The names used for "Americanised" names given to Mexican cities -- Metropolis, Zenith -- sound to me very much like they fit into a sort of '30s deco rocketpunk world. And obviously, this is reinforced by the fact that "Metropolis" is a famous city in DC comics, and does indeed have (in most depictions) a notable deco aesthetic.

Given the time-frame the TL is at now, I wonder if these cities might not see Americanisation/modernisation/reconstruction programmes, pushed by the pro-USA faction, which indeed lead to a lot of modern, gleaming art deco buildings all over the place? I am imagining something like the Bund in Shanghai, but with more of a deco look. Just as in Shanghai, any such a central district or area built in the "American style" would of course be surrounded by older architecture. That would pretty neatly illustrate, in a physical sense, the internal divisions that are still at play...

Perhaps I'm totally off-base with this, but it's kind of how I'm picturing things in my head.
 
The names used for "Americanised" names given to Mexican cities -- Metropolis, Zenith -- sound to me very much like they fit into a sort of '30s deco rocketpunk world. And obviously, this is reinforced by the fact that "Metropolis" is a famous city in DC comics, and does indeed have (in most depictions) a notable deco aesthetic.
The comics guy in me is so happy someone recognizes what DC Comics' Metropolis is supposed to look like the way Gotham tends to gothic architecture. At the risk of going truly off-topic, if Gotham tends to get a lot of "neon noir" added onto the Gothic via the 90s movies' aesthetic, I also like Metropolis integrating the current trend of 'futurist' glass-and-glossy on top of the art deco it usually has. It in my mind makes the adventure and SCIENCE!! aspects of Metropolis stick out way more and give it a genuine personality to rival that of Gotham's (because everyone knows what Gotham's like as a setting, but not any other major DC city, and poor Metropolis becomes too genericized).

I can see on-topic what you're saying as well for the American faction, and given the nature of the timeline's basis and sheer actual cultural settling-in/inertia, this faction winning out if only through waiting it out in time and direct memory of the past disappearing. Seeing the most prominent examples of deco not be the Great Lakes or Northeast but *Mexico as a symbol of Americana is fascinating to think on.
 
World-building is always a good idea, and what better way to do it?
Oh no no.

That was great.
It was really good! I want more stuff like that!
Thank you gentlemen, I keep forgetting how different the audience on this site is from just about everywhere else.:)

No, it's extremely interesting. This timeline's version of Mexico is bound to be interesting, due to the heavy cross-cultural influencing. A lot of your details suggest the give-and-take, the evolving attitudes, the advantages as well as the resentments that this would produce. And then that promise of future developments at the end. Mixtecs as kingmakers/deciders when it comes to shaping the future of the region? (United, they could guarantee that whichever faction they throw their weight behind has the advantage.)
I've been thinking a lot about TTL's Mexico actually, along many of the same lines that you suggest. It's got to be a real cultural melting pot, with American and Hispanic traditions meeting, mixing, and transforming. Identity is going to be a very challenging topic to come to grips with. You are quite right about the Mixtecs- if they can get organized then they have the opportunity to be kingmakers for state level politics at the very least.

If the Criollos, most of the mestizo rising middle class, and the Indios are all on the same page regarding “union with some cultural concessions”, it’s a done deal. Bombings are just the residual twitching in Mexico’s cooling corpse as body parts are removed to create Frankenstein's America.
I'll echo @Born in the USSA's comment that "Frankenstein's America" is a very good term. America was fairly Frankensteinian IOTL- ITTL it's even more so.

I have to admit, seeing Metropolis pop up as an American name for *Mexico City surprised me after seeing it pop up in Napoleon53's timeline, but between this and his work the concept of MC's Anglo name becoming that tickles me as a potential AH.com mainstay now the way "Sealion" became a thing from this site so many years ago.
The names used for "Americanised" names given to Mexican cities -- Metropolis, Zenith -- sound to me very much like they fit into a sort of '30s deco rocketpunk world. And obviously, this is reinforced by the fact that "Metropolis" is a famous city in DC comics, and does indeed have (in most depictions) a notable deco aesthetic.

