Retrospective Theses and Dissertations
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An analysis of social power in five Mexican ejidos Pedro Felix Hernandez S. J. Iowa State University
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HERNANDEZ, S.J., Pedro Felix, 1925=AN ANALYSIS OF SOCIAL POWER IN FIVE MEXICAN EJIDOS. lov/a State University of Science and Teohnok £y Ph„D„, 1965 Sociology, general
University Microfilms, Inc., Ann Arbor, Mich ;
AN ANALYSIS OF SOCIAL POWER IN FIVE MEXICAN EJIDOS
Pedro Felix Hernandez, S. J.
A Dissertation Submitted to the Graduate Faculty in Partial Fulfillment The Requirements for the Degree of DOCTOR OF PHILOSOPHY
Signature was redacted for privacy. In Charge of Major Work
Signature was redacted for privacy. Head of Major Department
Signature was redacted for privacy. Deaf
of Graduate College
Iowa State University Of Science and Technology Ames, Iowa 1965
TABLE OF CONTENTS
Page INTRODUCTION CHAPTER I:
1 REVIEW OF LITERATURE
General Nature of the Literature
The Theoretical Contributions on Social Power
THE FIELD STUDY AREA
THE FRAMEWORK OF THEORY
Purpose of this Chapter
Major Concepts in Social Power Theory
The General Hypotheses
The Field Methods and Procedures
Epistemic Correlations and Empirical Hypotheses
COMMUNITIES AND ISSUES
ANALYSIS OF FINDINGS
Findings CHAPTER VII:
CONTINUITIES ON POWER STRUCTURE
Peculiar Traits of Social Power in Rural Mexico
Some Remarks on the Theory of Social Power
Page A Note in Regard to the Methodology
Implications of the Preseni: Study
Power Actors Schedule
APPENDIX B Community Issue Areas APPENDIX C
316 316 319
The Ejido Problem
In contemporary Mexico, ejido is a term which has two meanings. It can designate people as well as land.
The term, as such, comes
from the Latin exitus^" and was used extensively in the agrarian laws of the Colonial period.
However, in the sense in which modern Mexican
agrarian law uses it, the term is a new one and has a very particular meaning.
Ejido is the land, ordinarily belonging to the old property
of one hacienda, that has been redistributed and given to a group of peasants of the same region.
Oftentimes the term also designates the
particular community whose members have been granted some land accord ing to the revolutionary agrarian law. The problem of the Mexican ejido is a social and economic one. Redistribution of land changed the face of Mexico; it definitely destroyed old feudal hacienda systems and gave the peasants a minimum of freedom and a parcel of land.
Economically, though, such revolu
tionary reform achieved very little in the sense of increasing rural people's welfare.
Actually, the ejido population amounts to about
25 percent of Mexico's total population. almost 52 percent of the tillable land.
The ejido land represents More than 80 percent of the
ejidos operate on a private enterprise basis ; each man is responsible
Noun and also past participle of "exire" (to go out); thus, originally designating the land "on the way out" to the common pas ture lands of the village.
for his plot of land, although he can never alienate it.
In round num
bers, however, more than 75 percent of the ejido land is very poor and not yet irrigated.
2 And, in terms of ejidatarios, a good 75 percent or
even more hold uneconomic plots of land because of the small area of these parcels (15).
Cooperative ejidos are the ideal in the law, but
they are rather an exception.
In fact, most cooperative ejidos are in
those areas where the ejidatarios are much better off, both in respect to the quality as well as to the size of their plots. Apart from this, and from another angle, the problem of the ejido appears to be a social one.
In very many, if not in most of the cases,
the ejido appeared suddenly on the scene of rural Mexico as a new social system within the old one ; they were superimposed, as it were, on exist ing rural communities, towns, and ranchos with their heavy cultural back ground.
These old social systems had a set of values and patterns of
activity not always in accordance with the new ones the ejido tried to create. One of these patterns of activity, resting upon traditionally anchored values, is undoubtedly the power structure.
If we accept the
fact that power-structure embodies one of the main elements in any social system, namely, the control of human behavior, we must: recognize such power-structures as well as the corresponding decision-making processes to be of paramount importance if one is to know how the social system operates.
2 Ejido beneficiaries.
As originally planned in the statutory laws which created it, (24, Article 27) the ejido was supposed to be the ideal social system of agrarian reform for a progressive agriculture in the framework of demo cratic living in a growing society.
In brief, the ejido was intended
to become a type of cooperative agricultural enterprise with each of its members being given the right to use a certain piece of land ; the land was to be worked and taken care of personally and, supposedly, can never be sold.
Such land has to be transmitted to one of the closest and ablest
heirs of the original beneficiary, allowing him to raise and support a normal family in the Mexican rural milieu. In order for any ejido to be created, not less than twenty adults, actual or potential heads of a family should constitute a committee and apply for land through the legal channels provided by the Ministry of Agriculture, (later on by the Agrarian Department).
Once the land was
provided, the beneficiaries should meet together again in a plenary session, in order to elect for first term, the official authorities of the ejido and to decide upon the type of agricultural enterprise (coopera tive or individual bases). The authorities are constituted by a double body of officials (three in each group, regularly).
Six persons enter in the rally for nomination.
The three with the most votes are elected, in order of votes received, president, secretary and treasurer of the so-called Comisariado Ejidal, the major official authority.
Similarly, the three with the fewest votes
are automatically elected president, secretary and treasurer of the auxil iary committee (Comisariado Ejidal Auxitiar).
All ejido authorities are independent from and elected independently of the town authorities (municipal authorities). The ejido was supposed to promote democracy and freedom in every day life.
The ejidatarios, it was held, would hold democratic values
and would participate in civic and cultural life, while freely elected authorities, would direct all social and economic activities of the ejido. It seems appropriate at the present time to investigate what has been the success or the failure of the ejido, after more than thirty years of agrarian reform.
Many endeavors have been made in recent years
to analyze some of the aspects of the ejido system in Mexico.
studies, although not very comprehensive, have been made particularly with regard to the over-all picture of ejido agricultural productivity, irrigation, credit, and extension services (26).
Very little has been
done yet with regard to the power structure of the whole system.
tions such as the following remain to be answered: What are the present forms of power in the ejido? Who are the power holders ? What are the power holders' patterns of decision making?
What are the main ways by which social control is exercised in the ejido system?
Government people -- officials and extension civil servants -- as well as scholars are puzzled about the real matter of social-, culturaland power-structures in the ejido.
The ejidatarios seldom talk about
the deep problems such questions involve, mainly because they know that they have been left to their own luck since the agrarian reform took place.
For many years good will and promises have been the only help
they have received from the rest of the people.
The ejido people know
that the system they actually have does not correspond to the ideal of the ejido plans, and they seem to have come to a sort of compromise with their actual situation.
If an outsider asks them questions about
power and authority in their system, they are most of the time shrewd enough to answer in terms of what the agrarian laws state.
rather reluctant, though, to reveal all the complexities of power structure and decision-making as they live and experience them in every day life.
Reality for them is the trivial and difficult daily striving
for survival without the help"of irrigation for their crops, without the know-how of modern techniques, without the support of an accessible source of credit, and oftentimes without the presence of any honest administrator or politician at the local level.
Daily life in the
ejido is in many cases a perpetual compromise between honest and goodminded peasants and the corrupted local cacique, or the municipal president of the main city in the neighborhood. In addition, the ejido receives also the impact of the tremendous social change Mexican rural society is undergoing today.
population must deal with the small and uneconomic size of the ejido plots.
The system is still in the hands of many old beneficiaries
(the original ones), subject to the pressure of new drives of younger
generations, to the problems of over-populated towns, to migration of the best labor force towards the industrial centers (in the last two decades also towards the United States), and finally, subject to the displeasure or apathy of many young people who see little advantage and many handicaps of contemporary ejidatarios in their home town. What is going on in the ejido?
Such a question of behavior can
be properly answered only if one looks carefully at the sources and problems of the control of social behavior ; that is, the power struc ture of the social system.
This approach no doubt will not provide an
exhaustive answer, but it is the author's opinion that it will help to clarify some of the key issues of the Mexican agrarian reform.
Plan of this study It was thought that an exploration of the nature and form of the power-structure in contemporary ejidos could best be done by testing in a representative area of rural Mexico, a set of hypotheses that have already been tested in some of the rural systems of the United States, particularly in Iowa.
The problems in the selected area are thought to
be representative of the various problems that rural Mexico will soon face. The present study is concerned with the definition and description of the ejido power-structures.
It deals with the designation and
description of the power holders, the "men-at-the-top" in the ejido affairs, as well as their major social and economic traits.
employs frames of reference which can be identified as Social-Functional
Theory as proposed by C. P. Loomis and others (52). In order to explore and test the hypotheses which were operationalized from the theory, an area of central rural Mexico was selected, Field work within the area was divided into two different steps : (1) Five ejidos were selected according to a set of criteria, to get a good sample of the area problems.
A survey of
their labor force was designed and completed by inter views with a randomly selected population.
view schedule that was used in this survey was intended to discover the community members' perceptions of power, the names of the power holders and the nature of their influence. mainly used.
Reputational and decisional techniques were A team uf fourteen interviewers carried
out this stage of the project. (2)
During five months^ a series of interviews with fortyfour influentials in the five ejidos were completed by the author who spent the entire period in the field work area.
The influentials were interviewed using a
double schedule ; that is, not only were they asked the questions asked of the labor force, but a more specific schedule was designed following the model of those
"Southern region of the Central High Plateau: Municipality of S. Martin Texmelucan. State of Puebla. ^October 1964 - March 1965.
previously used by Powers (75) and Tait (89) in their studies of Iowa communities.
schedules were intended to combine reputational, decisional, and the so-called "potential" techniques, as will be described later.
The organization of the present study can be outlined as follows:
Review of Literature: a. b. c.
The Social system theory. The theory of power. The methodology of power studies„
The General Setting of the Field Work Area. a.
Communities and Issues. Methodology. The Analysis of the Findings. Continuities in Ejido Power-Structure. a. b. c. d.
Peculiar traits of the findings in rural Mexico. Theory. Methods. Policies of change.
REVIEW OF LITERATURE
Before proceeding to develop the theoretical framework of this study, it is desirable to present a brief review of the literature on empirical power studies.
There are two aspects of such studies, their
theories and their methodologies, and in the present review each aspect will receive a separate treatment.
It is felt that a complete review
of the sociological studies on power and authority is beyond the scope of this dissertation (48).
General Nature of the Literature The literature on social power has been steadily growing, particu larly since World War II.
The growth, however, has not been even in
the various social sciences. Two major disciplines account for many of the efforts toward the conceptualization, definition and characterization of social power: political science and sociology.
As Près thus has summarized them, (76
pp. 5-17) such efforts mostly have resulted in theoretical contributions, particularly among the political scientists.
In addition, the focus of
the endeavors by political scientists and sociologists has been differ ent.
Political scientists have seemed to focus on individual-oriented
exercise of power.
Sociologists, on the other hand, focus on the inter
actional and the group-influenced performance of social power. The sociological studies of power typically utilize an "elitist" (a term coined by Presthus) or elite-oriented concept of power, whereas the political science studies utilize a "pluralistic" concept of social power.
The prevalent concept of power among political scientists focuses on the personality of the power holders.
According to this approach,
power is the controlling activity of dominating personalities, result ing from pluralistic conditions of society.
In other words, the ac
tive presence of many conflicting groups, seemingly powerful on the same level, seems to be the relevant factor behind men of authority. Sociologists, on the other hand, emphasize the elite of power holders.
The formation of an elite is not considered to stem from the
presence of conflicting groups and the pluralistic nature of society but from the interplay of social actions (normative, contentful human activity) which creates a set of circumstances which demand in some cases the presence of skill, in others the presence of knowledge, in still others the presence of status and prestige and so forth,
result, the effective capacity to control and to direct other peoples! behavior appears in a elite group of wise, skilled, prestigeful per sons for whom the arbiter-type of power between conflicting groups is a consequence of the prior intimate social nature of the phenomenon of authority. It is important to note that at present the literature on social power does not assert the superiority of one or the other concept of power.
Nevertheless, sociologists can be credited with more empirical
research on the subject of social power than political scientists (76, ib.).
Finally, a common trait of the recent studies on social power is their acceptance of a socio-functional basis for power.
In some way or
another there is no serious discrepancy in accepting social power, at least as effective control on other people's behavior.
two things: whether this effectiveness is considered in the actual (exercised) or in the potential stage, between the person who holds power and the ones who do not possess it, the linkage of power between controller and controlled, refers to a causal relationship.
words, some particular actions not only follow the act of the power holder, but follow it because the power holder intended this very thing. More about the nature of cause and causation will be explained in the theoretical frame of reference. A second thing which also pertains to the accepted idea of social power if that control can imply not only the direction of behavior, but also the launching and suppressing, relenting or changing of it as well as its content (meaning).
The Theoretical Contributions on Social Power Most of the efforts in conceptualizing power as suggested by Maclver (56) and Bierstedt (16 p. 730) have been traditionally placed in political context, from Plato and Aristotle to Machiavelli and Hobbes„ As suggested previously, modern sociology has not yet attempted an exhaustive treatment of power which could account for the ontological nature of this phenomenon as a part of human life.
Among the influential
and complete modern theorists of power and authority, Max Weber ranks first and highest (97 pp. 12-15).
Through Max Weber, contemporary sociology has received several com ponents of the concept of power tzhich can be detected in the philosophy of Aristotle (5), Aquinas (92), Machiavelli (55) and Karl Marx (48). In brief, the traits which have been considered relevant for the sociological treatment of power are the following: (11) (1)
Several aspects of social power have been commonly identi fied as qualities of men or groups, who in particular situations appear to be responsible for launching, chang ing and stimulating the behavior of other people.
aspects are mainly: a.
power as skill, ability or knowledge,
power as mechanical force,
power as human physical strength,
power as invested authority (formal or informal, institutional or transitory).
Concerning power as invested authority, the philosophers and social thinkers up to the twentieth century also distinguished various types of power which could be better labeled as levels of human activity where authority is exercised.
The main types
seem to be: a.
sacred power (referring to forces beyond human control),
political power (leading political personalities, formal holders of institutional authority, pressure groups and the like),
legal power (the effect of capacity to apply correc tive and penal sanctions),
ideological power (the compelling system of ideas infiltrating a group or society)s
will power (more restricted and psychological) or the control over the self,
social power (the concept which modern sociology attempts to define).
It would be questionable to assert that no social philosopher prior to Max Weber attempted to define the nature of social power.
to Marx, not to consider Arab and Chinese philosophers, many treatises on ethics of western culture dealt expressly with the question of the nature of authority, in as far as this is a component of society and human groups, and also in as far as authority could originate among men for the effective control of personal and societal behavior (48, ib.). What is lacking in the works of major philosophers and social thinkers of the past, is not so much the effort to search for the real nature of social power, but the particular point of view of sociology to explore power in a more comprehensive manner. modern sociology with Max Weber.
This is what appeared in
One could add that this happened not
only through Max Weber, who built on the body of sociological thought elaborated by Durkheim (97 p. 15), but also in spite of Max Weber, whose particular theoretical basis, (the elementary social action concept) neglected the analysis of a total social system which is considered neces sary to gain a better perspective of power (71).
Max Weber's contribution to social power According to Weber, social power is: "The chance of a man or a number of men to realize their own will in a communal action even against the resistance of others who are participating in the action." (97 p. 118) The conception of power that is inherent in this definition of power has had a strong influence on more recent sociological approaches to the study of power.
More specifically, Weber's contributions to the study of
power are seen as follows: (1)
Because of his insistence upon institutionally recognized power, Weber suggests a clear distinction between authority and influence.
This distinction has proved useful in later
sociological research. (2)
Because of his conception of social action, Weber develops a sociological perspective which permits a more orderly exploration into the complex phenomenon of power.
as a matter of fact, the content of sociology (its formal object, as Kantian Scholastics could call it) consists of "meaningful actions," i.e., human actions full of content inasmuch as they intend "the other" and inasmuch as "this other" is a human person capable of receiving and responding to stimuli.
When social action occurs among a plurality of
actors, then social relations appear ("the meaningful social action of a plurality of actors").
(3) In addition to his contribution through the conceptualiza tion of social action, Weber has influenced the sociological study of power by suggesting that power exists at different levels of social reality (personality, society and culture). (4)
Finally, Weber's conviction of the validity of a common system of logic for science and philosophy (97 pp. 12-13) led him to effective operationalization of at least some aspects of power.
While not many sociologists accept Weber's
idea of social power as a "chance" measured in statistical terms, Weber did make a contribution by suggesting the feasibility of identifying conceptional meanings with operational terms.
It should be noted that Weber accepted, as the social thinkers before him did without questioning, the Aristotelian and Kantian heritage (Weber particularly through the Neo-Kantian School of Baden) which maintains that there exists "de facto" the capacity of some men to rule over others as a universal phenomenon which is expressed and exercised in human societies through social relationships (11).
Bjerstedt The first of Weber's contributions, the suggested distinction between power and authority, was further elaborated by Bierstedt.
attempts to distinguish social power from prestige, influence, dominance, rights, force and authority (16 p. 733).
For Bierstedt, as Powers
summarized it (75 p. 14), power is often times the basis of prestige rather than vice-versa.
More important, power is characteristically
coercive, as is authority, whereas influence is voluntary.
With regard to other terms commonly associated with power, Bierstedt maintains that dominance is a psychological concept ; it is drawn from interpersonal relationships and does not go beyond them.
Power, on the
other hand, appears mostly in inter-group relationships and its domain extends from the simplest to the most complex levels of reality.
finally, according to Bierstedt, are prerequisites of power rather than power itself. Bierstedt made an additional contribution through his ideas on the identification of power sources.
He proposed three major categories of
sources of power: (1) number of people, (2) social organization, and (3) resources.
The latter are identified with the terms which he dis
tinguished from power, such as influence, force, authority, prestige and rights. There is only one thing that could empty the concept of power as it was advanced by Bierstedt, and this is his contention (if one is to take it literally) that social power occurs only as an inter-group phenomenon. This, however, seems to be secondary to his thought and perhaps gratui tously affirmed, or at least affirmed on behalf of questionable assump tions regarding the levels of social reality (38 p. 55).
Lasswell and Kaplan (47) A complete presentation of their advances is out of order here be cause their concept of social power is supported by a very questionable
assumption of interdependence of all values which the society can hold. The operationalization of this concept is arbitrarily reduced to eight forms of power and sixty four types of influence which apparently did not have any definite impact in the theory of social power, at least if one is to judge it according to the literature that followed their study. In brief, Laswell and Kaplan state that influence is the gender, whereas power is a case or specific difference, an instance of influence. In order to understand this conception they explain the relationships between influence and values in the following manner. Values are any events people -- individuals and groups -- desire. They can be arbitrarily separated into two categories: (1) the values related to the maintenance of the physical activity of the person (wel fare values) and (2) the other values, like to take into consideration the acts of the others and of the self (for instance, power, respect, rectitude).
These are called deference values.
Characteristically enough, social systems not only hold certain value patterns or certain distributions of values among their members, but they also hold value positions, the different degrees of holding values in a certain pattern.
The result is that such a difference affects
the person as well as the group as long as the person or the group with a comparatively larger share of a value occupies the favorable value position.
And more than that, since values can come into conflict --
as expression of conflicting desires -- persons and groups are also given "value potential" or the value position which is likely to be occupied as the outcome of conflict.
"To have influence is to occupy a high position (and potential) with respect to all the values important in the society. Influence is exercised when its possession affects the interpersonal relations of those (other than the self) active in the shaping and enjoyment of the values." (47 p. 71)
Power comes to be only a special case of influence, i.e., when a per son or group affects the policies of others by "applying or threatening" to apply sanctions for nonconformity with the policies intended.
mate possession of power, or formal power is called authority. It is interesting to remark that the final outcome of this theo retical framework in regard to power does not say anything beyond the functional social-action approach that conceptualized power has the effec tive capacity to control others' behavior.
However, it appeared very
helpful to clarify the difference between influence and authority.
about the contributions of Lasswell and Kaplan is to be said in the second part of this chapter in relation to methodology.
Talcott Parsons In the Weberian tradition, Parsons will carry the social action frame of reference to the realms of functionalism (beyond Weber's conception) (71) in regard to social power. the particular philosophy
However, Parsons was never committed to
idealistic historism -- of Weber himself.
For Parsons social power is: "The realistic capacity of a system unit to actualize its interests (attain goals, prevent undesired inter ferences, command respect, control possessions, etc.) within the context of system interaction and in this sense to exert influence on the process of the system." (71 p. 95)
In this sense, power is generated by three different factors (75 p. 18): (1)
The valuation of the unit (which actualizes its interests) in the system according to value standards, including qualitative as well as quantitative aspects of judgment in regard to these standards.
By the way, it is irrele
vant whether or not such standards are completely common throughout the system or not.
In other words, the unit
can be very highly placed within the system in regard to value standards which are strange to the system. (2)
The degree to which the actors in the system permit devi ance from these standards in performance, as well as the manner in which the deviance is permitted.
Finally, the control of possession (material belongings as well as non-material qualities and resources), which is a source of differential advantage in regard to a desired goal.
In summary, these three factors are:
1) a social process (evalua
tive), 2) a quality or degree-permissive, and 3) an access to resources of advantage.
Accurate observation can detect the organization of Weber's
conception of power with an introduction of systemic analysis of social functions.
According to Parsons there is indeed a process of social
action (valuative process) without the Weberian commitment to chance. The latter has to be explained in view of the whole conception of Verstehen and Verstehende Kenntnis (11).
There is also a systemic element or a way
of integrating the process into a system by relating the elements of action: the control of possessions.
And there is finally a structure
linkage between social action process and its system, the structural element or degree (or quality in general) to which social action is patternized within a system. In regard to authority, Parsons reaffirmed only the first idea of Weber:
authority is institutionalized power by others (71 p. 96).
French Three years after that important contribution of Parsons, French, a social psychologist, explored the ways in which the influence process can be explained by patterns of interpersonal relations. Influence, as it appears whenever exercised, is the sum of inter personal influence taking into account three different and complex patterns of relations: (1)
The power relations among members of the group,
The pattern of interaction within the group, which can be equated with the communication networks.
The relations among opinions within the group.
From the interplay of these three patterns of relations, an alge braic sum gives this result in the case of two actors, A and B: "... the power of A over B (with respect to a given opinion) is equal to the maximum force which A can induce on B, minus the maximum resisting force which B can mobilize in opposite direction." (34 p. 183)
This power has five bases according to French: "... attraction power based on B's liking for A; expert power based on B's perception that À has superior know ledge and information; reward power based on A1s ability to mediate rewards for coercive power based on A~*~3 ability to mediate punishments for B, and legitimate power based on B's belief that A has a right to prescribe his behavior or opinion." (34, ib.)
Each of the complex patterns of relations between social actors is based upon certain postulates.
The most important of these postulates
is expressed by French in this manner: "For any given discrepancy of opinion between A and B, the strength of the resultant force which an inducer A can exert on an inducee B, in the direction of agreeing with A1 s opinion, is proportional to the strength of the bases of power of A over B." (34 p. 184)
There are two major things to notice in regard to French's concep tion of power: (1)
First, it appears to be very limited in scope and range: French is interested not exactly in the ultimate bases of social power.
He admits power as something previous
to the object of his study (the so-called bases of power). His interests lay upon the way power could be scientifi cally explained as an interpersonal relationship.
he is not interested in contributing primarily to the ontological and noetical aspects of social theory. (2)
Second, French pursues one of the aspects of power suggested by Parsons, namely the aspect of the structural element or
degree to which social action can be patternized within a system.
In the examples of his quotations, French takes
into account three complex patterns of relations whose interplay gives a sum of influence of actor A over actor B.
Thus it is a new social action which will constitute
new structures in a system according to the degree that this very action affects the actors.
By doing this, French advances in some extent the concept of power because the operational expression of this concept can now be fruitfully stated in terms of an interplay of forces.
This, however, will not be
possible in all cases of social life, but it appears to be of some use in several instances.
One should say that the measure to analyze power
(i.e., the five power bases of French) have not been yet extensively developed in rural community studies, and the operationalization could be very problematic (89 p. 18).
Loomis Among contemporary sociologists, very few can be compared with C. P. Loomis in their efforts to pursue a complete presentation of systemic functionalism of social action.
The line of inspiration is
clear from Weber through Parsons, Tonnies and down to Loomis.
action is maintained as the formal object of sociology (52 p. 3), but Loomis supports behavioral assumptions of a philosophical background alien to Weber.
Besides this, Loomis continues with the Parsonian
prime concern of systemic analysis (already beyond Weber's work) and reaches a good level of generalization, the so-called processionally articulated structural model along this line. Two things are to be said in this review of literature in regard to the contributions of Loomis' first, his theoretical framework of systemic analysis -- which will be used in this study, has remained more or less untouched since the original complete presentation (1960) (52).
One major addition important in other respects but not relevant
for our present purposes has been proposed by A. L. Bertrand (13). Second, in regard to power, Loomis channels and summarizes the lines of social action and functionalism which inspire his own thought, by conceptualizing power as "the capacity to control others" (52 p. 20). Such capacity can be seen as the outcome of two major items -- clarify ing, thus the original suggestion of Max Weber -- authoritative and nonauthoritative power. The following statements summarize the complete conceptualization of Loomis (8).
As a component of power, authority is defined as the
right to control others, insofar as it is determined by members of the social system and when established authority resides in the status role, not in the individual as such.
Consequently, the incumbent of an office
cannot take the authority with him upon leaving his office. Loomis remarks that in some degree authority is always institutiona lized.
The remark is important if one is to recognize the limitations of
sociological functionalism, which by its very nature cannot pretend to
define social reality in.all levels, particularly when it comes to the level of personality and the intimate interaction among individuals. However, it is appropriate to say in general, as Loomis does, that the incumbent of a status role is expected to have certain rights and responsibilities, which is always beyond the strict level of personality. On the other hand, the nonauthoritative component of power is sub divided into unlegitimized coercion and voluntary influence. either physical or mental coercion.
It can be
In any case unlegitimized coercion
has a tendency towards one-way interaction. Voluntary influence has been defined by Loomis as "... control over others which is not built into the authority component of the status role but results from the unwillingness of the subordinate to become involved by the superordinate" (52 p. 21). Certain bases of such influence are put tentatively by Loomis.
main ones are these: skill in manipulating people social capital resting upon past favors superior knowledge of the social system wealth reputation certain outstanding qualities, like personal sympathy, etc.
Important in the systemic analysis of power is the basic assump tion of the interplay between authoritative and nonauthoritative power. This may explain many movements in political action such as when a power behind the throne "may pull the strings" and actually control the office (89 p. 19) whereas a career politician holds the office.
Form and Miller Disregarding the pursuit of systemic analysis, but still along the trends of functionalism, Form and Miller have brought some valuable in sights to the theory of power (31). First, the authors insist upon the social aspect of power and its roots in every human group, in contrast to the formulation of Weber which could sound more personalistic.
One remark should be made:
range of scope of Form and Miller's study.
They are interested strictly
in community power. In this respect, power is defined as "... the network of influ ences among persons and organizations involved in community issues or projects" (31 p. 434). Power, as rooted in community life, can be better analyzed by the careful consideration of five major components, which can be identified from overt to covert performance as: (1) Insitutional power structure of society: i.e., the rela tive distribution of power among societal institutions (church, political parties, etc.) (2)
Institutionalized power structures of the community: or the relative distribution of power among local institu tions (like local clubs, guilds, etc.)
The community power complex: a power arrangement among temporary or permanent organizations.
The top influentials or those persons who are reputed to be of most influence and power in community decision making.
The key infLuentials or acknowledged leaders among the top influences.
The second important contribution is the theory of equilibrium in the central point of the scheme: the community power complex.
the theory contends that according to the nature of community issues at stake, certain groups may be expected to join pro-forces, whereas cer tain others can be expected to join adverse forces.
It can be assumed
that in the normative character of social action there are bases to expect enough regularity in group behavior as to predict a resemblance of equilibrium in the exercise of power among the components of the community.
Powers and Tait Among the recent contributions to the conceptualization of social power, the studies of R. C. Powers (75) and J. C. Tait (89) on power structure in rural Iowa communities have particular relevance for the present research.
Both Powers and Tait utilize the structural function
approach to the theory of power.
Both also follow the systemic analysis
suggested and elaborated by Loomis.
And, what is perhaps more relevant
in this overview of literature, both Powers and Tait have attempted to conceptualize power, taking into account its communal aspect as suggested by Form and Miller. Since the present, research is an application of Powers' and lait1 s basic hypotheses in a different rural milieu (in central Mexico) and with communities that have been created under special circumstances by
the Mexican agrarian revolution, the complete presentation of Powers' and Tait's theoretical framework will be more appropriate in the chap ter devoted to theory. Briefly though, important contributions of Powers and Tait appear to be the combination of a systemic approach with the specific pursuit of the societal basis of power, in contrast to the personal basis. This combination is done by putting the theoretical conceptualization of Powers as it was proposed by Loomis together with the steps of a methodological scheme of inquiry, the result is similar to the schemes of the five theoretical components proposed by Form and Miller.
is still a typical Weberian flavor of personalism and of Loomis' con cepts.
In other words, Powers used a rather personalistic phrasing of
concepts together with a societal methodology.
Presthus Robert Presthus1 latest study (76) on community power is equally concerned as Powers and Tait with the exploration of societal roots of power.
But his interests in the systemic analysis, in the sense of
Loomis, appear to be secondary. Presthus' theoretical contribution to the concept of power does not go any further than Form and Miller. as "a system of social relationships."
Presthus conceptualizes power
This, in turn, "presupposes in
every community a certain on-going network of fairly stable subsistence, activated by social, economic, ethnic, religious, and friendship ties and claims" (76 pp. 5-17).
What is particularly relevant in Presthus1 work is the comprehen sive summary of literature on the typical lines of thought which characterized political scientists and sociologists in their efforts to conceptualize power.
Sociologists are described as being prone to
assume power as an "elitist" phenomenon, whereas the political scien tists tend to stress a pluralistic origin of power.
Laundergan A thorough appraisal of recent endeavors in the theory of social power, J. C. Laundergan's study, deserves attention before turning to a review of the methodological contributions (48). Among other things, Laundergan summarizes the implications of power at the level of personality in a functionalistic approach.
ing scheme, inspired by Simon, presents Laundergan's view of the har monic, albeit asymmetric, character of the relationship of power. As a result of comparisons between different concepts of power which typically appear in the main schools of social theory (conflict theory, social action behaviorism, functionalism, modern organicism, symbolic interaction), Laundergan proposes a real definition of power at the bureaucratic level, or the social reality level of formal organiza tions.
The definition of such power, which is always identified with
authority, has four ontological as well as physical elements as follows: (1)
Power is based in an independency generated
through acceptance or legitimacy. (2)
Power is a reciprocal acknowledgment.
Power is changed through either internal organiza
tional strain, resource conflict, social tension,
diction or discrepancy. (4)
Power is functional as much as it perpetuates the
organization (48 p. 152).
Methodology The literature on the methodology of power studies is more vast than that on the theory of power, at least since World War II.
exhaustive review of such literature is considered inappropriate for this study.
The principal concern of the present research is with
community power structures in a certain kind of community, that is, rural centers in an underdeveloped area.
The second part of this sur
vey of literature, thus, shall concentrate upon the relevant items of methodology in community power, together with specific issues concerned with the exploration of power in rural areas. Studies on the methodology of community power structures can be characterized as having three major concerns: (1)
The concern for operational terms, which can be traced back to Max Weber's work with regard to the expression of typologies (11).
The concern for the identification of sources of power, which can be imputed to Bierstedt, at least in the contemporary expression (16).
The concern for the analysis of the characteristics and consequences of the accumulation of power, which Lasswell and Kaplan dealt with in an orderly fashion (47).
With regard to specific studies, it is thought that they can be dealt with best by considering them as three types: (1) political studies in community power ; (2) sociological studies on community power; and (3) studies on power in rural Latin America.
Methodology in political studies It has been said without apparent disagreement among scholars that political scientists tend to explore power from the "pluralistic" end of the continuum of decision making (76 pp. 27-28), i.e., from the point of view which sees power as shared among several competing groups. In addition, it also has been asserted that political scientists have given less attention to the empirical substantiation of their hypotheses than sociologists do. Some good empirical research, however, has been already done by political scientists.
Three different instances show the main contribu
tions in their methodology (48 pp. 35). In a study of power in New Haven, Connecticut, R. A. Dahl (25) asks how governmental and nongovernmental power operates in city life. The methods he used are not particularly new; neither are they exclusively employed by political scientists: (a)
The historic approach,
The social-economic analysis,
Scaling and measurement of decision making,
Several sociometric techniques.
One point, however, must be acknowledged to Dahl, and this is his conscientiousness effort to select and weigh the possible ways of approaching each of the different issues in the community decision making process.
It can well be that Dahl does not deserve the origi
nal credit for this concern, but in this matter his study nevertheless has been inspirational for many others, Beth and Havard (14) made a study of coalition and control in the Florida State legislature.
They wanted to determine to what extent
committee membership (legislative committee) will reflect the power of ruling coalitions throughout an assignment by the committee, whenever committee assignments are used either as political punishment or reward to the legislator. The methodology they used consisted mainly in an analysis of official data from the rosters of the legislators.
These rosters were examined
and compared on the basis of certain variables such as implied political affiliation (North and South), tenure, and the like. As Laundergan states in his analysis, this approach indicates that while the focus of political science was restricted to structural aspects, a processual approach of broader size can be gained (48 p. 55).
will be seen later, this phenomenon is another expression of the biggest challenge for the methodology of social sciences; the qualitative nature of social data demands either an enormous simplicity in the basic assump
tions coupled with looser measurements, or a strengthening of measure ment coupled with more questionable assumptions. In 1962, H. J. Spaeth published a study on judicial power as a variable motivating court behavior (87).
The problem under study was
expansion of authority of the Supreme Court.
The methodology of the
study relied heavily on Gutman-type scales to analyze and measure the various concepts of power that are held by the Supreme Court Justices. As Beth and Havard did, Spaeth narrowed the area in which power was studied and gained precision in measurement, weighing data which were obtained by reconstructing cases.
The methodology of sociological studies Sociological research in community power outnumbers political studies.
J. C. Laundergan's review (48) includes at least four differ
ent types of study which are considered the most influential in contem porary research.
These types will be discussed in the present review
and special attention will be given to the controversial "reputational technique" which is also relevant to the present study. The main types of studies can be identified by the problem areas as follows: Problem area
F. Hunter, Community power structure (41).
Powers' and Tait's studies.
W. Bennis, et al., Authority, power and influence (12).
(Continued) Problem area
D. Mechanic, Sources of power of lower participants in com plex organizations (58).
(4) Decision making
G. M. Beal and J. M. Bohlen, The decision making process
(9) (10). Community area: urban Hunter's pioneer study tries to answer this specific question: What is the form and action of the power structure within a community?
hypotheses related to this question focus upon the relationship between the economic system and the power behavior.
Lynd (54) and Warner (96)
have preceded Hunter along this line and they also suggested a methodo logical approach heavily based upon the reputation of observers and knowledgeables, as distinguished from the power actors, as well as of the power actors themselves. What is new in the methodology of Hunter is that he tries to develop a way of showing the notion of power in a truly dynamic sense, and not merely in the formal views of power.
This attempt was successful at
least to the extent of showing that reputational techniques of any kind can be linked with historic reconstruction. Moreover, the concern of Hunter in using the reputational approach, in connection with systemic analysis, helped to identify several strata of power within the power system.
Such strata appear to be formed by
persons who have more or less designated functions for carrying the formu lation of policies and power matters in general.
Identification of these
strata were completed through lists of influentials rated by others and by themselves as having actual power in general as well as having power in different issues which were considered relevant for the community. Other relevant studies will be mentioned when generating hypotheses of this research.
The methodology of such studies, however, does not go
beyond the basic methods of Hunter.
The studies of Powers and Tait summarize in an adequate manner the methodology of power studies in a rural community.
The importance of
Powers' and Tait1s studies does not rest upon the introduction of new techniques, but rather upon the orderly and systematic use of the methods of inquiry that have been employed until recently, particularly by Hunter and followers.
