In Antiguo régimen y liberalismo, Gabriela Tío Vallejo details the political history of Tucumán as it made the transition from colony to liberal provincial capital. Vallejo focuses on Tucumán’s cabildo and elections; she makes extensive use of census materials and a variety of other primary and secondary sources.

In the first section, Vallejo sets the stage for the end of the colonial period by describing the type of society present in Tucumán, as well as the political institutions that supposedly carried out the crown’s wishes in that region. The most important political and social group was the vecinos—merchants and hacendados— which is not unusual in an area far from the Spanish centers of power. The vecinos occupied the important positions within the cabildo, and through their work represented all tucumanos.

Politically, the two most important institutions within colonial society in...

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