Yankee Invasion is a new novel from Iganciao Solares essayist playwright and author of There is No Such Place and Columbus. Solares has written a dialogue between his protagonist the writer Abelardo and his intellectual wife Magdalena that unlocks a door to understanding Mexicos perspective on the United States. Abelardo and his “sickness” are metaphors for Mexicos self-loathing confusion and ambivalence towards the USs invasion of their great city. Magdalena paraphrases William Blake to describe her husband and a section of his manuscript that chronicles his life. Magdalena says “I suppose I hadnt fully grasped how sick you really were at that point. Blake said it well: he who desired much but does not act engenders disaster.”
The mysticism of Blake and his verse well describes Abelardos emotional sickness. Clairvoyance and prophetic visions the consequences of his definition of “man” and “Mexican”-all of these mingle in a festering born of Abelardos political romantic and militant actions or inactions in the Petri dish of the Mexican American War. Solares shows us that Blakes verse is also an excellent description of Mexicos people. They were torn between allowing themselves to be governed by corrupt and self-serving generals or to be conquered by the United States to bring some kind of stability to their government and economy. Many fought for their freedom to maintain an ancient proud culture.