The U.S. war with Mexico was a pivotal event in American history, it set crucial wartime precedents and served as a precursor for the impending Civil War. With a powerful introduction and rich collection of documents, Ernesto Ch‡vez makes a convincing case that as an expansionist war, the U.S.-Mexico conflict set a new standard for the acquisition of foreign territory through war. Equally important, the war racialized the enemy, and in so doing accentuated the nature of whiteness and white male citizenship in the U.S., especially as it related to conquered Mexicans, Indians, slaves, and even women. The war, along with ongoing westward expansion, heightened public debates in the North and South about slavery and its place in newly-acquired territories. In addition, Ch‡vez shows how the political, economic and social development of each nation played a critical role in the path to war and its ultimate outcome. Both official and popular documents offer the events leading up to the war, the politics surrounding it, popular sentiment in both countries about it, and the war's long-term impact on the future development and direction of these two nations. Headnotes, a chronology, maps and a selected bibliography enrich student understanding of this important historical moment.