The search for national identity in Mexico, 1900-1934
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The period 1900 to 1934 saw the growth of Orteguian perspectivism in Mexico, where a national consciousness expanded by revolution made the country aware of four hundred years of rich and difficult history. It was the perfect philosophy for the times. It could justify Mexican curiosity and close any breach between a strayed academic appeal and the necessities of the age. A national consciousness found its raison d'être simply because it expressed itself; hence the wildness, unevenness, and diversity of the Mexicanist meditations on the national reality. There was no norm other than the nation itself, which had become a speculative jubilee for those skilled enough to approach it. There was no program in the ultimate sense, no evolution, no real submission to progress as in the old Porfirian positivism. Rather, for the historicist participant Mexican civilization became a fiesta, with its duality of grief and joy but always with its powers of vital renewal. All who witnessed the rite became sacred, having touched some part of the inviolable sanctity of the national destiny. They enjoyed the euphoric illusion of fusing consciousness and reality in the mythopoeic generation of Mexican man and history.