Analysis Of Michael Johns's 'The City Of Mexico In The Age Of Diaz'
The mestizo population of Mexico constantly sought the acceptance of their "superiors." Mexicans had long been the victims of conquerors and wished to demonstrate "Valor in the face of defeat: here was the sentiment that had become the most cherished quality of this new, battle-scarred nation" (26). Rich citizens on the Westside sought the admiration of the great western powers through proof of cultural cultivation. In describing measures taken by Diaz and other influential Mexicans during the centennial celebration in ridding the streets of vagrants and ruining their façade of Europe in the tropics, Johns illustrates, "Just as foreign dignitaries began to arrive, the police swept pelados off the downtown streets and kept them out of the west side's parks and plazas" (89). Thus, the visiting bigwigs could not acknowledge the upper class Mexican's largest blemishthe poor masses of drunk and unwasheda clear indicator of indigenous tendencies. While the rich were busy tending to their vanities, the meager remained unyielding in pursuit of prosperity. Both men and women worked for a dwelling, food, clothing, and entertainment purposes. Johns uses pulque, the Mexican alcohol of choice, as an example of one of the few pleasures enjoyed by the