Godfather of the Mexican Revolution: The Rise and Fall of Venustiano Carranza and His Contributions to Mexican Constitutionality and Nationalism, 1910-1920
Rubalcaba, Christian Jesus
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CitationRubalcaba, Christian Jesus. 2011. Godfather of the Mexican Revolution: The Rise and Fall of Venustiano Carranza and His Contributions to Mexican Constitutionality and Nationalism, 1910-1920. Master's thesis, Harvard University, Extension School.
AbstractMost of the academic attention devoted to the Mexican Revolution (1910-1920) in recent times has focused on revolutionary leaders. Inspiration for this thesis comes from a desire to understand an important participant of the Revolution, Venustiano Carranza, whose story deserves further investigation because of his catalytic role in the ten-year conflict. This thesis poses the argument that fluctuations in the rhetoric of Carranza's Constitutionalist campaign reflect a sense of willingness on his part to adapt strategically to new contexts; however, to show deep conviction, he always stood behind a platform that was characterized by an unwavering faith in the political doctrine of constitutionality. Even though he shifted some of his positions when necessary, the core of his program remained constant and stood at the heart of his bold state building.
After the introductory chapter, Chapter Two lays the foundation for the thesis as it paints a detailed picture of the birthplace, family, and political environment from which Carranza originated. Emphasis is placed on a number of experiences that gave rise to his drive and passion for politics, from his revealing past as a Porfirian senator to his transformation as a leader. This chapter shows how, in mid-1913, Carranza began to express concerns for law and order, two essentials for constitutionality.
Chapter Three identifies Carranza's ideology between the years mid-1913 to mid- 1916. It shows how his priorities changed in comparison to his mode of thinking in 1913, especially as he made and discontinued relationships with other revolutionary leaders, specifically Emiliano Zapata and Pancho Villa. This chapter demonstrates that, even in the face of Zapata and Villa, Carranza became more committed to constitutionality.
Chapter Four provides an in-depth study of Carranza's Constitutionalist program at work. This chapter analyzes the organizational attributes of the committee that took part in the Constitutional Convention at Querétaro from mid-1916 to mid-1917. The committee, which was convened by Carranza, served as the taskforce that revised the 1857 constitution so that the new one reflected more contemporary concerns. This chapter explores Carranza's political talents, since this convention put his skills as a tactician and leader to the test. In 1917, when members of the Convention completed the Constitution of 1917, Mexicans were left with a statement of fundamental laws, a new legal order launched by Carranza. Studying the rhythm of the convention and a number of radically changed articles reveal that Carranza had, indeed, achieved a major conquest.
Finally, Chapter Five covers the period from mid-1917 to mid-1920, Carranza's presidency. This chapter brings Carranza's presidency into focus and assesses his effectiveness, not as a revolutionary leader, but as a chief executive. This chapter explains how, even though Carranza failed to be an efficient president and disappointed many with his decisions, his work in the area of constitutional democracy continued, and Mexican nationalism began to appear with more clarity in his state building.
The thesis concludes by underscoring Carranza's successes and failures. In addition to his numerous virtuous attributes, Carranza ultimately felt out of touch with reality, did not know quite how to face the demands of Mexicans in the last stage of the Revolution, and his grand vision of Mexican constitutional democracy required a bold kind of energy that Carranza could not offer.
Citable link to this pagehttps://nrs.harvard.edu/URN-3:HUL.INSTREPOS:37367556
- DCE Theses and Dissertations