June 24, 2010
The LandMiguel Miramón
It is late and I’m just home from a book presentation. Guadalajara author, Jose Antonio Jimenez Diaz has written the second volume in a trilogy about what he calls “The Satanized Heros of Mexico.” Miguel Miramón is the subject…
If you know his story, you know your Mexican history! Born in 1830, he enrolled in Military College at the age of 14. Actually he was one of the “Niños Heroes”- the young cadets who defended El Catillo de Chapultapec during the American invasion of Mexico in 1847. He was elected president of the country at just 26 years of age… but, at 36, he was one of the Mexican generals who was executed with Emperor Maximiliano in 1867. An intense short life.
Jimenez Diáz claims that the biggest injustice the Spanish colonial law makers made was to not give full status to the children of Spanish citizens born in New Spain . The “Spaniards” born in the Spanish colony of Mexico were never respected by the Spaniards, born in Spain. They were clasified by the pejorative term, “Creole.” According to the author, it was this lack of validation that reinforced the resentment that would lead to the fight for independence. The colonials realized it is the land itself that defers belonging, and not the bloodline. The residents wanted their land to be independent, to have a name and give them dignity.
And isn’t this still true today? Like me, many of you who read this blog were not born in Mexico and although the tie may be weakened by time, not-so-pleasant experiences or whatever, the country of one’s birth is always “home plate.”
My children were born in Mexico but they also have Canadian citizenship. They have spent a lot of time in Canada, speak English perfectly, went to school there and so on, But if forced to claim just one nationality, they would immediately say they are Mexican first. The land where they were born is what gives them their primary identity. The land has a strong hold on us..
If you would like to know more about Miguel Miramón, Wikipedia has much information. If you read Spanish, José Antonio Jiménez Díaz’ book is called, “Triologia de los Satanizados: II Miguel Miramón, La Redención de los Descarriados”
The pictures of Miramón are from Google Images. The one of my children when they were very young… from my photo album of course.