a c k n o w l e d g m e n t s
some of the debts that we acquire in life, academic ones are a plea-
sure acknowledge. While traveling widely over the past fifteen years for
schooling, research, writing, and employment, I have had the honor to study
under and become acquainted with many people who helped to make this book
possible. In graduate school at the University of Illinois, Nils Jacobsen and
Joseph Love introduced me to Latin American history. I benefited greatly from
Jacobsen’s expertise in agrarian history and his close guidance over many years.
William Widenor’s specialization in the history of U.S. foreign relations and his
experience as a foreign service o≈cer in Mexico were equally invaluable. From
his stories, it appears that, in some respects, the manner in which foreign policy
is made on both sides of the border has changed little since the 1930s. As an
expert on Franklin D. Roosevelt, Mark Le√ provided much needed insight into
his administration and the nature of his political symbolism. Finally, Friedrich
Katz’s seminar on the Mexican Revolution, which I attended while studying as a
c.i.c. Visiting Scholar at the University of Chicago, provided direction to my
work on postrevolutionary Mexico. I am very grateful to Katz for warmly
welcoming me into the course, becoming a member of my dissertation com-
mittee, and lending me his support over the years.
Field research for this book lasted two years and took me to two countries,
seven cities, and sixteen archives and libraries. Hence, it would be very di≈cult
to thank everyone individually who provided assistance. Nevertheless, I am
extremely grateful to the many archivists and sta√ members at the Archivo
General de la Nación, the Archivo Histórico de la Secretaría de Relaciones
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