Before there was Che Guevara, there was Emiliano Zapata, the charismatic revolutionary who left indelible marks on Mexican politics and society. The sequel to Samuel Brunk's 1995 biography of Zapata, The Posthumous Career of Emiliano Zapata traces the power and impact of this ubiquitous, immortalized figure.
Mining the massive extant literature on Zapata, supplemented by archival documents and historical newspaper accounts, Brunk explores frameworks of myth and commemoration while responding to key questions regarding the regime that emerged from the Zapatista movement, including whether it was spawned by a genuinely "popular" revolution.
Blending a sophisticated analysis of hegemonic systems and nationalism with lively, accessible accounts of ways in which the rebel is continually resurrected decades after his death in a 1919 ambush, Brunk delves into a rich realm of artistic, geographical, militaristic, and ultimately all-encompassing applications of this charismatic icon.
Examining all perspectives, from politicized commemorations of Zapata's death to popular stories and corridos, The Posthumous Career of Emiliano Zapata is an eloquent, engaging portrait of a legend incarnate.
Samuel Brunk is Professor of History at the University of Texas at El Paso. His previous books include Emiliano Zapata! and Heroes and Hero Cults in Latin America.