Given the time-frame the TL is at now, I wonder if these cities might not see Americanisation/modernisation/reconstruction programmes, pushed by the pro-USA faction, which indeed lead to a lot of modern, gleaming art deco buildings all over the place? I am imagining something like the Bund in Shanghai, but with more of a deco look. Just as in Shanghai, any such a central district or area built in the "American style" would of course be surrounded by older architecture. That would pretty neatly illustrate, in a physical sense, the internal divisions that are still at play...

Perhaps I'm totally off-base with this, but it's kind of how I'm picturing things in my head.
Alright, this is awesome and it's inspiring me. I'll get to the aftermath of the First Anglo-Drakian War eventually, but we need another Interlude about Americanization and culture (including architecture, which will inevitably include a generous helping of Art deco) in Old Mexico. Before I write that however;

Mexico City= Metropolis (stole the name from @Napoleon53)
Veracruz= Zenith (stole the name from Sinclair Lewis' novel "Babbitt)
Guadalajara= Halcyon
Puebla= Angelópolis (OTL nickname for the city)

Sticking with our "deco-punk" theme, what other names do my readers have for "Americanized" Mexican cities?


The Columbian Bank Building in Metropolis, built in 1898 following the uniquely American version of the Esprit Nouveau aesthetic. Invented in Old Mexico in the 1890s "Esprit
Amérique" combines ancient Mesoamerican and general Native American artistic themes with modern geometric forms, streamlines, and techological ideas.
 
Last edited:
I guess my question is why do any renaming at all? I believe there were only a few small towns renamed in OTL, what changed here?
 
Sticking with our "deco-punk" theme, what other names do my readers have for "Americanized" Mexican cities?
Of the largest Mexican cities, there are several that wouldn't be so significant without OTL's Mexico-USA border, and there are others that only grew to any significant size during a time when renaming would presumably not be done anymore. The big two candidates, in my opinion, would be Léon and Monterrey.

The type of name would probably tend to (quasi-)classical. This is in keeping with the tastes of the OTL deco era and movement. One might expect a Heliopolis, although (since there is already an Angelopolis) the name Helion is equally possible. Another classical name that is always appealing is Arcadia. Of course, deco tastes run towards modern and flashy, so naming a city something like Mercury isn't out of the question, either. Hyperion and Aurora are also very obvious candidates.
 
TTLs US of A is more assimilationist for lack of a better expression.
The only significant work that I've seen with complete translated names used for the cities in the American Southwest was Turtledoves "The Case of the Toxic Spell Dump"
 
I'd honest like to see what an ethnic map would look like in this universe. Mostly Europe, but I'm sure Drakia has done plenty of ethnic cleansing as well.
 
Interlude: Rome and Azatlan

Interlude: Rome and Azatlan

The Criollos had a complex and often contradictory identity. Even before the annexation they had drawn parallels between themselves and both the Roman and Aztec Empires, after the annexation their newfound American character only added further complexity. On the one hand the Criollos were loudly and insistently American- as anyone who ever saw the 4th of July celebrations in Metropolis could attest- on the other hand their Americanism was predicated on New York’s support for the legacy of their existence as a foreign aristocracy. On the one hand the Criollos were enthusiastic participants in the American Civic Religion, on the other hand they believed that the appearance of Nuestra Senora had constituted a divine endorsement of the holy nature of Mexico. On the one hand they actively participated in the Fascist movement on the federal level, as the Fascists were the most supportive of accepting the Criollos as fully equal American citizens, on the other hand they rejected Fascist anti-racism in Old Mexico itself where they made much of the fact that they were white while the Mestizos and Indios were “red”. In theory they embraced their role as civilizers “Americanizing” the Mexican lower classes, in practice they were hostile to successful Americanization because it would mean the end of their stranglehold on political and economic power in Old Mexico.

This inconsistent sense of self- American and Mexican, republican and aristocratic, anti-racist and racist, European and New World- expressed itself in often paradoxical ways.

Take for instance the renaming of Mexican cities.

