Feb 10 Black Market Capital: Shadow Economies & Popular Politics in Mexico City

Friday, February 10 | 3:30pm | 122 Folwell
Lecture by Andrew Konove (History, University of Texas - San Antonio).

For nearly three centuries, Mexico City’s Baratillo marketplace was synonymous with crime and vice. Despite its infamy, however, the Baratillo persisted, transforming into a vast black market complex in the 20th century. The Baratillo survived repeated attempts to dislodge it from the city streets because it served a wide swath of Mexico City’s population—not just the very poor. Its commerce brought together wealthy merchants, government officials, newspaper editors, and struggling street vendors in unlikely alliances. This talk challenges an existing assumption that Mexico’s streets were sites of continuous conflict between elites and popular groups, showing how diverse interests converged more often than they clashed.

Generously cosponsored by the School of Architecture, the Consortium for the Study of the Premodern World, the Institute for Advanced Study, the Interdisciplinary Center for the Study of Global Change, the Spanish & Portuguese Research Group, and the Department of Geography, Environment & Society
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