January Term - Buenos Aires, Argentina
Each year in January, the Program in International Relations runs a special winter session course in what is called ‘J-Term’ at NYU.
Approximately two weeks in duration, students live in the Recoleta District, in the heart of Buenos Aires. All classes are held at NYU’s Buenos Aires global site which offers a full range of support services to students. Buenos Aires is one of the world’s great cities, often called ‘The Paris of Latin America’ offering an array of cultural opportunities for the visitor to explore.
Whilst onsite students have scheduled free time to explore the city and to travel further abroad if they wish. Past day trips include Colonia, Uruguay.
The course taught in Buenos Aires is ‘The Armed Forces, Society and Transitional Justice in Argentina’ which is an interdisciplinary exploration of the relationship between the military and society in Argentina.
Amidst widespread social unrest and violence, the Argentine military conducted a military coup in March 1976 seizing power from the democratically elected government. From 1976 to 1983 Argentina was ruled by a military dictatorship known today as la última junta militar. During this time the military conducted what we know today as the 'Dirty War' against their political enemies. During this period approximately 8,961 persons were 'disappeared' by the military government. The scope of human rights violations during this period is astounding and the legacy still reverberates through Argentine society.
Corruption, a failing economy, growing public awareness of the harsh repressive measures taken by the regime, and the military defeat in the Falklands War, eroded the public image of the regime eventually forcing the military leaders to hold in elections in October 1983 which resulted in the return of civilian rule.
Today Argentina is a vibrant democracy and is the only democracy in the world holding a series of investigations and criminal trials into the past actions of the military junta. However, Argentine society has also worked through the past through various memorials and art installations. As such, Argentina is a fascinating case study on the relationship between the Armed Forces and Society and how how societies engage in transitional justice after periods of intense injustice and human rights violations.
The course is taught in English by the Program Director, Professor Michael John Williams. All guest lectures and site visits are conducted in English.