative solution. The man responsible for this
activity, the tools with which he works, and the philosophy that
guides him, are dealt with in this readable and instructive book.
Presenting a generally faithful picture of what has been hap-
pening in Mexico during the past thirty years, this book suffers
from a certain tone disquieting to the conscientious reader who
seeks an impartial, analytical study of the Mexican scene. Dis-
cussions are shaded by the use of phrases which imply determined
conclusions, frequently open to question. Francisco Madero is a
"pathetic idealist with a squeaky voice," persecuted by a "pred-
atory colony of American promoters." The "progressive policies"
of the Cardenas administration are frequently referred to, and its
"surrender" on the question of indemnifying American owners of
expropriated lands is deplored. Lombardo Toledano is "loathed
by the pedants of the National University because he has placed
his knowledge at the service of the disinherited." None of these
statements, perhaps, are wholly false, but at the same time none
are wholly true, and each carries an implication that is unsup-
ported by cited material and evidence.
In other aspects the book shows a lack of completeness. The
authors, apparently, have not gone far enough behind the gov-
ernment propaganda front to distinguish that which has been
done from that which is represented as having been accomplished.
Their portrayal does not indicate an appreciation for the differ-
ences between claims and accomplishments in Mexican political
reckoning. The treatment of the agrarian experiment lacks the
realism and concreteness that comes from independent investiga-
tion of cases and results. Labor chapters tell their story almost
entirely from the attitude of the union chieftains. Bare mention
is made of the confidential employees section of the industrial
contract which the oil companies refused to sign. As for the
faults that are found with Mexico's program, it appears that
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 43, July 1939 - April, 1940, periodical, 1940; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101111/m1/584/: accessed March 18, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.