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From 1929 to 1952 Mexico underwent a period of intense nationalism as the state, newly emerging from the Mexican Revolution, sought to legitimize itself, consolidate its institutions, and promote economic growth. As a consequence, these years also witnessed a fervent search for national self-awareness in the cultural sphere. This work contrasts constructions of national identity in some of the most renowned literary works of the period with those in some of the most popular films, revealing their distinct functions within the nationalist project. It demonstrates that in spite of their striking dissimilarities, articulations of a Mexican consciousness in these two mediums were complementary within the framework of nationalism, as they satisfied and shaped the interests and desires of distinct sectors of Mexican society.
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The Author: Anne T. Doremus received her Ph.D. in Spanish from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 1998. Her article, «Authenticity, the Pelado and the Mexican National Identity: Essay versus Film during the 1930s and the 1940s,» is scheduled to appear in Confluencia in the fall of 2000. She has ten years of college teaching experience, including two years as Assistant Professor of Spanish at Carroll College in Waukesha, Wisconsin. Currently she is an independent scholar in Seattle, Washington.
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