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(Pancho Villa, pseudonym of Doroteo Arango). Born Oct. 4, 1877, in Rio Grande in the state of Durango; died July 20, 1923, in Hidalgo del Parral in the state of Chihuahua. Leader of the peasant movement during the Mexican Revolution of 1910-17.
Villa played an important role in the overthrow of the dictatorship of P. Diaz in 1911 and in the suppression of the counterrevolutionary rebellion of P. Orozco in 1912. In 1913 he formed the Northern Division, which operated in the states of Chihuahua and Coahuila. In the territory he controlled, land belonging to owners of large latifundia was confiscated and distributed to the peasants; industrial enterprises owned by reactionaries were also confiscated. Construction of schools increased. In December 1914, Villa’s troops and E. Zapata’s peasant detachments entered Mexico City. However, under the pressure of Carranza’s government troops, they left the capital in January 1915. During the US intervention in Mexico (1916-17), Villa participated actively in the struggle against the invaders. From 1916 to 1919 he carried on partisan fighting against the landlords and the Carranza government. In 1920 he withdrew from the revolutionary movement. He was killed by reactionaries. Villa’s image is reflected in a book written by J. Reed, who was a correspondent for American newspapers in Mexico during 1913-14.
REFERENCESLavretskii, I. R. Pancho Vil’ia. Moscow, 1962.
Reed, J. Vosstavshaia Meksika. Moscow, 1959. (Translated from >English.)
M. S. AL’PEROVICH