The beginnings of a movement: Leagues of agrarian communities, unions of industrial workers, and their struggles in Mexico, 1920-1929
This study is the history of a worker and peasant movement that organized in Mexico during the 1920s. At the beginning of 1929, labor unions and agrarian leagues united into a single worker-peasant movement, with organizational components dedicated to meeting worker and peasant demands through agrarian reform, union struggle, and electoral politics. The study thus follows as closely as possible the internal and broader struggles of each separate organization, how the organizations built power, first in the period when they were separate (1920-1926), then in the period when they united (19271929), and finally in the period when they divided (March-July, 1929). The first chapter is dedicated to discovering the ways in which leagues of agrarian communities arose in many regions of Mexico in the early 1920s, and how the agrarian league in Veracruz then combined with other leagues on a national level. Because workers in the railroad industry made the greatest difference for the ways in which workers in the country's main, national industries, and in independent, autonomous unions, united during this decade, the second and third chapters detail the struggles of railroad transportation workers during a major class conflict. In chapters four and five, on mass struggles for worker-peasant unity, I argue that the unification of worker and peasant organizations into two different kinds of alliances, an independent union confederation and an electoral bloc, derived from earlier experiences of conflict, contemporaneous debates on worker-peasant unity, and opportunities opened by the growing national crisis. After it united on political grounds, the movement divided on military grounds, during and immediately after the Escobar Rebellion of 1929, which is the subject of the final chapter.
Latin American Studies;
0550: Latin American Studies
0629: Labor relations