Sally Rountree is an official CAPA blogger for summer 2017, sharing her story in weekly posts on CAPA World. A Sociology major and Public Health minor at Simmons College, she is studying abroad in Buenos Aires on a custom program this semester.
In this week's post, Sally tells us what she learned in her first class, and how she observes the city because of it.
When I first walked into Universidad Austral in Buenos Aires I was amazed that I would be taking classes in such a beautiful building. As soon as you walk in there is a large round entrance way with gold trimmings around multiple paintings. The ceiling is a large dome that doesn’t look like it belongs in a school. Even though I have been here for a whole week I still stop to look at the entranceway every time I walk in. I am studying public health, so classes involve a lot of discussions about culture, economics, politics, history, and health structures. Our very first class at CAPA started off with a guest lecturer who spent three hours talking about Argentina’s history. The class was riveting and I took six pages of handwritten notes.
Argentina has a rather tumultuous history, with a series of dictatorships and military coupes. Europeans, especially from Spain and Italy, migrated to Argentina in huge numbers, especially in the 1800s. There was a large movement to eradicate indigenous populations, whether it be through absorbing them into European culture or killing them. While this history sounds very violent, it is extremely comparable to colonization of the United States. Native Americans were also eradicated and forced to assimilate or move. European conquest is a common history in the Americas. However, unlike some other Latin countries, there is very little sign of the indigenous population in Argentina.Continue Reading →