A small amount of renaming took place by Anglos in New Mexico (the OTL Mexican Cession and Northern Mexico), most notably of Nuevo Leon and Tamaulipas where American settlers who identified with the biblical Children of Israel named their new state Canaan. There were a few other name changes, but for most part New Mexico kept its old Spanish place names. San Francisco remained San Francisco, Los Angeles remained Los Angeles, Mazatlan remained Mazatlan, etc. On the other hand, the renaming of places in Old Mexico was considerably more extensive, and despite the fact that all four Old Mexican states kept their pre-annexation names, more radical.

This may have been partly due to the fact that by 1875 all of the states of New Mexico (which had been acquired in 1846, 22 years before the annexation of Old Mexico) were predominantly Anglo or Native (in Sookobitʉ) and Hispanics were a visible but definite minority, whereas in Old Mexico the majority of the population was Hispanophone and Criollos and Anglos were minorities in mostly Mestizo and Indio states.

In other words: the Criollos felt threatened.


Mestizo women learning English under the tutelage of a Criollo teacher in Oaxaca.

The renaming of many of Old Mexico’s cities and towns by Criollo-ruled state governments was presented as an Americanization program. In practice it was less about embracing America than it was about rejecting Mexico. None of the major cities were named after famous Americans or founding fathers, and only one- Liberia- was named explicitly for America’s republican ideals. In fact it was often observed that the new names were less “American” than they were something else, a third category that was neither Mexican nor American. The new municipal names- which were largely applied during the 1870s- instead reflected contradictory themes of ancient Rome and modernity. They connected to a distant past the Criollos celebrated and to a new era they were eager to embrace, ignoring an intermediary period they wanted to forget.

This was also reflected in the Esprit Américain school of art and architecture.

The Espirit Nouveau artistic movement originated in France in the 1870s where it was descended from various iconoclastic reactions to cultural conservatism that had been simmering since France’s defeat in the Last Crusade twenty-years earlier. Espirit Nouveau was a celebration of industry and technology, coupled with aesthetic inspiration from ancient Persian murals and medieval Muslim art. It used bright colors, stylized reliefs, and geometric patterns and arabesques. It could also be squarish, streamlined, and artificial, conveying speed and grandeur, a cultural embrace of the frantic mass-industrialization that characterized the Separate-verse.


Espirit Nouveau patterns inspired Islamic Golden Age arabesques. Seriously, why is there not more Islamic/Arabic inspired Art Deco? You could do so much stuff with arabesques, or the geometric designs, or those arches in Cordoba.

Yes, yes, okay, it’s earlier Art Deco, but unlike OTL’s Art Deco Espirit Nouveau was a more democratic movement that lacked its counterpart’s association with wealth, luxury, and the elite. Where Art Deco rejected mass manufacture in favor of individual craftsmanship, Espirit Nouveau embraced the practice to provide thousands of copies of significant works of art such as La Lumière Fantastique
(1877)- each, so the artist Théophile Rousselle insisted- as valid as the original, which the infamously transsexual sculptor promptly destroyed for philosophical reasons.

It’s hard to think of an artistic school less likely to catch on amongst the Criollo society of Old Mexico, and indeed when Espirit Nouveau made its first American appearance in Montreal it seemed destined to be shunned in Metropolis.

Yet something curious happened.

The Criollo aristocracy loved modernity- or at least the appearance of modernity- and nothing was more modern at the time than Espirit Nouveau. In France the artistic school might be democratic and even rebellious, in America it was the sort of foreign culture that the upper classes would have access to first and thus wouldn’t reach the lower classes until after they’d given it their own stamp. The first ten thousand copies of Rousselle’s La Lumière or Tape-à-L'oeil were rare enough across the Atlantic to be desirable by the upper crust, and samples of Espirit Nouveau art and architecture began to appear, first just a few, but in growing numbers, in Old Mexico.It was the American Art Exposition in Metropolis in 1889 that opened the floodgates and gave the New World flavor of the movement its name; Esprit Américain or American Spirit. It was less colorful than the French version, more “industrial”, more “machine-like”, more associated with wealth and power. Most noticeably, unlike Espirit Nouveau that drew inspiration from ancient or mediaeval art of the Middle East, Esprit Américain was seemingly obsessed with art and designs from Mesoamerican civilizations (although elements from Southwestern and Great Plains cultures were not unknown). Examples of the new school appeared across the United States, but it was Old Mexico, its birthplace, that became known as the touchstone of Esprit Américain. Criollo city governments in Metropolis, Zenith, and Halcyon passed ordinances encouraging or requiring new construction to incorporate at least elements of Aztecan American Spirit, creating uniform municipal architectural styles.


