This book is a radical reinterpretation of the process that led to Mexican independence in 1821-one that emphasizes Mexico's continuity with Spanish political culture. During its final decades under Spanish rule, New Spain was the most populous, richest, and most developed part of the worldwide Spanish Monarchy, and most vohispas (people of New Spain) believed that their religious, social, ecomic, and political ties to the Monarchy made union preferable to separation. Neither the American r the French Revolution convinced the vohispas to sever ties with the Spanish Monarchy; r did the Hidalgo Revolt of September 1810 and subsequent insurgencies cause Mexican independence. It was Napoleon's invasion of Spain in 1808 that led to the Hispanic Constitution of 1812. When the government in Spain rejected those new constituted arrangements, Mexico declared independence. The Mexican Constitution of 1824 affirms both the new state's independence and its continuance of Spanish political culture.
Jaime E. Rodriguez O. is Research Professor Emeritus at the University of California, Irvine, where he was Director of Latin American Studies and Dean of Graduate Studies and Research. He was the founder and editor of the journal Mexican Studies/Estudios Mexicanos and has published numerous works in English and in Spanish.