Mexico: A Brief History - by Alicia Hernández Chávez

Kenneth F. Maffitt


One-volume national histories are as varied as the historians who take on the challenge of writing them. Nevertheless, as a teacher and as one who is frequently asked to recommend introductory books to lay readers, I feel all surveys should satisfy a few basic criteria: they should provide an original interpretation, based in part on recent historiography, packaged in an engagingly written, volume that includes sufficient background and detail for uninitiated readers. While Alicia Hernández Chávez’s Mexico: A Brief History succeeds in interpreting Mexican political history in fresh ways, it otherwise falls short as a general text for English-language audiences.