Looking for Mexico provides a narrative of the most important developments in the formation and makeover of Mexican culture through the visual arts, Mexican photography in particular and Mexican film to a lesser extent. Unveiling the connections between visual culture and the construction of Mexican identities at different moments in Mexican history, the author provides an insightful and at times provocative analysis of some of the most remarkable photographers of Mexican people and landscapes. From the author’s perspective, the formation of Mexican national identity has been “carried out largely through the modern visual cultures of photography, cinema and picture stories” (p. 2); consequently a dialogue with the history of images of Mexico enriches the analysis of the foundations of mexicanidad in modern times.

Chapter 1 looks at the origins of photography in Mexico, from the mid-nineteenth century to the consolidation of the Porfirio Díaz dictatorship and the flourishing of commercial...

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