P a t r i ci a Fo n s e c aNATIONS OF THE AMERICAS: A p r i l 2 , 2 01 2 H i s to r y 1 41 31 1 3 6 A COUNTRY REPORT H i s to r y o f t h e Americas Since 1800 P r o f es s o r A r g u el l o
NATIONS OF THE AMERICAS: A COUNTRY REPORT ARGENTINA Argentina is made up of six main regions. Gran Chaco, Mesopotamia, the Pampas, Patagonia, Cuyo, and the Norwest. Parana, Pilcomayo, Paraguay, Bermejo, Colorado, Rio Negro, Salado and Uruguay are the major rivers. Atuel and Mendoza are regionally important rivers. The lakes include Argentino and Viedma in Santa Cruz, Nahuel Huapi, Colhue Huapi and Munsters in Chubut. Lake Buenos Aires, O’Higgins/San Martin Lake and Fagnano are shared with Chile. The largest slat water lake is Mar Chiquita, Cordoba. The Atlantic coast experiences two different ocean currents. The Brazil Current delivers warm currents while the Falkland Currents delivers cold currents. The two currents alternate in their influence on climate and don’t allow temperatures to fall evenly with the uneven coastal landmass.
NATIONS OF THE AMERICAS: A COUNTRY REPORT ARGENTINA Climate fluctuates between the northern and southern regions of Argentina. The north experiences very hot, humid summers with mild winters. Central Argentina experiences hot summers, cool winters, and higher moisture in the eastern areas. Southern regions experience warm summers and cold winters with heavy snowfall, especially in the mountain areas. The major wind currents include the cooling Pampero Winds that blow onto the flat plains of Patagonia. After the cold front the warm currents blow from the north in the middle and late winter that creates mild conditions. The Zonda is a hot dry wind (June-November)that affects the west and central part of Argen tina which creates wildfires. In the higher elevations, this causes snowstorms and blizzards. When the Sudestada blows in late autumn and winter along the central coast, it moderates cold temperatures and brings heavy rain, rough seas and coastal flooding.
NATIONS OF THE AMERICAS: A COUNTRY REPORT ARGENTINA 23 provinces with one autonomous city comprises Argentina. These main cities and the surrounding countryside became provinces during the Argentine War of Independence. Buenos Aires is divided into communes. National territories include the areas under control of Argentina but outside of the provinces. A territorial dispute between the provinces over the Quinto River led to Buenos Aires disputing the Lechiguanas islands with Entre Rios. It was decided that the deepest point of the rivers would be used to establish the exact international limits but also established provincial limits.
NATIONS OF THE AMERICAS: A COUNTRY REPORT ARGENTINA Argentina is comprised of European immigrants. The majority of Argentinians are descendants of colonial - era settlers. It is estimated that 8% are of Mestizo descent while 4% are of Arab or Asian descent. The vast majority of immigrants arrived from Italy, Spain, Germany, Wales, Poland, Croatia, Russia, Denmark, Sweden, Finland, Belgium, France, and Norway. Much of the architecture within the country is of French, Italian and Spanish composition. Argentina’s of ficial language is Castilian and is spoken by virtually the entire population with several dif ferent accents. Other languages spoken include, English, German, Arabic, Italian, Portuguese, and French.
NATIONS OF THE AMERICAS: A COUNTRY REPORT ARGENTINA Argentina is a highly urbanized country. There are ten large metropolitan areas accounting for half of the entire population. There is unequal distribution of the population throughout the provinces. 60% live in Pampa region. Seven other provinces hold approximately one million people each. Most of the European immigrants settled in the cities that could provide jobs, education and other opportunities that could bring them up to the middle class. Many of the urban areas reflect the boulevards and avenues seen in Paris. Many of the cities were in a colonial Spanish grid style.
NATIONS OF THE AMERICAS: A COUNTRY REPORT ARGENTINA One of the largest ethnic groups in Argentina are of German descent. German immigrants arrived in 5 main timeframes. Pre -1870, 1870-1914, 1918-1933, 1933-1940 and post-1945. Argentina and Germany developed a flourishing trade market together and Germany held a prestigious position within the Argentine economy. Argentina has continued a strong economic relationship with Germany and gave them supplies during World War 1 . The influence Germany had over Argentine cuisine is quite large, especially with desserts. One of the most well-known being facturas. Other German desserts include Torta Ochenta Golpes and torta fritas. It is estimated that there are 50,000 German citizens living in Buenos Aires.
NATIONS OF THE AMERICAS: A COUNTRY REPORT ARGENTINA The Argentine War of Independence was fought between the patriots and the royalists. Argentina declared their independence in 1816. Jose de San Martin and Simon Bolivar help lead Argentina to independence. With the rejection of the constitution in 1826 (due to its centralist bias) the civil war was rejuvenated. The Argentine Confederation was composed of a loose set of provinces without a head of state. Juan Manuel de Rosas faced many Unitarian attacks and experienced a consistent state of war during his rule from 1829 -1832 and 1835-1852. Buenos Aires separated from the Confederation from 1853-1862. The first president of this newly unified country was Bartolome Mitre who led military advances against remaining federals.
NATIONS OF THE AMERICAS: A COUNTRY REPORT ARGENTINA The War of the Triple Alliance left more than 300,000 people dead and completely thrashed Paraguay. Mitre twice attempted to separate Buenos Aires from the country but did not succeed. The national army came out victorious and military conflicts ended. The last conflict with the indigenous peoples resulted in Argentina gaining control of Patagonia. The Generation of ‘80 is a political movement opposing Mitre and seeking industrialization of the country. This movement is credited for the base of modern Argentina. European immigration strengthened the cohesiveness of the state and redesigned society, as well as the economy. With its agricultural export economy and British and French investment, Argentina materialized as one of the richest countries in the world. Population grew fivefold and economy 15 -fold.
NATIONS OF THE AMERICAS: A COUNTRY REPORT ARGENTINA As the National Autonomist Par ty failed in meeting their industrialization goals and Argentina remained a pre - industrial society. In 1 890, the Civic Union led the Revolution of the Park . Conser vative elites ran politics until 191 2. In 1916, the Radical Civic Union won its fir st free election. President Hipolito Yrigoyen was credited with making social and economic reforms. Economic crisis struck during the Great Depression and he was forced from presidency. Juan Peron won the presidency in 1946 and created Peronism. His strategies included nationalizing industries and ser vices, improved wages and working conditions, paying the full external debt, and creating nearly full employment. The government faced many year s of tensionn between the militar y and Peronism. Argentina experienced financial instability from 1983 until Eduardo Duhalde was elected in 2002.
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