From Many, One: Indians, Peasants, Borders, and Education in Callista Mexico, 1924-1935

Synopsis

This book looks at the educational policies and practices of the presidency of Plutarco Eléas Calles in post-revolutionary Mexico. Andrae Marak examines attempts of the Calles government to centralise control over education in the U. S.-Mexican borderlands region and to transform its rural and indigenous inhabitants into more "mainstream" Mexicans. During his presidency and the period known as the Maximato, Plutarco Eléas Calles put in place a series of national educational policies with the goal of constructing an economically prosperous and culturally unified Mexico. Marak's analysis of the federal government's attempt to promote nationalism highlights the ways in which the federal government sought to incorporate and unify Mexico through centralisation and assimilation as well as the ways in which it tried to define itself in relation to what was not Mexican, an especially prominent issue along the U. S.-Mexican border. Calles' new educational policies sparked a good deal of backlash among those affected. Marak's study focuses on three main incidents which caused the most contention: the establishment of frontier schools along the border in order to promote nationalism and protect against the onslaught of U. S. cultural and economic imperialism; the take-over of state primary schools by government inspectors in Chihuahua; and the government's indigenous assimilation program, which aimed to integrate numerous culturally distinct groups into a monocultural Mexican nation.