Tepito, a barrio bravo in the heart of Mexico City, has been characterized as one of the most dangerous marketplaces in the world. It spreads over dozens of square blocks a short distance from the Zócalo. Tepito has a long and complex past, and Andrew Konove's Black Market Capital tells a complicated history of the street market that preceded Tepito in the plaza and surrounding areas until it was moved to its current location. In this engaging and important book, Konove analyzes and historicizes the significance of the Baratillo, a street marketplace whose history spans back to the pre-Columbian past. In studying this “notorious” secondhand and thieves' market, he shows how a relatively small physical space in which working people traded new, used, and stolen goods had a 300-year history. Beginning in the 1700s, Konove provides an important historical analysis of change...

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