The methodology of these studies embraces five
major items: (1)
A somewhat arbitrary but reliable technique based on the reputation of outsiders.
Reputational scaling of power actors traced by themselves.
Critical reconstruction of historical data (community pro jects), throughout their decision making steps.
An analysis of correlations (non-necessarily statistical) between socio-economic variables and status role performances which are held by power actors and expected from them.
correlation or connection proceeds in a sequence of steps: first, identifying socio-economic variables that could be
thought of as typical of the various power actors (and of their strata), by means of significant correlation coefficients.
Second, identifying role performances
expected from power actors, again through reputation or imputation. (5) A discretional use of descriptive analysis of decision making processes and power actors' personalities in their specific environment.
The reputational technique: a note Methodology can be thought of as a link between theory and facts. The testing of hypotheses which convey the conceptualization that men have about the reality of our universe, as well as the conclusions which men draw from any analysis of data, depend essentially upon the validity of the methodology which is utilized to approach the reality in question. In the particular case of social sciences, sociology as well as political science in this case, a part of the methodology employed can be labeled as reputation techniques.
This describes, in general, an
indirect approach to qualitative data ; the researcher draws on the experiences that other persons have or have had with the phenomenon under study. In the specific case of community power studies, the term becomes singular, "the reputational technique."
It designates the approach that
was more systematically followed by Hunter in his study (41).
sists of asking a third person about the degree of a quality, in this case about the degree of power and/or authority, which a presumed power actor may have. Social scientists like Polsby (73) and Wolfinger (99), have attacked the procedure with criticisms about the reliability of the reputational technique. The soundness of the reputational technique, it is felt, should be appraised at two different levels.
At the basic level of elementary
social data gathering, the reputational technique is firmly rooted in sociological methodology.
It is nevertheless true that human communica
tion through symbols will affect the human actors differently, at least to some degree.
There is no way to avoid the personal elaboration of
symbols which each individual makes and the unique, at least to some extent, meanings he attaches to symbols.
Thus, the possibility always
exists that the unique interpretations of symbols of any one person may depart so much from interpretations of others that it can be considered a distortion of the reality more commonly described by the symbol. At another level, criticism of the reputational technique has been concerned with the possibility that informants may deliberately lie to the researcher.
It is felt, however, that this does not make question
able the basic method but only questions whether the desired precision is achieved.
However, such criticisms may be beneficial in that they
point up the need, at times, to question the results of some studies
which have been made.
Bias can certainly be introduced by the improper
wording of questions, by poor selection of informants, and the like, but the possibility of such sources of error does not, it is held, mean that the basic method of the reputational technique is incapable of produc ing valid results.
Bureaucratic area: institutional W. G. Bennis, N. Berkowitz, M. Affinto and M. Malone (12) studied a group of nurses in order to determine the separation of power and authority.
The question these authors had in mind was the following:
How can a maximum of control, and predictability of such control, be reached in a bureaucratic organization?
The central hypotheses about
the separation of power and authority rested on the assumption that authority and power must be coterminous if maximum control is at stake. The methodology of this study does not appear to be relevant for community power studies.
The study utilized long questionnaires con
taining items about rewards and supervision, considering that authority is "the potentiality to influence people's behavior based on a position, whereas power is the actual ability to influence."
Bureaucratic area: organizational D. Mechanic's study, quoted earlier, was related to the so-called "lower participantsor those persons whose positions are structurally subordinate within some organization.
Central to this study was the
question of how and to what extent lower participants attain power with
out any attempt or chance of getting formal authority. Since Mechanic did not test empirically any of his hypotheses, it may not seem correct to discuss the methodology of his study.
as is the case in one of the studies of Beal on the processes of deci sion making (8), there is also here a different level of methodology which one could call "middle range methodology," i.e., a way of inquiry not yet tested but providing enough bases to become operational. In this respect, Mechanic approaches the problem of the lower par ticipants power by means of a reputational technique related to the sources of power which are available for such formally subordinate bureaucrats.
It does suggest, at the same time, a new use of reputa
tional techniques which can be tested in different areas of community life. The lcgic coherence of his hypotheses suggest to Mechanic that power without authority is a more formidable combination -- as Laundergan puts it (68) --in cerms of control than is authority without power. The present researcher has also found this true in an underdeveloped rural area, as will be discussed in a later chapter.
Decision making process study Brief consideration only will be given to the methodology of studies by Beal and Bohlen which summarizes many other endeavors in the area of decision making processes (8) (9) (10). Two aspects of these studies are relvant to research on social power.
First, the logical explanation of the sequence of steps of a
complex decision making process ; and second, the discovery of the "feed back points," or the fact that evaluation appears to be characteristic of some of the steps of the decision making process . Some instances of these contributions of Beal and Bohlen's study will appear in the descriptive analysis of the various cases of the present research.
Power studies in rural Latin America Sociological and political studies on power in Latin America are of a different nature from the scientific ones which have been reviewed here. Dr. V. Flores Olea (30) confirms Kling's (46) statement that "modern research techniques and methods were only recently introduced into this part of the world, and their application here is extremely limited."
of the efforts, particularly in the area of political science, have been of "traditionalistic" category. The term "traditionalist" designates the theoretical as well as the methodological approach of such studies.
Theoretically, they are attached
to scholastic or classical political thinkers, while methodologically they tend to generalize without providing systematic findings.
they tend to formulate prescriptions and advice for political leaders. This phenomenon can perhaps be better explained in the cultural atmos phere of Latin American countries since their independence.
As Dr. Flores
Olea wrote, it is an atmosphere which forces us to reflect upon urgent problems and to look for immediate solutions; it is an atmosphere in which political thought immediately becomes political action (71).
As far as studies of rural Mexico are concerned, Dr. 0. Pals Borda (27) reviewed exhaustively sociological studies in his paper at the First World Congress of Rural Sociology (Dijon, France, 1964).
the studies reviewed were specifically related to power and power struc tures . A good survey of the scholarly work in political studies in Mexico, particularly with regard to the problems of government, has been pre sented by Brandenburg in his recent book, The Making of Modern Mexico (19). Power and politics in Mexico and in Latin America are the subject of at least a dozen essays of political scientists in the last seven years. Still, a major characteristic of these studies is the lack of any sophisti cated theory.
Perhaps this should be expected, since the first task of
any scholar is to explore and define reality, and this reality of poli tics and power in Mexico and in Latin America has not yet been thoroughly studied from a formalistic point of view utilizing a consistent theory of political reality. Methodologically, the power studies in Mexico have also a common trait: they tend to use historic reconstruction of major events together with observations of the socio-economic traits of the people, insofar as the regional or national statistics allow the researcher to obtain them. Beyond this characteristic, the studies can offer only a differential degree of penetration into the mentality of the people, particularly the Mexican and Latin American intellectual, whose insights and reflections are many times systematically observed by foreign scholars.
R. E. Scott (80) published, in 1959, a study on the Mexican govern-ment as a typical case of a government for a transitional period ; the transition being that from a traditional-oriented to a technology-domi nated country.
Scott pointed out how the increase in organization
with the consequent definition of roles tended to mature a government which was then the best adapted to the needs of the country that was growing up in a western political style.
Besides the description of
governmental processes and the description of the use of legalized power, the study offers also a good account of the physical and social setting of the Mexican people and of their major socio-psychological traits. At least a decade before Scott's study, the classic work of Dr. N. L. Whetten (98) was the most scholarly source of information with regard to the processes of power used in Mexico's rural areas. Power, however, has been only a secondary consideration to the economic scientists like Whetten. Between Scott's book and Whetten's study, J. J. Johnson (43) published a piece of research about the emergency of middle class sec tors and the political scene of Latin America.
This phenomenon was
viewed in connection with the predominant events and the relevant ideo logical streams which shaped Latin America in the nineteenth century. The socio-economic variables of urbanization, public education, industri alization, nationalism, and state intervention were treated systemati cally with regard to the creation and activity of political parties and
top leaders in the specific case of five Latin American republics. In 1961, Dr. C. F. Senior of the University of Florida presented a case study of political and economic significance in relation to cooperative ejidos in La Laguna (Torreon, Mexico) (81).
of this work lies particularly in the exploration of relevant socio economic characteristics of some of the influentials of the ejido. Such influentials, however, were not the main subject of the study, neither were they systematically questioned about power. In his survey of sociological and political ideas of contemporary Mexico (3), V. Alba traces the ideas prevailing in the setting and the use of power in modern Mexico.
Nothing is said, however, about the
contemporary organization and functions of the power structure, but the roots of authority and the complex net of socio-economic conditions are well analyzed. According to Alba, liberalistic ideology is prevalent and is accepted by all Mexican parties since the nineteenth century.
acceptance of liberal political thought is only an axiomatic assumption which has never been effectively influential in everyday life.
words, much of the political thought labeled "liberal" remains still at the level of Utopia.
Because of this, there is a tendency to mix social
problems and their conceptualization with many other areas of culture, such as, religion, civilization and economics, and the approach to studies in these and other areas is imbued with an Utopian ideology. Only a year ago, J. J. Johnson edited another essay related to some explorations of power in Latin America under the title, Continuity and
Change in Latin America (43).
It consists of a series of socio-psycho-
logical papers concerning types of people of Latin America in their particular socio-economic strata, such as the peasant, the military and the artist. In a chapter devoted to rural labor, a particular section embraces the area of power.
In regard to organizations, the study is primarily
interested in rural and peasants' organizations, as one example of a power arena, or, in other words, as a particular share in the distribu tion of social power.
Peasants' organizations as such are briefly
examined in relation to their distinctive resource basis, to the authority which determines the actual use of those resources, and, finally, with regard to the control or force sanctions which are at hand for the organi zation.
The study also focuses upon the set of social relations and
cultural forms emerging out of the use of power.
This latter area, more
than any other, suggests the possibility of further research in the share and communication of power. From the point of view of political sociology, one more study shall be mentioned, namely, Frank Brandenburg's book, The Making of Modern Mexico (19).
The mention is considered relevant here because of the
accurate reconstruction of the revolutionary governments and their ideo logical trends it contains, as well as because of its analysis of the major strata of the Mexican urban and rural political population.
this is, however, only indirectly related to the theme of the present study.
It is, however, important to understand the proper setting of
the power structure in rural communities.
More specifically related to sociology, some of the studies of the National University Institute of Social Research in Mexico City deal with the description of power in rural Mexico.
At least four of these
studies will be mentioned here. A team of scientists and graduate students of Dr. L. Mendieta y Nunez did an extensive exploration of the consequences of the agrarian reform in three ejido communities located in three different regions of the country (60).
The methodological approach consists of a systematic
review of roles and functions relevant to official power.
ally and with regard to the behavior of some people is mention made about other forms of power. In 1962, the anthropologist M. Nolasco Armas studied land tenure forms in Teotihuacan Valley north of Mexico City (67).
This paper con
tributed to the almost exhaustive analysis of the same area initiated years ago by Dr. M. Garnio (35).
The study of power and authority, how
ever, in this study, is really secondary and is restricted to the distri bution of land.
The methodology of the identification of power uses
the reconstruction approach based on interviews with ordinary peasants and farmers of the region. More recently, J. Ballesteros Porta studied a different region of Mexico wich regard to land tenure, the ejidos of Tlahulillo in La Laguna (Torreon, Mexico) (6).
The question he tried to answer was whether the
ejido system should be operated on a collective bases or whether it should consist of a sum of individual operations.
The relevance of this study
lies with its systematic review of socio-economic traits of the ejido labor force and the economic variables that can influence the control of behavior.
The methodology, though, is reduced to descriptive statisti
cal analysis of these variables.
There is no formal attempt of predic
tion in regard to power. The two major studies that have been published on the Mexican agrarian reform belong to Mexican scholars. Agrario (61) by Mendieta y Nunez.
The first one is El Problema
It is a historic and legal essay on
the sources and characteristics of the Mexican agrarian reform.
methodology for the identification of formal authority is the historic and functional analysis of formal roles.
In addition, throughout the
study are observations of an empirical nature which constitute a valu able source for further systemic analysis. A different point of view of agrarian reform is taken by the econo mist M. T. de la Pena in his work, El Pueblo y Su Tierra, an essay on the myth and reality of the Mexican agrarian reform (26).
this study is the most comprehensive description of the socio-economic effects of the agrarian reform, and the most reliable source of all available statistics on rural Mexico.
The book, however, is very uneven
in methodology; some chapters, such as the one on demographic analysis, are objective and empirical, whereas other chapters are a mixture of personal observations, anecdotic references, and ideological peroration. While not criticized by major Mexican scholars, this work has led to extensive data gathering but with an inadequate basis for summarizing
and evaluating the results of the Mexican agrarian reform.
respect, however, one must recognize that scientific research is only beginning to cope with the phenomenon of modern Mexico. One could thus conclude the present review of literature by stating that with regard to the theory of social power it is the social action functionalism theory which has advanced the most.
In addition, the
methodology appropriate for this theory is also the most precise in its major steps.
Finally, both theory and methodology, at least in the
functionalistic frame of reference, are still deficient in all major endeavors that have been dealing with power and authority in Mexico or Latin America.
THE FIELD STUDY AREA
The field work of the present study was done in the municipality of St. Martin Texmelucan, in the state of Puebla.
A brief description
of this area from an economic, ecological and social point of view is preceded by a summary of its geography. The state of Puebla, east of Mexico City, is located between 99° and 97° W. longitude Greenwich, and between 18° and 21° N. latitude. The state has the shape of the main island of Great Britain.
municipality of St. Martin Texmelucan roughly corresponds to the country of Wales. Although Puebla embraces a good number of regions which can be generally defined as the terrains of the Southern Mexican Plateau, the highest tableau of land of Mexico, it includes a great variety of other regions whose climate and flora range from the highlands of the cool and rainy Sierras down to the creeks of the hot land of Tierra Caliente, close to the borders with the states of Oaxaca and Guerrero. In the middle part of the state of Puebla, the municipality of Texmelucan is located between 99° 301 and 99° 40 between 19° 10' and 19° 20' N. latitude.
W. longitude and
It has the shape of an isoceles
triangle, whose horizontal base lies along Parallel N. 19° 24 .
west side of the triangle marks the line dividing the state of Puebla from Tlaxcala. This territory has an average height of 2,310 meters above sea level. Its area is only 94.44 kilometers square and its population is at present
above 37,799 (7). In this part of the Valley of Puebla, the climate is temperate and humid, tending to cold (83).
Average moisture in the air is a
little above sixty percent, but the humidity is uneven throughout the day.
Clear, fresh and even cold dawns are ordinarily followed by
half misty hours the first part of the morning.
At noon the air is
drier, even in the winter time, and the sunshine becomes burning. This gives a certain mood to all life in town as well as in the fields, except during the rainy season of the year, from May to August.
ings are again fresh and the cool wind from the Ixtlaxihustl refreshes at night, at least most of the time.
Summary of atmospheric conditions of St. Martin Texelucan area Ia Valley of Puebla - Mexico
Barometric pressure (mean)
Temperatures (Centigrades) Maxima Mimma Mean 23.9
Relative humidity 59
Summary of atmospheric conditions of St. Martin Texelucan area IIa Valley of Puebla - Mexico
Number of days With With rain frost
Precipitation (total in mm.)
Predominant winds Direc Medium speed tion E
Temperatures through the year average 18.0° C.
In terms of inter
national classification, the climate of the municipality can be defined as "rainy temperate."
Mean temperature in the hottest monta is 18.0° C.
(64.4° F.), and the temperature in the coldest month, in excess of 0° C. (32.0° F.), with an annual rainfall in excess of 580 milimeters.
is prevalent in the summer (83). The soils of the area belong, on the average, to the Rendzine soil category.
They present, however, a great variety of types within this
Rich clay soils are thought exceptional in the ejido plots.
except for a few portions of the S. Lucas ejido, which will be described later.
The lack of conservation techniques, especially notorious since
the years of the Revolution when the old haciendas were abandoned by the landowners for a considerable length of time, has increased the erosion within the whole area of S. Martin.
Geographically, the territory under study belongs to the central hydrographie area of Puebla. It is characterized by small rivers and river beds eventually completely dried.
The rivers carry down to the
Valley of Puebla, the waters of the melting snow from the eastern side of the Ixtlaxihuatl volcano (Alt. 5,280 meters), one of the landmarks of the colorful landscape of the region.
These rivers flow into the
incipient but important Rio Atoyac which receives most of the water of the plains of Puebla and drains it into the state of Guerrero, where the river has the name of Rio Mezcala, and finally into the Pacific Ocean (94). The ejidos that will be studied here do not take full advantage of these kinds of waters, mainly because the location of their parcels and the unpredictability of the avenues, particularly in the winter and summer months.
The ejido lands are situated within a range of 24 to 10
kilometers east of the lower valleys at the feet of the Ixtlaxihuatl and the sudden streams of melted snow, as well as the run-offs from showers and thunderstorms in the high mountains, are very uneven and extremely difficult to be controlled at the present stage of the regional irrigation.
Up to the present, such waters represent a menace
for more than one ejido, because of the powerful erosion they provoke in the many creeks along the river beds. For ordinary irrigation purposes, the ejidos rest upon an expected annual, average precipitation of 950 millimeters.
This figure is a
little above the average precipitation of the central hydrographie area,
because of the neighboring Ixtlaxihuatl (83).
The city of Puebla, for
example, has an average precipitation of 896.6 millimeters. The main source of steady and controlled irrigation for the ejidos consists of a system of channels originated in a dam.
It is located at
the edge of S. Juan Cuzco, a town southwest of S. Martin, at the feet of the Ixtlaxihuatl.
Such channels were constructed in the past century,
by the prosperous haciendas of the vicinity.
More about irrigation will
be said later, since irrigation causes and develops practically a whole social system in the life of the ejidos. Taking into account all losses, the average ejidatario may have no more than 36 Its/sec. during a period of five hours and for use on two of his irrigated acres every thirteen days during five to six months of the year.
This means, in other words, that in the best of the cases the
ejidatario is only able to irrigate one third of his land, for under present conditions ejido property in the area averages 6.5 acres (49). Throughout the whole area, though, there is plenty of subsurface water.
It can be easily obtained through wells, especially since the
electrification process of almost all the ejidos has been already com pleted.
The average level of this water ranges between 8 meters depth
at S. Francisco, down to 14 meters in S. Lucas (37).
An ecologic survey of the area The largest part of S. Martin municipality, in which the ejidos are located, belonged formerly to six big haciendas.
Their landowners used
to live for the most of the year in Puebla or in Mexico City, while the
peons of the haciendas lived in the towns which are at the present the seats of the ejidos.
A brief summary of the settlements is presented
in Table 3.
S. Martin Texmelucan municipality (administrative district of Huejotzingo) Political division
Name of the site San Martin Texmelucan El Moral San Baltazar Temaxcalac San Buenaventura Tecaltzingo San Carlos San Cristobal Tepatlaxco San Francisco Tepeyecac San Pedro Coxtocan San Jeronimo Tianguismanalco San Juan Tusco San Lucas Atoyatenco San Rafael Tlanalapam Santa Catarina Hueyatzacoalco Santa Maria Moyotzingo
Distance from the head city S. Martin
Ciudad*3 Pueblob Pueblo*3
Cabecera (head) 1.5 kms. 4.5 kms.
Pueblo^ Rancho Pueblo*3 Pueblo*3 Hacienda Pueblo*3 Pueblo*3 Pueblo*3 Pueblo*3
5.5 4.3 3.5 6.0 7.0 5.6 3.8 3.0 3.6
2.0 kms. 6.5 kms.
kms. kms. kms. kms. kms. kms. kms. kms. kms.
Roadsa 2 3 4 X X X X X
X X X X
X X X X
different categories of roads: (1) paved, (2) terraced (good all year around), (3) paths, and (4) railroad. ^Town with ejido.
As early as 1917, the year of the new constitution and the revolu tionary agrarian law of Mexico, several of the actual eleven ejidos applied for land.
For the most part, they got their land under Presi
dent Obregon, between 1923-1926, and for the most part also the extent and the number of parcels they got in those days remained unchanged. More than half of the original ejido beneficiaries, in the ejidos which are considered here, are still alive. According to the provisions of the first agrarian law (23) the ejidos were to identify themselves by the name of the town, rancho or neighbor hood to which the ejido applicant belonged.
These places were, as a
rule, older settlements where the peasants used to live while working in the neighboring hacienda.
Each of the villages had a small church and a
couple of narrow streets in the vicinity of the church.
best and bigger houses of the town were those of the Mayordoma, foreman of the hacienda, and of his associates, (oftentimes, his own relatives) or of the most faithful peons of the hacienda upon whom the landowner used to have the greatest confidence. In general, all houses were built of adobe (earth-brick) in the traditional Pueblo style -- of a big door and no windows in the facade, which goes straight along the tiny sidewalk.
In the inner portion, the
Mexican patio is many times only a portion of the "corral" or house ya&d. Remodeled and perhaps a little improved, these houses stand even today, giving the villages a common flavor of the old days, perhaps only altered by some strange facade of red bricks, bright colors and iron door or windows which may characterize the houses of the few rich young men of the town. For many decades, perhaps even centuries, the area has been a heavily populated one.
Oftentimes, its population seems to have been growing up
at a faster pace than the population of the state of Puebla.
4 and 5 which follow, give a brief account and comparisons of this phenomenon.
Comparative accounts of population3
1950 Area (Km2)
Mexico 1,967 ,183..0 Puebla 33 ,919..0 S. Mar tin 94..5
i960 Density (per Km2)
Density (per Km2)
Urban and rural population^
Mexico 25,791,017 10,983,483 14,800,534 34,923,129 17,705,118 17,218,011 Puebla 1,625,830 539,233 1,086,597 1,973,837 773,481 1,200,356 S. Mar tin 31,135 9,344b 21,791 37,799 13,786 24,013
^According to the information of the Archives of the Municipal Presi dency -- S. Martin Texmelucan, Pue., Nov. 1964.
Socio-economic traits of the area The whole Basin of Puebla, in which the region of S. Martin is located, is the second of the big clusters of people in Mexico.
though the Basin of Puebla can be considered in the same economic region as the Basin of Mexico (commonly called the Valley of Mexico), it is better favored than the latter as far as agriculture is concerned. Maiz is still by far the prevalent crop in the municipality, as well as in the whole Basin of Puebla.
In order of importance, other crops rank
as follows: wheat, beans, chile (red pepper) and alfalfa, the latter only in those plots which are irrigated (49).
In such irrigated lands,
however, alfalfa may yield ten or eleven cuts per year, and corn or wheat and vegetables can be easily obtained more than two times per year. Two main factors are to be kept in mind for a complete understand ing of the socio-economic life of the ejidos, which will be presented later on.
First, the head city of S. Martin Texmelucan is a center of
the textile industry in the whole region.
It has two main factories,
one in cotton textiles and the other in wool.
The city is also, more
than any other place in the eastern part of the Basin of Puebla, a very important market center for various agricultural products as well as for clothing and some minor typical crafts of the region.
As a market place,
5. Martin is even more important than Tlaxcala, the capital city of the state of that name. Three times a week throughout Lhe year, artisan local crafts, fruits, groceries and meat, as well as clothing and shoes are handled in an area consisting of four blocks in every direction around the big municipal
Items are usually displayed in improvised stands or booths
along the sidewalks or even in the streets.
They are put up early in
the morning and removed at dusk, each of the market- and fair-days. Almost half of the week, the city has a different look with the many packed, colorful shops which are spread in the neighborhood of the plaza and market place. As it will be noted below, industry and commerical life have deeply influenced the patterns of culture and social life of the towns in which the ejidos are located.
In addition, they also attracted a good
number of migrants from the towns and ejidos around the city of S. Martin, whose percentage of population increase is more than twice the increase of its rural vicinity. Three major plants for the processing of milk, all of them in S. Mar tin area, monopolize the dairy activities of the many dairy households in the ejidos, towns and ranchos of the region.
The bulk of the produc
tion of these plants, consisting of pasteurized milk, butter and cheese, is absorbed by Mexico City. A second important factor is the increased facilities in transporta tion and communication between S. Martin and Mexico City and Puebla, as well as between S. Martin and the neighboring towns and haciendas or ranchos.
Second-class busses and rental trucks bring to the little towns
a breed of life, more and more urbanized in flavor, which is only inter rupted from late evening to early morning. Puebla, the capital city of the state, remains the chief center of the Mexican textile cotton industries.
It is also famous for its manu
facture of tiles.
On the other hand, Mexico City, with the growing and
absorbing heavy industry newly created in the state of Mexico around the so-called Federal District, becomes, like Puebla, an important center of attraction for rural migrants.
The case is particularly noticeable in
many towns and ejidos of young girls who do not wait for their parents' blessing to take the first chance of going to the big cities as factory workers or as maid-servants. Communication facilities are also a feed-back for commercial life. The less expensive clothing provided by Puebla and S. Martin have been definitely influential in killing many artisan local crafts. Table 6 which follows, gives a detailed summary of the economic active population of the area.
Economic active population Municipality of S. Martin Texmelucan3
Groups 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9.
Professionals and technicians Executives and directors Clerks Salesmen and small commerce Agriculture*3 Masons and construction workers Secondary industry Foremen in industry Other services
Including ejido people.
126 3 99 463 970 7 161 8 330
270 1,244 6,997 99
As is shown in table 6, roughly 60.5 percent of the total labor force is employed in agriculture. of the total population.
This figure represents 21.07 percent
At the national level, 53.2 percent of the
total labor force is employed in agriculture.
Comparative view of the labor force and total population Municipality of S. Martin Texmelucana
Puebla S. Martin
Labor force in agric. (4)
% of labor force in agric.
1,811,430 12,752,120 6,317, 000 34,923,129 17,705 ,118 17,218,011 53.24
(81b, 1963), (82,1960)
7 , 967
7o of agric. labor force to the coun. total pop.
(4)-(5) (9) 18.1
THE FRAMEWORK OF THEORY
Purpose of this Chapter It is the object of the present chapter to describe the scientific frame of reference of this study. This frame of reference consists of two elements: (1)
The main concepts of social power theory which are to be applied.
The general hypotheses concerning the existence, nature, forms and domain of social power in rural Mexico, and how these hypotheses were generated.
Two general assumptions should be spelled out in order to better understand the theory. First, since the problem to be studied is in a community context, namely what is social power and how does it operate in some Mexican ejidos, it is held that a desirable theoretical approach would be one that seeks to explain the various sets of relationships within the com munity. Second, for the purposes of this study, theory is defined as "a set of hypotheses concerning the relationships among variables."
in this sense that the present chapter deals with the theory of social power.
Such theory is not to be considered the same as complete theo
retical systems of sociology which deal with the entire phenomena of socially meaningful interaction, but rather to be thought as "middlerange theory" (63 p. 5).
The present study uses the same theoretical framework, and almost the same set of hypotheses, which were used by R. G. Powers (75) and J. L. Tait (89) in their studies of Iowa rural communities.
chapter, accordingly, draws heavily on their presentations. It is possible that the findings of more recent research could suggest modifications of the hypotheses developed by Powers and Tait. Nevertheless, it is the author's contention that the present study could make a better contribution to future research and could have greater relevance for policy recommendations in regard to community development if the previously used theory is tested in a different cultural milieu, than it could be if the theory was substantially modified.
Major Concepts in Social Power Theory
Social system and elements The first concept to be explained is the basic concept of social system upon which other concepts are built and within which they are supposed to operate. As defined by Loomis (52 p. 12), social system is "the plurality of individual actors whose relationships to each other are mutually oriented through the definition and mediation of a pattern of structured and shared symbols and expectations." Three major elements are delineated in this definition. (1)
The physical component ; actors in the system (individuals, persons).
The formal component or the net of relationships between these actors.
The purposive component or the peculiar patterns and struc tures in which the relationships appear.
In addition to the basic assumptions of man's rationality and of the meaningful character of social action (in Weber's sense), it is further maintained by Loomis that the elements which constitute the social system as such remain the same regardless of the specific systems one studies (52). For an understanding of social systems, Loomis proposed an analyti cal framework built upon three sets of concepts, each set corresponding to one of the major elements of the definition: (1)
The conditions for social action:
The first set of concepts
are the factors that define the UMWELT of man, (his "worldaround-him") the human actor:
size (of any group); and
The second set of concepts are the so-called "comprehensive or master processes" of human interaction (8).
social system poses elements which can be articulated into specialized processes, there are also more complex processes (overall complex or comprehensive) in which elements and elementary processes are articulated. are:
These master processes
communication, or the process by which information, decisions and directives pass through the system and provide data.
It is from such data that beliefs are
gained and sentiments are formed or modified. b.
boundary maintenance, a complex of processes by which the social system retains its solidarity, identity and interaction patterns.
systemic linkage, or the process whereby the elements of at least two social systems become articulated even to the point that they sometimes can function like a single system, (although they preserve always their own indivi duality as separate systems).
institutionalization, the process by which human behavior is patternized and therefore made predictable and whereby social systems are given the elements of structure and the processes of function.
socialization, or the process whereby social and cultural heritage is transmitted.
social control, a process by which deviation is counter acted.
The last set of concepts are the more specific elements of any social system as such. elements of social systems.
Loomis delineates nine specific One more, added here, is sug
gested by Bertrand (13), as necessary for more adequate treatment of elementary systems.
end or objective:
those changes which members of the
social system expect to accomplish through the opera tion of the system. facility:
the means used by the system to attain their
the rules which prescribe what is acceptable or
unacceptable. status role;
whatever is expected from an incumbent in
any social position.
The two-term entity, as Beal
remarks (8 p. 56) contains the concept of status, (a structural element implying position) and the concept role (a functional position). rank:
the value any actor has for the system in which
the rank is accorded. power:
the capacity to control others.
two major forms, authority and influence.
defined as the right -- as determined by the system -- to control the actions of others.
Influence may be regarded
as control over others which is of nonauthoritative nature stress-strain:
(13) the process of disorganization or
disintegration placing stresses and strains in the system in such a way as to insure continuous change. sanctions:
the rewards and penalties used to attain con
formity to the ends and norms of the system. belief (knowledge):
any proposition about the universe
which is thought to be true.
feelings about phenomena.
It is important to realize that any of these elements can be viewed from three different angles and at three different levels of abstraction. The formal concept of power, for instance, is power statically consid ered.
The process whereby power is exercised can be seen as power
dynamically viewed from another angle, which is properly the systemic element in Loomis' theory.
Finally, the result of exercised power which
is social action, (controlled behavior, in this case) is also power, as it can be seen in the outcomes of induced behavior which human actors perceive.
The concept of social power As it has been noted in the previous chapter, social scientists have identified social power with skill, physical force, knowledge, competence, eminence, influence, authority and many other characteris tics.
This is an expression of the immaturity of the theoretical
standpoint already analyzed in the review of literature.
however, connotates a process of growth which Tait (89 p. 21) sum marizes as follows : "Weber was primarily concerned with authoritative power although he recognized bases other than belief in the legitimacy of authority. Bierstedt defined power as a latent force and authority as institutionalized power ; thus power contained more than one component, authority. Lasswell and Kaplan defined influence as the more gen eral term with power including the elements of influence plus sanctions. The conceptualization of Parsons views authority as institutionalized power. French recognized legitimate power, (authority) as different from other forms of power having attraction, expertness, rewards and coercion bases."
For the purposes of present research, the author accepts the con ceptualization of Loomis as the basis for a theoretical framework. Such conceptualization is presented according to the elementary theo retical model suggested by Powers (75). The following advantages for the present study are seen in Loomis1 theory: (1)
First, the conceptualizing is clear and simple; social power is thought of as having two components, namely, authoritative power and nonauthoritative power.
This central idea, essen
tially in the line of Weber, synthetizes to a good extent the views of other social action theorists and functionalists. (2)
Second, this concept of power seems to lend itself well to operationalization.
Finally, the concept of social power as an element of a social system seems most applicable to the present study which seeks the identification of social power in the ejido, a specific rural community.
Elementary model of social power The model of social power consists in the definition of four major concepts:
1) influence, 2) authority, 3) power structure, and 4) deci
The first two concepts were elaborated by Loomis.
concept of power was elaborated by Powers.
The concept of decision
making is adopted from Seal's conceptualization (8). these concepts can be put in this way:
A summary of
Influence Influence is that capacity to control the behavior of others which is not built into the authority component of the status role but results from the willingness of the subordinate to become involved by the superordinate.
The capacity of an actor (or actors) to influence others may
reside in the status role.
The facilities which give the actor the
capacity to influence others are human relation skills, intelligence, wealth, control of mass media, reputation, and many others.
as defined here, is the nonauthoritative component of power.
Authority Authority is the right to control others as determined by the members of the social system.
Established authority always resides
in a status role and not in the individual as such.
The incumbent of
a status role or office cannot take the authority with him upon leaving the office.
Authority always implies some degree of institutionaliza
tion, the standardization of expectancies with regard to rights and responsibilities of an occupant of a status role. In the ideal form the amount of authority is constant for the status roles of the social system unless changed by the system's mem bers.
In the empirical world the amount of power exercised through
formal status roles may vary as the result of three factors.
the amount of influence may interact with the amount of authority to produce variations in the amount of power exercised.
Thus, two power
actors may exercise the same amount of authoritative power, but one may exercise greater social power through a greater amount of influence
interacting with the formal power.
Second, the formal office holder
may not exercise authoritative power due to imperfect knowledge of the rights given to him by the social system.
Third, the units of
the social system may have imperfect knowledge of the rights which they have invested in the status role.
Power structure A power structure is that pattern of relationships among indivi duals which enables the individuals possessing power to act in concert to affect the decision making of the social system on a given issue area.
To clarify the concept, individuals working separately toward
a common goal in the social system without communication among the individuals does not consist of a power structure as defined here. A major objective of this thesis is to determine whether there is a structure of patterning in the exercise of social power in a rural community. The model of social power which will be utilized for guiding this study has been summarized by Powers as follows: S. P. = A function of (I,A,S); where S. P. = the social power of an individual actor in the system I
= the amount of influence possessed by the individual
= the amount of authority possessed by the individual
= the degree to which an individual exerts his power in concert with another individual or individuals in the social system.
Decision making Decision making is viewed here as a kind of social action-process. This process happens as a coordinate activity, (individual or group activity), through which the social subject dynamically links his valueattitude structures with the effective pursuit of a particular goal (1). Effective decisionmaking includes the following steps: (a)
the diagnosis of the present situation ;
the evaluation of such situation;
the knowledge of means ;
the evaluation of the means ; and
the selection of the means according to patterns of rational choice, (not necessarily identified with the so-called "economic rationality").
It is further assumed, that any value-attitude structure of the social actor, (individual or group actor) is a telic structure, and, as such, a functional element, (of any social system, from personality systems, to societies and cultures), steming out from the nature as well as from the past experiences of the social actor (9). The conceptualization of decision making processes is not intended to be exhaustive, but only sufficient enough to back up some exploratory hypotheses of this study.
The General Hypotheses The present section consists of a presentation of the genesis of the hypotheses this study proposes to test.
Theoretical concepts in an
applied science like sociology must be coordinated into logical systems (general hypotheses) which in turn shall be translated into terms (operational hypotheses) corresponding to the experienced reality that human actors can detect.
This translation is called operationaliza-
tion of general concepts. Operationalization comes about through an agreement upon the epistemological basis of the symbolic representation of the physical and sensory world.
It has been accepted that this agreement shall be called
the set of epistemic correlations or the logical expression of the com mon lines along which human knowledge abstracts the rough material of all mental categories from the contact with unique, particular physi cal realities. In explaining the way the general hypotheses were conceived and their correlated empirical hypotheses derived, mention will be made of contemporary studies which have used similar hypotheses or have been the most inspirational in suggesting the concrete expression of the hypotheses of this present research. Among others, Hunter (41) has expressed the basic assumption of all researchers on social power, power is a necessary function of society.
It therefore exists in every society and is expressed in
every society. Powers (75) and Tait (89) felt that even if all research on social power seems to support this assumption of Hunter's, it would be better to put the assumption in the form of two hypotheses.
Thus, two general
hypotheses are proposed as foundations of the present framework.
General Hypothesis 1 (G.H.I):
Social power exists in each ejido considered as a social system.
G. H. 2:
Social power is exercised in the ejido social system.
From the existence of any reality, scientific knowledge moves fur ther towards the possible ways of existence, or the how it happens. In contemporary research on social power, one of the first things that has been stated with more scientific basis is the existence of some concert of harmony among those holding power.
