Description : "Decentering" has fast become a dynamic approach to the study of American cultural and diplomatic history. But what precisely does decentering mean, how does it work, and why has it risen to such prominence? This book addresses the attempt to decenter the United States in the history of culture and international relations both in times when the United States has been assumed to take center place. Rather than presenting more theoretical perspectives, this collection offers a variety of examples of how one can look at the role of culture in international history without assigning the central role to the United States. Topics include cultural violence, inverted Americanization, the role of NGOs, modernity and internationalism, and the culture of diplomacy. Each subsection includes two case studies dedicated to one particular approach which while not dealing with the same geographical topic or time frame illuminate a similar methodological interest. Collectively, these essays pragmatically demonstrate how the study of culture and international history can help us to rethink and reconceptualize US history today.
Description : This volume offers readers new openings through which to understand critical but overlooked ideas about religion–state relations. It decenters discussions away from national narratives allowing for emerging voices at the individual and community levels, highlighting interactions of people with the state over questions about religion.
Description : Decentering Biotechnology explores the nature of technology, objects and patent law. Investigating the patenting of organic life and the manner in which artifacts of biotechnology are given their object-ive appearance, Carolan details the enrollment mechanisms that give biotechnology its momentum. Drawing on legal judgements and case studies, this fascinating book examines the nature of object-ification, as a thought and a thing, without which biotechnology, as it is done today, would not be possible. Unable to reject biotechnology per se, recognizing that such a rejection would essentialize the very object-ive categories shown to be manufactured, Carolan ultimately argues for doing biotechnology differently. A theoretically sophisticated analysis of the nature of objects and the role of technology as a form of life which shapes the social landscape, Decentering Biotechnology engages with questions of power, globalization, development, resistance, exclusion, and participation that arise from treating biological objects differently from conventional property forms. As such, it will appeal to social theorists, sociologists and philosophers, as well as scholars of law and science and technology studies.
Description : The period following Mexico's war with the United States in 1847 was characterized by violent conflicts, as liberal and conservative factions battled for control of the national government. The civil strife was particularly bloody in south central Mexico, including the southern state of Oaxaca. In Sons of the Sierra, Patrick McNamara explores events in the Oaxaca district of Ixtlan, where Zapotec Indians supported the liberal cause and sought to exercise influence over statewide and national politics. Two Mexican presidents had direct ties to Ixtlan district: Benito Juarez, who served as Mexico's liberal president from 1858 to 1872, was born in the district, and Porfirio Diaz, president from 1876 to 1911, had led a National Guard battalion made up of Zapotec soldiers throughout the years of civil war. Paying close attention to the Zapotec people as they achieved greater influence, McNamara examines the political culture of Diaz's presidency and explores how Diaz, who became increasingly dictatorial over the course of his time in office, managed to stay in power for thirty-five years. McNamara reveals the weight of memory and storytelling as Ixtlan veterans and their families reminded government officials of their ties to both Juarez and Diaz. While Juarez remained a hero in their minds, Diaz came to represent the arrogance of Mexico City and the illegitimacy of the "Porfiriato" that ended with the 1910 revolution.
Description : Elizabeth Ferry explores how members of the Santa Fe Cooperative, a silver mine in Mexico, give meaning to their labor in an era of rampant globalization. She analyzes the cooperative's practices and the importance of patrimonio (patrimony) in their understanding of work, tradition, and community. More specifically, she argues that patrimonio, a belief that certain resources are inalienable possessions of a local collective passed down to subsequent generations, has shaped and sustained the cooperative's sense of identity.
Description : At the end of the Mexican Revolution in 1920, Mexico's large, rebellious army dominated national politics. By the 1940s, Mexico's Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) was led by a civilian president and claimed to have depoliticized the army and achieved the bloodless pacification of the Mexican countryside through land reform, schooling, and indigenismo. However, historian Thomas Rath argues, Mexico's celebrated demilitarization was more protracted, conflict-ridden, and incomplete than most accounts assume. Civilian governments deployed troops as a police force, often aimed at political suppression, while officers meddled in provincial politics, engaged in corruption, and crafted official history, all against a backdrop of sustained popular protest and debate. Using newly available materials from military, intelligence, and diplomatic archives, Rath weaves together an analysis of national and regional politics, military education, conscription, veteran policy, and popular protest. In doing so, he challenges dominant interpretations of successful, top-down demilitarization and questions the image of the post-1940 PRI regime as strong, stable, and legitimate. Rath also shows how the army's suppression of students and guerrillas in the 1960s and 1970s and the more recent militarization of policing have long roots in Mexican history.
Description : From Liberal to Revolutionary Oaxaca aims at finally setting Mexican history free of stereotypes about the southern state of Oaxaca, long portrayed as a traditional and backward society resistant to the forces of modernization and marginal to the Revolution. Chassen-L&ópez challenges this view of Oaxaca as a negative mirror image of modern Mexico, presenting in its place a much more complex reality. Her analysis of the confrontations between Mexican liberals&’ modernizing projects and Oaxacan society, especially indigenous communal villages, reveals not only conflicts but also growing linkages and dependencies. She portrays them as engaging with and transforming each other in an ongoing process of contestation, negotiation, and compromise.
Description : This edited collection examines the connections between the new face of progressive, civil reform in Latin America and new kinds of openness to reform on the part of the private sector. It is the first to focus on the response of business to reform efforts arising from civil society. Enduring Reform presents five case studies from Mexico, Brazil, and Argentina in which marginalized groups have successfully forged new cultural and economic spaces and won greater autonomy and political voice. Bringing together NGO's, local institutions, social movements, and governments, these initiatives have developed new mechanisms to work within the system,' while also challenging the system's logic and constraints.