The fall of Porfirio Diaz has traditionally been presented as a watershed between old and new: an old style repressive and conservative government, and the more democratic and representative system that flowered in the wake of the Mexican Revolution. Now this view is being challenged by a new generation of historians, who point out that Diaz originally rose to power in alliance with anti-conservative forces and was a modernising force as well as a dictator. Drawing together the threads of this revisionist reading of the Porfiriato, Garner reassesses a political career that spanned more than forty years, and examines the claims that post-revolutionary Mexico was not the break with the past that the revolutionary inheritors claimed.
Garner (Spanish and Latin American studies, Goldsmiths, U. of London) presents a study of D<'i>az, president of Mexico (1876-1880, 1884- 1911), examining his regime and its demise in its 19th-century context, mindful of his accomplishments given the times, as well as his better known repressive abuses of power. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)