It is impossible to read Redeeming the Revolution at this moment without thinking about the crisis in Nicaragua and whether there is anything in the Mexican example that might apply in terms of how revolutions die—and how they try to resurrect or redeem themselves. The argument Joseph U. Lenti makes in this fascinating book is that even though it was students who rose up to challenge the official discourse of revolution in Mexico in 1968 in light of the government’s poor performance in terms of social justice and democracy, it was the Mexican working class that benefited from the government headed by president Luis Echeverría Alvarez (r. 1970–76). The reason that happened was that Echeverría, one of the architects of the Tlatelolco massacre of 1968, realized that the regime needed to placate workers and eliminate or co-opt a rising independent unionism...

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