Such findings pro
bably should not be called a "discovery," for the phenomenon may even be commonplace in the philosophical and political literature of Western cultures.
The newness of the findings resides less in their content
than it does in the systematic observation upon which the statements have been made in different communities. Hunter, for example, noted that a network of interaction among the power holders is characteristic: "Certain men were chosen more frequently than others, not only in relation to who should be chosen to decide on a project as it has been already indicated, but the same men interacted together in committees and were on the whole better known to each other than those outside the group." (41 p. 66)
In a similar manner, C. W. Mills has observed: "Local society is a structure of power as well as a hierarchy of status; at its top there is a set of cliques or "crowds" whose members judge and decide the important issues, as well as many larger issues of state and nation in which the com munity is involved." (65)
Later, Miller described how the top influential or the leaders of a community are prone to bring various other influentials to their own circle in order to carry on civic projects (64).
Among such people,
as it was noted in a study of the rural community of Springdale, there can be found a small group of men who are more familiar with the history of the community, its past and present problems, and the abilities, handicaps, and personal problems of other people.
Against this back
ground of methodical observation, Powers and Tait developed a hypothesis which has been supported in two social systems (rural communities). present study adopts the hypothesis with only two modifications:
specification of the social system under study (the ejido), and 2)
broadening of the functional character of the social action embodying power. The first modification is self-explanatory.
It reduces the form
of the hypothesis which was used by Powers and Tait by concentrating upon a definite social system which the agrarian revolution created in rural Mexico. The second modification is one on content ; the character of exer cised power is put in a broader form of interaction, not necessarily implying the stage of concert or consensus held by the power actors. This modification is based on the analysis and conclusions of Powers and Tait.
For the present study, the third hypothesis becomes:
G. H. 3:
Social power will be exercised in the ejido by individ ual power holders acting together.
Neither Powers (75 pp. 85-88) nor Tait (89 p. 63) have developed any definite measure of concert or harmony in the exercise of social pow er, although the general hypothesis was expressed in terms of harmonic exercise of power, e.g., "Social power will be exercised in the social system by individual power holders acting in concert" (89).
of this hypothesis was either through the analysis of sociograms of power holders' interaction, or by a measure of power holders' recogni tion of being influenced by other power holders in accepting or imple menting some project for the community. It is quite probable that a certain degree of concert, particularly among relevant groups of power holders, is always present in the exercise of power.
If it is a matter of general involvement of the influentials
in the exercise of power, and is not restricted to an agreement upon a course of action, an exploration can be made of whether there exists a group of power holders, as opposed to more than one group of power holders.
The question can be put in terms of whether or not the struc
ture of power in a rural community tends to be the same regardless of the issue at stake (monomorphic) or varies by different issues (poly morphic). At present, research findings are not sufficiently complete or consistent to allow a great deal of generalization.
Form and Sauer (33),
for instance, found a community where half of the influentials were given the credit for making the most relevant decisions.
half, while all influential in some area, formed different groups or coalitions, depending on the issues involved.
With regard to this problem, Agger (2) indicates that in still other communities there is a tendency to recognize specific influen tials in different issue areas, such as the school, community welfare projects, and local government. Powers in his study of Centertown (75), found that the same actors became involved to a certain degree on all community issues forming thus a monomorphic structure.
In a second rural community, Tait (89
p. 121) found that the data did not allow characterization of the power structure as being polymorphic. Because of the variance in research findings, the hypothesis con cerning the possibility of a polymorphic power structure seems worth testing in another rural area, culturally strange to American communities.
G. H. 4:
In the ejido community, power structures will vary depending upon the issue area
The next step requires detailed explanation.
From a systemic point
of view, it is apparent that "all social action takes place within the context of existing social systems" (8 p. 26). Since these social systems are living groups, one can expect that the boundary of any system will differ depending upon the social action programs which take place within the system.
The issue of social action
problems can be appropriately recognized as instigated social action and to some extent as instigated social change.
In both respects, the more
specific of social action and the general of social change, it would be
of paramount importance to note how social power as exercised by the power structure will vary whenever such structures belong (like in the present case of the ejido) to a super-system or to a larger social system, that is, the town and community where the ejido was created. The analysis of this phenomenon of existence and exercise of power in the context of a larger social system is not rare in contemporary literature.
Vidich and Bensman (93 p. 31), for instance, found a small
rural community participating in two larger social systems, the school system and town government, since the village government of their own had no jurisdiction over farmers living in the rural vicinity.
same researchers found that the power structure in the rural village varied depending upon the issues and social systems that were involved. Powers' findings in Centertown (75 p. 95) and Tait1 s (89 pp. 128-129) study of other rural communities support the hypothesis from which the one that follows is adapted.
G. H. 5:
The group of power actors, perceived to have the most power in issues limited mainly to the ejido, will differ from the group of power actors perceived to have the most power in issues of the larger social system of the town.
Moving toward the exploration of how social power is exercised, preceding research has given some attention to the implementation of instigated social action or, in simple terms, how the execution of decisions is carried out.
The findings of research in this particular field are still too meager to permit definite conclusions.
However, there is a phenomenon
that Seal points out in summarizing most of the research concerning social power holders ; with regard to small social systems it has been observed "that top influentials are sometimes overtly involved in the most formal group associations and play a more public role in the execution of important social action problems" (8 p. 13). However, there are at least two sets of opposite findings that should be considered.
Hunter, in his analysis of social power in a
large social system, found that the group in charge of some policies, such as for the development of a particular project, was very different than the group responsible for activating it (41).
Powers, on the other
hand, found the case of a small social system where power actors were also the executors of their previous decisions (75).
Tait also came to
the same conclusion (89 p. 135). In view of Seal's remark about small social systems, and taking Power's findings into consideration, Tait stated a hypothesis in the following terms:
"The persons who are perceived to exercise power over
the decisions of the social systems will also be the persons who help execute the decisions" (89 p. 33).
G. H. 6:
The persons who are perceived to exercise power over the decisions of the social systems will also be the persons who help to execute the decisions.
More about the way in which social power is exercised shall be explored beginning now with separate considerations of the theoretical elements of power before searching for the sources of it. As was noted in Chapter I, the theoretical approach of this study considers that there is a division of social power between authorita tive and nonauthoritative.
Because of its functionalistic character,
the theory assumes both elements interact with one another (52).
consequence of this is far-reaching, namely, the total social power any actor is perceived to hold can be based upon influence or authority or upon a combination of both. Contemporary research on power appears to be the more prolific, although the concept of influence has been treated in several studies; such studies, however, lacked a consistency of sociological terminology and theory. A brief survey of several studies of power and authority follows. When it comes to such prominent persons as the mayor and the president of the community group, Vidich and Bensman noted that "they are persons who have no voice in the determination of community affairs" (93 p. 265). In his study of small, contemporary American communities, Miller describes the case of a Northwestern community in which the top four people were neither political leaders nor political office holders (64). Stewart, in his study of Southtown community influentials, showed that out of fifty-five top influentials, thirty-eight percent did not hold any office.
"The office-holding approach (exclusively authoritative power) will produce a list of names of people who have status, but it does not describe the personal influence structure of the community." (88 p. 20)
More recently, comparing three Iowa communities with respect to power structures, Mulford pointed out that generally: "Measures of authority and measures of total perceived in fluence were not highly related in any of the three commun ities ; like businessmen and other community leaders, heads of formal organizations and people operationally defined as informal leaders do not significantly associate measures of perceived influence per se with measures of authority." (66 p. 121)
Powers and Tait come to a similar conclusion, namely that present power is unrelated to total authority, and conclude that "influence plays the major role in determining the amount of power an individual has" (89 p. 35).
Their hypothesis is repeated here for the present
G. H. 7:
The power actors perceived to have more power will have no more authority than the power actors perceived to have less power
Not only are the possible components of power relevant here, but also relevant are the origins or sources of power.
With regard to
sources of power, research findings are difficult to interpret.
the review of literature one can already see at least one common point of agreement in the theory of social power, that is, power requires the possession of various resources.
Some researchers identified these
resources (skill, knowledge, force, etc.) with power tests. ings in this area are numerous. pp. 36-37).
Tait has tried to organize them (89
One thing is apparent:
the bulk of empirical research
in this area tends to emphasize, in various ways, the resources which appear to be the most relevant in the particular community under study. Thus Miller, for instance, finds that most of the top influentials (a very small group, as a matter of fact) of the Northeast community, "have a very positive imagery of resources and proficiency, honor, success, victory, competence, friendship, loyalty, Christian living." One person in the same community, however, had a negative imagery because as a banker he had a position, but, according to community imagery, not enough resources to support it (64 p. 160). Many other resources have been emphasized, for instance, general control over mass-media, interaction prestige, wealth (Rossi, 78) and more particularly, the role of economic dominants. (Hunter, 41, Pellegrini and Coates, 72) A. Hirschman on his study of Columbian entrepreneurs (40) also points out several important economic variables. At this stage, though, the hypothesis which best could be justified in view of previous research is still a very broad recognition of sources of social power.
G. H. 8:
Power actors will perceive certain sources of power rele vant to social power in the general affairs of the ejido.
Because of the dynamics of the functional approach, one is to expect some interrelationships between the different sources of power,
whatever they are, and the role performances of a person in possession of such sources . processes.
Social action must be understood in the context of
Purposive normative activity intending other actors of
any social system stems out of qualities of the individual personality, implying also individual uniqueness in the way in which each human actor receives and embodies such qualities from the contact with others. Thus, as Tait puts it: "If persons perceived to have social power view some sources of power as being more relevant than other sources of power in a giving person, then it would seem logical that they may perceive an expected set of role performances to be fulfilled by a person prior to accumulating power." Such consequence, on the other hand, has been also methodically observed and tested in contemporary research.
For confirmation, one
could refer to the findings of Form and Sauer (33) with regard to the involvement of the influentials in formal organizations, with such involvement a source of power in varying degrees, or to Olmstedt (69). Closer to the subject matter of the present study, Powers (75) and Tait (89 p. 39) found a considerable degree of consensus among power actors with regard to certain sources of power in the economic and ethic life of newcomers in the particular communities under study. Powers' findings are illustrative.
Newcomers to Centertown were sup
posed: (1) to be active in community affairs, (2) to be successful in their own business, (3) to check out any ideas for community change "with us" (interviewed power actors) before moving further and (4) to be honest in their business dealings.
Powers also compared two different times of perceived social power in a group of influentials, together with their corresponding expected role performances.
From this comparison he concluded that:
"...there is an expected pattern or role performance asso ciated with the eventual attainment of power in the com munity." (75 p. 114)
From an anthropological point of view, and in the case of Mexican rural villages, Redfield (77) and Lewis (50) have drawn conclusions about this phenomenon of expected role performances being linked with effective social power in the community influentials.
R. Pozas (74) among others, in his portrait of a Chamula Indian, gives a detailed account of the same phenomenon in some indigenous communities of southern rural Mexico. For the present study, the following hypothesis refers to the development or growth in power:
G. H. 9:
These will be an expected set of role performances to be fulfilled which are associated with the accumulation of power by actors in the social system
To continue the exploration of power in Mexican rural communities, particularly to compare the situation with the communities studied in Iowa by Powers and Tait, another hypothesis will be tested.
used in the studies of Powers and Tait, and it refers to the validity of the "reputational approach" in this kind of research.
A summary of the controversy surrounding the reputational technique was discussed in the review of literature section.
The issue, without
trying again to summarize it, does not touch on the real problem of validity per se.
Rather, the issue concerns the application of the
technique to this particular type of study and the need for the social scientist to be aware of possible bias. It is against this background of controversy and possible bias that the hypothesis of Powers and Tait is repeated here to provide a further test of the use of the reputational technique.
G. H. 10:
The persons perceived to have the most power in the community issues of the ejido through the use of the reputational technique, will exercise this power in at least two specified issue areas.
Moving a little further along this line, there are at least two possible explorations of perceived power, the actual power and the potential power that could exist if a community were to face a new kind of project.
Despite the lack of research in this particular area, an
exploration of potential power is considered important, particularly if one is concerned with the future plans in community development. Thus, the following hypothesis is stated:
G. H. 11:
The key potential power actors in politics and in com munity welfare issues are among the actual key power
actors of specified issue areas as perceived through the use of the reputational technique.
The foregoing eleven general hypotheses conclude the portion of the present research that replicates, in part, the studies of Powers and Tait.
In view of the lack of methodical information in most of
in order to define better the major traits of the power actors of the ejido. Tlius, to the original set of hypotheses adapted from those developed by Powers and Tait, a new set of three hypotheses was developed with regard to some of the major traits of the mentality of ejido power holders which may be related to some important resources for community development.
These three hypotheses following here are in a different
level of theoretical treatment: they are only of exploratory nature. When it comes to community welfare projects, the influentials face the problem of securing technical help and financial means for launch ing any operation.
As Mendieta y Nunez pointed out (60), the organiza
tional aspect of community life for purposes of political issues, as well as for economic ones, is one of the major results of agrarian reform in Mexico.
It is from the ejido law and its prescriptions that
the most of the ejidataris have learned not only the need for organiza tion but also the basic techniques and procedures of organization necessary to apply for land and credit, to promote juridical issues, or to get any sort of cooperative action in their agricultural opera tions.
However, the ejido law is one thing, and the actual help of govern mental branches is another.
The experiences of rural Mexico, perhaps
even more so in the ejido, are quite deceiving in this respect.
thus seemed worthwhile to explore the prevalent feeling of the influen tial in the area under study with regard to the possible sources of help for the community projects they can promote and implement.
G. H. 12:
The key power actors will prefer to get help for com munity welfare issues from governmental institutions rather than from private firms
Given the present state of affairs, it is apparent to any observer from outside the ejido that the ejido is not only the first formal organization the peasants consciously knew and promoted, (that is, the peasants who decided to apply for land) but the major and most powerful organization in their life time in the rural village.
In addition, in
most of the ejido communities it was the only formal organization. Apart from theoretical consideration about the sociological nature of the Church or its particular voluntary associations, such as pious or devotional confraternities, the fact is that Church membership was more nearly a "built-in appurtenance" everybody got from the day of his birth. Only recently have some clubs, mainly youth clubs and minor organi zations like consumers cooperatives, began to reach some rural villages. The following hypothesis, also of an exploratory nature, is intended to assess the impact of such formal organizations on the power structure.
G. H. 13:
The power actors will not recognize any formal voluntary organization as having some influence in community wel fare issues
Finally, with regard to the agricultural operation, the ejidataris were also asked about their perception of major handicaps or adverse factors common to all ejido lands and ejido beneficiaries in the com munity. In an attempt at motivational analysis, M. T. de la Pena (26)
pointed out the fact that the Mexican peasant is ordinarily very sen sitive in the appraisal of land problems.
One might expect that a feeling
of frustration would grow deeper in the rural people as they realize that many times they are unable to voice their opinions and judgments about their own needs or to do so in such a way as to let other people know the ordeal of misery they have been going through for many many decades. Such frustration would become a shared experience of the people.
therefore hypothesized that there will be essential agreement among the peasants, in the present case among the peasants who are influentials, with respect to their perceptions of the major factors responsible for low agricultural productivity. The following, and last, hypothesis of this study thus has been stated.
G. H. 14:
Power actors will agree upon the main factors responsi ble for low productivity in their ejido.
This concludes the theoretical foundations of the present study. Methodological considerations will be the subject of the following chapter.
The purpose of this chapter is to present the way in which the theoretical framework -- the general hypotheses -- is applied to the real phenomena of social power as they appear in five ejido communities of rural Mexico. major parts. presented.
Methodological considerations are set forth in two
First, a description of field methods and procedures is
The second major part contains the concrete expression of
the general hypotheses in operational terms and the experimental hypo theses.
Scientifically, the linkage between the original statements of
theory or general hypotheses and their operational version is made through logical steps, the epistemic correlations.
intend to maximize the interplay of an elementary set of assumptions about the nature of social reality in order to make the best and most general use of terms which convey abstract knowledge in the way human sense can prove and share the physical or cosmological aspects of human interaction.
Purpose of the study To put it briefly, the questions this study attempts to answer are the following: (a) Whether or not social power exists in the ejidos, considered as social systems.
Whether or not this social power is exercised by a certain group of men; how the actors of this group identify themselves. How this group acts to exercise power, in general. How the ejido power actors differ from the actors of the larger social system in which the ejido operates. What the power actor's involvement is in carrying out the decisions they make. What the difference is between influence and authority among the power actors. What the sources of power are that the power actors identify. What the peculiar patterns are of behavior, if any, that power actors are expected to have. How to confirm the identification of power actors through the use of reputational technique. What some of the relevant traits are of the actual power actors with regard to the potential power actors. What the power actor's opinions are with regard to apply ing for help from sources other than the official (govern mental) ones. What the power actor's opinions are with regard to formal organizations, other than the ejido, as being influential for community development.
What the opinions of the power actors are about the major factors that adversely affect ejido productivity.
The section that follows explains the kind of data that were col lected in order to answer the above questions.
Since a major considera
tion in the present study was to test in a different cultural milieu what had been already tested in rural Iowa, it was necessary to follow the basic methodology which was also used in the previous studies of Powers and Tait.
Pertinent additions were made as a result of the
experiences and findings of those studies and also with regard to the particular way of living in the selected Mexican ejidos.
The Field Methods and Procedures The methodology combines five basic approaches: the reputational, the positional, the social participation, the event analysis and decision making, and the closed and open-end questionnaire-directed interview.
The latter were face-to-face, confidential interviews for
exploration of opinions; this part of the methodology was decided upon before focusing the research upon power structures.
A previous step in
the methodology has been explained; that is, the selection of the field work area and the criteria for this selection.
After the tests of the
various hypotheses, a comparison will be made between power actors of the ejidos and the ordinary labor force of the ejido communities. a comparison was possible as a result of the general survey of the village.
The field work was completed in three phases.
A concise discussion
of each phase should be helpful in order to understand how the various methodological approaches were integrated. The first phase of field work consisted of a series of interviews with extra-community (Table 8) and intra-community knowledgeables.
knowledgeables were selected after some days of acquaintances and conver sations with the people.
The knowledgeables were explained the scope of
the present study and were selected after thoughtful consideration of their status and peculiar careers and knowledge of different aspects of the ejido and city life.
Among these knowledgeables, it was the intra-
community ones who first provided elementary data about three or four major issues which involved actors of the community.
The issues they
pointed out as relevant in the past ten years in the five ejidos are listed in Table 9. The out-community knowledgeables were also asked at different times about their opinions of some relevant ejido issues.
In the early phases
of the interviews, these out-community knowledgeables were not told the issues that the intra-community knowledgeables named, in order to avoid the possibility of biasing their own opinions. Because of the length of time devoted to this phase of the study, because of the possibility of later conversation with most of the know ledgeables, and because of the number of knowledgeables who were inter viewed extensively, this study may be considered an advancement over previous similar ones.
Outside knowledgeables who nominated power actors
Years of res. in region Occupation
Place of residence
S. Martin City
S. Martin City S. Martin
Rev. M. Torreblanca Rev. R. M. Cardenas J. Tame I. Gonzalez M.
S. Martin S. Martin
S. Francisco Hacienda
S. Martin Mexico City
Acquaintance With No. of e iidos years all
Engineer chief dele gate Ag. Dept. Local direct electric ind. Super. of schools Sen. pastor
Commerce Agron., tech. ass. to Am. friends Sociologist
all all all
Particular community issues which were mentioned by knowledge ables
No. of know.
El Moral Col. Morelos
Particular issues Electrification of the town. Digging wells for irrigation. Cleaning ponds for irriga tion. Construction of a new school. Opening of a Rural Welfare Center. Electrification of the town. Public water service. Running the school. Betterment of the school. Construction of a bridge. Electrification of the town. Digging a well for irrigation. Better ment of the courthouse. Betterment of the school. Construction of a Rural Hygienic Center.
In other respects, however, the present study did not have the help of detailed analysis from the outside knowledgeables since the launching of any important community project is considered a secret as far as details are concerned, except for the closest and closed group of power holders participating in it.
People inside and outside the community
know only the names and official roles of those elected to carry on the community projects, and not the important details of the projects. In another respect, the present study fell short of previous ones. This is with respect to the use of the positional approach as it was used in rural Iowa.
At the beginning of Powers' and Tait's studies,
the positional approach was used with the inside knowledgeables who were asked to provide a list of formal organizations to which they belonged. The nature of the ejido communities did not permit any considerable use of this approach in this phase of the field work. In the present study, the selection and interviewing of knowledge ables used a two-fold reputational approach, direct and indirect, with a considerable amount of event-definition and event-analysis.
named, however, was used only with the inside knowledgeables.
positional and social participation approach was made at this phase, apart from some information about the involvement of some of the inside knowledgeables. The final selection of the power actors central to this study was made by combining two approaches. (1) By interviewing all the possible power actors of the five communities named by inside and outside knowledgeables
completing a portion of the power actors' questionnaires. Those who were named and ranked in regard to general power and influence more than three times (in each com munity) were interviewed formally using the question naire before moving to further interviews and talks. (2)
By checking the results of the interviewed labor force, the confirmation of major power actors was achieved. This survey of the labor force will be explained in detail later.
It must be added that the initial inter
view with the power actors provided the opportunity of pooling their opinions about the kind and rank of vari ous issues or projects of the community in the last ten years.
Out of this pool, a list of issues for analysis
was taken for the purpose of this study.
The list of
such issues is presented in Table 10.
For the final phase, a special schedule was prepared for the com plete interviewing of the influentials (see Appendix).
It was origi
nally developed by Dr. R. C. Powers and completed after the experiences of J. L. Tait.
The translation into Spanish was done by the researcher
of the present study.
Some features were added with regard to secondary
traits of the power actors in the ejido community of the area of S. Mar tin, namely, about the opinions of the power actors in regard to govern mental help, and the like.
Other features were omitted, specifically
those regarding participation in formal organizations, because such
Final selection of community issues
Issues (coded)a No. of influen tials
E i ido S. El C. S. S.
Francisco Moral Morelos Lucas Catarina
12 6 4 llb 11
0 2 1 0 1
Votes 8 4 2 7 6
Second rank 6 4 3 5 0
Votes 6 4 2 5 5
Interpretation of the code:
0 = Electrification of the town 1 = Irrigation improvement (channels, ponds in general) 2 = Improvement of the school (or construction of new school) 3 = Public water service for the community 4 = Opening a Rural Welfare Center 5 = Construction of a bridge k 6 = Digging of a well for irrigation A twelfth influential was never reached for interview.
organizations are lacking in the life of the ejido. This schedule is called here the influentials schedule or the power schedule, and it is considered as the second and most important parg of the complete project in which the present study was originated. It is included here as Appendix B. The power schedule has been designed to obtain data which are rele vant in determining: (a)
The power actors who are perceived as usually having social power in general and in various issue areas.
(b) The pattern of social power, whether it is monomorphic or polymorphic.
The rating of the power actors, by others and by themselves, on scales designed to measure the amount of power they perceived an actor to have in general as well as in some issue areas.
The kind of potential power actors who could appear in future issues of the ejido community =
The possible sources of social power which power actors perceive.
(f) The opinions that the power actors have with regard to the relevant socio-economic needs of the ejido life, such as governmental assistance in community projects and the factors responsible for lower agricultural productivity in the ejido agriculture. (g) Finally, the major factors of event-analysis.
item, however, was obtained by means of open-end questions and further conversation about the history of the major phases of several community projects, as well as by sociograms of actual or reconstructed phases of influentials' meetings.
In summary, it can be said that the power actors schedule used in the third and final stage of field work the reputational approach, the event-analysis, opinion explorations, and also, to some extent, the
social participation approach.
In the five ejido communities, a total of forty-four influentials were interviewed within the five months of field work.
The number of
influentials more or less corresponded to the size of the ejido communi ty.
A specific account of the influentials is shown in Table 11.
No. of beneficiaries
Town San Francisco El Moral Col. Morelos San Lucas Sta. Catarina
105 46 45 231 131
No. of interviewed influentials 12 6 4 lla 11
^Another one, the actual (two years) president of the ejido is a drunkard and was never found for interview.
As a complementary phase of the project, a survey of the ejido labor force was planned.
It consisted of experimental interviews with
a randomly selected population which could be estimated as truly repre sentative of the ordinary ejido people above the age of eighteen.
sample was selected at random, and in proportion to the size of each of the ejido communities. Because of the complex nature of the questionnaire, the author was advised, by statistician Dr. J. Nieto, to have a large sample in order to get a good degree of approximation in the possible findings. The total population of the ejido beneficiaries in the five communi ties under study was five hundred and fifty-eight.
The aim was to inter
view at least one hundred and forty-nine of them, or at least the house wife or one of the children above eighteen, working and living with the family in their ejido. The results were satisfactory enough, since the team of interviewers visited a total of one hundred and seventy people and completed as many questionnaires representing a total of more than one hundred and fiftyfive different households. The questionnaire which was designed for this survey included one hundred and twenty-three items, and it was designed for an interview time of approximately one hour and fifty minutes.
Besides the elements of
individual identification, education, and composition of the respondent's family, the questionnaire included five major sections designed to obtain the following kinds of data: (a)
Reputation of influentials and community issues.
(b) Dietary conditions of ordinary life. (c)
Religious feelings with regard to economic behavior.
Attitudes towards banking and credit.
Major practices in agriculture and in recreation.
The design of the questionnaire is not discussed here at length, since it belongs to a larger project on religious motivation, beyond the scope of the present study.
However, the section related to the reputa-
tional account of influentials and community issues will be discussed, with the presentation of the findings.
It should be mentioned that the
section follows the same techniques designed by R. C. Powers and explained
above when discussing the power schedule.
The questionnaire utilized
with the labor force, designated as the labor force schedule, is in cluded in Appendix C. The labor force schedule was administered by a team of fourteen interviewers.
Three of these people were senior college students from
Iberoamericana University, Mexico City, majoring in anthropology.
other eleven were high school seniors from the local preparatory school of San Martin.
None of these young people belonged to the ejidos, but
four of them were natives of other ejidos and all of them were very well acquainted with the region.
The team underwent a preparatory and inten
sive training period of fifty hours of work, before beginning the inter views . In order to become better acquainted with all sections and kinds of people in the ejido communities, the researcher of this study decided not to live with any particular family in any of the ejido towns, but rather to settle himself and establish his headquarters in the city of San Martin.
From this point, it was possible to visit the ejidos as
many times and for as many hours or days as the work demanded.
matter as sensitive as social power, one must be aware of, and avoid, the possibility of bias that may result from personal commitments to some of the parties in power.
Epistemic Correlations and Empirical Hypotheses The second section of this chapter intends to state the opera tional measures which were developed to test the general hypotheses.
As noted previously, the relationships between the conceptual and the empirical level are called "epistemic correlations."
They are, to
quote Northrop: "A relation joining thing designated by directly unexpected by intuition." (68
an unobserved component of any a concept by postulation to its component denoted by a concept p. 119)
The main factor for the accomplishment of the methodology used by Powers, Tait and Bohlen and Associates (8) seems to be the orderly expression of epistemic correlations. In the section that follows there appears a listing of the epis temic correlations related to the empirical hypotheses.
For the sake
of orderly presentation, the question or the general hypothesis is put before the set of epistemic correlations ; this permits a definite operational expression, an empirical hypothesis, to be stated at the end of each major section.
Existence of social power Question:
If the ejidos are considered a social system, does social power exist within these systems?
Social power can be considered as a capacity to control other people's behavior.
Such capacity can be evidenced in per sons as well as in deeds.
The ejidos can be considered as social systems, since they are recognizable as a unit of individual actors and patternized social action processes.
All mention or naming of items is an expression of the perception of such items by the interested person.
Epistemic correlations (E. C.):
There exists detectable social actions and/or social action processes, like com munity projects of welfare, which are achieved only after controlled behavior by persons who possessed such capacity.
The naming of such issues by ordinary labor force members of the ejido system is evidence of the existence of social power.
Empirical hypotheses (E. H.):
The ejidatario will recognize and specify important community welfare issues (or issues areas).
The existence of social power in the ejido is also evidenced if qualified "knowledgeables" perceive and name some persons as influentials or as having social power.
Knowledgeables will provide names of persons who are influentials in general and in specified issue areas.
With regard to those issues which affect the whole ejido, the ordinary labor force can also be considered as inside knowledgeables to some extent.
Thus, the naming of influentials by the ejido labor force can be seen as further evidence of the perception and existence of social power.
The ejidatario (ordinary labor force in the ejido) will provide names of persons who are influentials at large and in certain issues of community welfare.
(6) A portion of the rating of other power actors and themselves as influentials (along arbitrarily designed continua) can be seen as evidence of the perceived and existent social power, at large and also in specified issue areas.
(4) Power actors will rate other power actors and themselves on continua designed to measure power at large in the ejido.
(5) Power actors will specify other power actors and themselves as having a defi nite degree of power in specified issue areas.
The exercise of social power Question:
The second basic question concerning whether or not existent social power is exercised, might be thought unnecessary.
However, for the
sake of orderly exploration, this question is put here together with a brief account of the logical steps of its operational expression.
(a) If systemic elements are to be dis covered by the processes of social action, then it is through the exercise of power (actual or potential) that the existence of power can be evidenced. (b) Timing of power (actual or potential) does not alter the process of its dis covery.
(7) The involvement of a power actor in a community issue which requires the con trol of other people's behavior can be such an instance of exercise of social power.
The naming of power actors' involvement in specific issue areas (community pro jects) can be seen as evidence of percep tion of exercised social power.
Power actors will indicate their own involvement and name specific instances of it in specified issue areas.
(7) Power actors will indicate other power actors' involvement and name specific instances of it in specified issue areas.
(9) With regard to potential involvement of power actors in community issues (or possible involvement in future and special community issues), the assumption of existent power being evidenced through the exercise of power is still valid.
It follows then: E. H.:
According to their experience, power actors will indicate and rank their own as well as other power actors' potential involvement in community issues of politi cal and social welfare nature.
Structure in community power relations Question:
The exercise of power, once it is discovered, leads to a further question: How is such power exercised?
A general answer is suggested by
the response of the power actors; a definite group seems to be responsible for social power
in the community.
Could one speak of such a
group as having a definite structure of togetherness?
A first step of inquiry is an
indirect one, the exclusion of other persons for the power actors' pool.
Imputed amount of social power to a power actor is an evidence of perceived social power which can be explored through the reputational technique.
Power actors' perceptions of persons outside the power actor pool as not having as much or more social power than those inside is a measure of the extent to which the reputational tech nique has delineated the most powerful individuals in the community.
Therefore, the degree to which power actors do not add additional names to the rating lists of acknowledged power actors is a measure of the extent to which the reputational technique has
delineated the most powerful individuals in the community.
Additional power actors will not be men tioned by more than two power actors in the selected rating list.
A second step toward the identification of the power actors' group can be gained by comparing the influentials who were named by the knowledgeables and the influentials rated by the power actors themselves. Once can thus reason as follows:
The congruence of the most powerful per sons in the community as determined by knowledgeables1 mentions and the power actors' ratings of other power actors are measures of the extent to which the repu tational technique has delineated the most powerful individuals in the com munity.
The congruence of the most powerful per sons determined by the knowledgeables' mentions and the power actors' rating of other actors will be 75 percent or greater.
Pursuing still further the identification of power actors, one could hypothesize that not all of them appear to be rated as having the same amount of social power.
There may be great differences in range
(between the power assigned by two different power actors) as well as in deed.
This variability can be statistically described by means of
standard deviations of all ratings assigned by other power actors to one power actor in the general rating list of social power at large.
The variability in the power values assigned by power actors (on scales designed to measure the amount of social power each actor has or had) can be detected through the power actors' perceptions of differential power among the persons in the power actors' pool.
There will be variability in the power values assigned by power actors in scales designed to measure social power at large in the ejido.
The definition of any group is never functionally complete unless there are enough traits of the group's activity.
It is therefore legiti
mate to proceed further by hypothesizing about the harmonic character of the exercise of social power by the power actors.
Powers and Tait hypothesized a certain degree of concert in the exercise of power.
Such concert, however, presupposes a detectable
amount of interaction between power actors in the decision making process previous to the launching of any project involving the exercise of power. In the case of the ejidos, the hypothesis of concert was considered un fruitful because of the kind of influential groups prevailing among the first and second generations of ejidatarios, as it will be described in the next chapter.
For the present study, operational hypotheses deal
only with interaction and not concerted effort in the exercise of power.
(14) Perceived interactions among power actors at large as well as in various issue areas are measures of the extent to which individuals could exercise social power in concert.
These will be perceived interactions of power actors in various issue areas.
Assuming further that a sociogram is an expression of perceived interactions, one can then state:
There will be an identifiable social interaction sociogram describing the power actors of the ejido.
Monomorphic or polymorphic power Question:
From the general manner in which social power is exercised, one can now turn to the specific ways in which such exercise occurs.
question in this respect is whether or not the power actors' structure varies according to the issues under consideration for the exercise of power.
During the interviewing of the
influentials, they were asked to provide names of other power actors involved in the two or three (according to the size of the community and its past experiences) relevant issue areas.
Because of the basic assumption of the reputa tional technique, the degree to which the persons perceived by knowledgeables to be influential in those issue areas can be taken as a measure of the extent to which the power structure will vary depending upon the issue area (2).
For measurement purposes, the structure
of power will be considered monomorphic if there is 75 percent or greater duplication of names
in comparing each issue with every other issue. Otherwise, it will be considered polymorphic.
The formula for this first index of polymorphic power is a double one: (a)
Knowledgeables1 index of polymorphic power number of persons appearing in all the lists provided by know ledgeables of community issues total number of different per sons appearing in the same lists
Power actors' index of polymorphic power number of persons appearing in all lists of community issues provided by the power actors total number of different per sons appearing in the same lists
A second index of polymorphic power could be obtained only from the lists provided by power actors.
This index was devised by Powers and
Tait (89 p. 66) in the following manner. Since the power actors were asked to rank other power actors' in volvement in several community issues, for each power actor a mean power value was determined for each issue area.
The mean power values were
obtained by summing all the ratings on each power actor in each issue area and dividing the number of ratings made on the power actor.
their computations Tait excluded the power actors' rating of themselves)
By computing correlations between the mean power values of power actors on each issue and every other issue, an index can be obtained of whether or not the community power structure is monomorphic or poly morphic .
The extent to which the knowledgeables perceive influentials to vary in differ ent issue areas is a measure of the power structure variability, depending on the issue area, and can be expressed as an index of monomorphic or polymor phic power by comparing those issue areas.
There will be an identifiable and differ ent ranking of power actors for each of the specified issue areas of the com munities.
The power actors index of
polymorphic power between different issue areas will not be significant in any ejido.
Power structures, issue areas and social systems Question:
One could ask, moreover, what is the image of the power structure of the ejido -- or any
other community -- once the original community issue areas are compared with other issue areas of the larger social system within which the ejido operates. Given the experience of the relevant role of the ejido taking over the hacienda roles in regard to the larger system, the rural com munity within which the ejido operates, one can hypothesize that the power actors' group will not vary substantially when it comes to issue areas of the larger social system.
Only one thing is assumed here, namely that the inclusion of the ejido in a larger system (the rural town) is so intimate that the communication channels which allowed farmers use of reputational techniques do not vary when it comes to inter-systemic issues.
Among the issue areas that the power actors themselves considered the most important for the ejido community in the last ten years, more than half of them are a matter of concern also for the larger system, the whole rural town of which the ejido is only a part in subsystem.
summary of this kind of overlapping issue area can be gained from Table
Issue areas of community concern
Ejido S. Francisco
Exclusively ejido issue area
Town issue area
Opening a new well for irrigation
Electrification New school building
Betterment of the school Rural Welfare Center Betterment of channels and ponds for irriga tion
Public water service
Electrification Construction of a bridge Betterment of the school Betterment of irriga tion
Improved electrifica tion Betterment of the school
The power actors' perception of the top power actors (the first three always named) in different issue areas (town and ejido's) can show the degree of con gruence between the top power actors of the system under study and the top power actors of the larger system within which the ejido operates.
(15) The degree of congruence
top power actors in the ejido and the top power actors in town will be more than 75 percent.
