Winner of the 1999 Michael C. Meyer Manuscript Prize.
This book examines the social protests of popular groups in urban Mexico during and after the Mexican Revolution and also shows how the revolution inspired women to become activists in these movements.
Andrew Grant Wood's well-researched narrative focuses specifically on the complex negotiation between elites and popular groups over the issue of public housing in post-revolutionary Veracruz, Mexico. Wood then compares the Veracruz experience with other tenant movements throughout Mexico and Latin America. He analyzes what the popular groups wanted, what they got, how they got it, and how the changes wrought by the revolution facilitated their actions.
Grassroots organizing by house-renters in Veracruz began at a time of 'multiple sovereignty' when ruling elites found themselves in a process of regime change and political realignment. As the movement took shape, tenants expanded their opportunities through a dynamic repertoire of public demonstration, direct action, networking, and constant negotiation with landlords and public officials. During the height of the movement, protesters forced revolutionary elites to respond by requiring them either to negotiate, co-opt, and/or repress members of independent grassroots organizations in order to maintain their rule.
The tenant movements demonstrate how ordinary women and men contributed to the remaking of state and civil society relations in post-revolutionary Mexico. This book analyzes the critical roles that women played as leaders and as rank-and-file agitators to keep the movements alive.
The author has used a wide variety of primary sources to provide a vibrant portrayal of these urban social protesters. On a larger scale, this book shows that the voices of the urban poor were able to become part of the revolutionary dialogue and ideology. While others have highlighted the role of rural folk such as the Zapatistas, this work allows readers to appreciate the urban side of the popular movement.
Revolution in the Street is a valuable resource on the Mexican Revolution, modern Mexico, and the urban history of Latin America.
Very highly recommended for a wide audience. CHOICE The story of the tenement tenants' union and rent strikes in the port of Veracruz in 1922 is one of the most interesting in Revolutionary Mexico, and Andrew Wood tells it wonderfully-the background, the drama of organization, the conflict (first carnivalesque rallies and riots that demonstrated the power of grass-roots mobilization and direct action. -- John Womack Jr., Harvard University A crisp, accessible, well-written narrative evocative of the carnivalesque rallies and riots that demonstrated the power of grass-roots mobilization and direct action. American Historical Review
Chapter 1 Abbreviations and Acronyms Chapter 2 Introduction: Tenant Protest in Revolutionary Mexico Chapter 3 Birth of the Patio de Vecindad: Urbanization, Popular Housing, and Patriotism in Veracruz Chapter 4 Constitutionalism and Its Discontents Chapter 5 Divided Elites: Political Process and the Rise of Adalberto Tejeda Chapter 6 "Denle al caballo!" The Emergence of Tenant Protest Chapter 7 Viva la Colonia Comunista: Popular Protest and State Housing Reform Chapter 8 'A Perfect Dress Rehearsal for Sovietism': The July Massacre Chapter 9 'Behind the Words and Advanced Posturing of Public Officials': The Debate over State Housing Reform Chapter 10 Closing Political Opportunity for the Revolutionary Syndicate Chapter 11 Fall of the Revolutionary Tenant Syndicates Chapter 12 Conclusion: The Outcome and Legacy of Inquilino Protest in Mexico Chapter 13 Selected Bibliography Chapter 14 Index