One of the world's southernmost countries, Argentina is a diverse country, geographically and culturally speaking. Officially the Argentine Republic (Spanish: República Argentina), it has a wide range of ecosystems and biomes. Argentina had significant European colonization which brought wealth to the country, and by the early 20th century, it was a rising power. However, over the 20th century, military coups and economic crises led to challenges. Argentina is known for its sultry, passionate tango music and dance, the horse-riding rural Gaucho people and folksingers in The Pampas (a bit like Cowboys), and authors such as Jorge Luis Borges and Julio Cortázar.
Argentina's biomes range from deserts to mountains, forests, jungles and glaciers (as exemplified by National Parks like "Nahuel Huapi", "Los Glaciares", "Iguazú" and "Perito Moreno" among several others). Argentina has the highest mountain in the Western Hemisphere, Aconcagua at 6959 mnote . At the same time, Argentina is also home to the Western Hemisphere's lowest depression, Laguna del Carbón at 105 m below sea level.note Its northern boundaries have the hot tropical weather of Bolivia and Brazil, giving (in the jungles to the east) nest to fauna like monkeys, tapirs and jaguars; while in the west the desert-like mountains are the habitat of pumas, llamas and condors. Meanwhile, in its southern lands (more than 5000 km south) the ice-cold temperature that anticipates Antarctica is the habitat (in the western mountains) of foxes, deer and maras; while in the Atlantic coast there are penguins, whales and sea lions.
Argentina has beautiful natural sights, such as the forests and lakes lying along the Andes mountain range, and also important places for scientific research, like Valle de la Luna, an area which due to geological quirks over million years has soils from different historical times placed in rows. In paleontology, there are two top research places: China and Argentina.
Argentina was scarcely populated during the pre-Columbian era, with just nomadic tribes. The Spanish empire sent several colonization waves that established many cities. The Portuguese empire was forced by the Treaty of Tordesillas (1494) to stay at the east of South America; the land of modern Uruguay was near the limits and became a frequent cause of conflict between the two empires. The country declared its independence during the Spanish American Wars of Independence, but then fell into a civil war about the way to organize the country. It only ended after 60 years.
In the late 19th century, there was a huge immigration wave of Europeans, a kind only rivaled by the United States. Over 6 million Europeans immigrated during the period, easily doubling the population. Coupled with the fact that there were not many natives in the area to begin with, Argentina's population is distinctly "whiter" compared to most of its Latin American peers (only Uruguay, which has a nonexistent native population, is whiter). The immigration brought a lot of wealth to the area, and by the early 20th century, Argentina was a rising power, with a powerful military, a strong economy that dwarfed the likes of France and Germany, and a high standard of living which was rivaling that of any European nation.
However, several factors undermined Argentina's growth and resulted in the country entering a massive decline. This included several military coups, a couple of populist/nationalist leaders, and a reckless management of the economy that caused frequent economic crises and hyperinflation. Nowadays, although the country is not exactly poor, it has really fallen hard from being a superpower candidate, and is not even considered the richest country in Latin America anymore. Simon Kuznets, who won the 1971 Nobel Prize in Economics, said: "There are four kinds of countries in the world: developed countries, undeveloped countries, [rags to riches] Japan and [riches to rags] Argentina."
Argentina's Great Writer is generally agreed to be Jorge Luis Borges, one of the best and most influential practitioners of the Mind Screw. Most of Argentina's other great writers were also good friends of his, such as Adolfo Bioy Casares, Ernesto Sabato (some of his conversations with Borges were put together and published in 1976), and Silvina Ocampo. Although not a friend of his, Julio Cortázar, author of the postmodern novel Hopscotch, has said that Borges was a source of inspiration for his stories, most of which were brimming with Magic Realism. In regards to Comic Books, Quino's Mafalda and Héctor Germán Oesteheld's El Eternauta are easily the most influential to come out of the country.
Argentina's most famous cultural innovation is the sultry, passionate tango. Originating from the dock areas and brothels of Buenos Aires, this musical style and dance has lyrics that emphasize nostalgia, sadness, and lost love. Beginning in Argentina and Uruguay, it has spread around the world and become a global phenomenon.
In Argentina depictions, if there isn't a couple with the man dressed in an elegant suit and the woman in a sexy red dress dancing to tango, then maybe it is a Gaucho, a horseback-riding peasant from the rural areas, perhaps playing its vigüelanote near a fogónnote with its fellow Gauchos, singing proudly about their life in las pampasnote , or lamenting over their unfortunate lives... it is part of Argentine folklore.
Argentine folk music is diverse: music from the northwestern provinces usually are carnavalitos or other music styles like those also found in Bolivia and Peru, and are played with traditional instruments like bombos, flutes and charangos. Meanwhile those in the north-eastern provinces have styles like chamamé shared with Paraguay, usually played with violins, guitars and harps. Folk styles in the Patagonian and western provinces usually are shared with Chile; and many styles from the llanura pampeana associated with the Gauchos like milonga and chacarera have relatives in Uruguay.
Classical music in Argentina is also eminent, with Daniel Baremboim even creating an orchestra with Israeli and Palestinian people, for the sake of peace. As well, in The '60s and The '70s, tango innovator Astor Piazzola created a new style called "Tango Nuevo" which blended Classical music (bowed string orchestra), traditional tango, and jazz improvisation.
But if we are talking about Argentina's music, its most telling is ROCK NACIONAL!note With a history spanning decades, Argentine rock (or rock nacional, as it is called inside the country) was one of the first versions of rock not being sung in the English language, a complete novelty at that moment with uncertain results. It became the first non English language form of rock to be commercially successful, having revolutionized the hell of Latin America countries music with the Argentine invasion in The '80s.