Decision making and execution Question:
The sixth general hypothesis is related to another aspect of the exercise of power, namely, the involvement of the power actors in executing or carrying out the decisions they have taken.
The basic assumption underlying further research is that social power, by its own nature, in volves a complex process of decision making and execution.
Moreover, it is also assumed
that the mean of power values assigned to a power actor represents the capacity which power actors have to control others in specified issue areas.
"'The formula has been already given above, where it was the case of polymorphic power.
(17) If power actors are perceived by other power actors as not only involved in the decision making of community issues but also in various instances of their execution, this perception can be seen as a measure of deeper involvement in the exercise of power and the naming of such power actors can be taken as a measure^ of such perception.
The top power actors as determined by mean power values will be the top power actors as determined by specific instances of involvement in specific issues.
The top power actors as ranked by mean power values will name specific instances of their involvement in specified issue areas.
Both measures can be achieved by the same token: the mean power values of the power actors who appear involved in decision making as well as in the execution of community issues.
Influence and authority Question:
Moving beyond the exercise of power, a ques tion can be now asked about the intimate nature of social power, that is:
identified with a formal authority?
It is assumed that the record of formal par ticipation in authority of formal institutions is an index of the amount of formal authority a power actor has or used to have (in many instances also in the exercise of power) in the social system.
It is consequently assumed
that some power authority index can be made by correlating the mean power values of each power actor with the scores assigned to formal offices held by the same power actors.
The power authority index is a measure both of the power actors' perception of power and authority as well as of the extent to which the power actors per ceived to have more power will have no more authority than the power actors perceived to have less power.
The power authority index will not be significant.
A second index of power and authority
was developed by Tait in regard to the formal participation of the power actors as authori ties in formal organizations during two differ ent periods.
This index was not elaborated in
this study because of the special circumstances of the ejidos, as they will be explained in the next chapter.
A third index of combined power and authority overlaps with the next question.
The sources of social power Question:
What are the main factors responsible for social power?
Do the power actors identify
some items as sources of the capacity they possess to control other people's behavior? The general hypothesis is that power actors will perceive certain sources of power as being relevant to social power in the general affairs of the social system.
It is assumed here that the items which are not mentioned in connection with social power can not be taken as sources of it.
The perception of authority as a source of power^
can be stated as a ratio
between the times a respondent (power actor) mentioned influence because of authority and the times he did not.
(19) The influence authority ratio will be greater than 3:1.
When the perception of authority is
seen in relation to potential power actors, the following hypotheses can be stated:
The difference between actual influence authority ratio and the potential influ ence authority ratio will not be signifi cant.^
^For purposes of measurement, the influence authority ratio will be considered significant if there are three or more mentions of influence for every mention of authority.
The community source of power indexes (see work below) are a measure of the extent to which power actors perceive certain sources of power as being rele vant to social power in the general affairs of the community.
In the power actors' schedule and also
in the labor force questionnaire (see Appen dix), the same twelve different possible sources of social power were mentioned to the interviewed persons.
Each of these persons
was asked to weigh (by rank) the three main sources of influence as he perceived them. The weighed study of those answers are called here the community source of power indexes. There are two sets, the power actors' and the labor forces' indexes.
The second ones repre
sent an advance over the previous studies of Powers and Tait.
There will be differences among the com munity source of power indexes.
Another measurement of the extent to which power actors perceive certain items as relevant sources of social power can be devised by ask ing the power actors to put other power actors as qualified examples of influence because of a certain particular factor in which they excelled. With the list of named top power actors in different sources of influence (or power) a new index (called here top power actors' source of power index) can be constructed by weighing such sources with the same values given in the community source of power index.
The extent to which power actors per ceive similar sources of power between the top power actors in general affairs is a measure of the extent to which power actors perceive certain sources of social power in the general affairs of the community.
The congruence between the community source of power and the top power actors' source of power indexes will be signifi cant.
Role performances Question:
Apart from the perception of certain sources of power, one can also ask whether or not the
power actors also perceive certain roles and role performances associated not only with the exercise of power but with the accumulation of it.
The general hypotheses at this stage
expects a positive answer.
It is here assumed that the general functionalistic principle and peculiar roles and role performances come after the social actor (here the potential power actor) identifies himself with a new value.
Not only the aims of social power can
be seen as a new value, but perhaps even more is the striving for many factors (like skill, knowledge, prestige, etc.) whereby social power can be generated.
The naming of role performances to be fulfilled by newcomers in the ejido desiring to obtain social power is a measure of the extent to which there will be an expected set of role performances to be fulfilled in accumulating power in the social system.
The power actors will name at least two characteristics of personal behavior (role performances) which they perceive as associated with the accumulation of power.
As in the case of participation
in formal organizations within different periods of time, a second index or rec ord of expected role performances could be developed in different years (e.g., by following the cases of newcomers who established themselves in the community in different years).
Such cases were
not given in the present study.
Validity of the reputational technique Note:
Mention has already been made in the
review of literature about the reputational technique.
Powers and Tait hypothesized, at
the conclusion of their studies, a method to confirm the validity of such techniques.
must be acknowledged that there is no final proof of the validity of the reputational technique ; such proof is not of a sociological nature but belongs to the general philosophy of science .
With regard to the present study, we can, how ever, suggest some ways of confirming the assumed validity of the reputational technique.
In general, and where there is no evidence to the contrary, there is no reason to suspect arbitrary or purposeful falsification in the information which is secured through the reputational technique.
Power actors' perceptions of the top power actors1 involvement in social action programs is a measure of the extent to which those persons perceived to have most power in an issue area through the use of the reputational technique will exercise social power in that issue area.
The most powerful persons in specified issue areas as determined by the reputa tional technique of perceived power did exercise social power in those areas.
The power actors' personality Question:
In addition to the hypotheses that were developed by Powers and tested by himself and by Tait in their studies of Iowa rural communities, the present investigator had the chance of develop ing four more hypotheses related to some of the traits of the ejido power actors' person ality.
The four hypotheses are of an explora
tory nature and are related only to four realms of opinion which are paramount in the economic life of the ejido. The opinions that are explored are related to: (a)
How the actual power actors feel about potential (future) power actors in selected areas, specifically politics and community welfare.
How they felt about the possibility of getting help for community projects from sources other than government.
Whether or not they recognize some formal organization other than the ejido as being influential in community life.
How they define the major factors adversely affecting ejido agricultural productivity.
It is assumed that whenever there is no evi dence to the contrary, there is no reason to suspect a purposefully biased response by a respondent with regard to questions relevant to his economic life.
In view of the past experiences of the social life of the ejido, there can be found a perception of power actors' involvement in potential issues of politics and community welfare which will represent to some extent a measure of their potential involvement in those areas.
The reputational technique will also provide a designation set of potential top power actors in politics and com munity welfare issues which will not be different from the set of actual top power actors in specified issue areas, as perceived through the same technique.
With regard to the perception of their own influence, the power actors are
hypothesized to perceive a stability in their social power :
(26) In more than 75 percent of the cases, power actors will not perceive changes in the amount of social power they exercised in the community at large dur ing the last five years.
The final empirical hypotheses are also of an exploratory nature:
The ejido power actors will name govern mental institutions as the source of help to accomplish projects.
The ejido power actors will not name any voluntary formal organization as having some degree of influence on community issues.
The source and type of factors adversely affecting agricultural productivity, as perceived by the power actors will not vary significantly within each ejido.
COMMUNITIES AND ISSUES
Before turning to the findings and testing the hypotheses, it is the purpose of this chapter to provide: (a) An explanation of the selection and choice of the field-work area. (b)
A brief but complete description of the five ejido communities under study.
(c) A definition of the major decisions, and the com munity issues, which the influentials faced in each of their communities. Points (b) and (c) will be covered together while describing each ejido.
Why S. Martin area? Although the present research was planned to be a case study, it was thought best to choose an area which would represent the major traits of the Mexican ejido problem.
The task was to get true representative
ness of the social and economic characteristics of the rural communi ties that were created by the agrarian reform.
include an uneconomic parcel of land ; poor irrigation; precariously helped, if helped at all, by any assistance of credit and extension ser vices ; a sizeable population increase; increased emigration; and a better exposure to mass media of transportation and communication.
The S. Mar
tin area appeared to have these characteristics. Sociologist Mendieta y Nunez summarizes in the following words the findings of his work on the Mexican agrarian problem: (61) "The land problem in Mexico is one of economic and social nature: it appears in many different ways and it demands a diversity of solutions according to the characteristics it presents in different regions of the country. In order to resolve it we need a wise distribution of land by means of agrarian laws which will allow, in each case, the application of economic criteria. A tactful distribution of the rural population is also needed, through coloniza tion and erection of new settlements of rural popula tion. Soil conservation, improvement of poor soils, education in the rural areas and agricultural credit are a must. The problem demands, in sum, an integral endeavor which the governmental administrative branches could only carry on when they get a true vision of it."
The views of other contemporary scholars such as, N. L. Whetten (98), F. Tannenbaum (90), F. Brandenburg (19) and Silva Hernog (84), are in accord with such statements. With these views as a basis, a set of seven major criteria was developed in order to get, as far as possible, true representativeness of ejido communities.
With these criteria in mind, three relevant areas
of Central Mexico were explored during a three-week period: (a)
The Cuernavaca Valley:
fertile, well-irrigated in
many places, and devoted to plantation-type (sugar cane) agriculture to a large extent.
ejido agriculture. (b)
Southern Guanajuato (Southern plains of "El Bajio"): less electrified, poor communication system, and
under less pressures of migration towards industrial sites. (c)
The Valley of Puebla and Tlaxcala, especially the municipality of S. Martin.
The criteria and the degree to which the areas fit the criteria are briefly explained as follows: (94) (1)
An area whose location, climate, agricul ture, and irrigation would be typical of the areas in which the major portion of rural Mexico lives.
Degree of fit:
San Martin Texmelucan area pertains to the Southern Mexican High Plateau, whose rural, agricultural, and orographical conditions are among the ones that 80 percent of rural Mexico experiences.
An area preferably occupied neither by hacendados and private farmers of European ancestry nor by Indians (who are only 17 percent of the total Mexican population) but by mestizo people, who actually comprise more than 60 percent of the total Mexican population.
Degree of fit:
The area of 5. Martin is one of the oldest sites of mestizo breeding since the days
Cortes formed a pact with the neighboring Tlaxcala Indians in order to overthrow Montezuma. (3) Ecology:
Common rural type habitat:
bare earth floors and the setting of the ejido in an older community. Degree of fit:
In S. Martin area, almost eighty-five percent of the rural population lives in adobe houses of one or two rooms (84.4 percent is the fig ure for the whole of the Mexican population) and all the selected ejidos live within older communities.
Ordinary major crops and techniques, average cultivated area per ejido and average situa tion with respect to extension and credit services.
Degree of fit:
Common basic food.
The common ejido parcel in the area is less than three has. per ejido beneficiary (c. seven acres) and the effectively irrigated land less than two acres.
Maiz and beans are
prevalent crops as is true in most of the Central High Plateau, serving also as the ordinary basis for meals.
Although there is
an agency of the Ministry of Agriculture (S. A. G. -- in the city of S. Martin) with
an extension technician and also an agency or corresponding post of the National Ejido Credit Bank, the vast majority of the ejidatarios^ do not get anything from them. (5) Education:
Rural type ejido school system, with access to some parcels of ejido land and with active par ticipation of the ejidatarios in running their school.
Literacy within the average range for
rural Mexico. Degree of fit:
Although the vicinity of S. Martin, the head town, makes the whole area a little better off, the ejido school system still can be considered a common one, and literacy in the area (rural) is a little less than 50 percent, in contrast to the 68 percent or more of the urban popula tion (the city of S. Martin).
The last fig
ure of the Census (1960) for all of Mexico was 57.8 percent. (6)
Reasonable distances from at least one city of more than 10,000 people and average roads all the year around.
with the local head town.
Degree of fit:
In this respect, the area certainly remains above the average of the Central Plateau ejido areas.
This, however, was not a reason for
rejection since the phenomenon must be taken into consideration together with the last criteria that follows. (7)
Adaptation to social change (possibilities): As was noted above, the whole country faces rapid changes because of population pressures, migratory (internal) conditions, industrializa tion and urban development, and, by the same token, the ejido faces more and more the pres sure of uneconomic techniques and specialized agriculture.
All this was apparent in the
area under consideration.
Ejidos and their issues The municipality of S. Martin registers as many as twenty settle ments (Table 13); twelve of them have ejidos.
The selection of five of
these ejidos was made in view of the limitations of time for field-work and of personnel for interviewing the labor force of the ejidos.
result of those limitations, and taking into account the characteristics of population and communication with the head city of S. Martin, five ejidos were selected as follows in Table 14.
Account of the population in the municipality of S. Martin Texmelucan Estado de Puebla, Mexico3 Eighth Population Censes, 1960 (Revised)
Name S. Martin Texmelucan El Moral S. Baltazar Temaxcalac S. Bartolo Granillo S. Buonaventura S. Carlos S. Cristobal Polaxtla S. Cristobal Tepatalxco S. Damian S . Francisco Coxtocan S. Francisco Tepeyecac S. Jeronimo Tepoxtla S. Jeronimo S. Juan Tuxco S. Lucas S. Lucas Atovatenco S. Rafael S. Simon El Verde Sta. Catarina Sta. Maria Moyotzingo
Politi cal category
13,786 * 657
Pueblo Hacienda Pueblo Rancho Hacienda
Pueblo Hacienda Pueblo Pueblo Rancho Pueblo Pueblo Hacienda Pueblo
1,387 2 1,413 2,154 2 1,735
2 1,369 1 29
Ejido benefici aries
^The ejido of the city of S. Martin is called ''Col. Morelos Under this name it wi 11 appear later.
°This town has been the site of a project of community development which has been carried on for five years by the Amer. Frds. Ser. Comm. Note: study.
The underlines names are the communities selected for this
size and distance Ejidatarios
S. Francisco Tepeyecac El Moral Col. Morelos S. Lucas Atoyatenco Sta. Catarina Hueyatzacoalco
106 49 45 240 150
Distance 6.0 kms. 1.5 kms. City limits 3.0 kms. 2.0 kms.
In brief, the selection has these relevant points: (a)
It would permit the comparison of ejido communities within the range of average size ejidos (the mean of the ejido size for the whole country is 103.6 ejidatarios) (61).
(b) It also allows comparison of the traits of those ejidos which are close to the big towns (the case of Col. Morelos and El Moral in regard to S. Martin City) with those farther from it. (c) And, perhaps the most interesting aspect, it per mits also some comparisons between one ejido like S. Lucas, which has been shifting more and more towards small industry economy, with another one like S. Fran cisco, which remains traditionally agricultural and is at the same time the object of the efforts of an industrious group of foreign social workers. Form and Miller (32) have suggested, in a more systematic way, the methodology that appears to be relevant to the present section of the
study, that is, the description of the communities and their issues by an orderly analysis of the institutions which seem to be responsible for their unique social structure and activity.
To some extent this
methodology has also been employed by Presthus (76). Briefly, the methodology has been here reduced to a systematic review of the following points in each case study: (1)
The town and its location.
Main historical traits.
(3) Major recent events. (4)
Peculiar look of the town:
habitat and people.
The ejido organization.
Formal organizations (clubs and unions).
Mass media, particularly transportation.
The origin of major community projects.
(14) Decisions and results.
Given the uniformity of the region with regard to the ecological and demographical background, the exploration of the familial social system was not considered too relevant for the purposes of finding and defining power structures and decision making processes, the main sub
jects under research.
And because this uniformity also affects many
institutions and activities, a general description of the communities and issues is provided, with specific references to the individual towns made as required.
The settlements Before the years of the Mexican Revolution, the town of S. Francisco Tepeyecac was a part of the old hacienda S. Pedro Coxtocan.
enda was recently rebuilt and put into operation by a prominent coffee industrialist of Vera Cruz; this has meant a lot for the economy of the town. S. Francisco Tepeyecac is located six kilometers south of S. Martin Texmelucan.
It has two sections.
The oldest one is built around a
church on the north side of a hill and a reservoir.
It is formed by six
irregular blocks and uneven, narrow, climbing streets.
The new section,
which is also the bigger one, is located in a flat country west of the reservoir, with long straight streets and chiefly brick houses.
part of the town was developed mainly because of the ejido homestead grants which were conferred with the redistributed land.
One of the
homestead sites in the center of this section became the location of the new ejido community school and courthouse. There are bases to state that this town was already alive in the first half of the eighteenth century (70).
In the last quarter of the
nineteenth century the town gave its name to a new hacienda -- S. Fran cisco Coxtocan, a fraction of S. Pedro -- which the land owner erected
for one of his sons.
By this time the owner of S. Pedro had also sold
a few parcels of land to the most faithful of his peons.
This fact gave
the town a new social group, although not large, of private small farmers. Most of the people in town remained laborers (peons of some of the neighboring haciendas, mainly S. Pedro and S. Francisco).
was for the most part the rural wage-type economy found in the old Mexican hacienda; i.e., with all the handicaps and injustices of the hacienda supply and food store and the like.
Also, part of such economy
was the peculiar lease-contract of the medieros.
This term designates
the men, oftentimes peons, who, besides the usual work they did for the hacienda, were able to spend some days and most of their spare time cultivating some lands of the hacienda given to them individually on a share-crop basis of one kind or another. El Moral and Col. Morelos are the smallest ejidos under study.
of their settlements are rather new; they were formed in 1923 at the time of the ejido grants.
El Moral applied for some land of the haci
enda S. Cristobal Polaxtla, and Col. Morelos applied for some land of S. Damian, one of the richer haciendas northwest of the city of S. Mar tin.
El Moral, however, became an addition to the settlement of peons
of S. Cristobal, founded in the late years of the nineteenth century. El Moral is located in a plain a little more than a mile and a half due south of the city of S. Martin; its area is a square mile.
plaza bordering the churchyard and the north edge of the reservoir, which goes from the plaza to the old fence of the hacienda houses, marks the southern limits of the town.
The streets are plain and rela-
tively wide, and most of the homes are a combination of red brick and adobe.
Col. Morelos is now a suburb of the city of S. Martin; it is
located on the north side of a rolling hill, between downtown and a
bigger than El Moral.
The streets are not yet paved (unlike the center
of the city), but Col. Morelos already has public water service and has done some work on public drainage.
Most of the houses are of the same
material as those in El Moral and the rest of the ejidos, but many of them are plastered and painted with colorful materials.
As a matter
of fact, Col. Morelos hardly differs from other suburbs of S. Martin. The lands of the ejido are in the northern part of Col. Morelos behind the textile factory.
None of them are irrigated.
The town of S. Lucas Atoyatenco is perhaps the oldest of the five settlements.
During the nineteenth century it was considered a part of
the hacienda of the same name.
It is located on a plain about 3.5 kms.
east of the city of S. Martin.
It is formed like a parallelogram whose
long base is about 0.75 kms. and north-south oriented.
The whole town
is composed of twelve big lots along three parallel streets.
plaza, school and courthouse are located in the southern part of the town.
Interestingly enough, the church of the town still shows its
It has been bricked-up and merely plastered white.
new facade and small tower were built in the second part of the nine teenth century.
At one time, the hacienda got hold of the ancient
western yard of the church in order to extend to the maximum its culti vated land.
This is a typical example of the way in which the haciendas
took over the original ejidos and communal land of the Indian towns in many regions of Mexico. Streets in S. Lucas are narrow and the houses are mainly of adobe, although bigger than the average house in other towns of the region. There is running water and public faucets, two or three in each street, but the houses, like the rest of the ejidos, have neither public water nor drainage service. Although there are one or two houses in ruin in almost every block, the town appears to be the most prosperous of the five under considera tion.
S. Lucas has more electricity, a few more cars and trucks, and
much more movement of people to and from S. Martin almost every hour of the day. Finally, Sta. Catarina was an independent doctrina eighteenth century.
Its people used to work in the neighboring haci
endas of S. Miguel Totolqueme, S. Carlos, and also S. Cristobal.
distance from S. Martin is almost two kilometers. The actual ejido of Sta. Catarina was a part of the hacienda S. Miguel.
A fourth of the town is very irregular ; all of it is level
except for the small hill on which church and plaza are located.
church and the plaza are the finest in their respective categories to be found in the five towns.
They are also clean, and well taken care of
and humbly ornamented. As a very important feature, Sta. Catarina has just completed its new center of hygienics and health.
It is very simple and unpretentious,
9The name that was given to the original settlements of Indian laborers and peasants in the colonial period.
but useful and efficient.
It is a little complex of public bathrooms
and showers, laundry facilities, and a well for the public water service which is now beginning to operate. As well as S. Lucas, Sta. Catarina has a very good courthouse or municipal palace.
The word palace is far from adequate because there
are no such things as palaces for public offices except in the capital city of Puebla.
But the size and appearance of such buildings describe
the type of town the visitor may find, regardless of the accuracy of the words. From 1911 to 1917 all these towns experienced critical years of poverty and insecurity.
Labor at the hacienda was precariously planned
because of the absenteeism not only of the rich land owners but also of many of their ablest foremen. paid.
Needless to say, labor was also poorly
People continued, however, to cultivate the land of their masters
in order to survive. A few young men of these towns joined the revolutionary columns of Zapata, but most of the people did not take part in the revolt.
the region was due to the fact that the central government of Mexico (wherever it could operate during the Revolution) used to maintain a strong garrison in the city of S. Martin in order to protect the rail road to southern Vera Cruz and Oaxaca and to prevent any access of the adversaries to Mexico City through the mountain pass (Rio Frio) of the old road, Mexico City-Vera Cruz.
Institutionalized power The government of S. Francisco, like the government of other towns, consists of a president (he is called Municipal Auxiliary President), a secretary and a treasurer, plus two adjoined consultants who are called vocales.
The advice of these counselors is a part of the routine in
every decision of public affairs.
All of these members are elected in
an apparently democratic way, in a general meeting of the town family heads and other people over twenty-one years of age. The people also elect a judge of civil affairs with limited juris diction over items of property, property damage, public conduct, and disturbance of the peace.
For the occasional penal cases which might
arise, they elect an agent of the justice department (Agente del Ministerio Publico) (23).
The erection of the ejidos Although the ejidos were not officially secured and created by provision of land until 1923, some ejido activities began as early as 1916.
In that year, a chief of the Zapata forces, Gen. Domingo Arenas,
distributed land to some people who called themselves ejidatarios. Organized movements, though, and obligations for ejido grants came later, once the country was at peace and the constitution of February 5, 1917 was adopted. The majority of the original applicants for ejido lands were young people, almost all of them men.
Since the obligation for ejidos was
mised up with animosities and adverse fee lings against the old masters, as well as with many unfortunate events and crimes of the Civil War, the
erection of the ejido meant a split not only between old and new gener ations, which was less the case here, but especially among the young peasants themselves. One of many cases in S. Francisco is a good illustration of this point, which can also be found in other ejidos. On the eve of 1916 the ejido applicants of the neighboring town of S. Jeronimo (which was another belonging of the hacienda of S. Pedro) shot and killed Mrs. Evans, a German-born lady who was the only heir to the hacienda at that time.
Because they held some affection for
her, the Rafael family (two young men) decided not to apply for any of the land of their old master.
Instead, they managed to borrow, some
money and asked Mrs. Evan's family to send them some parcels of land in the so-called "protected zone" of the hacienda, peripheral land to the hacienda housing and storing complex.
This land was considered
exempt from expropriation policies, according to the early agrarian law of the Revolution (January 6, 1915). The Rafaels were no doubt among the most influential young men in town and continued to be influential until present days ; however, they did not like to make a common cause with the rest of the people who became the first ejido beneficiaries. A few years later when the ejido affairs took over the activities of the town and the official political party appeared to be the omni present shadow of the central government, the Rafaels, as well as other people who did not apply for ejidos, decided to join the "Laborist Party," a moderately socialist party of certain opposition to the official one.
The Laborists alienated from the central government, some of the largest labor unions of Mexico. This political movement must be seen as a means of protection against the arbitrariness of a revolutionary chief, Manuel Montes, at least in the case of S. Francisco and the other two larger ejidos (S. Lucas and Sta. Catarina).
Montes was the founder of the ejido El Moral ;
later on he became the regional cacique and even governor of the state of Puebla for a transitional mandatory period, 1926.
Anti-ejido movements In other instances, apparently not the most common in this region of Texmelucan, the inhibition or abstention from ejido movements and application for land was not due to affection or loyalty towards the ancient landlords but to the pressure of the church -- Catholic Church -and the counsel or sermons of the pastors and assistants who told the people that accepting or holding ejidos was a sin of injustice and theft. The point, however, is very difficult to evaluate since the Mexican rural clergy have ordinarily been very close to their people, realizing almost always their needs and problems, as it has been recognized by several historians. The case, however, was the most frequent in El Bajio and Jalisco rural areas.
No complete studies have been made yet in order to weigh
the influence -- positive or negative — of the Catholic clergy and Catholic Church as a social institution upon the Mexican Revolution and
particularly upon agrarian reform. These feelings against the ejido appear to be rather irrelevant at the present time, but the observer cannot help but recognize them, once the conversation centers upon non-ejido influentials (or with the nonejido influentials themselves), all of them belonging to the same gener ation as the rest of the ejido influentials. Among the ejido people themselves, the group of influentials appears split into two other groups, at least in the larger communities, S. Fran cisco , S. Lucas, and Sta. Catarina.
The larger of these two groups
embraces ejido beneficiaries of different origins, even relatively new comers, as will be noted later.
The smaller group, practically two or
three in each community, is formed of ejidatarios who call themselves members and ex-soldiers of the Zapata columns (Antiquo Frente Zapatista -Ancient Zapata Front). The split appears to be significant in at least two of the five ejidos under study, mainly S. Lucas and S. Francisco, but the smaller group does not represent any serious threat to the major decisions of the elite of the influentials as such. Of much more significance than the exiguous groups of the so-called Zapatistas has always been the split between the unconditional adherents of the CNC (Confederacion Nacional Campesina or National Ejido Confedera tion, a branch of the official and monolithic revolutionary party), and the members or sympathizers of the CROM (National Confederation of Mexican Workers), which began to operate in the region with some of the textile labor unions only five years after the ejidos were established.
This split is very noticeable in S. Lucas and still more in Sta. Catarina where it is found typically alive until present days.
of these ejidos, the minority group of influentials belongs to the CROM, except for one private farmer in each case.
In S. Francisco, on the
other hand, the split can be more characteristically defined as between ejido people and private small farmers (non-ejidatarios), whose old preferences went to the Laborist Party in the origins of the CROM ejido movement.
Labor unions and ejidos A few words are necessary to understand the extent and relevance of this trait (majority-minority groups) of the ejido power structure and its relationships with local labor unions of the textile factories in S. Martin. As soon as the textile factories in S. Martin began to operate again after the chaotic period 1914-1917, several young people of the neighbor ing towns came to work there.
Sta. Catarina and S. Lucas were among the
towns which contributed with a considerable labor force.
A few of these
workers became ejidatarios later on without abandoning their jobs at the factory.
Many more of the textile workers were children of the original
ejido beneficiaries. 1920's.
All this was taking place in the first half of the
Actually, at least 20 percent of the ejidatarios of both com
munities (S. Lucas and Sta. Catarina) possess ejido land while working normally in one of the two factories in S. Martin.
By the time the ejido land was granted, the strongest labor union of the country in those years, the CROM (socialist-oriented under chief leader J. L. Morones) had conquered the two important factories of S. Martin, El Pilar and El Carmen. In the late 19201 s, under President Galles, new political forces were organized in order to strengthen the official revolutionary party that was just created by him.
Among these forces, the Agrarian (ejido)
League and the new Confederation of Mexican Workers (CTM) were supposed to affirm the governmental control of the ejidos on one hand and the labor unions on the other, as well as to secure political support in whatever election campaigns should happen in the future. The conflict soon centered on the newly created ejidos like S. Lucas and Sta. Catarina, in which a certain number of young members were al ready committed to the CROM-affiliated labor unions of their factories. In addition, and long before the political maneuvering of Galles (i.e., the strengthening of an official monolithic party), the CROM had al ready begun to expand its unionist program in various states of the country, asking for the membership of the ejidos without the approval of the government. This feeling of resentment and opposition to the political monopoly of the official party was also present at the time in other communities like S. Francisco.
As it has been noted, some of the influentials
sympathized to some extent either with the former Zapatista partisan group or with the independent Laborist Party which maintained some vitali ty until President Cardenas (1934).
The rivalry between the labor unions in the city, which was, as a matter of fact, very strong, soon became a rivalry among the group of influentials also in S. Lucas and Sta. Catarina; the rivalry lasted for more than ten years, during the 19301 s and 1940's, with a disastrous consequence of several crimes (assassination of three influentials) and the delay of important community projects like the introduction of electricity and wells. In 1926, the foremost leader of El Moral, Manuel Montes, who began as a mason in El Carmen factory, was the instrument of the CTM com mittee (the "official" confederation of labor union) that broke for the first time the columns of the local unions of S. Martin, originally affiliated with CROM.
Together with Montes, a handful of influential
young men of S. Lucas took over one of the textile factories, El Pilar, after compromising with the local director of the factory, who wanted to get rid of some of his workers, among them a prominent young leader of Sta. Catarina, Alejandro Arana. Two major events happened as a result of the maneuvers of Montes. Arana and many other people of Sta. Catarina applied for and obtained some ejido land taken from the hacienda S. Miguel Totolqueme, a belong ing of the owners of El Pilar factory.
Several of these men were also
among the workers who had been expelled from this factory with Arana. The second event was the tragic death of Montes himself.
after a short stay in the capital city, Puebla, where he served a term as provisional governor, Montes came back to S. Martin.
He had the
favor of the late President Obregon and his people and he began to con
trol, or to manage the controlling of, all ejido activities in the munici pality.
On his birthday, June 16th of the same year, he was giving a
party, and after some drinks his presumptuousness led him to march with his friends towards the rival factory of El Carmen.
The captain in
charge of the local garrison, an old enemy of Montes, seized the oppor tunity presented by the movement and let some of his soldiers shoot at Montes during the apparent riot which took place in front of El Carmen. Needless to say, Sta. Catarina remained for years a staunch CROM ejido, as did S. Lucas, opposing the official party and the CTM during the critical years and the bloody horrors between the labor unions in the city of S. Martin.
When some of the influentials died and the
government of President Cardenas and his successors began to control the CROM also, the fight between the factories relented and things began to slow down with regard to the complete control of the power elite in the ejidos. At the present time, the son of Governor Montes still lives in El Moral and exercises a good amount of influence as local delegate of the CNC (the National Federation of Ejidos).
He has served two terms
as representative in the national legislature, before the term of President Cardenas in the early 1930's.
At present about sixty years
of age, Alejandro Arana has left Sta. Catarina to become the state secretary for the ejido branch of the CROM.
Actually, though, the
union is formally affilliated with the official and monopolistic party of the Mexican Revolution.
The three major ejidos, on the other hand, have almost completelyreversed themselves politically.
The actual ejido president in Sta.
Catarina is a man of CTM preferences, and Arana does not have complete control of the power group in town.
S. Lucas, on the other hand,
became less and less influenced by politics, since the community began to depend increasingly more on industry, and the youngest influentials do not have many ties either with CTM or with CROM.
Finally, S. Fran
cisco does not have any connections at all with labor unions, and the minority group of non-ejido influentials also gives full support to the politics of the revolutionary party.
The economy The present economy of the five communities is still definitely agricultural.
Its characteristics are as follows.
In S. Francisco,
one third (about fifty-seven) of the family heads in town are private small farmers, with an average of 1.0 Ha. of irrigated land, plus 2.5 Ha. of ordinary land (irrigated only by seasonal rainfall).
size of land holdings does not accurately describe all the private farmers, since there is among them a little group of four to six men who are the richest men in town and whose holdings are very much above the average. About 20 percent of the ejidatarios also have private property, and their standard of living is certainly above that of the people who are merely private farmers.
As it has been said previously, the ejido
lands are of two classes, 0.75 Ha. of we11-irrigated land and 2.25 Ha. of non-irrigated land.
The average private land holdings of those ejidatarios who also have private property is almost half of the average of the private small farmers or about 1.5 Ha.
The rest of the ejidatarios are worse off
than the ordinary private farmers of the towns ; their access to credit seems poor and their motivation appears low.
Major traits of the agricultural economy
Percentage range of total town population^
Households Ejidatarios (only)
Average size of holdings (in Ha.) Non-irrigated Irrigated 2.25
Ejidatarios who are also pri vate farmers
Private farmers (only)
population of each town = 100 percent.
^In El Moral and Col. Morelos practically all people are ejidatarios.
The greatest part of the arable land is used only once per year ; usual crops are corn (white) and beans.
Only 42.0 percent or 43.5 per
cent of the land (taking together ejidos and private property) can be effectively irrigated and bear two crops per year; that is, winter and summer crops.
Some of the relevant differences between these two kinds
of land are presented in Table 16.
Major traits of the agricultural economy
Kinds of cultivation Summer Crops Corn (white) Beans Alfalfa Haba (lima beans) Cilantro (parsely and celery) Carrots Fruits (peaches, apples)
Non-irrigated Yield/Ha. Cost/Ha.
Irrigated Yield/Ha. Cost/Ha.
900 Kg. 1 Ton
1.8 Ton 1.2 Ton 8.0 Ton
$1,200.00 $1,080.00 $ 658.00
All irrigated3 Yield/Ha. Cost/Ha.
21.0 Ton 2.0 Ton
$ 813.00 $1,342.00
28 handful units/Ha. $6,000.00 20-25 trees/Ha.
^Mexican pesos. The costs here do not include fertilizer costs. On the average, the cost of fertilizer was estimated at $470.00 pesos per ton during the period 1960-1964. And the amount of fertilizer per Ha. was around 1.5 ton, but the figure is questionable since it varied very much according to the kind of land and the wealth of the farmer. CAlfalfa
receives several cuts during the season; the farmers do not let it blossom.
A minor, albeit important, little social system has been developed in each of these towns for purposes of distributing water for irrigation; its name is the Water Supply Committee.
It is made up of three men;
the Juez de Aguas (arbiter of waters) and two assistants.
The task of
this committee is to secure an efficient and honest distribution of water once the people are, told the amount of water that can be provided each year from the communal dam of S. Juan Cuzco. The arbiter is a part of the municipal authority system and also of the ejido authority.
The fact that important ejidatarios are also
private small farmers, in at least three of the five communities, tends to eliminate friction and to prevent suspicion of the arbiter who is always a member of the ejido.
It is interesting to note that 5. Fran
cisco has the biggest group of mere private farmers and still there is no friction between this group and the ejidatarios with regard to the Water Supply Committee. Returning to the matter of crops, the ejido communities also raise vegetables and fruits.
Both commodities are ordinarily sold to whole
salers in S. Martin, who transport them to Mexico City. land, alfalfa is perhaps the preferred crop.
In the irrigated
Corn, beans, and alfalfa
are partly stored for household needs and uses and partly sold commonly to wholesalers who periodically visit the community; many wholesalers even contract future crops.
The number of ejidatarios dealing with the
Banjidal (the national ejido credit bank) has been very small in recent years, mainly because of political problems.
The typical nature of these
problems may be illustrated later by the cases of S. Lucas and Sta.. Catarina.
Ordinarily almost all of the private farmers, as well as the ejidatarios who also have private land, possess at least two or three cows and a pair of oxen.
Some of them even have seven to nine cows
(non-registered milk cows).. Milk is partly consumed at home, and partly sold to some of the dairies in S. Martin.
The typical family also is
helped to a limited degree, by keeping a few hogs and hens.
turkeys play a major role in preparing the major celebrations and feast days of town and family. Another relevant point of economy is electricity.
A brief summary
of the characteristics of electricity consumption and other references is presented in Table 17. As it can be noticed, 5. Lucas is the biggest consumer of elec tricity, average 70 K.W.H. per household ; this is a little more than three times the average consumption of electricity of all the towns. Almost fifty percent of the households in S. Lucas, and also more than sixty-five percent of the ejidatarios in town, operate a family sew ing shop, consisting of two or three Singer sewing machines.
many youngsters to earn as much as forty pesos per day, which is more than three times the average rural salary in the ejidos of the area. These small sewing shops operate under a contract with some big clothing and textiles firms in Mexico City. materials as well as cloth, already cut. and iron the product.
