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Mexico City through History and Culture$
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Linda A. Newson and John King

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780197264461

Published to British Academy Scholarship Online: January 2012

DOI: 10.5871/bacad/9780197264461.001.0001

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Mexico City: Space to Mourn, Time to Spend

Mexico City: Space to Mourn, Time to Spend

(p.8) (p.9) 1. Mexico City: Space to Mourn, Time to Spend
Mexico City through History and Culture


British Academy

This chapter describes Mexico City through the observant eyes of Carlos Monsiváis, an influential and engaging commentator of the transformations of the city. This urban cronica offers snapshots of the post-apocalyptic city. It looks at the different ways in which the ordinary people negotiate and appropriate urban space or the lack of space in the city and amusingly presents such snapshots of Mexico City as its source of pride. Blending humour with social criticism, the chapter discusses the ‘humanism of squeeze’ and the pluralism on the metro and subway of Mexico wherein singularity and anonymity is abolished by squeezing the nation into an entire square meter. The chapter also offers political criticisms for the travails of working and marginalized people with a sense of wit including the attempts for the Americanization of some of the cities of the nation.

Keywords:   Mexico City, Carlos Monsiváis, urban space, lack of space, humanism of squeeze, pluralism, Americanization

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