Essay, Research Paper: Emiliano Zapata

Famous People

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The Ideology of a Peasant Revolutionary Zapata
The Ideology of a Peasant Revolutionary portrays the fight of the Mexicans'
and Indians' to gain freedom, from the people who were 'superior' to them. The
powerful story tells about a group of peasants who put their trust one man,
Zapata, who led them into a revolution. Zapata, written by Robert P. Milon is a
very confusing work. He uses many wordy details and jumps between events in a
very fluttery way. When new people make an entrance in the book he does not make
a good transition between the events. He could have added more scenes to help
the dialogue move smoother. The author also jumped around with a very confusing
time-line. Emiliano Zapata was born on August 8, 1879, in Anenecuilco. Zapata
was the son of a mestizo peasant who trained and sold horses. He was orphaned at
the age of 17 and had to look after his brothers and sisters. In 1897, he was
arrested for taking part in a protest. From this you can see that he was a hard
worker from the start. He was mestizo, and therefore oppressed by the upper
class. In 1909 he was elected president of village defense committee. This part
is very moving because it happens early in the story but it shows the first
glimmer of hope for these people. By 1910, Zapata, was already planning things
and he led his people on two peaceful demonstrations. This was the start of a
revolution with Zapata and his followers letting everyone know that they would
not take it anymore. The story goes on about the struggle of Zapata and his
followers, but by page 36 the hero is lying dead from a trap he fell into. Being
that the book starts on page 11, the central character dies rather quickly for
the whole book to be about him. After Zapata dies the author attempts to flash
back and recap everything that happened between page 11 and page 36, so this
book appears to be like in media res stlye. Which is a style of writing by
starting in the middle, going ahead, and then telling the beginning. (Oedipus is
an example of this). In Chapter II (Agrarianism), the author hastily tried to
put all of these Plans, and Articles into the story. He bounced from paragraph
to paragraph taking up a new point of an article in each one. The plan of Ayala,
first appears on page 40, and by the next paragraph he is running away with
Articles VI, VII, and VIII. After that Millon is discussing the two revisions
this plan had. By the next page, he is talking about a pamphlet that was used.
By page 45 he is introducing a new manifesto. It seemed that every paragraph
started with a date saying Zapata addressed so and so at this time to produce
this plan . The author felt the need to include what seemed like the life
stories of every person involved in making these plans, and the writing of these
articles. In Chapter III (Liberalism and Anti-Imperialism), the author seemed to
jump back in time, again. This chapter feels like an entire repeat of what
chapter II had discussed. Also, through this entire book, the author uses what
seems to be Mexican or Spanish in italicized words, which makes it very hard to
read . Words such as carrancistas, cacique, porfirista, ejidos, &
latifundismo appear. As the book went on, more Mexican words showed up. After
the foreign words the author should have translated them. Combined with the
unorganized writing method employed one needed help getting through the long and
tedious chapters. The only thing constant about, Robert Millon's chaotic writing
was that he started every chapter with a long quote from Zapata himself, to set
the chapter up. Chapter IV, entitled Misconceptions Concerning Zapatista
Ideology, did not help to make anything clearer. The author rambled on making an
effort to explain his past chapters and the concepts surrounding Zapata. This
was a failed attempt because the author again goes into wordy descriptions and
introduces an abundance of people and dates. Also, by the end of this chapter
the author feels compelled to use a long list of quotes. Almost every paragraph,
is a quote. Millon is not giving the reader his input here, but instead he
leaves the reader with pages of quotes to fumble through. It makes it very hard
to get through. Chapter IV, named Revolutionary Tactics, Millon discusses the
fighting strategy of Zapata and his followers. Again we find ourselves in 1915;
the author has backtracked once more. He retells the story of the past four
chapters over again. He goes over the same tiresome details, again. The final
Chapter in this sloppily written work, bears the name, The Fate of Zapatista
Ideology, this tiny chapter, is only about four pages . In this last chapter,
the author summarizes the previous details to the readers that have already been
introduced, but now he explains why they did not work that successfully . Robert
Millon, is not a skilled writer. He did not do Zapata or his followers justice.
His lack of being able to understand the concept of a time-line, and how to
introduce new people showed throughout this entire work.
Milon, Robert. Zapata. International Publishers,1969.

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