The firm furnishes raw
The people in S. Lucas sew
Once, or maybe twice, per week the firm collects
the products and transports them to Mexico City or to other cities in the country.
Increasingly, some clothing merchants of S. Martin are
Household electricity for the ejidoa (individual average consumption = 22 KWH each month)
Intro Wells electriduced cally operated (yr.) Irrig. Town Mills
Big House •- sew. holds mach.
Average cur rent consump tion (KWH) Winter Summer
Small Value factories average (20 employ.) (month)
Sta. Catarina 1924
Archives: IBM (Mexican Electric Industry) Local Agency, S. Martin Texmelucan, Pue. October, 1964, and information given by Sr. Emilio Diez, Local Agency IBM Manager. (November, 1964). ^Total consumption average, including mills and small sewing shops, in Mexican pesos. (1.00 Mex. = $.80 U.S.).
beginning to order and to sell some of these products on the same basis as the big firms of Mexico City do. Church Church activities can be properly distinguished and divided into two types: (1) the pastoral and sacramental aspects of religious life, and (2) the institutional activity of the social system in charge of the church in the community.
The former, the sacramental aspect of
religious life, is rather precarious.
It is reduced to three particular
events: (1) the Sunday services, consisting of the Mass, with a little sermon, (2) the solemn Mass of the patron saint of the town (every year), and (3) the eventual funeral Masses which are celebrated in the town church (in addition to the funeral services) on the occasion of the death of some person and also on the anniversary of a person's death, among wealthier families. The latter services, the funeral ones, are the least attended, except for the close circle of the family.
Mass on ordinary Sundays has
an average attendance of about eighteen percent of the community, and participation in the sacraments appears to be low in the last five years ; there have been extremely few confessions and communions.
In S. Lucas
one can find the largest non-Catholic congregation of the region, thirty Methodist families. The picture of religious life, however, could be misleading if one interprets it in terms of the religion of the whole town. used to go to S. Martin every Sunday.
They go not only for shopping,
relaxing, and movie attendance, but for religious services as well.
addition, in the last decade it has become customary for the people to
get baptized and married in the main church of S. Martin, where confes sions and Masses are provided for several hours every day and for a longer period on Sundays.
Also, in recent years people have begun to
go the that church for the blessing of the corpse of a deceased relative before the burial.^ The institutional life of church activities presents a different picture ; in this respect, church life is quite active with regard to the maintenance of the church, the preparation for religious services, and the preparations for the Patron Saint feasts of the towns.
various activities are carried on by specific social systems which also have considerable social power. Since Colonial times, almost complete responsibility for the main tenance of the church, its treasures, statues, and garments rested with a committee of laymen, apparently democratically elected by the mature heads of families of the town.
The chief of this committee was always
the person first elected among the group of so-called church officials (the ones the assembly proposed for the committee).
The title of this
committee chairman is "El Fiscal" or fiscal officer, literally trans lated.
With him a second officer is also elected as an assistant, who
is entirely subordinate to the Fiscal.
Two more officers are elected
to help these authorities in their duties, mainly as sacristans or men in charge of the details and preparations for the weekly religious services.
Often people also elect other officers for the church, such
^Other public religious services are forbidden by the law in Mexico.
as treasurers, special administers of alms, or fund-raising campaign promoters. Oftentimes special auxiliary committees are formed following another assembly in order to help the Fiscals in carrying out particu lar projects, such as making major repairs or improvements of the church.
(For instance, a new tower was added to the church of S. Fran
cisco and a Hammond organ was bought for the church of S. Lucas.) The presence of such persons as president, secretary-treasurer, and so forth of these "ad-hoc" committees tends to create a more formal corps of advisors around the Fiscal, who is elected for a period of two years, The main duties of the Fiscal and his committee are the following: (1)
The first and the major duty consists of maintaining an active relationship with the pastor of S. Martin. This may imply also provision of the necessary things needed for the weekly services, checking with the parochial office concerning the time schedules and activities of the local church of his town, and advising the whole community about the dispositions of the pastor.
archives of the local church.
With regard to the local church, the pastor is by no means an omnipotent and arbitrary lord of the church affairs.
The influence and
decisive authority of the pastor is confined, as a matter of fact, to
the type and frequency of religious services he will or can offer to the people. Once a year the Patron Saint feast of the town adds some extra duties to the schedule of the Fiscal; he is responsible for arranging a solemn Mass, in spite of any difficulties, and he is also the one who must contract with musicians, folk dancers, as well as with the fire cracker manufacturers.
Each family is assessed a certain sum of money
as its contribution for the yearly feasts.
It is also the duty of the
Fiscal to collect such contributions for the celebration. Commonly the Patron Saint day is celebrated on the same day that the Catholic Liturgy commemorates the saint.
Sometimes, however, the
town celebrates it on the closest Sunday, if the Patron Saint day falls in the middle of the week.
Rather exceptional among the communities that
are studied here, the community of S. Lucas celebrates it in the form of a four-Sunday feast.
The town's fair As in many other cases in Latin American rural towns, the Patron Saint feast is a very important socio-economic institution; it remains, however, a religious one.
Here in the area, on the very day and often
times during the holy week around it, recreational activities like town fairs, with their small theaters and circuses, ordinary country fair games and competitions, and even boxing and amateur bull-fighting reach almost everybody in town.
The humble plaza as well as the atrium or
front yard of the church provide a place for improvised fairgrounds, where from dawn to late evening the old Aztec drums -- strange and
monotonous for the outsider -- remind the people of the various events of the feast:
Mass, devotions, dances, fairground games and the like.
These drums are accompanied intermittently by the capricious pitch of wooden flutes.
where mainly food, candy and delicacies are sold. It is customary in the region for most of the families to have an open house on the day of the Patron Saint or on the next Sunday.
an event means a generous banquet for anyone who likes to visit the family.
Most of the guests are friends and relatives who live in neigh
Some of them are accustomed to visit more than one ban
quet in the same town during afternoon hours. On such an occasion the head of the house welcomes the guests and talks with them at the table, while the wife and daughters remain in the kitchen, preparing the meals and making tortillas.
According to the
wealth and status of the head of the family, the banquet offers a cer tain variety of food and drinks.
There is always plenty of beer and
pulque (fermented guava juice) for most of the visitors ; but Coca Cola and lemonade are available for children and non-drinkers. As it will be noted later, the open house on the Patron Saint day, as well as the banquets on the birthday of the head of the house, are very important elements of prestige and status.
gatherings play a secondary role in local politics, since political affairs are always first handled in top confidential meetings.
these open houses constitute a good occasion for becoming better ac quainted, for informal meetings, and for the settlement of new peaceful relations if some minor divisions and quarrels occurred during the previous months. Each year the Fiscal designates every other family to be the hosts of the visiting priests (some years even an auxiliary bishop) who per form the ceremonies of the big celebration day.
Education The school system of the five ejidos under study have some traits in common.
However, for the most part, each ejido has had very pecu
liar problems and interests with its own school, and these must be described and analyzed separately. One of the first provisions of the agrarian law (23) is for a school for the ejido.
By merely granting the lands and erecting the ejido,^
the community has the right to a rural-type primary school, directly depending upon the Ministry of Education (23). There is also a State School District, financed and promoted by the state and local governments through the State Department of Public Educa tion.
Both systems, state and national, operate with the same problems,
but the administration and finances are completely separated.
school systems depend upon the Ministry of Education and are supported by the central government.
^The official document of the foundation consists of a decree signed by the President of the Republic and the Director of the Agrarian Department, who has the rank of State Minister.
The school, however, is created only after the family heads of the community have gotten together and formed a special committee for the foundation of the school.
Oftentimes this committee continues
operating as the permanent Ejido School Committee, identified for practi cal purposes with the local committee of family heads (Comité de Padres de Familia).
An important addition, though, takes place in this com
mittee; once the school is founded, the director (or the only teacher, as is the case, for instance, in the tiny school of El Moral) becomes the secretary of the committee, and the one who ordinarily is the most concerned with it. In the younger ejidos, the inspector of the regional school dis trict demands several things before even considering the application for a new school. essential:
Among these things three items are considered to be
(1) a complete census of the ejido population of school
age, (2) an official statement of the community decision and contracts for building the school, providing support and protection to the teachers, and (3) a plan of the site of the future school with the ejido tillable land to which the school will be entitled, that is, the school parcel. Even though several irregularities could and did exist with regard to the origins of the ejido school in many communities, at the present time all of the five ejidos have met the official demands and the com mittees of family heads have been in operation for at least twenty years, although their effectiveness is not great and their activity often paral lels the personal interests of the local director of the school.
school, however, has been improving steadily, and so also has the propor tion of the population receiving education (83). Before the ejido was founded, the school, like in many rural towns of Mexico, consisted of only one poor teacher who was paid partly by the central government and partly by the owners of the haciendas. few exceptions in this area, school was mainly for boys.
About 95 per
cent of the women forty-five years of age and older are illiterate. The Revolution and its critical development intermittently from 1910 to 1918 reduced the number of rural schools drastically, and few teachers remained in the region.
All the communities under study were no excep
tion in this tragic phenomenon. At the present time the five schools have only day-time courses. For a time, the S. Francisco school had some elementary courses to im prove adult literacy.
All of the five schools now receive some benefits
from their tillable land parcels.
Peculiarities of the ejido schools The school of S. Francisco was founded five years later than the ejido (March 7, 1928).
For almost thirty years, the school occupied one
of the best houses of the town, apparently the same one that was previously furnished by the owner of S. Pedro for the old hacienda-school. In many instances, wherever it was the case of a new ejido within an old community like in S. Francisco, the ejido school took over the older school and became the only one for the whole town.
The many rela
tionships of this new school with the ejido system were perhaps the main
reasons why the school committee has been almost always in the hands of the ejido people. Nevertheless, the beginnings of the ejido school did not differ too much from the old hacienda- or town-school.
It had only one room
(ordinarily overcrowded) one poor, dedicated teacher, who offered two years of formal elementary instruction.
And that was all.
It was not
until 1950, after the first successful National Campaign for Literacy, that the central government began to expand effectively the program of increased assistance and provision of more teachers for the rural areas. Actually, S. Francisco has four teachers (three of them with registered title) and a complete elementary school program of six years. In 1960 a Quaker organization, Los Amigos (a group of members and voluntary recruits of the American Friends Service Committee), came to live in the half-ruined quarters of the hacienda of S. Francisco, within the limits of the ejido.
The practical help in community development
plans rendered by these people included attention to the school problem. As a result of diligence of a member of the American camp, the school committee was given a considerable grant in order to help construct a new and bigger school.
This was in 1963.
At present, as it will be described in Chapter VI, the school com mittee headed by one of the most energetic influentials, Sr. M. Garcia (Don Martin), and the new school has been completed. It bears the name of "Primary School Republica Argentina," and it is among the best in these ejidos.
The particular statistics of the school will be given
at the end of this section in addition to those for the rest of the
schools. The foundation of the school of El Moral became official late in 1948, when some of the titles of ejido land grants were given and recog nized by the central government.
However, the school seems to have been
operating with minor interruptions since 1931.
It is difficult to know
at the present time whether the little school of those days should be considered as an ejido school or whether it was supported by the state government and the owners of the hacienda S. Cristobal.
presence and the activity of a leader like the latter provisional Governor Montes (the main influential and instigator of El Moral ejido) makes one think that the school was already part of the ejido system thirty-five years ago. The fortunes of El Moral, its life and destiny, in recent years have been more and more associated with the life of the city of S. Mar tin.
This is the reason why the school has never been a very important
part of the ejido.
Since the distance to the town is only a mile and a
half and the children have a safe way to go, the parents do not have to be concerned with having a complete curriculum of elementary education at home. In the first year of the ejido the school was considered a luxury, because the prevalent opinion among the peasants was that no more education was needed than learning to read and to write.
War II and the launching of industrialization by President Aleman (in the early 1950's) this opinion began to change ; but the facilities and the quality of education offered by the schools in S. Martin changed
even faster, thus slowing down the striving for a better school in El Moral. Apart from this, in recent years one of the most powerful trade labor unions of the Puebla (Transportes Flécha Roja, a passenger and freight transport union) founded a new elementary school in the suburb of S. Martin closest to El Moral and invited the influential Sr. Montes to serve as director of the board of trustees of the new school.
result the old school at El Moral remains a tiny and poor one with one teacher, one room, and offering but two years of elementary education. The picture at Col. Morelos is very different.
Trying to expand
its area and to improve its suburbs, the city of S. Martin, together with the school committee of the ejido, finally got a considerable amount of money from the Ministry of Education and began to construct a nice school before 1943.
In 1951 two more rooms were added to the four
original ones and the same number was added in 1954.
Also in 1943, the
director of the school applied for a grant from the textile factory El Carmen in order to expand the activities of Col. Morelos school and to provide at least two years of elementary education within the factory for children who were unable to get a place in the ejido school. With this new activity the school reached second place in terms of enrollment, being exceeded only by the school of S. Lucas.
school committee has been, as a matter of fact, in the hands of the director of the school.
He has understood well the type of town and
ejido with which the school deals, and he has gained considerable authori ty both among the personnel of other rural schools as well as among the
most influential people in Col. Morelos.
The figures presented in the
summary at the end of this section are thought to attest to the strength of the school in this ejido.
In addition, in the past school period
1963-1964, the school of Col. Morelos won most of the prizes in the scholastic competition with all rural and urban elementary schools of the municipality. Among the five ejidos, S. Lucas was the first nucleus of organized peasants applying for land in the region.
Their movement was seriously
mistreated and mis-regarded, and reacted to even with animosity, not only by the land owners of S. Damian and S. Lucas, the neighboring haci enda, but also by the captain of the local garrison at S. Martin.
officer was a close friend of the owner of S. Cristobal and El Moral. Instigated by land owners and foremen of the ha ciendas, and with full approval of their captain, the federal troups attacked and killed seven of the first ejidatarios in S. Lucas.
A humble block of red brick and
cement still stands in testimony to this bloody strife for the ejido. This occurred in the first year of the government of President Obregon (1922) and before the official establishment of the ejido. Because of this troublesome experience and also because of the difficulties and quarrels between the newly organized CTM (the officially controlled labor union of El Pilar), and the old labor union CROM of El Carmen, the benefits and provisions for the ejido were very much delayed. The school was only founded in 1932.
At this time the ejido parcel plot
attached to the school was only 1.5 Ha. plus five hundred square meters for a small sports court.
The people of S. Lucas were nevertheless industrious and courageous and they built a school which is perhaps the best among the other four ejidos.
It has five large classrooms, and a three room apartment for
An addition is now under construction.
The students are
the most numerous in comparison with other schools ; the size of the town is also the biggest in relation to other ejidos.
The superintendent of
the school lives in S. Martin as do four out of seven of the teachers. The school at Sta. Catarina has experienced more difficulties than any other of the five. came into existence.
There was no school in the town before the ejido A few years prior to the founding of the ejido,
Sr. Arana (who was mentioned with regard to the labor unions) became auxiliary president of the town.
At this time, 1919, the powerful
Serilla family of S. Miguel Totolqueme, the land owners of S. Miguel hacienda and the directors of El Pilar textile factory, convinced most of the practicing Catholics of the town to allign themselves against the idea of having a school in their own town.
But Arana was able to
convince some of his fellow workers and hometown friends of the need for a school and with their support he applied for a school. a grant from the federal government to pay a teacher.
He also got
Once the teacher
came into town, Arana convinced the people of the need to pay another teacher, a lady, if they were to have a separate school for boys and girls, in the way they liked. Incidentally, it was in connection with this school matter that the Serilla family became alienated from Arana and began to think of expelling him from El Pilar factory together with his friends.
time the ejido was created, Arana went to work in El Carmen factory, whereas the late provisional Governor Montes remained as a worker in El Pilar.
Little by little things reached the dimensions of a conflict,
particularly when Arana and his friends of Sta. Catarina applied for ejido lands to be taken out of the hacienda S. Miguel. The school existed in a poor and routine manner.
In those days,
as it has been said, children in rural schools could only get two years of elementary education.
And things did not change too much with the
creation of the ejido, except for the grant of a small parcel of land whose crops were a help for a school and teacher. Almost ten years after the ejido was granted, in 1933, a Cultural Mission of the Federal Ministry of Education selected Sta. Catarina as a place for an experimental operation.
The mission consisted of a
special group of teachers and technicians who instigated community development in rural areas.
Sr. Arana was again auxiliary president of
the town for a second term. The two most tangible results of this visit were: (1) Sta. Catar ina got an electrical transformer from a federal grant, and (2) it also received help to improve the classrooms.
The gift of an electrical
transformer encouraged the people to get things organized in order to introduce electricity in town.
They decided to contribute some money,
according to the size and wealth of each family, and they also applied for more help from the influential textile factory, El Pilar.
were slowing down, it should be noted, in the battle of the labor unions, and after Montes1 death El Pilar was less bitter toward the men of Sta. Catarina.
The betterment of the school consisted of the addition of class rooms and of general plastering and painting of the building.
support for the most important additions, teachers and the corresponding federal grants, did not come until 1952.
With this support, the com
munity accepted the idea of building a new school as the school com mittee proposed.
The school was completed three years ago; it is actually
a building behind the church of the town.
For a period of ten years the
school had a complete program of elementary education. However, the separation of the influential Sr. Arana from Sta. Catarina, and the election of authorities who were against him or who were not willing to have anything in common either with him or with his influential nephews, resulted in the fact that many people began to send their older children to the closest elementary school in S. Martin (between 1.5 to 2 miles from Sta. Catarina).
As a result, the school
committee began to give less support to the directors and teachers of Sta. Catarina school. years.
At the present time, the school is offering only three years of
elementary education. tor.
Half of the teachers resigned in the last three
It has only three teachers, including the direc
It exists precariously, although the building and classrooms, as
well as the teaching material, are in good order.
Exceptional among other
ejidos in the region, there are no illiterates in Sta. Catarina.
Transportation and mass media The entire region in which the ejidos under study are located can be considered as having adequate communication and transportation facilities, especially if it is compared with the average localities in
an overview of five ejidos in S. Martin Texmelucan, Puebla&
No. of illiter ates F M
Year school founded
Years of education provided
Rooms in school
School land parcel (in Has.) Irrig. Non-Irrig.
Daytime courses only
central Mexico. Long before the opening of paved highways, the main roads linking the ejidos with the city of S. Martin were already in service and they remain in the same condition at present. Transportation was never a problem for Col. Morelos, today a suburb of S. Martin, and only seven or eight blocks from the downtown district. In the remaining ejidos, a system of roads radiating from the center of the city was built during the old days of the Colonial period.
there were four roads, leading from the center in the cardinal directions. They used to link the city of S. Martin with the biggest Indian settle ments or doctrinas of S. Salvador el Verde (west), Sta. Maria Moyotzingo (east), S. Lorenzo Chautzingo and Huejotzingo (south) and the most important neighboring city, Tlaxcala (northwest).
In any case, at least
one of these roads used to pass close to the ejidos under study.
S. Francisco happened to be along the route of the first paved highway of the region (Mexico City to Puebla).
Although this fact did not bring
many changes in the life of S. Francisco, people began to use the new road almost exclusively, leaving the old road of S. Lorenzo completely abandoned. There are no direct roads linking the various ejidos among them selves except for the case of El Moral and S. Francisco.
roads are badly terraced in in poor condition during the rainy weeks of summer, although the busses always manage to continue in operation.
the city of S. Martin, a system of second class busses link all the ejidos with the head town.
Ordinarily one finds a bus passing through
the ejido every two hours going to and from S. Martin. With regard to other aspects of communication, most of the ejido families have at least one radio, and in each of the ejidos one can find at least five television sets located in the houses of the richer people. Many times not only the members of the family and relatives, but also the young people of town have some access to the most popular television programs like boxing, bullfights, and soccer games.
An estimation of
the exposure of the people to mass communication appears in the chapter on research findings.
On the average, two amplifier sets, handling both
phonograph and radio, are found in every community, usually located in side one or two of the small grocery shops. play music at the request of some client.
These outfits are used to The music is announced as well
as the person to whom the music is offered, ordinarily a girl.
of necessity, for example, if a person of the of the community is badly needed at the moment, the sound equipment does a good communication job. It has, however, spoiled all the calm and tranquility these communities used to have in the past, for the big amplifiers are usually hung from a post and dominate the whole town with their noise. There are two movie theaters in S. Martin, but there are not any in the ejidos or little towns of the neighborhood.
Recreation and family institutions One could hardly delineate recreation as an institutional system of social action in these ejidos, except at a very elementary level where one finds two or three sporting clubs with more organized activity. There are soccer-football clubs at S. Lucas, S. Francisco, Col. Morelos,
and there is one baseball team at Sta. Catarina. Apart from this, S. Francisco is the only ejido which has a kind of experimental social club for the youth; it was created by the American Friends Service Committee group.
This group (Civic Club 5 of May)
promotes agricultural practices, like animal breeding, poultry raising, and bee keeping, as well as furnishing instruction in home economics and hygiene.
The group also has regular meetings, in the form of social
evenings with dances, movies and the like. Not much more can be found in a systematic way as far as recreation is concerned.
Alcoholism, pulque drinking and many forms of disguised
unemployment, while existing, do not seem to fall properly in the category of social recreation. The following is a summary of observations about family living ; these observations were made during the first of five months of living with the rural people in the area.
From an outsiders point of view, the rural
family of Mexico represents the core of all of the good qualities and the handicaps of Mexican people.
Sober, careworn, patient and hard
working, the faithful Mexican wife symbolizes many of the highest values of the country.
She inspires the unquestionable respect and veneration
of the children for their father in spite of all bad qualities and habits he may have.
She also instills in the minds of her children a deep sense
of loyalty towards their own relatives, which should be felt and ex pressed no matter what a brother or cousin may do to you.
And she is
also the one who seems to have, deeper than anybody else, the strange feeling of patience and tolerance mixed with some stoic, perhaps dull and
silent ability to endure all hardness of life.
Many of these things
are something that an outsider will never penetrate, nor understand. But the Mexican wife can also hate and be permanently stubborn and resentful.
And the poor, rural people of Mexico have had plenty of
things about which to be resentful.
Disregarded, abused, impoverished
and living always on promises of help and better standards from the old hacendado to the new politician, they have existed on the fringe of hunger and misery or even in the midst of them. Perhaps thirty percent of the families in these ejidos can still be labeled "semi-extended" because of the fact that some older married child, continues to live under paternal authority.
In about the same
number of cases the families may have some older close friend or rela^ tive living with them, as a result of the person being abandoned or unable to work. In most cases, however, the rural family of the five ejidos appears to be the nuclear type, with fewer children than in the past generation. Not infrequently, perhaps up to forty percent of the cases in some ejidos like El Moral and S. Francisco, the young girls have had already some experience working as maid-servants in Puebla, Mexico City, or even in S. Martin.
For most of the families, trying to convince their older
children to stay in town is a periodic source of trouble. The family, no doubt, is often at the roots of social power. little, however, has been systematically explored in this respect.
present study does not intend to explore this point, mainly because it seems that the discovery of the ultimate sources and roots of power in
the family has to be preceded by a thorough exploration and description of the family itself.
Some valuable information though, with regard
to the ejido family heads is thought to result from the present study.
The Issues In order to complete the picture of the field-work area, a word must be added in relation to the community issues which serve to define and evaluate the processes of decision making in the exercise of power. With regard to the methodology part of this study, two features seemed to the researcher to make for ideal conditions for the type of research planned.
First, there is the fact that the five ejidos could be com
pared on two or three parallel issues, exactly the same, with the same content in all of them, for example, the running of the school system or the initiation of a project of irrigation.
Second, the parallelism
of such issues could be traced back through time with enough accuracy, that is, for the last ten years.
However, neither of these things
proved to be as possible as was first assumed. The following tables summarize the characteristics of the com munity projects that were studied as an expression of the decision making processes.
Among other things, analysis of the table shows
important correlations in the logical growth of many of these community projects, with regard to the characteristics of the economic life of each ejido.
A brief summary of such an analysis is presented here.
For the largest communities, three among the five, electrification is considered the first or second relevant project of the past decade. For Sta. Catarina though, the influentials refer to the electrification
as a renewal of the electrification system they got almost thirty years ago.
These three communities are the ones which are located further from
the city of S. Martin. The same three communities strived and were deeply activated by the influentials in order to get electricity coming into town, whereas Col. Morelos was driven towards electrification only four years ago, and almost by the decision or help of the non-ejido residents=
on the other hand, got electricity before any other ejido as a gift from the powerful politician Montes, the founder of the ejido. In one way or another, that is, either by direct works for the distribution of water or indirectly, by digging a well, irrigation is also ranked first or second among the projects in at least three of the five ejidos.
This implies the recognition and the acceptance of
intensive agriculture as the only means of survival and compromise with the ejido problem.
For many people in the area, the ejido problem can
be identified with the uneconomic size of the plots.
Steady and reli
able irrigation will mean for a good half of the ejidatarios, the possibility of at least two crops per year with sizeable earnings from such crops as carrots and other vegetables, and alfalfa. The relevance of a bridge for the community of S. Lucas appears immediately to the observer once it is realized that the town, two miles east of S. Martin, happens to be in a low terrain and is exposed to the floods of the Atoyac River, which passes along the eastern edge of S. Martin.
S. Lucas can remain for several weeks with its only source of
communication the old railroad tracks.
Finally, it is important to realize that four out of five towns estimated that some work in their schools was in one way or another among the most relevant community projects. Col. Morelos, where the school is perhaps at the best, did not appear interested in it to the extent that the other ejidos were.
is not surprising, because the school, as well as the whole suburb in which the original ejido settlement is located, is now completely integrated with the rest of the city of S. Martin, and the ejidatarios no longer play in their community the relevant role they have in other towns. A detailed analysis of the community projects referred to appear in the chapter on findings.
an overview of five ejidos in S. Martin Texmelucan, Puebla3
Populati.on General. (town) School age° M F M F
Enrollment in school M F
Mean daily attendance M F
Number of teachers Titled0
State Delegation -- Ministry of Public Education -- Puebla.
^Children between 5-14 years old. CTeachers
with registered title.
Community projects ranked by order of importance by the influentials in five ejidos
Electrification of the community
Opening a well to improve irrigation
Building a new school
Improving the function ing of the school
Setting up a rural welfare center
Works (canals, etc.) for better irrigation
Obtaining public water service
Electrification of the community
Construction of a bridge
Renewal of the school building
Works for better irriga tion
Electrification of the ejido community
Renewal of the school
ANALYSIS OF FINDINGS
It is the purpose of this chapter: (a)
to present the data that are relevant to test the hypotheses, and
to draw conclusions concerning the acceptance or rejection of the hypotheses.
The chapter is organized in the following manner.
hypotheses are stated in the order in which they were developed from the theoretical scheme.
Following each empirical hypothesis, data used
to test the hypothesis are presented and a conclusion regarding the acceptance or rejection of the empirical hypothesis is stated.
ing the presentation concerning each set of empirical hypotheses, a conclusion is stated regarding the general hypothesis to which the empirical ones relate.
Findings Existence of social power Social power, like any other action in the social system is condi tioned by time and space.
The first empirical question deals with the
discovery of such place in social power, namely, community issues or activities that could be accomplished through influence-induced-behavior.
E. H. 1:
The ejidatarios will recognize and specify impor tant community welfare issues.
Question No. 67 of the Labor Force Schedule asked: "Which are in your knowledge, the most important issues for the welfare of the ejido community: (name them by ranking them according to your opinion)?"
It should be noted that the question was put in a form which could permit us to get two sorts of information: (a)
the perception of issue areas where behavior could be induced or had been already induced, and
the general opinion of the ordinary people with regard to the needs of their community.
The results support the hypothesis, as is shown in Table 21. As it can be observed in the table, the mentions of specific wel fare issues sufficient to support the empirical hypothesis (No. 1).
the case of Sta. Catarina, the ejido labor force who were interviewed (thirty seven in total) indicated several community issue areas.
opinions, however, had a wider range of variety and the first two ranks were as indicated in the table.
E. H. 2:
Knowledgeables will provide names of persons who are influentials.
Two kinds of knowledgeables were interviewed in the first stage of this study: (for a period of two weeks) outside and inside knowledgeables.
21. Community welfare issues (to be promoted) as they were recognized and rated by the labor force
No. of respondents
No. of mentions
1st rate Introduction of new agric. techniques
No. of mentions
Introduction of public water service
Better irriga tion through wells
Better irriga tion through wells
Introduction of new agric. techniques
Better irriga tion through wells
Introduction of public water service
Better irriga tion through wells
Better and new classrooms and more teachers for the school Introduction of new agric. techniques
As it can be observed in Tables 22 and 23 two groups of knowledgeables were selected:
one in S. Martin and the other in the five ejidos.
tables also give a second of kind:
i.e., the "out" or "in" relationship
of the ejido knowledgeables in regard to the other ejidos themselves. Since each of the knowledgeables named at least three influentials, the data support the empirical hypothesis:
E. H. 3:
The ejidatarios -- ordinary labor force -- will provide names of persons who are influential in community welfare issues.
This hypothesis is complementary to the first one which only had to do with arbitrarily selected knowledgeables.
As it was said before
(Ch. IV, Methodology) this study was preceded by a previous search for socio-economic characteristics of the ordinary labor force of the ejidos, as for the perception of influentials and community needs such people may have. In question No. 68 of the Labor Force Schedule, people were asked: "In your opinion who are the "real influentials" (those who can move people as distinct from those who only enjoy pres tige) in this ejido community?"
Table 24 gives a summary of the people's perception of the existence of power in their communities.
In each ejido the people amount to be
in a true sense, and in a certain degree, inside knowledgeables.
Outside knowledgeables who nominated power actors (see Ch. V, Table 13)
Number1 of power actors they named for each e iidoa I II III IV V
Rev. M. Torreblanca
Rev. R. Cardenas
I. Gonzalez Monreal
II III IV V
S. Francisco El Moral Col. Morelos S. Lucas Sta. Catarina
kTheir personal characteristics appear in Appendix B.
Table 23. Inside knowledgeables who nominated power actors
Place of resi dence
(I) F. Silva F. Rafael J. Diaz G. A. Montes A. Garcia
A. Camacho G. Calderon C. Garcia P. Romero A. Arana J. Blanquel
Years of resi dence in region
El Moral (II)
Col. Morelos (III) Il
San Lucas (IV) If
Sta. Catarina (V) ft
72 71 41 70 65 63
Occupation President of the ejido, ejidatario Treasurer ejido ejidatario Private farmer Skilled worker in movie theater Regional dele gate CNC Pte. of the ejido city council S. Martin Ejidatario Former Pte. ejido ejidatario Munie. Pte. Polit. ejidatario Founder of the ejido State delegate crom. Form. Mjat. Pte. ejidatario
Years of acquain tance with the ejido town
Number of power actors named3 I
^Encircled are the number of influentials of the same town. are considered inside knowledgeables.
For such a case, the ejidatarios
The fact that half of the labor force are women who in rural Mexico are shy, passive in civic and political affairs, and are not supposed to talk about the major decisions of the community (which are considered typically their husbands' business), should be taken into consideration in interpreting the findings regarding how many in the labor force named influentials.
As shown in Tabic 23 there were a total of one hund
red and forty-four people in the five towns. named one or more influentials.
Of these, ninety-seven
Those who named influentials named, on
the average, almost two influentials. The proportion of the interviewed labor force that named influen tials was high with the exception of town IV.
If this town is excluded,
it can be noted that seventy-four out of the remaining eighty people named at least one influential. The case of the fourth ejido, S. Lucas, is a little problematic because only seventeen persons of the seventy interviewed named influ entials.
However, it seems understandable that people of this community,
who have been exposed to the misfortunes and pressures of the politics of labor unions (as was explained in Chapter IV) would be reluctant to name influentials they fear in some cases.
This may be particularly the
case since the team of interviewers consisted of younger people who were outsiders to the ejido, but were still of the same region. In view of this explanation for the low rate of naming influentials in S. Lucas and considering the findings from the other four ejidos, it is felt that the data support the hypothesis that the ordinary labor force will provide names of persons who are influential in community
Empirical hypothesis No. 3 is therefore accepted.
Perception of power by ordinary people -- Labor force and its perception of the influentials --
No. of persons inter viewed
No. of persons who named influentials
No. of instances naming influentials
Ave. of influen tials named
Before proceeding towards the test of the hypothesis, a word is necessary about the influentials who were interviewed.
the instances in which the same person (influential) was named by: (1) The outside knowledgeables. (2) The inside knowledgeables. (3)
The labor force.
Forty-four influentials were selected in the five ejidos, namely, those who were named more than twice by groups (1) and (2) and more than three times by group (3). The influentials together with their more relevant personal and social characteristics are identified in Tables 25 to 26.
Selected personal characteristics of power actors
Town H. Angel
L. Garcia Garcia Garcia Rafael
E. T. F. E.
Rafael Romero Silva Vazquez
0 3 3
R. Flores R. Sosa Average (3)
24 05 42
3 2 6
Secondary occupa tion
Private farmer Ejidatario II II
I I II I I
Average (2) A E
55 54 66
Primary occupa tion
J. Diaz (2) 11 H. Fortis I I A. Montes G. I I G. Morales Perez Velazquez
Years of educa tion
N. Cordero G. Flores E. Garcia J. M. P. F.
Years of resi dence ejido
(3) I I
42 61 47
05 42 07
4 4 2
48 63 55 40
15 42 42 14
3 2 6 3
ii it n n ii M
Industry work Ejidatario
II I I
50 6 24.3
Ejidatario I I
Ejidatario Commerce None Industry work None it
None Stock rais ing Truck driver None
Table 25 (Continued)
Town E. Allende
11 II II
45 77 42
R. C. r-, xL P.
II 11 II 11 II
63 41 65 45 70
Espinosa Garcia Garcia Perez L. Romero
Average (4) (5) 11 II II II II II II II II II
Primary occupa tion
Secondary occupa tion
J. Calderon M. Castillo J. Dominguez
Arana Arana Arana Arana Arana Blanquel Blanquel Blanquel Pineda Pineda Zarate
Years of educa tion
G. Calderon M. Mendieta
A. J. J. M. P. J. F T F G L
Years of resi dence e iido
42 23 42
8 6 3
59.6 3 6 . 2
65 47 44 42 54 63 63 66 48 50 44
32 31 20
Ejidatario Industry owner Ejidatario Clerk Ejidatario II M
Union leader Ejidatario Ind. worker II 11
3 2 1
Ejidatario Pri. farmer Ejidatario II II
Ind. worker (mason)
Commerce Ejidatario Pri. farmer None Ejidatario Ind. shop Ejidatario None II II
Ejidatario Commerce Ejidatario II 11
None H ii ii ii
Selected social characteristics of power actors Politi cal views
Code 01 02 03 04 05 06
H. N. G. E. J. M.
Angel PRIb ft Cordero II Flores II 0 Garcia L. Garcia II Independ. Garcia
07 P. Garcia 08 F. Rafael0 09 E. Rafael0 10 T. Romero 11 F. Silva 12 E. Vazquez0 13 J. Diaz 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28
29 30 31 32 33 34 35
Church affilia tion
Property'a value between
5,000- 10,000 30,000- 50,000 ii 10,000- 20,000 It 150,000 II 100,000-150,000 Nonpract. 30,000- 50,000 Catholic Spintist 10,000- 20,000 Catholic
II II II II
Mexican money: 1 peso = $.08 U.S.
