Art & Politics in the City
In this immersive course experience, students spend one semester in Buenos Aires and one in New York, exploring topics of urban aesthetics, social justice, global cultures, digital humanities and mapping. This course also offers students an opportunity to gain urban fieldwork experience by incorporating hands-on, grounded research into their programs of study.
Do you want to learn about current events in Argentina and how they are connected with the country’s past? For example, why and how is the stereotype of Argentina as a “European” country in Latin America still productive to certain social actors? What populations have been invisibilized by this myth? What about the First Nations that reside and struggle for their rights in the Southern Cone? Is Spanish the only language spoken in this country? Argentina Today and La Lengua de Buenos Aires are not just conversation courses (although they are that, too!) - they are windows into the city and the country, its cultures, its nuances and the intersection between local and global issues.
What are former students saying?
“This was my favorite class this semester! I feel like it really gave me an opportunity to improve my Spanish. If I could suggest one thing, I would suggest offering more classes like this about a variety of different subjects. It helped my Spanish so much, and Silvia is a great professor.”
“This class far exceeded my expectations, the professor was wonderful, and I spent most of my semester bragging about all the interactive and informative ways we were learning
about Argentine culture. I truly could not have improved a thing, and the only suggestion I would make is for NYU to change the course description to give students a better
understanding of how vital this class is to truly appreciate Buenos Aires!”
"This course was a wonderful surprise. Edgardo invited incredible guest speakers."
“The field trips were really excellent. The class was the perfect supplement to help me immerse in the culture and learn things that I never would have known otherwise about
Argentine history and culture.”
Course Descriptions and Syllabi
Argentina Today - SPAN-UA 9026 - 4 points
Corequisite: Intensive Intermediate Spanish or Intermediate Spanish II.
Offered in the Spring and the Fall
This class is designed for students who want to perfect their Spanish as they expand their knowledge regarding social and political issues within modern Argentine society. The reading of different texts and viewing of various films throughout the semester will serve to expand lexicon, strengthen grammar and improve the student's rethoric. The objective of this course is that the students familiarize themselves with everyday language of current newspapers and magazines, at the same time as they enter into the world of local culture. To this end, every week the students will analyze and debate a newspaper article or/and an academic text. In addition, every two or three weeks the students will present a written composition of topics covered in class. In the classroom linguistic correction will be emphasized along with listening practice through the use of a wide range of materials and resources: theoretical explanations, comprehension and vocabulary exercises, film viewing, as well as exercises that highlight certain morphological aspects or grammatical usage of Spanish. Classes will be conducted in Spanish.
La Lengua de Buenos Aires - SPAN-UA 9103 - 4 points
Open to students who have completed Advanced Grammar and Composition or enrolled concurrently in Advanced Grammar and Composition.
La lengua de Buenos Aires is an advanced conversation course, which seeks to make students familiar with the most outstanding features of the Spanish of the Rio de la Plata area. It does also work as a map of the local effects of well known global processes. Buenos Aires is justly regarded as a cosmopolitan city, unique in Latin America for its multicultural mélange of European and American cultural influences. Yet Buenos Aires is cosmopolitan in another, deeper sense: as a city, it has been defined by the same global forces that affect and shape London, New York and Shanghai. The course will focus on six problems that can be studied in any major city in the world: tensions around immigration; poverty, social exclusion and its impact in urban life; discrimination and violence in connection to racial, sexual and class difference; drugs and the narco-machine; violence against women and femicide; religious tensions in a modern society. All these social, cultural and political problems are present everywhere, and global in their character. However, they assume peculiar and specific forms in Buenos Aires and Argentina. This tension between a global process and its local forms is what we will explore in the course.
Course Description and Syllabus
Prerequisite: Open to students who have completed SPAN-UA 200 Critical Approaches (or equivalent), or to students enrolled concurrently in SPAN-UA 9200.
Offered in the Spring
The course studies cities, landscapes and architectures through 19th- and 20th-Century aesthetic representations, with particular focus on the Argentine case, along with some references to Brazil. The aim is to reflect on literature, painting, sculpture, photography, architecture and urbanism in relation to fundamental concepts in theories of space, visual culture, cultural geography and urban studies, as well as architectural and landscape theories. Thus, we will look into topics such as the spatial and landscape designs of the Argentine Pampa alongside the 18th-Century civilization/barbarianism dichotomy; local color in La Boca and Riachuelo; North-South relationships, particularly in relation to intellectual networks between Victoria Ocampo and Le Corbusier, or between US poet Elizabeth Bishop and Brazilian Lota de Macedo Soares; the (political) history behind the creation of Palermo parks; and the aesthetic and political readings of the Rio de la Plata up to our days. We will work in depth on each production, concept or context as a way to gradually incorporate specific notions of landscape; representation; ekphrasis; sketch; map, plan and atlas; view and urban outlines; pampa and tropic.
The class will be taught in Spanish, but will include abundant bibliography in English.
Political Institutions and Economic Policy - POL-UA 9795 - 4 points
Offered in the Spring
This course explores the way in which public policies (Economic, Social, and other) emerge out of the interactions of various economic, social, and political actors. We will pay special attention to institutions and to the way in which various actors influence the policy making process. The class will attempt to blend abstract theoretical views from economics and political science with attention to the nuances and details of policy making in a developing country context. The professor will supplement the theory and empirical content of the course with examples of economic and social policy making in different political institutional contexts in Latin America. The primary focus will be on economic and social policies in Latin American countries in recent times, particularly Argentina, a country in which the professor has extensive top level policy making experience.