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The Life and Times of Pancho Villa

Friedrich Katz

139 ratings by Goodreads
ISBN 10: 0804730458 / ISBN 13: 9780804730457
Published by Stanford University Press, 1998
Condition: Good Hardcover
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Bibliographic Details

Title: The Life and Times of Pancho Villa

Publisher: Stanford University Press

Publication Date: 1998

Binding: Hardcover

Book Condition: Good

About this title

Synopsis:

Book by Katz, Friedrich

Review:

The historical figure known as Pancho Villa, hero of the Mexican Revolution, is shrouded in considerable mystery. His enemies presented him as a bandit and murderer, one who thought nothing of slaughtering innocent civilians and looting their villages. His followers considered him to be something of a Robin Hood forced to take action against the government only after stoically enduring its oppression for years. And hagiographers have assigned to Villa an important role in shaping the Mexican Revolution--an uprising that he joined somewhat late. That he was a bandit Villa never denied, but he protested being called a murderer: he killed only when attacked or betrayed, he said. Elements of many other stories made their way into American government reports, however, and went on to color the historical record. (That government, under the administration of Woodrow Wilson, took a considerable interest in Villa after he led an armed raid on the little New Mexico town of Columbus, making off with weapons and supplies.) University of Chicago historian Friedrich Katz carefully separates what can be reliably said about Villa's life from the tidbits of legend and celebration, and the extensive picture of Villa that he gives us (his book weighs in at nearly 1,000 pages) is no less interesting for all his debunking. Students of Mexican history will find much of value in Katz's researches. --Gregory McNamee

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