^Official political party cNo
200 600-1,000 500- 600 200 600-1,000 300- 400 200-
11 11 11
10,000- 20,000 100,000-150,000 75,000-100,000 Independ. Nonpract. 10,000- 20,000 Catholic II Catholic 100,000-150,000 H. Fortis Nonpract. 100,000-150,000 A. Montes G. PRI Catholic 5,000- 10,000 G. Morales Independ. Catholic ii L. Perez 10,000- 20,000 PRI 75,000-100,000 P. Velazquez Independ. Protest ant 50,000-• 75,000 Catholic A. Garcia PRI II 30,000-• 50,000 E. Flores Protest. ii 20,000-- 30,000 Independ. R. Flores R. Sosa PRI Catholic 10,000-- 20,000 ii 150,000 E. Allende PRI It ii 100,000--150,000 G. Calderon It II 75,000--100,000 M. Mendieta II 11 150,000 J. Calderon 75,000--100,000 M. Castillo Independ. Atheist Catholic 100,000-150,000 J. Dominguez R. Espinosa Socialist Spiritist 10,000 - 20,000 Catholic 150,000 PRI C. Garcia II n 100,000-150,000 G. Garcia II ii N. Perez P. L. Romero Independ. Spiritist: 20,000- 30,000 Catholic 75,000-100,000 PRI A. Arana H ii 30,000- 50,000 J.. Arana aIn
Ave. mo? income between
ejido (only private land owners)
200- 300 400- 500 1,500-2,000 1,500-2,000 600-1,000 1,500-2,000 600-1,000 600-1,000 400- 500 600-1,000 400- 500 500- 600 200- 300 1,000-1,500 500- 600 1,500-2,000 1,500-2,000 600-1,000 1,000-1,500 500- 600 2,500 500- 600 200 200- 300 600-1,000 200
Table 26 (Continued)
Code 36 37
38 39 40 41 42 43 44
J. M. P. J. F. T. F. G. L.
Arana Arana Arana Blanquel Blanquel Blanquel Pineda Pineda Zarate
E. H. 4:
Politi cal views
Church affilia tion
Property value between
Ave. mo. inc ome between 20,000 20,000 30,000 75,000 20,000 50,000
200 200 600-1,000 600-1,000 300- 400 200 200 200 1,000-1,500
Power actors will rate other power actors and themselves on continua designed to measure power in specified issue areas.
The same question (labor force schedule No. 69) asked previously of the labor force, was also put to the influentials.
continuum with points from zero to eleven was shown to the influentials in order to facilitate their description of the rating of other power actors' influence.
As an aid in understanding this rating technique,
the interviewer used a parallel scale consisting of four qualitative steps from null to maximum.
Each of the steps corresponded roughly to
three units of the first-mentioned numerical scale. The use of the adjectives was intended to be a help for understanding the numerical scale.
Both scales can be paralleled in the following way:
Amount of influence Nul
2 3 4
7 Mucha (great)
Muchisima (very great)
All of the influentials were found to have a very sensitive percep tion of other power actors' influence.
Once the intention of the ques
tion was clear, they quickly rated the power of others.
different persons were named as having great (mucha) influence, but the respondents were able to differentiate degrees of great influence (from six to eight on the scale). Tables 27 to 31 summarize the rating results of rating other power actors' influence in general.
The results are interpreted as supporting
empirical hypothesis 4.
E. H. 5:
Power actors will specify other power actors and themselves as having power in specified issue areas.
Influentials 1 own rating:
Degree of power assigned to influential by others'1 Code No.
J. L. Garcia
in rows refer to degree of power ; column headings are code number of influentials assigning specified degree of power. Thus, read rows to determine the various degrees of power assigned by others to any one person; read columns to determine the influentials named and ranked by a specific person. No ejidatario.
Influentials 1 own rating:
Degree of power assigned to influential by others3 Code No.
A. Montes G.
footnote in Table 27.
Influentials1 own rating:
Degree of power assigned to influential by others3 Code No.
footnote in Table 27.
Influentials' own rating:
S. Lucas Atoyatenco
Degree of power assigned to influential by others'1 Code No.
P. L. Romero
footnote in Table 27.
footnote in Table 27.
Influentials1 own rating:
Sta. Catarina Hueyatzacoalco
Degree of power assigned to influential by others5 Code No.
footnote in Table 27.
7 7 8
Frequency of ratings by power actors in S. Francisco
Rated self as having power: In On one or general more issues
Code 01 H. Angel 02 N. Cordero 03 G. Flores 04 E. Garcia 05 J. L. Garcia 06 M. Garcia 07 P. Garcia 08 F. Rafael 09 E. Rafael 10 T. Romero 11 F. Silva 12 E. Vazquez
X X X X X X X X X X X
Xb XX X
XXX X X
Number of other power actors named by each nominee as having power In specified In issues ;a general 1 2 3 4 5 3 3 6 5 5 5 9 4 3 1
4 3 4 3 7 4 2 4 4 3 4 2
5 2 5 4 3 2 2 5 4 2 4 0
2 2 1 1 3 3 4 3 1 2 3 1
a Particular :issues in S. Francisco: (1) Electrification of the town, (2) Digging a well for irrigation, and (3) Building a new school. b
Rated himself specifically in favor' of the projects and against another project.
Frequency of ratings by power actors in El Moral
Rated self as having power: On one or In general more issues
Code 13 14 15 16 17 18
J. H. A. G. L. P.
Diaz Fortis Montes G. Morales Perez Velazquez
X X X X X X
Number of other power actors named by each nominee as having power In specified issues: In 3 general 1 2 2 6 4 5 4 5
2 1 3 3 4 3
1 1 1 1 0
^Particular issues of El Moral: (1) Betterment of the ejido school, and (2) Implement a Rural Welfare Center.
Frequency of ratings by power actors in Col. Morelos
Rated self as having power: In On one or general more issues
Code 19 20 21 22
A. E. R. R.
Garcia Flores Flores Sosa
X X X X
Number of other power actors named by each nominee as having power In specified In issues:a general 12 3 3 3 2 3
4 2 2 0
4 1 0 0
Particular issues of Col. Morelos: (1) Securing irrigation for the ejido, and (2) Implementing public water service.
Frequency of ratings by power actors in S. Lucas Atoyatenco
Rated self as having power: On one or In general more issues
Code 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33
E G M J M J R C G. N. P.
Allende Calderon Mendieta Calderon Castillo Dominguez Espinosa Garcia Garcia Perez L. Romero
X X X X X X X X X X X
XX X X Xb X XX XXX X XX XXX
Number of other power actors named by each nominee as having power In specified issues:a In general 12 3 6 4 7 5 6 6 5 9 5 4 4
2 0 4 3 1 1 2 2 2 2
2 0 3 1 2 3 0 1 1 1 1 1 11 2 1 13 3 1
^Particular issues of S. Lucas: (1) Electrification of the town, (2) Construction of a bridge, and (3) Addition to the school building. kRated himself specifically for one of the projects and against another.
Frequency of ratings by power actors in Sta. Catarina Hueyatzacoalco
Code 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44
A. J. J. M. P. J. F. T. F. G. L.
Arana Arana Arana Arana Arana Blanquel Blanquel Blanquel Pineda Pineda Zarate
Rated self as having
Number of other power actors named by each nominee as having power
X X X X X X
On one or more issues
xb X X X X
8 4 6 7 5 4 10 5 6 7 5
issues • cL 1 2 3 2 2 1 2 1 0 1 2 1 2 5
0 1 1 2 1 0 3 0 3 2 0
2 2 1 3 0 1 3 1 2 2 1
^Particular issues of Sta. Catarina: (1) Securing irrigation for the ejido, (2) Electrification of the town, and (3) Running the school. kRated self against one issue.
These areas were selected and ranked by the power actors themselves as the most relevant issue areas in community projects of their ejidos in the past ten years.
Their selection and rank is presented in
Appendix B. In the power actors' schedule (Q. 1) the interviewed influentials were asked to rank the most relevant issues effectively implemented in the community in the past ten years.
Besides they were also asked to
mention their own as well as other power actors' involvement in such issues; this is pertinent for the test of the hypothesis.
The following are the results of particular rating.
general nature, the results are enough to support the empirical hypo thesis that power actors will specify other power actors and themselves as having power in specified areas.
At the same time, the data
definitely tend to isolate some groups of top power actors.
explanation of this has to be completed in the next chapter together with some continuities of descriptive analysis of the communities and their influentials. Taking into account the data presented concerning the five preced ing empirical hypotheses, and the conclusions reached regarding their acceptance, it is further concluded that the following general hypo thesis can be accepted:
G. H. (1):
Social power exists in the ejido considered as a social system.
The exercise of social power The first two empirical hypotheses related to the exercise of social power can be tested by the same data.
They are therefore presented
E. H. 6:
Power actors will indicate their own involvement and name specific instances of their involvement in specified issue areas.
E. H. 7:
Power actors will indicate other actors involvement and name specific instances of it in specified issue areas.
Question No. 2 of the power actors schedule (see Appendix C) was designed to gather the necessary information to test these two hypo theses.
Power actors were asked, "What was yours and others (power
actors) involvement in the issue area you already mentioned?". These two hypotheses are supported by the data presented in Tables 37 to 42. Another step along the line of the present question (exercise of social power) was taken by the following hypothesis:
E. H. 8:
According to their experience, power actors will indicate and rank their own potential involvement as well as other power actors' potential involve ment in community issues of political and social welfare nature.
It was thought, during the process of planning the field-work, that the power actors schedule could be expanded along the line of the previous hypotheses by adding a question which would explore the atti tude of community influentials towards eventually coming projects.
is in relation to these kinds of projects that the word potential power actor is used here.
Two relevant issue areas, politics and community
welfare, were explored in relation to that kind of project.
were explored through a double question: (power actors schedule, ques tions No. 3 and 4) "Who are the persons having more influence if a political issue happened to arise in the ejido?" "Who are the persons having more influence (getting people engaged to act) if an issue of purely social wel fare happens to arise here?"
a Rating of power actors in specified issue areas Pro. ranked 1st No. of power Pro actors ject ranked code in it
Town S. Francisco El Moral Col. Morelos S. Lucas Sta. Catarina Code 0 1 2 3 4 5 6
0 2 1 0 1
7 3 4 6 5
Pro. ranked 2nd No. of power Pro actors ject ranked code in it 2 4 3 5 0
Projects ; Electrification of the town Irrigation project School betterment Public water service Rural Welfare Center Construction of a bridge Digging a new well
9 3 3 7 5
Pro. ranked 3rd No. of power actors Pro ranked ject code in it 6 X X 2 2
Reputational survey of influentials 1 involvement in com munity issues in S. Francisco 3
Influential Name Code H. Angel 01
Influentials Project ranked 1st Self , 04 11 10 11 01 06 10 „ . Calderon 09 P
06 E. Garcia
J. L. Garcia 05
11 06 03 01 05 06 09 10 03 11 03 E. Rafael 11 01 05 11 P. Calderon 11 03 01 06 11 10 06 01 11 01 03 06 03
named as involved in:b Project Project ranked 2nd ranked 3rd 10 03 03 E. Vazquez . M. Garcia 04 12 03 06 09 10 r, „ ,, «g P. Calderon 06 11 11 06 04 03 06 05 P. Garcia
F. Calderon Aux. Pres. 11 M. de Jesus
06 05 11 06
03 04 03 06 10 P. Calderon 06 M. Garcia 06 10 01 11
05 10 P. Calderon
10 09 V. Hernandez 03 06 11 01 06 T. Vazquez
10 P. Calderon 06 03 Aux. Pres. 06
^Projects: (1) Electrification of town, (2) Digging a well for irri gation, and (3) Building a new school. bThe
actors are listed in the order of their extent of involvement in the project as perceived by each respondent. For rank order, read down in columns.
Reputational survey of influentials 1 involvement in com munity issues in El Moral 3
Influentials named as involved in: Project Project ranked 1st ranked 2nd
H. Fortis A. Montes G.
A. Montes J. Diaz A. Montes R. Araoz P. Velazquez J. Velazquez (Pte. ejido) A. Montes M. Soria P. Velazquez A. Montes
A. Montes PTA President
A. Montes A. Velazquez
(1) School, and (2) Construction of a bridge.
Reputational survey of influentials' involvement in com munity issues in Col. Morelos3
Influentials named as involved in: Project Project ranked 2nd ranked 1st E. Flores R. Flores J. Garcia Self R. Flores A. Garcia E. Flores Pres. of ejido
E. Flores R. Flores J. Garcia Self R. Flores
(1) Irrigation, and (2) Public water service.
Reputational survey of influentials 1 involvement in com munity issues in S. Lucas Atoyatenco 3
Influential Name Code E. All ende
M. Castillo J. Dominguez R. Espinosa
Influentials named as involved in: Project Project Project ranked 1st ranked 2nd ranked 3rd 30 J. L. Moreno 0
29 25 32 E. Flores 25 30 29 30 30 30
33 30 F. Garcia 30 31
32 30 F. Garcia
30 30 30
27 27 31
30 32 33
E. de la Rosa 31 29 M. Cortes 32
25 29 25
P. L. Romero
30 25 32 30 F. Perez
31 M. Arias F. Escobar
^Projects: (1) Electrification of the town, (2) Construction of a bridge, (3) Addition to the school building.
Reputational survey of influentials 1 involvement in com munity issues in Sta. Catarina 3
Influential Code Name A. Arana
P. Arana J. Blanquel F. Blanquel
Influentials named as involved in: Project Project Project ranked 1st ranked 2nd ranked 3rd 34 (rs. Blanquel) 42 34 M. Blanquel^ 34 39 34 39
Pte. Aux. 0 34
34 0 34 39 41 0
44 P. Benitez 34
34 M. Blanquel 39 40 41 42 43
A. Hernandez (teacher) 40 34 42
34 42 V. Perez 34 43 0
34 44 A. Hernandez 40 34 34 44 42 0 44 34 39 41 39 34 41 34 41 44
^Projects: (1) Securing irrigation, (2) Electrification of the town, and (3) Running the school. ^Deceased.
Potential power actors named and ranked by other power actors of the same ejido Potential issue (1) politics
No. of mentions
Influential ranked 2nd
Influential ranked 1st
J. L. Garcia
No. of mentions
Potential power actors named and ranked by other power actors of the same ejido
Potential issue (2) community welfare
No. of mentions
Influential ranked 2nd
No. of mentions
Influential ranked 1st
Influential ranked 3rd
No. of mentions
M. Garcia X
The results presented in Table 43 and Table 44 are interpreted as supporting the hypotheses that power actors will indicate potential involvement of themselves and others in community issues. However, in regard to these findings, it must be kept in mind that the survey and interviewing of the ejido influentials did not show any possibility of exhaustive ranking and giving marks to all influ entials in all selected issues, even if they all participated in the main meetings that were essential for the launching of a project.
a matter of fact, it was discovered in further interviewing and in the history of several issue areas that when it was the case of a particular issue area the influentials as well as the ordinary labor force tended to assign social power to power actors according to the particular role or to the formal authority the persons had in that particular issue area. In other words, it appeared that the power actors recognized power and the exercise of power, at large and in general, and were able to provide a quantitative rating of the amount of social power and/or influence possessed by themselves and other power actors.
But it also
appeared that when it came to specific issue areas the power actors were unable to rate more than two or three people in each project and that there were the ones who happened to be officially in charge of imple menting the project. Taking into account the findings regarding the empirical hypotheses, it is concluded that there is sufficient evidence to accept the follow ing general hypothesis:
G. H. 2:
Social power is exercised in the ejido social system.
Structure in community power relations Having dealt with the facts of the existence and exercise of power, the research proceeds towards the discovery of the ways in which power is exercised. structure.
This implies the existence and functioning of a power
Different approaches are required to test this matter.
next three hypotheses refer to the presence of a definite set of actors -a social structure -- as an identifiable reality.
E. H. 9:
Additional power actors will not be mentioned by more than two power actors in the selected rat ing list.
The test of this hypothesis is a double one:
negatively, it is
the rating list itself, since it was composed precisely by all influ entials whose name appeared more than two times in the first interview with the inside knowledgeables and the influentials of the community. Positively, the results are abbreviated in Table 45 which show, by ejido, the additional power actors named and the mean power rating assigned them. A second way of getting at the existence of a recognizable, defi nite power structure is through the following hypothesis:
Additional power actors (not interviewed)
Additional power actor
Vazquez Garcia Garcia Martinez de Jesus
I. M. I. L. M.
R. Arroyo R. Aroaz M. Morales
Nominated by F. G. M. J. J.
Mean of power value3
Silva Flores Garcia, F. Rafael L. Garcia L. Garcia, T. Romero
2.3 1.1 1.1 1.3 0.5
0.5 0.4 0.5 0.1
D. L. F. R. G.
A. Camacho A. Sosa M. Flores Martinez^ Perez Perez Bueno Morales
R. Benitez V. Perez D. Fuentez
0.5 0.4 3.4
E. J. J. T.
Allende, M. Castillo Dominguez Dominguez Calderon, R. Espinosa
F. Pineda, A,, Arana T. Blanquel J. Blanquel, T. Blanquel
0.7 1.1 1.0 1.0 0.8
mean refers to the original scale of rating power actors on continuum (0-11)
^Actual president of the ejido. Ch. IV.
He was not interviewed for serious reasons.
E. H. 10:
The congruence of the most powerful persons determined by the knowledgeables, and the power actors' rating of other power actors will be seventy-five percent or greater.
The test of this hypothesis is made by assigning a value of one hundred to the initial group of influentials who were named by the out side knowledgeablesj and by dividing this one hundred by the number of these influentials.
This resulted in a score or value for each influ
ential named by outside knowledgeables.
For each person named by the
knowledgeables but missing in the power actors' rating list, the par ticular value assigned to the person was subtracted from one hundred. The resulting value states the degree of congruence. Results are as follows :
Degree of congruence
Town S. Francisco El Moral Col. Morelos S. Lucas Sta. Catarina
Degree of congruence (percent) 89 75 75 100 85
One word shall be added in regard to the type of congruence that was found.
Actually the power actors' rating list outnumbers the list of
the outside knowledgeables.
But there is a case of people basically con
gruent in both parts, which allows the test and gives a positive proof
of the hypothesis. It seems improbable though, that the initially discovered struc ture of power could be composed by a group of uniform influentials, from the point of view of perceived power, as in the case of an arbi trarily selected committee of trustees of some formal organization. Thus, the following hypothesis searches a more realistic answer.
E. H. 11:
There will be variability in the power values assigned by power actors in scales designed to measure social power in general in the ejido.
The results are interpreted as supporting this hypothesis.
are tablulated according to the answers to questions 68 and 69 of the general (labor force) schedule and questions 1 and 2 of the power actors schedule.
See Tables 47 to 51.
A few things will be said in the last chapter in order to get a better understanding of the findings concerning the variability of rated power. Another way of approaching the characterization of the power struc ture is to hypothesize concerning a degree of harmony in the exercise of power by the power holders.
The following hypothesis states this in
the simplest way:
E. H. 12:
There will be perceived interactions of power actors in various issue areas.
Variability in rated power, S. Francisco
Range of power score3
Peer group mean power scoreb
Overall mean power score
0 - 11
0 - 11
0 - 11
0 - 11
0 - 11
0 - 11
^Between lowest and highest ratings of him by other influentials. bPeer
group mean; average of influential1 s rating by influentials who were his friends.
Variability in rated power, El Moral
Range of power score3
Peer group mean power score°
Overall mean power score
6 - 1 0
6 - 1 0
10 - 11
7 - 1 0
5 - 8
footnote in Table 47.
^See footnote in Table 47.
Variability in rated power, Col. Morelos
Range of power score3
Peer group mean power score"
Overall mean power score
5 - 10
9 - 11
10 - 11
footnote in Table 47.
^See footnote in Table 47.
Variability in rated power, S. Lucas
Range of power score3
Peer group mean power scoreb
Overall mean power score
2 - 10
1 - 11
8 - 10
9 - 10
5 - 11
2 - 11
4 - 11
footnote in Table 47.
^See footnote in Table 47.
Variability in rated power, Sta. Catarina
Range of power score3
10 - 11
Peer group mean power score°
Overall mean power score
5 - 10
8 - 11
6 - 10
footnote in Table 47.
footnote in Table 47.
Two different ways were used to test this hypothesis.
most important, a careful study of the major steps of the decision making processes of the relevant community issues was followed through formal and informal interviews.
People were asked expressly about how
a certain project was developed, by whom, the steps that were taken toward its development, and the like.
Also, a check was made of res
pondents' random mentions which did not fit into the accounts of other respondents. Second, a formal statement was asked of the interviewed influ entials with regard to their personal ties and relationships with: (a) other influentials, and (b) other people having formal authority at the present time in the community.
(Questions 7 and 13 of the power
actors schedule). Both ways seemed to provide an effective test of the hypothesis, but the second one must be properly qualified. preted as definitely supporting the hypothesis.
The results are inter Some examples of the
first way of testing the hypothesis are summarized as follows:
A case in S. Francisco The most relevant community project of the past decade is the electrification of the town.
According to Table 37, at least seven
influentials were named and rated in relation to their involvement in that issue.
The inter-action record shows, however, a complex pattern
of relationships involving more than several power actors. In 1956, Herculano Angel began to talk with his influential friends about the need of bringing electricity into town.
Although he had a
very close friendship with Nicolas Cordero and the few friends of his who sympathize with the so-called "Zapata Group" (Antiguo Frente Zapatista), Angel preferred to influence three men:
(now influential number one in the community), Francisco Silva and Teofilo Romero.
In a confidential meeting they decided to take the
first steps by getting acquainted with the local and state people of the Orient Light and Power Company, and then to apply for the electri fication of the town of S. Francisco to the Federal Electricity Com mission.
The Orient Light and Power Company, a private company in those
days, (it has been nationalized in 1962) used to provide the service of electricity it bought originally from a plant of the Federal Electricity Commission. These four men decided: (1)
To complete all the preliminary steps before consulting the people of the ejido and of the community in a general assembly, in order to get their support more easily by showing them some concrete results.
To go through these first steps by completely relying upon the counsel and help of an engineer in Mexico City, apparently a top-level employee of the Federal Electri city Commission, whom Angel claimed was a good friend of his.
To bear all necessary expenses for these steps without bothering the people with collections or assessments ; they felt these costs could eventually be recuperated once the the community voted for the project.
Surprisingly enough, several old people and one or two influentials like N. Cordero got the news of the activities and began intensive gossiping about the foolish idea of promoting such an expensive project. In addition, the friend of Angel's failed completely in promoting the acceptance of the project by the proper channels, the Federal Elec tricity Commission.
What Angel and other influentials expected to have
was an official recognition of priority for their project among other ejidos also applying in the state (Puebla).
They also hoped to get a
grant in the form of an extension of the electric line between S. Martin and Huejolzingo or between S. Martin and El Verde, the municipal head town at the feet of the Txtlacihuatt. A year later, 1957, businessman J. Fernandez, the owner of the remainings of S. Pedro Coxtocan, brought electricity into his rebuilt hacienda housing complex.
Top influential Martin Garcia got well
acquainted with him through several members of his family (daughters and wife) who began to work as main servants in the hacienda. Since the hacienda house lies only less than a mile from the old section of S. Francisco, Martin Garcia got the idea of using the same line of Sr. Fernandez to bring electricity into town.
talked about it with Gabriel Flores, the influential president of the ejido for more than twenty years, and also with Felipe Rafael, the most influential man among the non-ejido people.
They purposely avoided
talking with H. Angel who apparently was responsible for the first fail ure due to his unlimited confidence in his friend of Mexico City.
Once Sr. Fernandez accepted the idea of taking an extension from his main line, the five influentials, Martin Garcia, Gabriel Flores, Francisco Silva, Teofilo Romero and Felipe Rafael went to the late auxiliary Municipal President and gained his support for the idea of a general assembly of the town ; the meeting was not held immediately, but only as soon as the rest of the influentials agreed to sign a pre liminary contract with the Orient Light and Power Company.
this, Martin Garcia and the group were trying to show some work and to produce some tangible assets (the posts for the electrification) in order that the people might overcome their discouragement from the pre vious failure. The rest of the influentials, with the exception of N. Cordero, were then interviewed and convinced before arranging for a secret general meeting of the influentials (to be described later) which always precedes any important general assembly. In the general assembly, the influentials got the formal nomina tion of a special committee for the electrification of the town.
previous movement were risky enough, since a second failure could have meant not only a serious loss of prestige, which would have been par ticularly pleasing to the tiny stubbornly group of Zapalistas, their oppositional critics for good or bad, but also a serious loss of money, since the Orient Light and Power Company already had fixed the posts along the streets of the town. The special committee was headed by the auxiliary Municipal Presi dent.
F. Silva was named secretary treasurer.
Teofilo Romero was
named vice-secretary and counselor.
Sr. Silva is a man of considerable
wealth, one of the oldest ejido influentials, and a man with a sound reputation of honesty in all dealings and business. It is important to realize that the people, and generally the influ entials also, tended to name and rate as influential in a particular project those influentials who were officially in charge of implementing the projects ; the one or two top leaders of the town were also fre quently named.
The rest of the influentials, even if they had an essen
tial part in the decision making, were almost ignored when the formal question about participation and involvement was asked in the interview.
Issue areas in smaller ejidos Two of the relevant issues in these small ejidos are a good example of what might be called "typical" projects of these communities.
these issues is the creation of a Rural Welfare Center in El Moral. The other is the opening of the public water service in Col. Morelos. A brief analysis of the first case will be presented here. Seven years ago, the National Ministry of Public Health and Welfare began to develop an intense program of help for most communities.
special agency of the ministry was created in order to promote the plan ning of community development programs and activities. Being now for several years the regional delegate of the National Ejido Federation, Antonio Montes, former Federal Representative and politician, (son of the provisional Governor of Public of whom the talk was in Ch. V), and also top leader of El Moral, got acquainted with this program of the ministry of health and welfare before any other people in
S. Martin. The aims of the Rural Welfare Center impressed A. Montes very much. Three years ago he began to talk openly in the general assemblies of the ejido about the need of such a center for El Moral.
The Rural Wel
fare Center consists of a working team of an extension technician, in residence, and a social worker who is mainly concerned with nursing and sanitation training of the housewives and girls.
The social worker and
the technician attend to the needs in a small zone comprising three or five communities.
Besides the promotion of agricultural techniques, the
extension technician works also as community developer. Montes also began a strong campaign to convince three or four of the influentials of the importance of a Rural Welfare Center.
particularly to Rafael Araoz, an influential of secondary rank (he was named only twice in El Moral) and with the most promising among the young influentials, Juan Velazquez, who was to be elected auxiliary municipal president of El Moral, (he was named only once by the influen tials). By this method, Montes gained the support, or at least a favorable opinion about the project of the two possible advisaries the Welfare Center could encounter; that is, (1) the old reactionary people, a group of three or four close friends of Araoz who were old gentlemen and always critical of every measure or project which may imply changes toward "modern" ways of living, and (2) the younger generation who look at Velazquez as their representative, the first young man entering into the previously closed and compact circle of ejido influentials.
generation perhaps would not have been against the Welfare Center but would at least have been apathetic if the project was conducted, as in the old times, without taking younger people into consideration. It is important to note that Montes did not exercise any special influence upon the other five major influentials of the ejido, realiz ing that they are almost automatically gained for every good idea and project which could mean some advancement for El Moral.
to have in mind is the way Montes operates within the group of influ entials ; he is perfectly aware of his position as top leader in the ejido and is aware also of his influence all over the region as chief delegate of the National Ejido Federation -- CNC. these two roles very carefully.
But he distinguishes
He only gives orders when official
directives come from the Official Party or the CNC; he never tries to impose his will among the fellow influentials in the ejido. Once the favor of the potential adversaries was secured, Montes proposed a meeting -- a secret one -- with the group of influentials. The auxiliary president was also invited. Montes declared his plans. (1)
It was at this meeting when
They included several steps:
The ejido should apply officially to the National Ministry of Health and Sanitation and ask to be the seat of a Re gional Rural Welfare Center of Community Development.
The application should be made through the National Bureau of the CNC, asking this institution to back the proposal because of the needs of the region, and because the ejido at El Moral has been a typical and exclusively ejido com
munity which could be used as a model for small com munities in the area of Mexico. (3)
The application should also mention the need for a good community development leader, indicating that the ejido people were unable to improve their school in spite of the work of the local school committee.
A special document should be secured which would attest that the families of the ejido voluntarily expressed their intentions to protect the center and to contribute eventually to most of the programs this center could develop in their community.
In addition to making the formal application, another important point was decided at the secret meeting ; this was to call the general ejido assembly and to explain to them the convenience of having a Rural Welfare Center.
Montes asked some of the influentials to back his own address and to emphasize and complement it at the general meeting. The agreement was reached on all these points of the plan after a few comments and explanations by Montes.
The group decided, therefore,
to call for a general assembly as soon as possible. The general assembly followed the procedures which are common in other ejidos, that is, the influentials distribute themselves among the rest of the people.
They attend the session with a naive appearance of
unawareness of the whole plan they developed.
They meet for as many
times as necessary, because almost every man over sixty years of age
feels an obligation to talk about the things that are proposed to the assembly.
When the talking and eventual discussion warms up enough,
some of the influentials begin to take note and to express the right points of the program they delineated.
Finally, a certain point of
awareness seems to be reached ; some few remarks are made among the influentials and the president of the meeting, generally the auxiliary municipal president, finally calls for the decisive voting on the issue under consideration. It is a customary practice of the influentials that during the course of discussing an issue or making comments during the assembly meeting they manage to suggest names of people who would be reliable in key posts of a future committee for implementing the project.
ever, the official registration of names and votes for such a committee comes only immediately after the assembly decides to accept the project. The votes of the people are according to the influentials1 plan. However, it is less and less surprising that more young men did not think about getting some of the secondary posts of the committee in ques tion. The foregoing descriptions of ejido power structures in action are submitted as partial evidence to support empirical hypothesis which states that there will be perceived interaction of power actors in various issue areas. A third test of the identification of an elementary power structure is provided by the following hypothesis:
E. H. 13:
There will be an identifiable social interaction sociogram within the power action of the ejido.
By means of elementary socio-graphic techniques, three of the major steps of a project in S. Lucas are presented here in some detail.
project was the building of two new classrooms and better playground facilities for the school of the ejido. In the first week of November 1964, the president of the ejido was notified that a change of authorities (ejido committee) was supposed to take place in a few weeks according to the disposition of the Agrarian Law (Codigo Agrario, art. ...).
The notification came from the Regional
Delegate of the Agrarian Department, Manager T. Rodriquez. The election of new authorities and the transmission of authority from the old to the newly elected committee is supposed to take place in a general assembly of the ejido beneficiaries.
An official convocation
notice is written and publicized by fixing it to two or three different public places of the town.
In the event that a majority of ejidatarios
(ejido beneficiaries) gathers at the announced time and place, the gen eral assembly proceeds immediately to elect new authorities.
it is postponed and an official record of the postponement is made and signed by the ejido committee and the Delegate of the Agrarian Depart ment.
The postponement can happen only twice, within two weeks.
the third convocation., the general assembly takes place regardless of the number of participants. One of the oldest influentials of the ejido, P. Romero, was immedi ately informed about the communication by the ejido president himself.
Since it has become customary for the most of the people of this ejido not to pay attention to the first convocation of assemblies, Sr. Romero got the idea of using this meeting not only as a means for exploring the opinion of secondary influentials about possible candidates, but also as an occasion for gaining their support for the project of the betterment of the school.
The idea of improving the school was already
ciruclating among the influentials because of a series of private talks most of them already had with the director of the school. Given the importance of the coming assembly, the customary secret meeting of the influentials was called immediately for two purposes: (1) to reaffirm their stand on the project of the betterment of the school, and (2) to decide their course of action for the election of the new authorities of the ejido. It must be kept in mind that the influentials of S. Lucas can be divided in two antagonistic groups:
three men (E. Allende, R. Espinosa -
compadres between them - and G. Garcia) together with the richest men of the town (the brothers Perez, Luis and Francis) represent the old reactionary style, rather adverse to any change in community life.
second group centering around C. Garcia and M. Mendieta included also old ejido influentials of great respect like Pedro Romero, who was for many years the top leader of the ejido. The sociograms depicting the interaction patterns during three steps of the project for the betterment of the school can be presented at this point.
-> (MM) RE
D = SCHOOL DIRECTOR (JD)
J. Hernandez (Pres. of the Ejido School Committee) (JC) Près. of the Ejido
S. Lucas school
the first circuit of closer interaction, between C. Garcia
and his closest friends and between him and the actual Auxiliary Municipal President.
A second circuit between R. E. and friends is very noticeable too.
Besides being a close friend and aide of C. Garcia, N. Perez is also the actual treasurer of the ejido committee.
During his period as Auxiliary Municipal President, M. Castillo was the influential who better enforced punctual payments of the assessed contributions for building the present school.
The whole structure of interaction patterns is centered around the director of the school, who is also secretary of the ejido school committee. An arrow-end in the sociogram indicates one way interaction is a typical process of dissemination of an idea.
Two arrow-ends indicate more interest
and an interchange of ideas, together with satisfactory awareness on the part of the director of the school. A double line-arrow indicates that definite agreement was reached by the two people in question and that both accepted the idea that the project was needed.
A triple line (in Figs. 2 and 3) means that agreement had been
reached by the two individuals that the project should be implemented.
Influentials secret meeting before the first general assembly.
Code No. 23
E. Allend e
Actual Ejido President (secondary influential) attending discovers: 27
M. Castillo J. Morales P. (secondary influential)
1\ / (24)
Observers: (27) JMP (low influential) Fig. 2.
The most remarkable trait is how the final decision of implementing the project is reached among all influentials through a very definite channel, the oldest influential who is also the one who has still indispu tably the greatest prestige and who is the top leader, that is, C. Garcia. Characteristically, the two main groups of influentials accept G. Calderon as an intermediary; through a motion, an agreement between R. Espinosa and the president of the meeting finally is reached.
agreement was after the decision between (33) and (30); it was not reached by force, but through an understanding of the need of the project. The main content of the present interaction sociogram was the assessment of the contribution of each ejidatario.
The first general assembly sociogram
Out of a total of one hundred and thirty-three ejidatarios who were supposed to attend, only about 13 percent, twenty-five men and six women, came to the assembly.
Among them the following influentials were present:
J. Dominquez (Aux. Mpal. President) P. L. Romero R. Espinosa N. Perez M. Castillo Ejido Committee President: Other three secondary influentials:
D. D. J. F.
J.D. P.R. R.E. N.P. M.C, Martinez Buen Morales P. Jordan
D.M. D.B. J.M.P. F.J.
Other participants -- ordinary ejidatarios -- are indicated with a capital letter.
Explanation The bundle of arrows represent the first two initial addresses to the assembly. dent.
The president of the meeting was the Auxiliary Municipal Presi
After a few moments of private talk with P. Romero, he announced
that he had decided to postpone any consideration of the school project because there were too few people at the assembly.
He further told the
assembly that he would like them to think about planning a brief celebra tion for the anniversary day of the foundation of the ejido and for the sacrifice of their seven fellow citizens who fought for their land. D. Martinez, a secondary influential and actual president of the ejido (chosen as a compromise between the two groups of influentials) repeated basically the ideas of Dominquez and urged the participants to contribute to the celebration. By means of private talks among themselves and by means of a pri vate conversation between N. Perez and the Auxiliary President, the influentials quickly agree that all action in regard to the school pro ject should be postponed. The arrows from the many different speakers (they actually talked in clock-wise order) indicate that they question and worry about the oppor tunity for the celebration, feeling that there was not enough time to pre pare it.
The meeting ended after two hours of continuous talking with con
The few influentials who participated in the discus
sions accepted the matter with apparent calm.
The evidence concerning
the interaction between and among influentials that was presented in the sociograms and the descriptive materials that accompanied them, coupled
with the results of the tests of preceding empirical hypotheses, is considered sufficient to accept general hypothesis 3 which states: social power will be exercised in the ejido by individual power holders acting together.
Monomorphic or polymorphic power With regard to the characterization of the power structure, the hypothesis to be tested is the following:
E. E. 14:
There will be an identifiable and different ranking of power actors for each of the specified issue areas.
Two questions on the power actors' schedule (Q. 1 and 2) provide the data which can be used to test the hypothesis.
The data in Table 52 are
condensed from information in Tables 38 to 42 which dealt with the influentials own involvement in different issue areas. The data in Table 52 do not allow a precise conclusion regarding the hypothesis.
As shown in Table 52 it is possible to conclude positively
regarding the hypothesis, as far as the small group of "top power actors" is concerned.
The grouping of top power figures apparently varies for
each different issue.
The data and observation do not allow any concerning
the entire group of influentials.
It is the author's impression, however,
that the general trend of the influentials' answers in regard to their own involvement and rating of it for different issue areas was to identify involvement and influence in launching a project with their involvement in implementing it.
