Mexico City

A Cultural and Literary Companion


Nick Caistor

ISBN : 978-190-2669-07-6

History Cities of the Imagination Other Distributed Titles

January 2000

240 pages, 5.25″ x 8″

For sale in Hong Kong SAR and Macao SAR only

  • HK$175.00

Mexico City is a place of superlatives. The oldest city in the Americas, it is now the world’s largest urban area. Formerly the centre of the Aztec and Spanish empires, this vast modern metropolis is home to over fifteen million people, mirroring Mexico’s mixed cultural identity. Rapid growth and industrial expansion have created dramatic environmental problems, turning Mexico City into what has been called the first ‘post-apocalypse’ city. Polluted and congested, it is slowly sinking into the lake on which the Spanish founded their symbol of conquest.

Nick Caistor explores this city of extremes, revealing its turbulent past and chaotic present through its urban landscape. Looking at Aztec ruins, baroque monuments and modernistic complexes, he traces the history of a volatile and vibrant city, where conquest, revolution and natural disaster have left their marks.

THE CITY OF ARTISTS, WRITERS AND REVOLUTIONARIES: Diego Rivera and Frida Kahlo, Octavio Paz and Carlos Fuentes, Zapata, Villa and Trotsky.

THE CITY OF INDIGENOUS MEXICO: the living legacy of the Aztecs’ Tenochtitlán; museums, festivals and markets; modern indigenous culture.

THE CITY OF MODERNITY: skyscrapers, highways and flyovers; the stock exchange and industrial sprawl; where the Third World meets the First.

NICK CAISTOR is a writer, translator and broadcaster, who has written widely on Latin American culture and politics.

“Few people outside Latin America itself are more expert in the culture of Latin America than Nick Caistor. Caistor has written a novel and splendid guide, fuller by far of culture than politics.” —Hugh O’Shaughnessy