Culture & History Digital Journal, Vol 4, No 1 (2015)

Adapting to the new world: Mexico’s International Strategy of Economic Development at the outset of the Cold War, 1946-1952


https://doi.org/10.3989/chdj.2015.003

Vanni Pettinà
Centro de Estudios Históricos, El Colegio de México, Mexico

Abstract


This article is aimed at analyzing Mexico’s attempts to overcome the obstacles that the new international context, shaped by the end of World War II (WWII) and the beginning of the Cold War, posed for the country’s economic development plans. Drawing largely on new Mexican primary sources along with American, British, and multilateral organizations’ documents, this work will focus on the strategy that the Miguel Alemán administration (1946-1952) designed in order to adapt to the adverse conditions that the bipolar conflict generated for Latin America’s industrial developmental projects. This article will show that in spite of the adverse setting, the Alemán government was able to create and launch an ambitious plan for economic industrialization that implemented developmental measures on a large scale. In addition, this work will also show that a crucial ingredient for the initial success of Mexico’s economic strategy was the country’s capacity to attract economic aid and political support from Washington. Paradoxically, this happened at a time when the United States’ (US) economic and political backing of Latin American developmental projects had become a scarce currency in the Western Hemisphere.

Keywords


International history; global cold war history; latin american contemporary history; mexican contemporary history; third world’s history

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