Power structures in different community issue areas Top power actors, listed by rank received from other power actors Proiect No. 1 Pro iect No. 2 Pro iect No. 3
Town S. Francisco Projects: 1) Electrification3 2) Irrigation well 3) School building
F. M. G. J. T. H.
El Moral Projects: 1) School betterment 2) Rural welfare center3
A. Montes P. Velazquez
A. Montes A. Velazquez^
Col. Morelos Projects: 1) Irrigation 2) Public water service3
E. Flores R. Flores A. Garcia
E. Flores R. Flores A. Garcia
S. Lucas Projects: 1) Electrification3 2) Bridge3 3) School addition
C. R. M. N.
Sta. Cat arina Projects: 1) Irrigation 2) Electrification3 3) School betterment
A. Arana T. Blanquel F. Pineda
Silva Garcia, E. Garcia Flores L. Garcia Romero Angel
Garcia Espinosa Mendieta Perez
G. T. F. M.
Flores Romero Silva Garcia
M. T. P. J. G.
Garcia Romero Calderon'3 Vazquez Flores
C. Garcia P. L. Romero N. Perez
M. G. R. T.
Castillo Garcia Espinosa Garciab
A. Arana F. Pineda G. Pineda
L. Zarate A. Arana T. Blanquel
area of the larger social system as well as of the ejido.
Therefore, only for the case of the restricted top power actors group is it valid to affirm that, to some degree:
G. H. 4:
Power structures will vary depending upon the issue area.
Power structures, issue areas and social systems Two ways can be devised to test the general hypothesis related to this question, namely, to determine whether or not the power group substantially varies when the issue area under consideration pertains to a larger social system. The first way of testing this is to inspect again the data in Table 52 which relate to the different power structures in issue areas.
be noted, the three larger ejido communities under study had at least one issue area among the first two relevant ones.
As it can be noted also,
the power actors who were named do not differ from the ones who were responsible for other projects.
Thus the thesis stating high degree of
congruency between ejido and non-ejido power actors of the larger social system can be accepted on this basis.
A more direct test, however, is
represented in the following hypothesis:
E. H. 15:
The degree of congruence between the top power actors in the ejido and the top power actors in town will be more than 75 percent.
Two questions on the labor force schedule (questions 68 and 69) which were also asked of the influentials provide some basis for the present test.
In these questions the respondents were asked to name
and rate all influentials, both in the ejido as well as in town.
ever, this can apply only to the larger ejidos since El Moral and Col. Morelos did not have any issue areas of concern for the larger social system (here only the municipality or county as a whole) within which they operate. For each ejido, Table 53 shows the number of influentials who fig ured in issues of concern to the larger social system.
The degree of
congruence has been computed to indicate the extent to which those influentials in ejido issues were also influential in larger system issues.
Congruence between ejido and non-ejido (town) power actors
Total of influentials named
Town S. Francisco El Moral Col. Morelos S. Lucas Sta. Catarina
12 6 4 11 11
Non-ejido influentials 3 0 0 2 1
Degree of congruence 75.01% 100.007= 100.00% 87.82% 90.91%
The data in Table 53, which indicate that most of the influentials in larger system issues were those who were also influential in ejido issues, are used as evidence to accept the hypothesis:
G. H. 5: The group of power actors perceived to have the most power in issues limited mainly to the ejido, will not differ from the group of power actors perceived to have the most power in issues of the larger social system of the town.
Decision making and execution Two empirical hypotheses are used to test the extent to which the top power actors are also those who are most involved in implementing the decisions that have been made by the power holders.
E. H. 16: The top power actors as determined by mean power values will be the top power actors aq determined by specific instances of involvement in specific issue areas.
E. H. 17:
The top power actors as ranked by mean power values will name specific instances of their involvement in specified issue areas.
The data in Table 54 indicate that of the twenty power actors, as determined by those involved in issues, fourteen have power actor scores above 5.0.
It is also shown eighteen of the twenty did name specific
community issues in which they themselves were involved.
is considered sufficient to accept the general hypothesis:
Top power actors involvement in decision making and execution
Power actors ranked according to their involvement in specific issues
Power actors mean power value
No. of in stances of self naming in specific issue areas
M. G. F. T. J.
Garcia Flores Silva Romero L. Garcia
8.01 6.07 7.00 1.07 1.92
2 2 2 1 1
A. Montes P. Velazquez J. Diaz
8.09 4.03 7.00
1 1 0
E. Flores R. Flores A. Garcia
10.25 9.08 5.05
2 2 2
C. N. R. P. M.
Garcia Perez Espinosa L. Romero Mendieta
6.09 2.08 5.09 5.00 2.04
2 2 2 2 1
A. T. F. L.
Arana Blanquel Pineda Zarate
9.00 6.06 2.02 6.01
2 2 0 1
G. H. 6:
The persons who are perceived to exercise power over the decisions of the social systems will also be the persons who help to execute the decisions.
A few remarks about the peculiarities of this involvement in effec tively implementing the projects will be made in the final chapter, where the continuities in power structure are treated.
Influence and authority
E. H. 18:
The power authority index will not be significant.
The power authority index was worked out as correlation coefficient between the mean power values (see Table 55) and the authority partici pation score.
This latter was formed by adding certain arbitrary values
assigned in the code of the questionnaire to the different positions of authority each of the influentials had in the past fifteen years, both in the ejido as well as in the larger system of the town. Other scores of formal participation in authority roles of clubs and similar organizations were not to be expected in rural Mexico, because of the lack of formal organizations, as was noted in Chapter IV. The data are presented in Tables 55 to 59. For the five ejidos, the coefficients of correlations, or power indices, were: .17, .54, .59, .66 and .87. cant at the .05 level or above.
Of these, two were signifi
Empirical hypothesis 18 stated that
the indices would not be significant.
Since two were significant and
Power authority index for influentials in S. Francisco Tepeyecac
Name of influential
Mean power values
Authority pa.rticipation score
J. L. Garcia
= 26.17; r between power value
and authority participation score = .87 (significant at .005 level)
Power authority index for influentials in El Moral
Name of influential
Mean power values
Authority participa tion score
A. Montes G.
= 5.21; X2 = 23.67; r between power value
and authority participation score = .54 (not significant at 0.05 level)
Power authority index for influentials in Col. Morelos
Name of influential
Mean power values
Authority participation score
X^ = 6.13; X^ = 21.75; r between power value and authority participation score = 0.59 (not significant at 0.05 level)
Power authority index for influentials in S. Lucas Atoyatenco
Name of influential
Mean power values
Authority participa tion score
P. L. Romero
X^ = 3.24; X2 = 20.91; r between power value and authority participation score = 0.17 (not significant at 0.05 level)
Power authority index for influentials in Sta. Catarina Hyeyatzacoalco
Name of Influential
Mean power values
Authority participa tion score
= 4.23; X^ = 12.27 ; r between power value and authority participation score = .66 (significant at 0.01 level)
since two others (.54 and .59) approached significance, the results are interpreted as not providing sufficient evidence to accept the hypo thesis.
E. H. 19: The influence authority ratio will be greater than this hypothesis states, also a measure of the extent to which the power actors perceived to have more power will have no more authority than the power actors perceived to have less power.
In Iowa rural communities Powers and Tait hypothesized a ratio of 7.1.
Formal organizations, in which an influential may exercise
authority, are almost completely lacking in the Mexican cases.
addition, the size of the Mexican communities is so small that the same people must perforce hold one or more positions of authority.
is therefore considered that a ratio of 3.1 would in these villages indicate a separation between authority and power.
authority ratio has been explained in the Methodology chapter.) Table 60.
Influence authority r^cio in five ejidos
No. of respond. Town influ. S. Francisco 12 El Moral 6 Col. Morelos 4 S. Lucas 11 Sta. Catarina 11
Men tions of influence 14 6 4 16 15
Men tions of authority 4 0 1 5 5
Influ ence authority 7:2 6:0 4:1 3.2:1 3:1
Ratio 3:1 3:1 5:1 3:1 2.9:1
In the power actors schedule, questions 8 and 12, the influentials were asked what they thought made a person influential in the ejido. The answers were categorized as "influence" and "authority."
simple enumeration of these answers the ratio between the instances of authority responses and influence responses can be computed.
one of the computed ratios was above 3.1, the evidence is considered sufficient to accept empirical hypothesis 19.
G. H. 7:
The power actors perceived to have more power will not have more authority than the power actors per ceived to have less power.
The reason of this contention is the way in which many of the power actors, particularly the ones who are less educated, tended to interpret the question about power holders and influentials of the community ; namely, they often identified the persons as influential whom they remembered as officially active in some project at the stage of imple menting it.
This, however, did not mean that they could not distinguish
between social power in general and formal authority.
The material in
Chapter VII, it should be noted, is presented to provide a deeper in sight into the present question of the distinction between power and legitimized authority.
The sources of social power
E. H. 20: There will be differences among the community source of power indexes.
It must be kept in mind that the term "community power index" refers to the weighted values assigned to the responses made by each power actor on each source of power. In the power actors schedule, questions 8 and 9, several sources of power were mentioned.
A rank was assigned to these sources in the
form of a number in order to allow a sum of values and thus serve as an index for each source of power.
Twelve possible sources of power
E. H. 21:
The congruence between the "community source of power" and the "top power actors source of power" indexes will be significant.
Data that can be used to test these hypotheses are presented in Table 61.
Inspection of the left half of Table 61, confirms hypothesis
20, for it can be noted that among the communities the sources of power are differentially perceived. Insofar as hypothesis 21 is concerned, the test is given by the complete Table 61.
The analysis of it, allows to conclude the tight
ness of the hypothesis.
The results, allow us to conclude the tight
ness of general hypothesis 8:
G. H. 8:
Power actors will perceive certain sources of power relevant to social power in the general affairs of the ejido.
Sources of power index and differences3.
Source Honest dealings and hard work Honesty Membership in authority Friendship with influ. Education Avoiding drunkness Accèsibility to people Respect Frankness Success in bus. Prestige (moral rep.) Control of money aS.
Community index (wt.) Towns IV V I II III 6, .5 7 2,.75 3.67 2.,5
3 1..33 1.67 ,92 4.,67 5.67 1 1 2
10.5 5.45 7.,09 2.,75 2 4
2.18 .55 2.45
Top influential index (wt.) Towns I II III IV V 8.5 4 2.75 3.67
2.09 1 4
1.,64 1.,09 1.,91
.92 .92 1
7 8 4
8a 7 6
1 2,.09 .45
1 1 .55
Ranks Comm. Influ. (all town;
6 2 10 9
Francisco I: r= .9207 significant at .005 level; El Moral II: r= .5672 signifi cant at .025 level; Col. Morelos III: r= .7954 significant at .005 level ; S. Lucas IV: r= .4801 significant at .05 level; Sta. Catarina V: r= .8717 significant at .005 level.
E. H. 22:
The power actors will name at least two charac teristics of personal behavior which they per ceive as associated with the accumulation of power.
In the labor force schedule which was also administered to the influentials, questions 109 and 110, asked for those expectancies of behavior which the respondent perceived as associated with the accumula tion of power.
As indicated in Table 62, at least two characteristics
of personal behavior were mentioned as sources of power. hypothesis 22 is therefore accepted.
On the basis of the acceptance
of empirical hypothesis 22, the following general hypothesis is accepted;
G. H. 9:
There will be an expected set of role performances to be fulfilled which are associated with the accumulation of power by actors in the social system.
The expected set of role performances in the ejidos under study include: (a) A style of life where honest deals and hard work are emphasized and take precedence over any other form of behavior.
Perception of expected role performances in order to accumulate social power
Expected role performance
I - Max=24
Frequencies of mention per town II - Max=12 III- Max=8 IV - Max=22
V - Max=22
Give alms to church
Contribute to the feast
Have a large house
Acquire much land
Having ag. machinery
Give more school to children
Honesty and serious work
Inability to succeed in business
A practical demonstration of such hard work in the prosperity of one's land holdings.
A striving for more and better education for the children.
Validity of the reputational technique
E. H. 23:
The most powerful persons in specified issue areas, as determined by the reputational tech nique of perceived power, did exercise social power in that area.
This hypothesis is tested in two ways.
First, a table of com
parisons has been constructed ; this compares the mention of each of the top actors as being involved in certain issue areas according to other power actors
perceptions and the mention of involvement confirmed by
each of the top power actors.
Second, some excerpts of actual inter
views are reproduced which describe the exercise of power by different power actors.
(See Appendix C)
Both the data presented in Table 63 and the descriptive material from the interviews are considered sufficient to accept empirical hypo thesis 23.
In view of these results, and with the reservations set
forth in the chapter on Methodology, it is concluded that there is sufficient evidence to accept the following general hypothesis:
Comparison between alien and own mentions of involvement in specified issue area (top power actors)
No. of mentions of other power actors
Self mention (one per issue area)
M. G. F. T. J.
Garcia Flores Silva Romero L. Garcia
06 03 11 10 05
23 14 16 12 5
2 2 2 1 1
A. Montes P. Velazquez J. Diaz
15 18 13
7 4 3
1 0 1
E. Flores R. Flores A. Garcia
20 21 19
5 4 2
2 2 2
c . Garcia N . Perez R. Espinosa P. L. Romero M. Mendieta
30 32 29 33 25
16 7 5 3 5
2 2 2 2 1
A. T. F. L.
34 39 42 44
19 6 5 5
2 2 0 1
Arana Blanquel Pineda Zarate
G. H. 10:
The persons perceived to have the most power in community issues of the ejido through the reputa tional technique, did in fact exercise this power in at least two specified issue areas.
Some traits of the power actors personality The potential power actors
Influentials-to-be, as detected by
the reputational technique.
E. H. 24:
The reputational technique will provide a set of potential top power actors in political and com munity welfare issues which will not be different from the set of actual top power actors in speci fied issue areas as perceived through the same technique.
The answers given to the questions which asked about who would be the power actors in an hypothetical project of political and/or com munity welfare nature that might come to the ejido should provide a test for the hypothesis. The results presented in Table 64 indicate that the potential power actors, with one exception, were also the actual power actors.
cal hypothesis 24 is therefore accepted. Since empirical hypothesis 24 is accepted, it is therefore concluded that the following general hypothesis should be accepted:
Potential top power actors
Actual top power actors
Potential in politics
Potential in comm. welfare
M. G. F. T. J.
Garcia Flores Silva Romero L. Garcia
1 2 3 4 5
M. Garcia J. L. Garcia
F. Silva G. Flores M. Garcia
1 2 3
A. Montes P. Velazquez J. Diaz
1 2 3
A. Montes P. Velazquez
P. Velazquez J. Diaz
E. Flores R. Flores A. Garcia
1 2 3
A. Garcia R. Flores
E. Flores A. Garcia
c . Garcia
1 2 3 4 5
c . Garcia P. Romero
c . Garcia M. Mendieta N. Perez
1 2 3
A. Arana J. Arana
T. Blanquel3 A. Arana J. Arana
1 2 3
N. Perez R. Espinosa P. Romero M. Mendieta Sta. Catarina
A. T. F. E.
Arana Blanquel Pineda
1 2 3 4
person did not appear before among the top power actors.
G. H. 11:
The top potential power actors in politics and in community welfare issues, are among the top actual power actors of specified issue areas as perceived through the reputational technique.
Dynamics of power
The influentials perceived changes in their
amount of power.
E. H. 25:
In more than seventy-five percent of the cases, power actors will not perceive changes in the amount of social power they exercised in the community in the past five years.
Data that can be used to test this hypothesis are presented in Table 65.
As noted in the table, power actors mostly did perceive
changes, either growth or decline, in the amount of social power they exercised over the last five years.
There is no evidence, therefore,
to accept the hypothesis.
Influentials perception of the change of their own power
Town S. Francisco El Moral Col. Morelos S. Lucas Sta. Catarina
Percent of answers My influence My influence has grown is the same 33.0 83.0 75.0 45.0 27.3
42.0 17.0 27.3 27.2
My influence declined 25.0 0.0 25.0 27.2 45.0
Since the empirical hypothesis was rejected, there is no evidence to accept the general hypothesis:
G. H. 12:
Power actors tend to think that their influence does not vary significantly through the last few years.
A further discussion of the change in influence appears in the next chapter.
Some traits of power actors relevant opinions
institutions as they are shown in the influentials1 opinion.
E. H. 26:
The power actors will name governmental institu tions as sources of help for community welfare issues.
Question 5 on the power actors schedule provided the data to test this hypothesis.
As shown in Table 66, in all of the ejidos govern
mental institutions were named by over half of the power actors.
four out of the five ejidos, almost two-thirds, or more, named govern mental institutions.
Empirical hypothesis 26 is therefore accepted.
Frequency of naming governmental institutions
Town S. Francisco
In view of the acceptance of the empirical hypothesis, the follow ing general hypothesis is accepted:
G. H. 13:
The power actors will prefer to get help for com munity welfare issues from governmental institu tions rather than from the private ones.
E. H. 27:
The power actors will not name any voluntary formal organization as having some degree of influence upon community issues.
The data to test this hypothesis were derived from the answers to question 6 on the power actors schedule. Table 67.
The results are presented in
It is shown that voluntary associations were not named at
all in four of the ejidos but by 41.5 percent of the respondents in one ejido.
The evidence is considered sufficient to accept empirical
Frequency of the influentials perception of voluntary organizations
Frequency (percent) 41.5a 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0
S. Francisco El Moral Col. Morelos S. Lucas Sta. Catarina
aAll the instances of perception are related to the social club founded by the friends (see Chapter IV) and all the mentions were made for potential degree of influence but not for any influence in the past.
Inasmuch as the empirical hypothesis was accepted, the following general hypothesis is accepted:
G. H. 14:
The power actors will not recognize any formal voluntary organization with some influence in community welfare issues.
E. H. 28:
Influentials' opinion with regard to productivity.
The source and type of adverse factors of agricul tural productivity, as perceived by the power actors, will not vary significantly in each ejido.
From the power actors' schedule (question 14) the data on the two main adverse factors affecting agricultural productivity in the ejido are presented in Table 68.
Power actors' opinion about the major adverse factors of the ejido productivity Adverse factor No. 1
Lack of water for irrigation
Lack of ade quate credit
Lack of ade quate credit
Lack of tech nical assist.
Lack of water for irrigation
Poor quality of the soils
Uneconomic size of the plots
Lack of ade quate credit
Lack of water for irrigation
Poor quality of the soils
The percentages indicate a great diversity of opinions with regard to the rank and importance of adverse economic factors. is therefore rejected.
Additional comments with regard to the influ
entials 1 opinions on the ejido operation will be made in the final chapter.
CONTINUITIES ON POWER STRUCTURE
Before discussing implications of this study in view of the poli cies of agrarian reform and community development in the ejido, conclud ing remarks must be made with regard to three major topics: (1)
With regard to cross-cultural comparisons, some of the findings must be analyzed in still greater depth.
With regard to the theory of social power, some explora tion shall be attempted to see whether or not the data of rural Mexico suggest some changes in the general hypotheses.
Finally, qualifications in the methodology of this study, in view of the findings, will be discussed.
Peculiar Traits of Social Power in Rural Mexico The existence of social power Social power exists in the ejidos.
The findings show that this
power is exercised by a group of influentials whose numbers tend to be very close to one-tenth of the total number of families in the ejido. San Lucas is no exception, despite the present figure of two hundred and five ejido beneficiaries, since more than sixty-five cases are widows or widowers actually living with other members of their family. The influentials have several traits which are not found in the labor force.
First of all, influentials are old men, particularly in
the Mexican milieu.
Their mean age is 55.6 years; this must be viewed
in the context that the average life expectancy in Mexico is 37.92 for males.
Although the range of ages is very wide, from thirty-seven to
ninety-seven, the number of young influentials (in their forty's) is very small; five among the forty-four interviewed influentials were of this age group.
The influentials have worked on the average almost
thirty years (28.7) in their ejido plots.
This means that they have
worked their plots practically since the ejido was founded.
As far as
education is concerned, the mean years of school attended by the influ entials is only 3.3.
The ejidos which are closer to St. Martin show a
higher mean level of education among the influentials.
of the groups has a mean as much as six years, the period of elementary education. The labor force, on the other hand, does not have a higher mean level of education than the influentials, except in the case of Sta. Catarina; in that ejido, the influentials1 mean years of education is 2.0, whereas for the labor force the mean is 4.2 years. With regard to wealth and monthly income, the influentials show definite characteristics placing them above the ordinary labor force. In some instances, S. Francisco, El Moral, S. Lucas, at least half of the influentials have some privately owned land besides the ejido parcel. This fact alone puts the influentials in the upper one-third of the ejido community families, i.e., the ones who have ejido and private property. The wealth of the influential varies according to the type of town in which the ejido is located.
In all ejidos, except S. Lucas, about
twenty-five percent of the influentials reported their total wealth as 15,000 pesos ($1,200); half of the influentials can be classified as below 80,000 (or below $6,500). S. Lucas being a community which is starting to be industrialized, shows a different picture; almost seventy-five percent of the influentials are above the $6,500 mark in terms of total wealth.
Unlike the other
ejidos, a notorious group (the ganger) of influentials of S. Lucas did not consider their primary occupation being ejidatario farmers, but small industry entrepreneurs. Monthly income figures reflect the picture of the influentials' wealth, although not exactly.
In S. Lucas, forty-five percent of the
influentials have a monthly income between 1,500 and 2,500 pesos; in the other ejidos only one-fourth of the influentials estimated their monthly income above 1,000 pesos.
Among other cultural variables, it is important to notice that all the influentials have at least a radio (AM receiver) at home, and in all the ejidos between thirty-three percent and fifty-four percent of the influ entials reported regular listening to radio news as their favorite.
The national average monthly income is about 425.00 pesos and the rural monthly income for the wage earner of the region is only 360.00 pesos according to the law. The ordinary labor force of the ejidos re ported a mean monthly income between the legal rural wage (monthly) and the national average; however, this picture could be misleading because the labor force at S. Lucas is much better off than the ordinary ejida tario. Rural workers (employees by farmers or ejidatarios) receive an average salary of 10.00 pesos per day. They are thus even below the legal rural wage income.
the exception of S. Francisco, where none of the influentials has a tele vision set, at least 25 percent of the influentials have television sets. With regard to television programs, again about 33 percent of the influ entials reported news programs as the only ones they customarily and daily viewed (novels and sports -- bullfighting -- were the next in pre ference). With regard to other variables which were also as a part of a larger project, the influentials failed to show consistent differences as compared to the ordinary people of the ejido.
Investment and saving
patterns, agricultural operation, the adoption of fertilizers, the negligence and unawareness of banking services, the recourse for credit to the private money lenders ; none of these variables showed relevant differences between the groups of influentials and the ordinary labor force. The spending habits with regard to religious and civic feasts of the town can be regarded as a definite symbol of status and to some extent a source of influence, however poor, as compared with other sources. However, the influentials do not exhibit a pattern in this area which could be labeled as exclusively theirs.
Their spending patterns follow
the lines of the societal class to which they belong in the town. In S. Lucas, more than 50 percent of the influentials are accustomed to spending between 500.00 and 1,500 pesos per year in the two main "fiestas" of the family (the Patron Saint Feast of the town and the birth day of the family houselord).
In other ejidos, most of the influentials
reportedly spend between 100.00 and 500.00 pesos.
Roughly, the figures
reported for these expenditures correspond to the amount of the monthly salary of the influentials. As far as religion is concerned, 90 percent of the influentials considered themselves practicing Catholics, and, in their own words, about 75 percent of them are "mediocre Catholics"; only 25 percent of them reported habitual weekly attendance at Church.
In all five ejidos,
except in Sta. Catarina, there are at least two non-Catholic influentials (almost all non-Catholics in the region are Methodist Protestants). Catholic influentials do not show any form of disrespect or disregard for the non-Catholics.
Within the group of influentials in each of the
ejidos, the question of religious belief seems to be quite secondary and is not an issue with regard to the nomination and election of candidates for ejido or municipal formal leadership positions.
As a matter of fact,
in four ejidos (Sta. Catarina does not have any Protestant family) the non-Catholic influentials already have been in major posts of official authority for more than one period. What appears to be relevant, in making a cross-cultural comparison with regard to the existence of social power, is not that such power exists in the ejido, but the fact that apparently social power in the ejido is perceived by knowledgeables as well as by ejido people (influ entials and ordinary labor force) as being rigorously kept in the hands of a group of initially determined and courageous men who first applied for land in the local town many years ago.
It seems questionable to
identify all these power holders as belonging to any particular social class or social group of the old town.
They were, in general, the more
literate among the young men in town and began their work as ejidatarios in the aftermath of the Revolution which overthrew the ancient struc tures (social and economic) of Mexico, particularly the overwhelming power of rural absentee landlords to which the whole rural family was committed. As time went by, hard work together with intense efforts at saving allowed many plots.
of those men to buy some private land, adjoining their ejido
They soon surpassed the small group of private farmers of the
town and finally took over their posts of formal authority or outsmarted them in the roles they could play in community projects.
Much of this
can be explained by the constant help (or at least the constant work of propaganda and revolutionary slogans for the ejido agriculture) of the federal and the state government given to the affairs of the ejido. As Powers and Tait (89 p. 58) suggested, the scholar doing research on social power can assume the existence of it; the first general hypo thesis may thus appear unnecessary.
However, the devices for the dis
covery of social power are so intimately and clearly connected with the ranking of power holders, as well as with the elementary definition of their personal traits, that the statement of such a hypothesis and its test become a good frame of reference for later characterization of the power holders. The general hypothesis that social power is exercised in the ejido system was sufficiently supported, and, again, the question is so appar ent that they hypothesis could be omitted.
It is felt that the wording
of a hypothesis of this nature is secondary as long as the social
scientist is able to reconstruct, in some reliable way, the instances of involvement of prominent influentials in the community projects where power is to be expressed; the ideal way to determine the exercise of social power is ordinarily ruled out, namely the participant observa tion of the researcher in all concrete projects under study. When it is the case of some projects which have taken place years ago, one can obviously expect some deficiencies in recalling the per sons involved in them, except for the outstanding leaders of each pro ject. However, the data from rural Mexico tend to show that in almost all cases the influentials tend to name as involved with any project, only those among them who were officially elected by the general assembly of the ejido (or town) to implement the project or who had some specific task connected with the project.
Thus, treasurers, secretaries, or
spokesmen for the project on behalf of the town would be named.
however, does not mean that they tend to identify power with authority, but only that they may tend to consider more relevant the power exer cised in implementing the project with public approval than the fact of exercising the power to launch any project.
The structure of social power The rests of empirical hypotheses No. 9 and No. 10 show that there exists a definite set of power holders.
As it will be noted soon, the
group of power holders primarily detected through reputational techniques, up to the present stage of this research, finally identified itself when
the author gained the confidence of the top influentials of each ejido and they talked plainly about the secret meetings of the power elite, and named the regular attendants at such meetings in the last five years. In the author's opinion, it is one of the most remarkable findings and successes of the reputational technique to have discovered the structural essence of the power holders with almost ninety percent degrees of con gruence with the confidential naming of the regular attendants to the secret meeting. One cannot overlook, however. the conditions of the ejido social systems, particularly their small size and the closeness of the ejido living because of the many ties of friendship "compadrazgo" (God-parent hood ties of particular relevance in Mexican lower classes, both urban and rural), and communal interests in agriculture.
All this makes it
very difficult for one person to conceal secrecy or animosity behind the scenes of bureaucratic screens which could implement power decisions. It has been found, however, that there is a great variability in the amount of social power which power actors assigned to each other.
findings and interviews tend to show that in this milieu of the Mexican ejido, when it is of considerable size (more than 100 families), the power holders only recognize one or two top influentials in the whole group ; besides these few, they only name as influentials the friends who sympa thize with themselves, tending to ignore completely other influentials perhaps of their own stature.
For example, the "Zapatista" group (three
men) of S. Francisco did not recognize power actors (besides themselves) other than Martin Garcia and Francisco Silva.
A similar case can be
found also in S. Lucas and Sta. Catarina.
Interaction within the power structure in smaller ejidos In the smaller ejidos, like El Moral and Col. Morelos, the inter action among influentials and other aspects of the power process charac teristically would be as follows: (a) An idea begins to be shared with all kinds of people. (b) At the same time, the formal task of convincing secon dary influentials begins.
Eventually the influential
who originated the idea may call another close friend -another top influential usually -- for help in this convincing step. (c)
The group of key influentials (the ones everybody named both by labor force as well as by other influ entials) apparently are not taken into consideration.
Once the idea is disseminated and the good will of potential adversaries secured or at least explored, a for mal meeting of influentials takes place.
The main content of such a meeting is (1) discovery of the position each one holds with regard to the issue, (2) a discussion of a plan to get the issue proposed to the general assembly of the ejido, and (3) the outline of the general plan to get the issue implemented.
Many times, a definite set of names and corresponding roles is also drawn up at this secret meeting in order
to get certain persons to take charge of the posts which will permit the implementation of the project. (g) The general assembly follows the customary pattern as in the case of larger ejidos.
Interaction within the power structure in larger ejidos The following steps describe the dynamic characteristics of the ejido power structure in the larger ejidos, those with more than one hundred families. (a) If the originator of the idea is among the top power actors, the idea is shared with one or two of his best friends among the influentials. (b)
Otherwise, the idea is shared with one of the top ^ower actors but not with one's friends if they are not among the top influentials.
After discussion and mutual counseling, a formal proselytiz ing begins in order to gain the support of most of the influentials.
At this stage, the routine secret meeting is called to set forth, in a formal manner, the following steps to take in order, (1) to maintain the image of concensus among the influentials or among the largest group of influentials, (2) to maintain some coherent positions in matters of opinion and policies with regard to the projected issue, and (3) to get the right people on the particular committee which will be created for implementing the project.
The general assembly of the community (ejido and/or town) takes place in which peculiar tactics are utilized to gain the support of the labor force for the plans of the influentials.
(f) A final remark should be added: the selection of names and corresponding roles for the future committee which will implement the project tends to be more and more liberal.
By this it is meant that the influentials tend
to select new people, potential influentials or active influentials among the younger generation, despite the fact that they still maintain their circle (the influ entials as such) as very exclusive and almost completely closed. Power monomorphic or polymorphic? With respect to the monomorphic character of the power structure, the findings in the ejidos provide a complex picture.
As far as social
power in general is concerned, the Mexican rural cases under study do not differ substantially from the Iowa cases studied by Powers, Tait and Bohlen and Beal (17, 79, 89).
There exists in the small rural social
system a tendency for social power to be structurally monomorphic. However, the ejido cases show some degree of structural polymorphism when it comes to specific issue areas, and only with regard to the very small number of top power holders.
This means that the small group of
influentials who launched the idea of the new bridge of S. Lucas, for instance, was not the small group who recently launched the project for
improvement of the school.
In both cases, though, these groups got the
approval of their ideas by the whole group of power holders, who finally obliged themselves to get those projects started and implemented before proposing them to the general assembly of the ejido or the town.
Power structures and decision making What has been said with respect to the monomorphic nature of ejido power structures helps to explain the peculiar way in which the projects are brought into completion, or the way in which the decisions are implemented by the power actors.
In most of the cases (issue areas)
under study, once the agreement of the whole group of influentails was reached they also selected and elected the ones who should get the votes of the assembly to head the committee which had to be responsible for implementing the decision.
Ordinarily two or at least one of the "key"
posts of such committee (president or teasurer) has to be kept for the influentials.
However, there are no data to assert that those influ
entials who helped to implement the decision had to be the ones who first promoted the idea of the project.
Thus, the general hypothesis of
the involvement of the influentials in concrete action shall be inter preted with this reservation.
Issue areas and social systems At the present time, very few issue areas can be labeled as strictly being ejido areas (except the nomination of ejido authorities).
matter of fact, it was difficult for the researcher to draw a line of separation between the interests of the ejido system and the interests
of the whole community, apart from the areas of concern about personal property and the definition of roles of ejido authorities. In contrast to what may ordinarily happen in rural communities in the Midwest -- at least insofar as the Iowa studies suggest -- the ejido social system under study clearly originated as an appendix to a rural town, a larger social system because it became the most relevant social system as far as power and authority is concerned. not be said of all Mexican ejidos.
This certainly can
In the region of S. Martin, however,
several factors explain the phenomenon of accumulation of total com munity social power among the ejido influentials.
These facts can be
summarized as follows: (a)
The ejido was created years ago -- in the recovery of the revolutionary aftermath -- apparently by the most courageous young people of the town.
This elite of young men knew each other very well and they were united by a common desire for hard work, freedom and success.
The complete attention of the federal and state govern ment to the cause of the ejido made them look respec table and successful in the eyes of their fellow citi zens in the village.
The whole process of application for land and the responsi bilities of a new start completely of their own, most of the time without the promised help of the government (with regard to technology, extension and credit) allowed these
people to grow and mature as well as they could have with any other enterprise of their own. (e)
Thus, the combination of having land, of doing honest work, and achieving respectability, put the ejido influentials at least at the same level of power and prestige as the best independent farmers of the com mun!ty.
The sources of power In a cross-cultural perspective, the question of the sources of power is relevant.
At the present time, the studies that have been done
in Iowa -- by Powers, Tait, Bohlen and Beal and Associates (17 pp. 168 ff)-have explored ordinarily a set of eighteen sources of power within the group of influentials, comparing the so-called "community source of power index" with the index of "top community influentials source of power." The first index is derived from the choices and ranks that the power actors give to each of the possible sources of power about which they are asked.
The second index is the result of the choices and ranks of
those sources which the power actors attribute to each of the first five (or six) top ranked influentials of the community. The preliminary exploration of the five ejidos and the first long interviews with the knowledgeables convinced the present researcher that the exploration of the power sources could not be done in the Mexican case as it was done in Iowa.
Whenever the power actors were asked about
the possible sources of power and their rank, they tended to identify
the most important sources of power with the sources that actually had made other members of the power elite influential.
In other words, the
Mexican power actor among the peasants tends to think in concrete terms and does not attach much importance to the abstract notion of what could be a source of power. On the other hand, as it was noted in the methodology chapter, a survey of the labor force gave the researcher the opportunity of explor ing the sources of power. As a result, in this work the "community source of power index" refers to the ordinary people's perception of the courses of power, some thing different than the community power index presented in the Iowa studies.
The top influentials1 power index can be labeled simply "power
actors' index" which corresponds closely to the "community power index" presented in the American studies. It is felt that no strict comparison of power sources can be made in different cultural "milieus".
The Mexican ejido lacks many formal,
voluntary organizations, it lacks many aspects and processes of bureauc racy, it is not yet industrialized or mechanized and the economic life is very much routinized. It is important to note that the top ranked sources of power are always colored with moral values ; specifically with honesty in business dealings and with presenting a personal and family image of sober living; this latter was almost always the response given to the question about power sources at least by the influentials.
Relevant also is the fact
that hard work, coupled with demonstrated past achievements, appeared to
be the first source of power in the surveys of influentials and labor force, and that this source was the second most important source of power reported in Iowa studies. It should be noted that the present study discovered a great dis tance between the first source of power and all other sources.
phenomenon does not appear in American cases. Also, it should be mentioned that education seems to be perceived in rural Mexico as a source of power to a greater extent than it is in rural America.
On the other hand, it should be noted that both in the
cases of the Mexican ejidos and the American rural communities, very little importance is given to money as a source of power. It is the author's impression that the indexes of the two first sources of power ("knowledge of problems" in America, "hard work with honest dealings" in Mexico) are revealing expressions of a mood of pro gress and change which has different traits in the two different cul tures.
"Knowledge of problems" may reveal primarily a response to
pressure for change and a need of changing at a fast rate.
with honest dealings," on the other hand, may reveal certain colors of conservatism and a feeling of preserving that which has been acquired, that is, the influential status and rank; but it also seems to express the sense of doing good for the community as well as for their families. A final look at the two sets of sources complete these observations.
Some Remarks on the Theory of Social Power In view of the findings of this study, as well as of the experi ences reported by Bohlen and Beal and Associates (17) summarizing their
own as well as Powers' and Tait's findings, it is the present researcher's contention that the theoretical framework -- conceptualized in the gener al hypotheses -- should be modified and/or expanded in the following lines: (1) With regard to the existence and exercise of social power, the hypotheses should not simply state these two phenomena as real, but should explore the extent to which social power can exist and is exercised by the official authority and to what extent it exists beyond authorities. (2) With regard to the ways in which social power is exercised, the basic steps of inquiry seem quite pertinent (namely, general hypotheses three to nine) and should be followed in their present order, since they show a plausible logic of information. (3)
However, it seems very important to try to define at the conceptual level the kind of structure (formal, informal, etc.) and the level of harmony one may expect to find in the individual power holders acting together in the exercise of power.