Rock historians place Argentine rock in 3rd place after American and British rock, for the mark it left in the history of world's music changing it all in all the countries in the continent, even giving birth in some of that countries to their local form of rock. Bsnds include Soda Stereo, Rata Blanca, Los Gatos, Almendra, Vox Dei, Sui Generis, Aquelarre, Los Abuelos de la Nada, Seru Giran, Virus, Patricio Rey y Sus Redonditos de Ricota, Riff, V8, Almafuerte, Los Enanitos Verdes, Sumo, Divididos, Las Pelotas, Attaque 77, Flema, Dos Minutos, Embajada Boliviana, Fun People, El Otro Yo, Babasónicos, Los Piojos, Los Ratones Paranoicos, La Renga, Las Pastillas del Abuelo, Bersuit Vergarabat, Catupecu Machu, Arbol, A.N.I.M.A.L....
After finding its first big sales in the form of Los Gatos' La Balsa, Argentine rock took an evolution to more psychedelic, experimental and progressive styles, and a more aggresive, protest-song style in their lyrics, eventually gaining the antipathy of the military dictatorship and leading to a bitter feud that brought Argentine Rock to agony. It was however The Falklands War that was used by the militars to boost national pride and so prohibited broadcast of songs in the English language and instead promoted their old enemies, the pelilargos y melenudosnote , effectively revitalizing Argentine rock.
After the loss of the war and the falling of the military dictatorship, Argentine rock moved on and influenced itself with the New Wave Music and Synth-Pop that was raging in the United States and the United Kingdom. Rock took a twist to a more laid back and dancing style, which consequently conquered all of Latin America. While with the advent in The '90s of the rock barrialnote and rock rolinganote
Argentine rock forgot what put itself in the frontline of music in Latin America, and lost terrain at the hands of Mexican and Chilean rock, there is always an Argentine rock band in the top of the charts in Latin American countries, and so, rock nacional will never cease to exist.
Completing the music scene in Argentina, cuarteto and cumbia are two major players in the provinces of Córdoba and Santa Fe respectively. The later also gave birth to a local style named cumbia villeranote in the poor neighborhoods named villas miseria (like the brazilian favelas, only on a much smaller scale) where they started to sing about what was happening in their Crapsack World of the Argentina that would eventually lead to the 2001 crisis. It all started in 1999 with the band Flor de Piedra's song "Sos botón". Ever since, the cumbia villera lyrics constantly shocked the lower-class disdaining Argentine society. Of course, among the lower class, cumbia villera is defended as a way of expression.
Acting-wise, the country has produced Guillermo Francella, Adrian Suar, Norma Aleandro, Rodolfo Ranni, Leticia Bredicce, the late Alberto Olmedo, Jorge Porcel, Emilio Disi and Ricardo Darín. Comedy groups like Les Luthiers, with more than 40 years on stage, have made a name of themselves in all Spanish-speaking countries, even winning awards in Spain. In the last decades however, the media has been crowded with quarrel-loving scantly-clad vedettes, actresses and fashion models, with TV shows like those of host Marcelo Tinelli's VideoMatch and Bailando Por Un Sueño making an industry out of this. It is worth noting that Moral Guardians are really weak and almost absent in Argentina, for they are associated with the right-wing that supported the military dictatorship. The Argentine audience has evolved into being very laid back about sexual themes (a trait shared with, and maybe due to proximity influence from, Brazil). Nowadays everybody is fine if an actress pole-dances in a thong on TV, usually achieving the highest ratings as a result...
The country is known for its meals, and the parrillas (Argentinian grills, commonly known around the world as steak restaurants) are commonplace. One traditional way of preserving the beef for export was to pack it in coarse-grained salt, known as "corns" of salt, hence "Corned Beef". Which means very different things in Britain and America. Argentine cuisine is very rich, ranging recipes from a wide range of origins: from the Native times came corn omelettes, the mate drink and roasted fishes like the surubí; in colonial times locro (a bean stew), empanadas and asados (a traditional type of barbeque) were added; later the immigration waves brought pastas, "helados" note (recognized and paired in quality with Italian gelatos) fatay or Empanada árabe (arabic "empanada"), and choripanes note ; currently a wide variety of oriental cuisine note , and the fusion of them all made the Argentine cuisine.
Argentina is not the only place where Nazi leaders escaped to after World War II, and it's far more exaggerated in the media than what it actually occurred. Also, Villa Gesell has no mountains, despite how X-Men: First Class might have depicted it. It's a seaside city in the east of Buenos Aires, while the big mountains are located in the west of the country, in the Andes range.
Works created in Argentina
Tropes associated with Argentina
- Pre-Columbian Civilizations
- British Invasions of the Río de la Plata
- Spanish American Wars of Independence
- Argentine Civil War
- War of the Triple Alliance
- Juan Domingo Perón
- National Reorganization Process
- Raúl Alfonsín
- Carlos Menem
- Fernando de la Rúa
- Adolfo Rodríguez Saá
- Eduardo Duhalde
- Néstor Kirchner
- Cristina Fernández de Kirchner
- Mauricio Macri
- Javier Milei
The Argentine flag
The Argentine national anthem
- Federal presidential constitutional republic
- President: Javier Milei
- Vice President: Victoria Villaruel
- Chief of the Cabinet of Ministers: Nicolás Posse
- President of the Chamber of Deputies: Martín Menem
- President of the Supreme Court: Horacio Rosatti
- Capital and largest city: Buenos Aires
- Population: 44,938,712
- Area: 2,780,400 km (1,073,500 sq mi) (8th)
- Currency: Argentine peso ($) (ARS)
- ISO-3166-1 Code: AR
- Country calling code: 54
- Highest point: Aconcagua (6,960 m/22,835 ft) (9th)
- Lowest point: Laguna del Carbón (–105 m/–344 ft) (10th)