Esprit Américain reliefs in downtown Zenith.

It was just another part of the ongoing effort by Old Mexico’s rulers to link the present with the distant past, papering over those inconvenient thirty-four years from 1821 to 1855 (not counting the thirteen years spent under American military occupation) when such a thing as Mexico had existed. It lasted until La Mexicanidad and the Espíritu Mexicano that followed the World War challenged the style’s hegemony in Mexico, and was eventually replaced wholesale by Rationalist architecture after the Great Pacific War.


You didn't think you were getting away without an Esprit Américain-style Mesoamerican-revival step pyramid did you? Meet the Hidalgo State Capitol on the shore of (it's basically a large artificial pond with no relation to the original body of water) Lake Texoco. I swear to Joe Greenstein if I ever get fuck-you money I will build an effing Aztec-inspired art deco step pyramid and throw time-traveler parties in the penthouse at the top.
 
Looking at Islamic Art Deco, I very much agree! Holy crap is that beautiful. Makes me wonder if there is a tl where Dieselpunk is a big literary genre in the Middle East.
 
America defeats Japan. It seems that Korea and Manchuria will become separate countries, although if Japan becomes a republic as in canon is unclear
 
Fundamentally OTL Japan was never going to win, not just because of the vast material differences (for vast material differences have sometimes been overcome), and not just because of the toxic and dysfunctional strategic culture (for even good commands often make as many mistakes as not), but the interplay between them both together. Like long after sufficient evidence should have been provided that the Japanese codes were compromised they still categorically refused to consider that as a possibility as to why their merchant marine just got deleted. At the beginning they looked at their own codebreaking efforts and cryptology and devised a schedule as to when codes should be likely compromised and should be replaced and then rigidly adhered to that old schedule come hell or high water, because the high command lacked the technical competence and the professional study to truly envision the battlefields Japan was to face, and even facing right now, against America. Japan was not in a material environment that gave everyone and their dog a radio like America was and so Japan did not have the luxury of mass radio use and mass signals work displayed right there before them, but it was those limitations then producing only a limited number of comprehensive experts and even fewer of those being availed to Japan's strategizers that made even Japan's conditions not being used to the fullest extent. Like part of the reason American codebreakers got so good at penetrating within the week a code supposed to last for months was that all their communications had the same stock opening courtesies like "I have the honor of informing your excellency"... so that the first fragment of every code is already linked to its true message. And they kept doing this. In wartime.

ATL however that interplay is lessened on all fronts. Firstly like I mentioned earlier Japan is likely to have a lot less ancient generals who made their name massacring Koreans officially in charge of their efforts as Imperial Japan is ever so slightly less of a fascist clusterfuck. Secondly, from the other direction, America sure has a lot of Admirals that made their name massacring Filipino strikers and protestors now, don't they? And that is only compounded by the in-fighting between the entrenched officership and what are basically going to be political officers assigned by the Perdue administration to defang them- so anything or anybody with a navy stamp on them is to be respectively attacked or defended to the death, regardless of any actual value. And thirdly, the insane Separateverse technological advancement has left countless critical sectors of everyone's economies obsolete and their actors ill-educated in what's just off the line. So honestly, Separate-Japan has a genuine shot at something here (at least in this specific first conflict), if they don't fly by the seat of their pants like OTL and actually think long and hard about how they want to accomplish their objectives.
 
