By Monique Nuijten
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Additional resources for Power, Community And The State: The Political Anthropology of Organisation in Mexi (Anthropology, Culture and Society)
Although he agreed with the expropriation of landholdings for the establishment of ejidos, he also helped friends who were private landholders in their efforts to keep certain lands. One of the most famous 32 Power, Community and the State cases in which he was involved concerns the ejido of Autlán where he opposed the expropriation of lands that were necessary for the extension of the ejido of Autlán. Although opinions about the General differ, the common image that is conveyed is that of an impressive man who was more held in awe than loved.
At last, the people of La Canoa could establish their own ejido. Villagers of La Canoa who had been ejidatarios of the ejido Autlán left that ejido and now became ejidatarios of La Canoa. The ejido Autlán yielded the land held by these ejidatarios to the newly established ejido. As the land they received in the endowment grant was not nearly enough for all the people with recognised agrarian rights, the ejidatarios of La Canoa made a request for an expansion grant two weeks after the ejido was formally established in 1938.
The division between the ‘PRI-establishment’ and the ‘opposition’, which I mentioned above, was the clearest form of division in the ejido during the research. However, the dividing lines were not clear-cut and most ejidatarios did not belong to either of these two ‘camps’. The ‘establishment’ which was a network formed around the Romeros, had most characteristics of a ‘political family’ in the sense of persons who share the same name and which develop into a group with political purposes (Friedrich 1986: 106–7).