Latin America

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    Porfirio Díaz

    1876–1910 Porfirio Díaz, dictator of Mexico
    For thirty-four years General Porfirio Díaz (DEE-as) (1830–1915) had ruled Mexico under the motto “Liberty, Order, Progress.” To Díaz “liberty” meant freedom for rich hacienda owners and foreign investors to acquire more land. The government imposed “order” through rigged elec- tions, bribes to Díaz’s supporters, and summary justice for those who opposed him.
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    Mexican Revolution

    1911–1919 Mexican Revolution
    Emiliano Zapata- Revolutionary and leader of peasantsin the Mexican Revolution. He mobilized landless peasants in south-central Mexico in an attempt to seize and divide the lands of the wealthy landowners. Though successful for a time, he was ultimately defeated and assassinated.
    Francisco “Pancho” Villa-A popular leader during the Mexican Revolution. An outlaw in his youth, when the revolution started, he formed a cavalry army in the north of Mexico and fought for
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    Hipólito Irigoyen (Argentine)

    Hipólito Irigoyen Argentine politician, presidentof Argentina from 1916 to 1922 and 1928 to 1930. The first president elected by universal male suffrage, he began his presidency as a reformer but later became conservative.
  • New constitution Mexico

    1917 New constitution proclaimed in Mexico
  • Mexico’s National Revolutionary Party

    1928 Plutarco Elías Calles founds Mexico’s National Revolutionary Party
    The Institutional Revolutionary Party, or PRI (the abbreviation of its name in Spanish), controlled Mexico until the 1990s and had overseen a period of economic expansion during the war years.
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    Getulio Vargas

    1930–1945 Getulio Vargas, dictator of Brazil
    Getulio Vargas Dictator of Brazil from 1930 to 1945 (and from 1951 to 1954). Defeated in the presidential election of 1930, he overthrew the government and created Estado Novo (“New State”), a dictatorship that emphasized industrialization and helped the urban poor but did little to alleviate the problems of the peasants.
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    Lázaro Cárdenas

    1934–1940 Lázaro Cárdenas, president of Mexico
    President of Mexico (1934–1940). He brought major changes to Mexican life by distributing millions of acres of land to the peasants, bringing representatives of workers and farmers into the inner circles of politics, and nationalizing the oil industry.
  • Mexican oil industry

    1938 Cárdenas nationalizes Mexican oil industry
  • Estado Novo

    Vargas proclaims Estado Novo in Brazil
  • military coup in Argentina

    1943 Juan Perón leads military coup in Argentina
  • Perón president of Argentina

    1946 Perón elected president of Argentina
    Juan Perón President of Argentina (1946–1955, 1973– 1974). As a military officer, he championed the rightsof labor. Aided by his wife Eva Duarte Perón, he was elected president in 1946. He built up Argentinean industry, became very popular among the urban poor, but harmed the economy.
  • Eva Duarte Perón

    Eva Duarte Perón Wife of Juan Perón and champion of the poor in Argentina. She was a gifted speaker and popular political leader who campaigned to improve the life of the urban poor by founding schools and hos- pitals and providing other social benefits.
  • United Fruit Company

    Guatemala’s situation was more representative of Latin America in 1950. An American corporation, the United Fruit Company, was Guatemala’s largest landowner; it also controlled much of the nation’s infrastructure, including port facilities and railroads. To limit banana production and keep prices high, United Fruit kept much of its Guatemalan lands fallow.
  • Jacobo Arbenz Guzmán

    Jacobo Arbenz Guzmán, elected in 1951, advocated positions broadly similar to those of leaders like Perón of Argentina and Vargas of Brazil, who confronted powerful foreign interests. He advocated land reform, which would have transferred these fallow lands to the nation’s rural poor.
  • Fulgencio Batista

    Fulgencio Batista, a former military leader and president, illegally seized power in Cuba in a coup in 1953.
  • CIA Guatemala

    The U.S. Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), in one of its first major overseas operations, sponsored a takeover by the Guatemalan military in 1954.
  • American Companies in Cuba

    1950s American companies dominated the Cuban economy. They controlled sugar production, the nation’s most important industry, as well as banking, transportation, tourism, and public utilities. The United States was also the most important market for Cuba’s exports and the most important source of Cuba’s imports.
  • US/Cuba Sugar

    By 1956 sugar accounted for 80 percent of Cuba’s exports and 25 percent of Cuba’s national income. But demand in the United States dictated keeping only 39 percent of the land owned by the sugar companies in production, while Cuba experienced chronic underemployment.
  • Castro

    Fidel Castro was a young lawyer who led a failed uprising in 1953. Then a sucesful one in 1959. Within a year Castro’s government seized and redistributed land, lowered urban rents, and raised wages, effectively transferring 15 percent of the national income from the rich to the poor. Wanted Communism.
  • Bay of Pigs (Cuba)

    An army of Cuban exiles trained and armed by the CIA landed at the Bay of Pigs in an effort to overthrow Castro. The Cuban army defeated the attempted invasion in a matter of days.
  • Cuban Missile Crisis

    Brink-of-war confrontation between the United States and the Soviet Union over the latter’s placement of nuclear-armed missiles in Cuba.
  • Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty

    In 1968 the United States and the Soviet Union together proposed a world treaty against further proliferation, leading ultimately to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) signed by 137 countries. Not until 1972, however, did the two superpowers begin the arduous and extremely slow process of negotiating weapons limits.
  • Salvador Allende

    The socialist politician that was elected president of Chile in 1970 then overthrown by the military in 1973.
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    Peron (Again)

    1946 Perón elected president of Argentina
    Juan Perón President of Argentina (1946–1955, 1973– 1974). As a military officer, he championed the rightsof labor. Aided by his wife Eva Duarte Perón, he was elected president in 1946. He built up Argentinean industry, became very popular among the urban poor, but harmed the economy.
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    Dirty War

    The war was waged by the Argentine military against leftist groups. It was characterized by the use of illegal imprisonment, torture, and execution by the military.
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    Castro (President)

    Cuban revolutionary and politician. Was President of Cuba from 1976-2008. Part of the Communist Party of Cuba.