Mexico Unconquered is an evocative report on the epic powers of violence and corruption in Mexico and the underdogs and rebels who put their lives on the line to build justice from the ground up.
Author John Gibler probes the overwhelming divisions in contemporary Mexico, home to the world's richest man, Carlos Slim, and to destitute millions. The book explores the concept of the Rule of Law in a land known for its implacable corruption and impunity; the political machinations behind Mexico's devastating economic disparities; the implications and consequences of the annual exodus of half a million Mexicans to the United States; the unprecedented civil disobedience uprising in Oaxaca state; and the continuing Indigenous Present that resists the government's attempts to confine Mexico's 10 million indigenous peoples to calm and controlled corners of the past.
Global Exchange supported John Gibler while writing Mexico Unconquered and reporting from Mexico from 2006-2008 with the Global Exchange Media Fellowship. Read his dispatches at GlobalExchange.org.
Praise for Mexico Unconquered:
"In Mexico Unconquered John Gibler has produced an important new work focusing on Mexico's ongoing class struggles and the historical continuum of resistance, organizing, and revolt against the social injustices and official corruption evident at all levels of Mexican society. Gibler argues that the Conquest never quite finished, that colonialism from Spain evolved into a new, but equally violent form of internal domination. From the arrival of the first people in ancient Mesoamerica to the ongoing plague of narcotrafficking and feminicide in Ciudad Juarez, Gibler explores Mexico's current political undercurrents in a historical context. Through research, critical analysis, and superb first-hand reporting culled from years of living in Mexico, Gibler shares the voices, stories, and communal dignity of the ordinary Mexicans who are putting their lives at risk by challenging corrupt power as they build social movements for basic rights, justice, and autonomy. An exciting first book by an emerging young writer."
"Part journalism, part history, part call to action, John Gibler's book chronicles not only the continuing colonization of Mexico, but also the continuity of resistance to it. Revealing those forces of resistance, which sometimes take the form of mass explosions, and other times take the form of individual expressions of indignation and defiance, Gibler helps us see Mexico with new eyes—a Mexico that has always been constituted by revolutionary dreams of freedom and equality."
—Michael Hardt and Antonio Negri, co-authors of Empire and Multitude: War and Democracy in the Age of Empire
"An insightful tour of the horror show next door, this book is full of shocking and distressing tales about the struggle and brutality of Mexican politics. It boggles the mind how close Mexico is, yet how overlooked their past and current history is. Gibler, burning with righteous anger, helps correct that."
—Christian Parenti, author of The Freedom: Shadows and Hallucination in Occupied Iraq, The Soft Cage and Lockdown America
"Mexico Unconquered maps a complex and tangled territory stretched between two poles—on one side, a world driven by the logic of empire and the reality of possession, conquest, and occupation; on the other, a land of possibility animated by cooperation, mutual recognition, love, dignity, and sustainability. John Gibler plots the former with laser-like precision, and portrays the latter in vivid and urgent detail. What becomes clear is that the power of resistance today draws in the first place on human creativity and the collective power of our imaginations. Taking the long view—glancing back at the steps that led us to the place we are, and looking forward toward a new world in-the-making—this book is essential reading for activists and engaged citizens who want to make a difference here and now."
—Bill Ayers, Distinguished Professor of Education, UIC, author of Fugitive Days: Memoirs of an Antiwar Activist