(4) It seems more and more definite that the so-called monomorphic character of the power structure (the phenomenon of social power exercised by the same group of influentials no matter the nature of the issue area) is something re lated to the size of the social system under consideration,
Comparison of two sets of power sources,a two cases
Studies in Iowa
Source of power
Source of power
Knowledge of problems Past achievements
Honest dealing and hard work Honesty
Ability to think Human relations skill Ability to plan Occupation Influence with important organizations Knows lots of people Holds an authority position
Authority To be friend of the influentials Education Avoiding drunkenness Respect (from peers and younger people) Frankness Success in business
Is a source of good ideas Family background Controls money and credit Controls mass media Access to sources of power outside the community Flexible in time commitments Control over jobs Formal education
Prestige Control of money
^Presented according to rank as perceived by power actors in both cases. ^Spontaneously united by the interviewed power actors as a unique source.
whenever the power holders act freely and whenever some democratic ideals are officially professed by a country or region. (5)
Consequently, a more accurate definition of what has to be understood by monomorphic or polymorphic seems to be relevant.
According to the latest study of Bohlen and
Beal and Associates (17), some efforts and research in conceptualization are already underway in this direction. (6)
The hypothesis about the differentiation between power and authority seems to be less relevant in its present form (power actors will have social power independently of authority).
It is perhaps more important to hypothe
size to what extent some of the top power actors fail or refuse to have official authority. (7) With regard to the sources of social power, the mere exploratory nature of the hypothesis seems to be diffi cult (and questionable) to get altered.
research in conceptualization seems to be needed to get some possible, non-overtly perceived sources of power which could be already working as latent functions of any power structure in the community.
Loomis states that the first characteristic trait of influence is "that it is not built into the authority component of the status-role but results from the willingness of the subordinate to become involved
by the superordinate" (52).
Thus, the capacity to influence others
resides only in the individual actor and his facilities. The findings of this study suggest that some exploration could be done along this line at the conceptual level, because the phenomenon of influence appears to be a very complex one; there are not a few cases in which the willingness of the subordinate is also present where only authoritative power is apparent.
In addition, the "building or creat
ing influence" is considered by many people the keystone of authority.
A Note in Regard to the Methodology In view of the suggested modifications of the theoretical frame work, some remarks should be made about the corresponding methodology. (1)
The most important remark in the author's opinion con cerns the unexplored capability which the four or five basic tools of the methodology of this study (the same methods which have been used in the Iowa studies) seems to have.
Referential as we'll as reputational techniques
can be still considered proper devices for new lines of inquiry, provided the conceptualization is mature enough so as to permit sound operational measures.
attempts at the regional level, some items could be explored by means of a questionnaire.
It is, however,
to be tested whether or not the questionnaire could yield data as valid as that yielded by personal inter views ; this seems questionable.
(2) It is the author's impression that the event-analysis technique -- the one without participant observation is the best and a necessary technique for serious re search on social power, and should be given all pri orities, as far as time and financial resources are concerned in the implementation of scientific projects regarding social power.
In this respect, residence in
the area for a considerable length of time seems to be imperative for the better results. (3)
Finally, with regard to the strict definition of the power structure of the social system, it seems that the survey of the ordinary members of the system is irrelevant and can be a big consumer of time and efforts. This does not imply, however, that for the purposes of comparing the influentials with the rest of the people, a sample of the system population would not be valuable.
Implications of the Present Study Conclusions (1) Not by way of deduction of any premise, but certainly by way of confirmation of an assumption in view of the find ings, one must assert that it is valid to consider the ejido as a social system. (2) Social power exists and is exercised in the ejido, and several characteristics of the existence as well as of
the dynamics and exercise of power can be scientifi cally affirmed. The first trait of the existing and exercised social power is that it is held by a certain structure which can be detected at least as an identifiable group of power holders. Such power holders or power actors are perceived as such by the common people of the ejido as well as by other persons whose knowledge of the ejido community is extensive. The power actors are conscious of being such. In general, and in the case of ejidos which are, in terms of size, half or more than half of the rural town, the ejido influentials are among the more influential people of the whole town.
Economically, they are above the middle of
the population of the whole community. One could also say in view of the findings, that in the small rural communities of Mexico, less than 3,000 people or less than 500 families, the power actors who are instru mental in launching community issues will be the same per sons who helped to implement them. It seems also possible to affirm, in general terms, that the ejido power structure can be validly discovered and defined through the reputational technique when it is applied to a diversified set of inside and outside knowledgeables (prelimi nary step) and thereafter to a selected group of possible power holders.
(9) For the mere discovery and definition of the power struc ture , it does not seem necessary to make a survey of the labor force or common people. (10) However, a survey of the ordinary people (randomly selected) of the communities under study is very relevant if the researchers intend to complete the definition of the major characteristics of the power actors group. Other conclusions are less general in their scope, because of the particular nature of the area and the traits of the ejidos under study. (11)
It seems quite relevant that the ejido power structures operate in these five communities as secret groups.
In the ejidos which consisted of more than a hundred beneficiaries, it was found that there were at least two minor groups or peer-groups within the ejido power struc ture.
(13) In spite of the existence of this internal conflict and antagonistic views on community problems by these two groups, the decisions on community issues were handled in the secret meetings in a very democratic way. (14)
While democratic within itself, the power structure is auto cratic and authoritarian towards the ejidos.
The final decision about community issues happens to be always an outcome of such secret meetings of the power struc ture.
It also appears quite relevant that whenever the two groups of power holders differ in opinion, a compromise formula (in the form of the nomination of some person, or in the way in which a certain issue has to be implemented) is reached by the mediation of one of the oldest persons among the power holders.
More relevant yet is the fact of closeness and the reluc tance of the actual power holders to open the gates of access to their structure to younger generations in the ejido.
Given the scarcity of leadership, it is also the power actor's group that has the most and the best of the legitimized authority roles in the community.
However, authority is not identified with social power, not even by the ordinary and simple people, although the fact of becoming an authority figure is ordinarily seen as a relevant source of power.
A good proof of the above conclusion (No. 18) seems to be the fact that the power structure of the ejido frequently puts (the term may be hard, but it is appropriate) younger people who show certain qualities in posts of authority and responsi bility.
(21) It is necessary to remark on the uncompromising honesty and the hard style of life and work most of the influentials of these ejidos have shown.
By far the greatest source of power,
as perceived by them as well as by their people, is precisely a high moral stature in the framework of hard work. (22)
The ejido being for half a century the essential slogan of the Mexican Revolution, it is understandable that the ejido influentials tend to name the official agencies if they would like to launch new issues in their communities.
(23) Finally, in other traits of attitude regarding agricultural productivity, the influentials of the ejidos that have been studied here did not show any definite agreement but a diversity, and perhaps confusion, of opinions which appears to be similar to the attitude of the labor force.
Some recommendations As it was said in the review of literature, very few sociological studies have been made on the ejido, and still fewer on social power in the ejido.
The recommendations which come out here are to be taken with
reserve, being only the outcome of a piece of research, which is, besides a case study type of research and only in a certain region of Mexico. Certain considerations, however, can attain a good level of generali zation with regard to persons and institutions interested in social change and economic development.
Social workers as well as extension service
agents, and community development planners and economists, are con sidered here as agents of social change. It seems paramount, for any serious attempt of change and develop ment to detect and define the power structures of the social systems under consideration.
This study, as a confirmation of the Iowa studies
in this respect, confirms that such discovery and definition of the power structures can be done with scarce resources. Once—maânr_Hays__of exercising power are known, the planning of effective social action and induced change should begin with the tactics of gaining the confidence of the power structure and letting them inter pret the ideas of the change agent in order for them to make these ideas of their own and feel thereafter the desire of launching and implement ing community issues according to these ideas. It is also very important for the change agent to realize that the process of communication of ideas can reach more people and more effec tively if it has been previously initiated with the power structure, whenever the process of communication intends innovations and not just general education. The following is the author's final comment: as a tentative hypo thesis, it is felt that the major contribution of this study is the fact of realizing the urgent need for a complete revision and reform of the ejido system.
As it exists now in the older ejidos, more than 60 per
cent of the total, the power structure is a deadlock, a close structure of power holders who will be unable to adapt the ejido to the needs and realities of changing rural Mexico. On the other hand, and to some extent because of its closeness, in side democracy (and outside autocracy), uncompromising cuperiority and rigidity of canons, the phenomenon of social power in the ejido reflects much of what is happening with the revolutionary group of power holders
at the national level; there exists a closed-circuit minority rather unprepared and less able to renovate and to adapt itself to the demards of democracy in a changing world.
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The author would like to take this opportunity to thank the many persons, particularly his professors and friends, who have contributed to the development of this thesis.
The author is deeply indebted to
Dr. William F. Kenkel for his continuous assistance, constructive criti cisms and thorough correction of the manuscript.
A deep feeling of
respect and gratitude is also manifested to Dr. John F. Timmons and Dr. George M. Beal whose inspiration, encouragement and judicious com ments were very instrumental in developing the author's graduate program and research. The author wishes to thank Drs. Joe M. Bohlen, Ronald G. Klietsch, Emerson W. Shideler, Ronald C. Powers, Richard D. Warren and Jose Nieto as well as Mr. Quentin Jenkins and Mr. John L. Tait for their valuable comments and advice with regard to the- subject of this present research. Acknowledgment and appreciation are extended to Sr. Alfredo A. Luengas, and to Mexican sociologists Rev. Alfredo Mendez Medina, S. J. and Dr. Lucio Mendieta y Nunez, to agronomists Dr. Ramon Fernandez y Fernandez and Ing. Gustavo Leser Jones and to Dr. Pablo Latapi and Rev. Enrique Gutierrez M. C., for their support, encouragement and inspiration. A final word of thanks to my students Marisol Perez L. and Cecilia 0'Gorman for their continuous assistance in the field work, and to Alex Diaz Caballos and Guadalupe Andrado for their efficient secretarial work.
Mexico and the State of Puebla.
lucan lty) 2 : Puebla(Ctty of) 3 : Mexico CjLty SCALE 200 200
M l LES
LAMBERT AZIMUTHAL EQUAL-AREA PROJECTION
1?ail 'Roatfj ) IA l£ X I CO - OfiXACA
M OR £ LOS
5TA.r ATAk\M A
S.Maktin (City Of)
Total area : 94.5 / (Sq.Kms.)
Municipality of S. Martin Texmelucan
Tepeyecac has an a
- r ; t ::^
Ejido land : tota
r r/: r Ejido land : »»»« «*
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, jJ—: %exico-Veracruz Kg*.
of e 3 W o
IRRIGATED EJIDO * PARCELS
IRRIGATED1 EJIDO ** PARCELS
Irrigated ejido plots in S. Francisco
Inside and outside knowledgeable s 1.
I como se llama vd.
Ocupacion o profesion
Years of residence in the community
Tiempo de residencia (en el lugar)
Years of acquaintance with the ejido
Cuanto hace que vd. conoce los ejidos.
Naming of influentials
Quienes son a su juicio, las personas que mas influyen en el ejido a diferencia de los que solo tienen prestigio
Name some of the relevant projects of these com munities
I proyectos importantes del ejido
Can you name some of the influentials who were involved in such issues
Influyentes que tomarorparte en ellos
Labor Force Schedule Estudio Ejidal. BLYMSA - ISU - UIA. Die. - Ene. 1964.
Muestra No. Entrevisto: Fecha: Entrevistado:
Introduccion Mi nombre es Trabajo como sociologo investigador en un estudio que lievan a cabo el Banco de Londres y Mexico, y las Universidades Iowa States, (Ames, Iowa, USA) e Iberoamericana, de Mexico. Este estudio intenta descubrir las formas reaies de la autoridad y los procesos de decision en la comunidad ejidal: esto es, se trata de ver cuales son, (o cual es), los verdade - ros poderes que controlan la accion de la comunidad ejidal - especialmente
en lo que mira a la gestion de asuntos de interes economico para el ejido y en lo que mira a la marcha de la escuela del ejido. Esto nos permitira conocer como se toman las decisiones importantes en la comunidad ejidal. Ademas de esos dos objetivos, es decir, ademas de1 conocimiento de las llamadas 1estructuras de autoridad'y del proceso de sus decisiones, se trata de ver algunos de los principales motivos de la conducta del ejidatario en su vida economica, sobre todo, en lo que se refiere a sus actitudes ante el progreso material y al mejoramiento de su bienestar como agricultor. Se trata de un estudio de cinco casos aislados que representan muchas caracteristicas de las comunidades ejidales de la Mesa Central de Mexico. Este estudio puede servirde base para ulteriores estudios de caracter nacional y futures programas de mejoramiente comunitario. Toda la informacion es confidencial y no se descubrira nada que pueda ser en perjuicio de un tercero.
Informacion general 1.
Ademas de hacerlo en el hogar, trabaja en algo su esposa?
(En caso de un si) En que?
Posee Ud. una casa propia?
Cuantas personas forman actualmente su familia en casa?
Cuantos hijos menores de 18 anos viven en casa? HH
Cuantos anos hace que vive Ud<. en el Poblado?
Cuantos ano hace que trabaja Ud. su parcela ejidal?
Cuantos anos tiene Ud.?
Cuantos anos de escuela tuvo Ud.? menos de los dos anos 2 Primaria 6 Hasta Sec. ? Primaria (?) y Vocacional (?) Agricola
Sabe Ud. leer
Ha proporcionado escuela a sus hijos?
Hasta que grado han podido llegar sus hijos varones?
Hasta que grado han estudiado sus hijas?
Cuantos anos de escuela quisiera Ud. darles a sus hijos?
Y cuantos de escuela para sus hijas ?
For que razones no han podido tener sus hijos mas escuela?
Por que razones han tenido sus hijas esos anos de escuela?
Que cree Ud. que rinda mas, 2,000 pesos puestos en educar a un hijo o ese mismo dinero invertido en su negocio?
Le gustaria que gus hijos recibieran algun titlo profesional?
Que profesion le gustaria a Ud. ams para sus hijos?
Y para sus hijas ?
Ud. cree que podria endrogarse para educar a sus hijos mejor?
Hasta por cuanto dinero se endrogaria Ud. para eso?
Cuantas personas comen en casa diariamente ?
Cuantas comidas hacen al dia?
Describa la dieta ordinaria: DESAYUNAN
Cuantas veces comen carne a la semana?
Podrian gastar mas en carne si la hubiera?
Cuantos huevos por persona a la semana?
En cuantas comidas?
Cuantas veces por semana?
Toman pan diariamente?
Cual es el ingreso de Ud. cada mes, (distinto del Familia)?
Tiene Ud. algunas propiedades?
Cuanto vale lo que Ud. posee? AJIDAL NO EJIDAL
Cuanto se gasta en pan
del Jefe de
Ha invertido Ud. su dinero en algun negocio?
Que clase de negocio ?
Tiene Ud. dinero en el banco? SI NO Cheques?
Si Ud. pudiera, pondria su dinero on ol banco?
Por que razones ? (Entre estas)
Tiene Ud. o su familia un apartado en el correo?
(en caso de un si)
Mas o menos cuanto gasta Ud. en fiestas al ano?
Cuanto dinero necesita Ud. invertir en su tierra al ano?
Cuanto gasta en preparar la tierra?
Usa peones que le ayuden en su trabajo?
Cuanto gasta al ano en peones? Cuantos dias?
Necesita Ud. credito para su negocio?
Cual es la fuente de su creditor?
Cuanto paga de interes?
Quisiera Ud. pedir prestado mas dinero?
Soguridad. Comodidad. Buen Credito Prestigo personal? SI
Por que lo tiene vd.? Por prestigio? Por comodidad? Por negocios ?
Cuanto dinero en el?
que plazo? SI
Ud prestaria dinero a gente del ejido solo con recomendacion de una persona bien conocida, sin garantia de alguna propiedad del deudor? SI NO
Ve Ud. alguna diferencia entre propiedad ejidal y privada?
Como la explica Ud.?
Cual prefiere Ud.?
Por que razon?
Prefiere Ud. el negocio individual o cooperative?
Por que ?
Cual es la palabra que mas dice con su posicion politica? (ponga una marca x) Partido Oficial Partido Accion Nacional Partido Popular Socialista Independiente Moderado, sin preferencia por ningun sentido Comunista Nunca voto, (no me importa la politica)? por que?
Cuales son, a su jiucio, los problemas o proyectos mas importantes, para el ejido en que vive?
Cuales son, a su jiucio las personas mas "Influyentes" en la comunidad ejidal en que vive ? (en orden de influencia segun Ud.)
Entre esas personas cuales tienen realmente influencia. (poderpalabra a discrecion, si el entrevistado no capita el entido), y cuales tienen solo prestigio? Muchisima Mucha Mediana Poca
4 3 2 1
Nota: Calificar esa influencia sobre estas dos bases por separado. 1 - 11
(Y no advertir al entrevistado de la correspondencia de ambas escalas, sino simplemente pedirle que diga la palabra que créa conveniente y lue o que califique esas inf"iuencias, de me nor a mayor del 1 al 11). 70.
Que periodicos o revistas lee Ud.? (Regularmente)
Le agradan algunos programas de rr.iio especialmente ?
Ve Ud. algunos programmas de T. V. regularmente ?
Tiene Ud. radio en casa?
Tiene Ud. televisor en la casa?
Tiene Ud. Automovil? Tractor?
Cuantas veces al ano va Ud. a Puebla? a Mexico?
Le gustaria mas vivir en la ciudad o en el campo? _
Le gustaria a Ud. que sus hijos vivan en la Ciudad?
Que trabajo le gusta mas, en el campo o en la Industria?
Se considéra Ud. MUY CATOLICO CATOLICO POCO CATOLICO MAL CATOLICO PROTESTANTE MORMON SiN RELIGION (Subrayar)
Asis te casi todos los domingos a Misa?
Comulga mas de una vez al ano?
Esta bendecido su matrimonio en la Iglesia?
Cuanto tiempo estudio Ud. el catecismo?
Ha leido algun libro de religion? Cual (es):
Entre estos asuntos, cual (es) ha oido mas en la predicacion de los sacerdotes (en la cabecera y en el pobla do): a. Fe en un solo Bios. b. Dependemos siempre de Dios (Todo depende de Bios). c. Somos hermanos todos en Jésus. d. Jésus es nuestro hermano. e. Dios nos juzgara. f. La Virgen es nuestra Madré. g. No hay que robar, ni fornicar, ni embriagarse. h. Hay que respetar la autoridad. i. Hay que respetar a los padres (sacerdotes). j. Respeto y veneracion a nuestros mayores. k. Hay que preocuparnos por mejorar el pueblo. 1. Hay que dar toda limosna que se pueda.
Nota: Poner XX cuando el asunto es de los mas frecuente. 88.
Cuales son los asuntos (problemas) de la religion mas importantes para Ud .?
Reza Ud. algo en casa con los familiares?
Ve Ud. alguna relacion entre su religion y su vida de agricultor? SI NO
Como lo podria Ud. explicar con sus palabras?
Si todo depende de Dios, para que quiere Ud. mejorarlo?
Que causa las malas cosechas, al fin de cuer.tas ?
Cuando muere un nino chiquito, por que murio?
Ud. cree que se podria haber evitado eso si hubiere hecho algo?
Recuerda Ud. haber oido alguna vez un sermon sobre la necesidad de cooperar con los demas para mejorar su pueblo? SI
Tiene Ud. algunas "creencias" ademas de su religion? a. animas en pena que vienen al mundo? b. animales que se aparecen en la noche para danar? c. algunas estrellas o astros buenos o daninos? d. tirar la sal? (13 granos de sal) - pasar bajo una escalera, etc. e. algun maleficio de yerbas? f. maleficios hechos a distancia. g. mal de ojo? (Expliquelo con sus palabras)
Dependemos de Dios, esto lo hace a Ud.? a. poco activo. b. sin deseo de cambiar de modo de vivir. c. receloso para cambiar su modo de cultivar la tierra? d. (esceptico) no cree mucho lo que ostros hacen para mejorar tierras y cultives. e. no le gus ta lo "moderno" en la vida del campo.
Cuando trata a los otros que estan en el mismo negocio que Ud., ve en ellos de verded hermanos en Cristo? o solo cuando va a la Iglesia?
Esta hermandad en Jésus lo mueve a Ud. a ayudarlos siempre? SI NO ALGUNAS VECES
Cuando ha tornado parte en obras de la comunidad ejidal - ha pensado hacerlo para mejorar la suerte de Cristo? SI NO
En su negocio se siente Ud. responsable como administrador de algo que es de Dios? SI NO P0C0 RARA VEZ
Eso lo ha movido a mejorar algo en su vida? En su negocio? o mas bien lo mantiene deseoso de conservar todo como - Ud. lo aprendio de sus mayores ?
Cree Ud = que 1as fiestas religiosas ayudan al pueblo? SI
Por que ?
No cree Ud. que gastan demasiado en las fiestas?
No cree Ud. que los demas gastan en las fiestas mas por hacerse notar que por amor al santo?
A quienes ha visto Ud. mas interesados en mejorar la comunidad ejidal, a los "buenos catolicos" o a los que no van mucho a la Iglesia?
Que cosa cree Ud. que es mejor para mantener y ganar - prestigio delante de los damas: (Nota: poner en orden preferencias del entrevistado) a. dar mucha limosna a la Iglesia. b. dar mucho dinero para las fiestas del pueblo. c. tener buena casa. d. dar buenas comidas en las fiestas, del pueblo y de familia? e. tener muchos terrenos. f. tener maquinaria agricola. g. producir grande cosecha. h. tener mas educacion y viajes. i. tener mas gente educada en la familia.
Que cree Ud. que da ma influencia al hombre en su pueblo? a. lo que Ud. senalo arriba. b. o ser hombre que sabe salir adelante en lo que se propone?
Ud. cree que los proyectos de mejoramiento de su comunidad deben venir de por lo general: a. de la autoridad superior del Estado y de la Nacion. b. de la iniciativa del Pte. Municipal Auxiliar. c. del Comisario Ejidal. d. de la iniciativa de los padrecitos. e. de ustedes, miembros de la comunidad?
Ha propuesto Ud. alguna obra para bien de todos en su comunidad? SI NO Cual?
Que lo mueve a Ud. a mejorar sus siembras y a preocuparse mas ingresos: a. el ejemplo de un amigo intimo? b. ver lo que todos hacen? c. las deliberaciones o asambleas del grupo ejidal?
Cuando Ud. decide mejorar un ano sus cosechas (o negocio): a. lo hace porque teme que otros lo critiquen por degado? b. por que otros lo hacen asi? c. por aventajar a otros?
Pertenece Ud. a alguna asociacion: a. En la Iglesia? SI NO
en lo civil?
Ha sido Ud. miembro de la Aut. Ejidal SI Que? Cuantas Vecez? Nota: a. Presidente del Comisariado ejidal. b. Presidente del Comité de Vigilancia. c. Secretario Propietario. d. Secretario del Comité de Vigilancia. e. Tesorero Propietario. f. Tesorero del Comité de Vigilancia. g. Suplente.
Ha sido Ud. miembro de la Autoridad Municipal? Que ? Cuantas Vecez?
Sus a. b. c. d. e. f. g. h.
ingresos mensuales andan: (Abarcando T0D0 lo que lecae). en menos de 200 pesos? entre 200 y 300? entre 400 y 500? entre 500 y 600? entre 600 y 1,000? mas de 1,000? y menos de 2,000? entre 2,000 y 3,000? mas de 3,000?
Ud. a. b. c. d. e. f. g. h. i. j.
considéra que su capital (Todo lo que posee): Vale mas de 1,000 pesos. SI NO menos de 5,000? entre 5,000 y 10,000? entre 10,000 y 20,000? mas de 25,000 pero menos de 50,000? entre 50,000 y 75,000 pesos ? mas de 75,000, pero menos de 100,000? entre 100,000 y 150,000? cerca de 200,000 pesos ? mas de un cuarto de million de pesos?
Power Actors Schedule Entre los proyectos y problemas que Ud. cree mas importantes para el pueblo en que vive, en cuales tomo Ud. parte ? a. en pro b. en contra
Algun comentario? Entre los influyentes que Ud. nombro anteriormente, cuales son les son los que mas intervinieron en el. (Comentarios) Lista a la vuelta: a. Proyecto A.
Nota: Establecer un orden de acuerdo con el criterio del entrevistado. Si se tratara de una nueva medida politica para el ejido, quienes serian los de mas influencia? (Comentarios)
Puede evitarse la lista, si son los mismos influyentes antes nombrados y en el mismo orden.
Si se tratara de una medida de bienestar social, cuales serian los mas influyentes para lograr que la comunidad se interesara? (Comentarios)
Seguir la misma indicacion de la nota inmediata anterior.
Que organizaciones contarian con mas apoyo de los ejidatarios para un nuevo proyecto de bienestar do la comunidad: a. un banco privado? b. una empresa del Gobierno, como la C. F. E. (Com. Fed. Elec.) c. el banco de credito agricola. d. el banjidal? e. la Confederacion Nacional Campesina. f. una empresa privada - un ingeniero - ya conocidos? g. Un empresario amigo de los mas influyentes on el ejido? h. la oficina locai de la SAG. Existen algunas (o alguna) organizaciones, (clubs, asociacones, etc.) que tengan algun influjo en la comunidad?
Entre las 16 personas (Comisariado Ejidal Propietarios-Vigilancia y Suplentes -- 12 mas Pte. Mpal. Srio. Tes. Fixcal) como los describiria Ud.? Que has de hacer una persona para llegar a sor influyente?
Nombre. No lo conozco
He oido de el
Lo conozco poco.
Lo conozco bien.
Lo conozco muy bien
Lo Es visi paren te te
Pte. Srio. Tes. Sup. Pte. Srio. Tes. CV. Pte. Srio. Tes. Sup. Pte. Srio. Tes. P. Mpal. Srio. Tes. Fiscal. Agente M.P Juez
Que no ha de hacer?
Como describiria Ud. su posicion en los proyectos de la comunidad que Ud. mismo senalo anteriormente? No oyo Cargo Parte Ayudo No tomo hablar oficial activa poco parte de el a. Froye to A. b. Proyecto B. c. Proyecto C. d. Proyecto Ejidal
Que a. b. c.
palabra describe mejor su actual situacion en el pueblo? Mi influencia ha aumentado desde hace 5 anos. Mi influencia sigue siendo la misma en estos cinco anos. Mi influencia da disminuido en estos cinco anos pasados.
Entre algunas razones para tener influencia, (puestas - aqui en lista), descamos preguntarle: a. que e lo que hizo a uno influyente por lo general? b. ponga un ejemplo - con las personas que Ud. considéra las dos mas influyentes. c. hy razones que sirven para ganar influencia en el futuro? Ejemplos: a. b. Salir airoso en sus negocios
tenor mas educacion (escuela)
su dinero y prestamos
saber de Guest. ejidales
politiquerias (saber colocarse con autoridades estatales)
honradez y trabajo
Relaciones entro los "influyentes" de la comunidad: Comentario:
Nota: La persona que entrevista trazara un sociograma - elemental. 14.
Cuales son a su juicio, las causas de baja productividad en la explotacion agricola? a. malas tierras. b. Parcelas muy divididas unas de otras. c. Parcelas muy pequenas. d. Falta de agua. e. Falta de credito. f. Falta de conocimientos para mejorar la tierra. g. Falta gente para trabajar en el campo? h. Falta de maquinaria agricola. Nota: Ordenarlas segun apreciacion del entrevistado.
Cree Ud. que el ejido podria tener maquinara agricolaen una cooperativa? SI NO
Cuales serian las principales dificultades contra eso? Comentario:
Podria el ejido pagar un technico agricola que viniera a trabajar para todos ? SI NO Comentario:
Recibe Ud. alguna ayuda del Tecnico de la Zona de Extension Agraria? SI NO No Ha Oido - Hablar De El
Recibe Ud. alguna revista o periodico agricola? Cual?
Ha leido Ud. mas sobre: a. Tecnica Agricola. b. Leyes Agrarias. c. Politica Agraria. d. Historias. e. Historietas y revistas de grabados.
Con que frecuencia ve Ud. cine?
APPENDIX B Community -Issue Areas
0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9
= = =
Electrification of the town. Irrigation project. School betterment. Public water service. Rural Welfare Center. *i by Ldge. D'gging a new well. Betterment of channels. Repair of roads. Other (specified).
Influential's choice and ranking of important community projects of the past ten years in San Francisco
Influentials H. N. G. E. J. M. P. F. E. T. F. E.
Angel Cordero Flores Garcia L. Garcia Garcia Garcia Rafael Rafael Romero Silva Vazquez
Code 01 02 03 04 05 06 07
08 09 10 11 12
Issue (coded) ranked as: 1st 2nd 3rd 0 0 0 0 0 1 6 0 0 0 9 1
2 6 6 6 2 0 0 2 6 2 6
6 2 2 2 6 2 6 2 6 1
Influential's choice and ranking of important community projects of the past ten years in El Moral
J. H. A. G. L. P.
13 14 15 16 17 18
Diaz Fortis Montes G. Morales Perez Velazquez
Table 73 e
Garcia Flores Flores Sosa
2 4 2 2 1 2
4 2 4 4 7 4
Influential1 s choice and ranking of important community projects of the past ten years in Col. Morelos
Influentials A. E. R. R.
Code 19 20 21 22
13 13 3 0 0 1
Influential's choice and ranking of important community projects of the past ten years in S. Lucas Atoyatenco
Influentials E. G. M. J. M. J. R. C. G. N. P.
Allende Calderon Mendieta Caleron Castillo Dominguez Espinosa Garcia Garcia Perez L. Romero
23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33
2 0 0 0 2 0 0 0 6 0 2
0 5 5 5 0 5 2 2 0 5 8
1 2 2 2 5 2 5 8 5 2 5
Influential's choice and ranking of important community projects of the past ten years in Sta. Catarina
A. Arana J. Arana J. Arana M. Arana P.,Arana J. Blanquel F. Blanquel T. Blanquel F. Pineda G. Pineda L. Zarate
34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44
0 1 1 1 2 0 1 1 0 1 2
2 2 0 0
1 0 2 2
2 0 0 1 0 1
2 2 2 2
Some notes about ejido proceedings in the case of a parcel of land which was apparently sold against the law. S. Lucas Atotoyenco.
Notas para estudio y analisis sociologico
de un proceso du unufructo y tenencia parcelaria. Archivo local, delegacion de zona del Depto. Agrario.
Texmelucan (Delegado: Sr. Ing. Jose Rodriguez R.)
Antecedentes: En oficio (Cedula Hipotecaria) 1 de Julio de 1954, el Delegado de Zona Ejidal notifica acuerdos tornados en asamblea ejidataria (celebrada en la misma fecha) sobre asuntos y demandas de adjudicaciones y usufructos parcelarios.
La notificacion figja un plazo (30 dias) a fin de que se
presenten reclamaciones legalmente fundeas contra los acuerdos que de otro modo entraran en vigor. Uno de los acuerdos (el 7°) es el siguiente: "La parcela numéro 62.62 que partenecio al finado Jesus Lezama, se adjudico a David Perez." Sin fecha de escrito - Recibido en el Depto. Agrario el 20 de Julio de 1949 - David Perez Ramirez, consigna en una carta al Jefe del Depto. Agrario, Direcion de Derechos Agrarios, ha ber envisdo con anterioridad, (el 12 de Mayo de 1949) la documentacion conveniente relacionada con las parcelas 62.62 del extinto titular parcelario Jesus Lerama.
de este, Jorge Lezama, segun la carta, cede "en forma libre y expontanea su lugar y derechos agrarios en la mencionade SUCESION de su finadopadre."
Como el autor de esta carta, David Perez, "no disfruta de
otra porcion de tierra que cultivar para su aprove chaminento personal y la de su familia, desde esa fecha, 12 de Mayo del corriente ano, tome posesion de las citadas parcelas y desde luego procedi a la preparacion y siembra del cereal especie frijol." Nota:
David Perez confiesa ignorar los resultados de legalizacion
para su caso y dice que eso ha traido como conse cuencia el que hasta la fecha el no pueda senalar la lista de su familia (presuntos herederos si el recibe la parcela).
Jorge Lezama no firma esta oarta, cosa que le
hubiera dado un caracter mas grave. A 27 de Abril de 1953 - Florentine Cortes se dirige - tambien al C. Jefe del Depto. Agrario con un escrito de queja y consigna.
1945 afirma estar viviendo en una casa (#2, de la C lie Martires Colonia) que era poses ion del finado Jésus Lezama, adjudicatario de la parcela 62.62,
Despues de sufallecimiento, esta casa paso a poder del unico
sucesor que queda del Sr. Jesus Lezama.
Dr. Jorge Lezama, quien "extuvo"
trabajando por algun tiempo la parcela que correspondia como recompensa a la misma casa que hago referenda, pero que des pues el Sr. Jorge Lezama hizo el traslado de dominio de la casa, con el Sr. Fernando Tovar, que fue desde el ano de 1941, y va despues el Sr. Tovar tambien me hizo el traslado de la misma casa que es donde yo estoy viviendo nada mas con el interes de que se le pago al Sr. Jorge Lezama la construccion que hizo de la casa: y ya despues, el como se ausento del pueblo entonces paso a vender la parcela Nu. 62.62 con el Sr. David Perez, que conforme a la
Ley del Codigo Agrario pues no hay derecho a hacer ninguna venta de parcelas como el lo paso a hacer. El autor de la carta, alega que esta solicitud la hacepor ser ahora dueno de la casa a la cual corresponde la parce la, y por no tener "nada de terrenes de donde poder trabajar para el sostenimiento de mi familia ..." Nota:
No alega ningun derecho de trabajo de la tierra.
que hay vecinos que pueden testimoniar de la venta; "Y que ya como digo que si usted cree que hay derecho a vender parcelas pues bien pero sino pues espero que usted hagasus tramites correspondientes para ver la forma de poderme ayudar." De Marzo a Septeimbre de 1949, (segun se deduce de las fechas de los documentes, Jorge Lezama hace diligencia para procurar los certificados de defuncion de los herederos de la parcela de Jesus Lezama, Sras. Ma. del Pilar Flores) (17 Nov. 1927) y Guadalupe Lezama (22 de Marzo de 1949). En escrito del 26 de Agosto de 1949 Jorge Lezama, certifica de su voluntad de cesion de su parcela (62.62) en favor de David Perez Ramirez y adjunta el documente oficial decesion del 12 de Mayo de 1949 (firmado por testigos y por el Comisariado Ejidal, Pedro L. Romero, Gumesindo Perez y Encarnacion Limon).
Adjunta tambien el acta de defuncion de
Jesus Lezama. Nota:
el 99 % de los certificados medicos hacen notar la falta de
asistencia mediea en las enfermedades, y defunciones.
Resoluciones Por su parte, proxima la fecha de la Asamblea General que mas tarde dictaminara sobre el asunto, David Perez procura una "constancia de Desavecindad," del Sr. Jorge Lezama, (feshada el 19 de Junio de 1954 y debidamente sellada y firmada por el Pte. Mpal. Auxiliar, Cecilio Garcia). El mismo dia en que David Perez procura la notificacion de desavencidad, el Jefe de Zona Comisionado del Depto. Agrario y el Pte. Auxiliar lanzan la Primera Notificacion a Jorge Lezama para que se présente a la Asamblea convocada para el 1° de Julio a fin de resolver el asunto de su parcela. Con intervalos de cuatro dias cuatro de caûa uno, siguen otras convocatorias al mismo Sr. Lezama. Previa a la junta, las autoridades envian notificacion personal para asistir a la Asamblea a David Perez y a Florentine Cortes. La disposicion resolutoria de la Asamblea, como sevio, favorecio a David Perez. Dos anos despues, este se procura (5 de Septiembre de 1956) una "Constancia de usufructo de parcela" (debidamente sellada y firmada por el Comisariado Ejidal), que certifica que el "esta en quieta y pacifica posesion y usufructo de la parcela numéro 62.62, la cual pertenecio al extinto Jésus Lezama." Cinco dias despues 10 Septiembre de 1956, David Perez se procura y hace legal su lista de Sucesion.