The Rise of the Purhepechan Nation: Democratization, Economic Restructuring and Ethnic Revival among the Purhepecha Indians of Michoacan, Mexico

Macha Poemysl


This paper seeks to identify the common conditions which have supported nation formation in Mexico, abstract the specifics of the Purhepechan case to account for the degree of its advancement in contrast with other ethno-political movements in Mexico, and contextualize the regional trends vis-a-vis the ideological transformations at the level of the individual and the community. In our paper we will pay special attention to two extraordinary phenomena: the rise and discourse of the organization Ireta P orheecheri - Purhepechan Nation, and the celebration of the newly established ethnic- revivalist event P orheecheri Jimbangi Uexurhini (Purhepechan New Year). Our thesis is that nation formation in Mexico is a result of economic and social modernization, democratization and the introduction of western liberal discourse, and changes in government indigenist policies that have been taken advantage of by indigenous political leaders.


Modernization, democratization, indigenism, nationalism, ethnicity, Mexico, Purhepecha

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