Geography<br /><ul><li>The Argentine Republic is the second largest country in South America by land area. It lies in the south of the continent between the Andean mountain range and the Atlantic Ocean. It also has claims to Antarctic land.
Its total area is 2,780,400 sq km and it is the eighth largest country in the world by land area.
The climate is mostly temperate, but is arid in the southeast and sub-antarctic in the southwest.
Argentina has diverse geographical features, from tropical regions to rugged mountains to tundras. It also contains the highest and lowest geographic points in the Western Hemisphere.</li></li></ul><li>People<br /><ul><li>There are approximately 41 million people in the Argentine Republic.
Most Argentines are of European (Spanish and Italian) descent. The country is ethnically and culturally diverse.
Roman Catholicism is the country's most common religion.</li></ul>Argentina also has the largest Jewish population in Latin America.<br /><ul><li>Ninety-two percent of the population lives in urban areas.</li></li></ul><li>Culture<br />Media<br /><ul><li>Argentina is one of the dominant media markets in South America.</li></ul>Theater and Cinema<br /><ul><li>Cinema has been active in Argentina since the late nineteenth century. It has been a great influence on Argentine culture.</li></ul>Sports<br /><ul><li>Fútbol is the nation’s most popular sport by far. Other popular sports include tennis, rugby, and field hockey.</li></li></ul><li>Food<br /><ul><li>Argentine cuisine is similar to European food, with influences from Spanish, French, and Italian cooking. Pasta and beef are very common.
Argentina is well known for its asada (grilled meat) and wine</li></ul>Music and Dance<br /><ul><li>Argentina, along with Uruguay, created the popular and influential tango dance.
Argentina has a wide range of popular music genres. The most popular music among the younger generations is rock and its subgenres.
Classical European music is popular. The Teatro Colón in Buenos Aires is one of the world’s major opera houses.</li></li></ul><li>History<br /><ul><li>Precolumbian Argentina was populated by several different groups including the Incas in some northwestern parts.
In 1516 Juan Diaz de Solis of Spain explored the region and it became slowly colonized. In 1580 Buenos Aires was established as a permanent colony.
The Vice Royalty of Rio de la Plata formed in 1776 included Argentina. This elevated the status of the region and Buenos Aires became a very successful trading port.</li></li></ul><li><ul><li>At the time of the Viceroyalty Spain and Britain were competing fiercely for maritime supremacy.
After Spain was conquered in the Napoleonic Era, Argentina declared itself independent in 1816.
Early independence in Argentina was characterized by a feud between two political groups: the Unitarists who wanted a strong central government, and the Federalists who wanted local control.</li></li></ul><li><ul><li>Argentine culture—much like America—was greatly influenced by immigration.
Britain and other European powers helped to modernize Argentina in the late nineteenth century by opening it up to the global economy and investing in railroads and ports. Argentina grew into one of the wealthiest nations through agriculture and foreign investment.
The 1930s are known as the Infamous Decade because of political strife and the global Great Depression. Juan Domingo Perón ascended power in the 1940s as President. Perónism is the populist ideology associated with him and his wife (Eva Perón).</li></li></ul><li><ul><li>Perón's regime was corrupt and he went into exile. He was later reelected in the 70s but died in office.
Throughout the 50s and 60s the government went through a succession of civilian and military governments which were not long-lasting.
In the 70s economic decline caused violent anti-government rebellion. In the “Dirty War” thousands of insurgents were killed by the military-controlled government. Argentina also lost a war with Great Britain over a territorial claim on the Falkland Islands.
In 1983 constitutional democracy was restored. In 1994 the Constitution was majorly revised.</li></li></ul><li>Sources<br />http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Culture_of_Argentina<br />http://www.state.gov/r/pa/ei/bgn/26516.htm<br />https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/geos/ar.html<br />http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/americas/country_profiles/1192478.stm<br />http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Argentina#History<br />http://www.argentina.gov.ar/argentina/portal/paginas.dhtml?pagina=1480<br />
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