What is last?

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José Estudiante
BA Latin American Studies
Exchange: The Southern Cone in Global Perspective

The aperture that followed the fall of authoritarian regimes in much of the Southern Cone reopenednational cultures and economies to a rapidly globalizing world. A global perspective was not new for this region, however. The countries of the Southern Cone have long occupied important internationalpositions. My Latin American Studies major focuses on exchange” in Latin America, specifically the Southern Cone: positioning regional cultural, economical and political activities in a regionalcontext and within the emerging global political-economy.

The Southern Cone is highly industrialized, boasting the largest regional economy, highest standard of living, and strongest literacy rate inLatin America. Thus, it epitomizes Latin American development while representing an exception that proves—and disproves—many tropes about culture and society. My interdisciplinary course workunderscored core regional characteristics while providing exposure to a variety of methods and tools for analyzing exchange. Through my coursework and research, I approached issues of national identity andinternational relations through the region’s economics, politics, popular culture and art, observing how these facets of society were often mutually reinforcing. The media analysis of Braziliantelevision production under the dictatorship and after that we undertook in COMM 465, for example, suggested an active civil society with an acute awareness of global events despite cultural isolation andstate repression. Archival research conducted for HISL 371, which looked at populism in Argentina through the lens of gender, reinforced similar conclusions about the influence of internationalopinion on local politics. Moreover, the literary analysis introduced in SPAN 654 Literature of the Southern Cone through cultural critics from Angel Rama to George Yúdice broadened my understanding of...
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