Last edited:
I love this TL.
The better luck for African-Americans and Native Americans is great!
Drakia's... everything is substantially less great but still fascinating to watch.
One thing I would like is a detailed map naming all the Princely States and provinces within Drakia, similar to the US map in chapter 8.
Finally, in more recent story questions, was it really the best idea for the Reform Jewish Admiral Klein to defect to a nation that is probably about to be rather... angry with its Jewish population given how they rebelled.
 
Great Pacific War? Rationalism? Don't leave us hanging!
:p

Looking at Islamic Art Deco, I very much agree! Holy crap is that beautiful. Makes me wonder if there is a tl where Dieselpunk is a big literary genre in the Middle East.
Well The Automan’s Daughter has a diesel-punk Ottoman Empire, but I know that's not what you mean.

can i come
Of course you can.;)

YES AN UPDATE!!!! Thank you so much!!
My pleasure! Hopefully I'll get a couple more out over the holidays.

Fundamentally OTL Japan was never going to win, not just because of the vast material differences (for vast material differences have sometimes been overcome), and not just because of the toxic and dysfunctional strategic culture (for even good commands often make as many mistakes as not), but the interplay between them both together. Like long after sufficient evidence should have been provided that the Japanese codes were compromised they still categorically refused to consider that as a possibility as to why their merchant marine just got deleted. At the beginning they looked at their own codebreaking efforts and cryptology and devised a schedule as to when codes should be likely compromised and should be replaced and then rigidly adhered to that old schedule come hell or high water, because the high command lacked the technical competence and the professional study to truly envision the battlefields Japan was to face, and even facing right now, against America. Japan was not in a material environment that gave everyone and their dog a radio like America was and so Japan did not have the luxury of mass radio use and mass signals work displayed right there before them, but it was those limitations then producing only a limited number of comprehensive experts and even fewer of those being availed to Japan's strategizers that made even Japan's conditions not being used to the fullest extent. Like part of the reason American codebreakers got so good at penetrating within the week a code supposed to last for months was that all their communications had the same stock opening courtesies like "I have the honor of informing your excellency"... so that the first fragment of every code is already linked to its true message. And they kept doing this. In wartime.

ATL however that interplay is lessened on all fronts. Firstly like I mentioned earlier Japan is likely to have a lot less ancient generals who made their name massacring Koreans officially in charge of their efforts as Imperial Japan is ever so slightly less of a fascist clusterfuck. Secondly, from the other direction, America sure has a lot of Admirals that made their name massacring Filipino strikers and protestors now, don't they? And that is only compounded by the in-fighting between the entrenched officership and what are basically going to be political officers assigned by the Perdue administration to defang them- so anything or anybody with a navy stamp on them is to be respectively attacked or defended to the death, regardless of any actual value. And thirdly, the insane Separateverse technological advancement has left countless critical sectors of everyone's economies obsolete and their actors ill-educated in what's just off the line. So honestly, Separate-Japan has a genuine shot at something here (at least in this specific first conflict), if they don't fly by the seat of their pants like OTL and actually think long and hard about how they want to accomplish their objectives.
There's only so much I can say about future events in this TL, but that is an excellent summary of Japan's OTL weaknesses and how most of them won't exist ITTL.

I love this TL.
Thank you!

The better luck for African-Americans and Native Americans is great!
They deserve to catch a break.:)

Drakia's... everything is substantially less great but still fascinating to watch.
One thing I would like is a detailed map naming all the Princely States and provinces within Drakia, similar to the US map in chapter 8.
Let me think about that, I'm substantially less familiar with Africa's physical and cultural geography than North America's, but it's certainly a possibility.

Finally, in more recent story questions, was it really the best idea for the Reform Jewish Admiral Klein to defect to a nation that is probably about to be rather... angry with its Jewish population given how they rebelled.
Ah, well. It was the only place within reach to defect to.
 
Last edited:
Just binged read this and let me just this is the one of the if not the best Draka timelines I've ever read! Right up there with Crack at the Draka and Even Dogs were Wolves Once (sorry can't remember the exact name.) You sir have successfully managed to do what few have ever dreamed of, taking Stirlings feaver dream and actually managing to turn it into a believable, cohesive timeline! Bravo!!!
 
Top