The Mexican Wars for Independence and over one million other books are available for Amazon Kindle. Learn more
Buy Used
$9.95
FREE Shipping on orders over $35.
Condition: Used: Good
Comment: Ex-library w/ usual marks and stickers. Light wear. Clean text. Good binding. Eligible for FREE Super Saving Shipping and Amazon Prime!
Add to Cart
Have one to sell? Sell on Amazon
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See this image

The Mexican Wars for Independence Hardcover – April 14, 2009


See all 6 formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
Amazon Price New from Used from
Kindle
"Please retry"
Hardcover
"Please retry"
$3.93 $0.65

NO_CONTENT_IN_FEATURE
NO_CONTENT_IN_FEATURE

Product Details

  • Hardcover: 280 pages
  • Publisher: Hill and Wang; First Edition edition (April 14, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0809095092
  • ISBN-13: 978-0809095094
  • Product Dimensions: 0.9 x 5.5 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,351,143 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

This perceptive history paints Mexico's 1810–1821 struggle for independence as a dark, dejected affair, tainted by massacres, famine and crippling contradictions. Auburn University historian Henderson (A Glorious Defeat: Mexico and Its War with the United States) explores the difficulties facing successive Mexican insurrections against Spain's heavy-handed, parasitic rule, including ill-equipped and untrained armies and a fractious, brutal, often incompetent leadership. But the main problem, he contends, was the social chasm between the white Creole elite who led the rebellion and the harshly exploited Indian and mixed-race masses who manned their armies. Revolutionaries envisioned a new liberal order, Henderson argues, but feared to stir up the social resentments of their troops, whose attachment to king and church trumped nationalist sentiment. The result was an incoherent revolution torn between progressive and reactionary impulses that bequeathed a tendency toward unstable or authoritarian government. Henderson's concise, lucid narrative skillfully guides readers through these confused political currents while sketching vivid portraits of leaders like the rebel priests Hidalgo and Morelos. Henderson illuminates the fault lines in the Mexican nation through this trenchant study of its founding. (Apr.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From School Library Journal

Henderson (history, Auburn Univ., Montgomery; A Glorious Defeat: Mexico and Its War with the United States) offers a good synthesis for the general reader of what is known about Mexico's wars for independence between 1810 and 1821. He illustrates how the policies and practices of the Spanish colonial authorities led to a stratification of Mexican society, which ultimately brought about demands for political and social reform, and how attitudes and events in Spain influenced Mexican politics, society, and the course of the wars for independence. The royalists, Creoles (Spaniards born in Mexico), castes (those of mixed parentage), and Indians had different objectives, but Henderson keeps it all straight and provides in-depth portraits of the major revolutionary figures, allowing readers to easily follow the changes in fortune and shifting alliances and objectives. Henderson also explains how the wars deepened the divisions that plagued Mexico and set the stage for the turbulent decades to come. Written for the general reader, this accessible overview will also be useful to undergraduates. Highly recommended.—Stephen H. Peters, Northern Michigan Univ. Lib., Marquette
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

More About the Author

Discover books, learn about writers, read author blogs, and more.

Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
5 star
7
4 star
3
3 star
1
2 star
0
1 star
0
See all 11 customer reviews
This is a better book, and I read it in one sitting.
Kevin M Quigg
Henderson does a good job with the Peninsular situation as well.
Thomas Donahue
The author does a good job of making it comprehensible.
Flat_Tire

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

17 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Thomas Donahue on June 22, 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Henderson does a terrific job here. His work fits nicely into a current trend in academic writing to produce SHORT, INCISIVE works that cover the territory and then close. His review of the Mexican experience of separation from the Spanish empire in the early 19th century is all ground oft trod by others. What is particularly good about his work is that he manages to create incisive snapshots of the people and the events of the time without the need blither on ad nauseum to cover every possible academic contingency. I have read much about the era and its events. I do not think I have ever read so sharp a description of Father Hidalgo y Costilla as I have seen here. Nor have I been so impressed with the geographic realities of the revolutionary period (how wide spread geographically it was!) or with the fact that despite some three centuries of Spanish control of Mexico so very, very little has changed from, say, the first fifty years after the conquest. The Indians are still a despised and wretched minority. The creoles are still loathed by the peninsular Spaniards as being, by definition, inferior to anyone coming from Spain. The fundamental structure of the society, in short, is PRECISELY what it has been for nearly three centuries.

Henderson does a good job with the Peninsular situation as well. Without dragging on too far he gives us a good summary of the misery and confusion of Spain in the grip of the Napoleonic wars and under the heel of monumentally bad leadership in the persons of Carlos IV and Felipe VII.
Read more ›
2 Comments Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By J. Lockie on August 26, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Dr. Henderson's writing style makes for easy, enjoyable reading. We Mexican history buffs now have many new insights and food for thought concerning the Mexican struggle for Independence, especially when contrasted with the earlier American and French experiences. I especially enjoyed "The Empire" subsection of Chapter Nine (p. 192 paperback). This is an extremely helpful historical perspective.

I think his comments in Chapter Seven, subsection "Morelos Vanquished" (p. 140 paperback) are a bit tough on the Mexican declaration of independence. Under the circumstances, it did not spell out the exact form of the new independent Mexican government, but neither did the US Declaration of Independence (whose purpose was to justify the separation of the North American colonies from Great Britain). The US Articles of Confederation served as an interim government structure during the War and for some years after, just as the Mexico rebels used the Spanish Constitution of 1812 and various "Plans" as their organization during their quest for autonomy from Spain.

I believe four important differences between the US and Mexican experiences were:

1. US Independence was a war over absolute autonomy. Mexican Independence was a war for social change, vengeance, and, in the end, autonomy as well. I think American history would have been quite different if abolition of slavery, in addition to autonomy from Great Britain, had been the main objectives of the US Revolutionary War.

2. The US was fortunate to have altruistic, highly educated, and well-read leadership who put building a strong new nation ahead of their personal interests (i.e., the precarious, but effective teamwork at the Constitutional Convention).
Read more ›
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By R. M. Peterson TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on August 19, 2010
Format: Paperback
Before reading this book, I would not have come up with the correct answer to the above question even if given a dozen tries. That is how shamefully great my ignorance is of the history of Mexico. Twice I have tried to read general histories of Mexico, but I found them unsatisfactory. As the title reveals, THE MEXICAN WARS OF INDEPENDENCE is not a general history of Mexico, but instead focuses on the period 1810-1821, during which various groups of Mexicans waged rebellions against those who claimed to be exercising authority in the name of Spain. For author Henderson, the plural "wars" is intentional, inasmuch as he sees no overarching ideological or political project. Rather, the insurrections were conducted "for a wide variety of reasons, most of which responded to very local and even personal concerns."

As Henderson states, THE MEXICAN WARS OF INDEPENDENCE does not contain any new historical theories or scholarship. Rather, it is a work of synthesis, an attempt to present "existing knowledge [in] a relatively brief and readable account for general readers." The result is indeed "relatively" brief and readable. The book is decently organized, but it is not of the first rank of popular history nor is the writing particularly sparkling. Still, it is successful at least to the extent that I was able to finish it and I will not feel a need to read any other book on the subject. Plus, I can now answer the above question.

By coincidence, my reading THE MEXICAN WARS OF INDEPENDENCE when I did turns out to be quite timely. Why? Because the 200th anniversary of the beginning of the Mexican War(s) of Independence is nigh.
Read more ›
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again

Customer Images

Most Recent Customer Reviews

Search