A Persistent Revolution is a synthetic political history of contemporary Mexico that identifies revolutionary nationalism—a flexible, negotiated “cognitive framework” borne from revolution that set the terms and boundaries for contentious engagement between citizens and the state—as the source for political and social stability during moments of severe crisis (p. 8). In his reading of Mexican politics, which focuses largely on ruptures and crises beginning in 1982, Randal Sheppard looks at historical commemoration ceremonies, protest movements, oppositional politics, and public intellectual debates to analyze the political power of certain historical myths that underscore revolutionary nationalist cultural identity. That the figure of Emiliano Zapata emerged in the early 1990s in both neoliberal and guerrilla Mayan guise indicates for Sheppard the hegemonic power of a revolutionary nationalism malleable enough to sustain Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) rule during the crisis-ridden neoliberal economic restructuring of the 1980s...

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