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Volume 55 / Social Sciences


CESAR CAVIEDES, Professor of Geography, University of Florida, Gainesville

THE GEOGRAPHIC LITERATURE from and about Southern Cone countries is rather weak for the period covered by this chapter. Works on the environment and populations seem to have changed considerably over the last years as topics which were previously considered as "geographical" are now also the purview of urbanists, political economists, and/or urban sociologists. Rather than viewing this as a shortcoming on the part of geographers, it is mostly an indication of the increasingly eclectic character of a discipline which also encompasses related social sciences. Such cross-disciplinary incursions and expansions attest to the degree of intellectual maturity and sophistication among Argentine, Chilean, and Uruguayan social scientists.

Several of the recently published general works of Latin America should be consulted for valuable information on the Southern Cone. The volume edited by Axel Borsdorf entitled Lateinamerika: Krise ohne Ende (item bi 95018749) deserves special consideration as a reflection of perceptions shared by many German-language specialists concerning Latin America and its unending crises. Equally revealing are Borsdorf's articles on urban models proposed by German specialists (item bi 95018759), regionalization of Southern Cone countries (item bi 95018788), and the futures of Anglo-American and Latin American cities (item bi 95018792).

While in the recent past Argentina generated a large number of entries dealing with the Malvinas/Falkland War - thereby revealing not only an interest in geopolitical subjects but also concern for the perceived dismemberment of the national territory - books and papers on this theme have declined in recent years. The only article on this subject is a review essay on books analyzing the causes and consequences, as well as the future implications of the conflict (item bi 94010203). The bulk of Argentine geographical contributions is compiled in a special issue of the Madrid journal Estudios Geográficos (Vol. 53, No. 208, julio/sept. 1992) which contains collaborations written by prominent Argentine geographers such as Bolsi, Bruniard, Reboratti, and Roccatagliata. Moreover, one of the major additions to the geography of Argentina is the synthesis produced under Roccatagliata's direction (item bi 93021774), a work which reflects the state of the art in Argentine geographical research. Geographical production in Chile evinces a strong bias towards geopolitical subjects, a tendency that is stressed by the relatively large number of articles published in the Revista de Geopolítica on the ongoing dispute with Bolivia pertaining to an opening into the Pacific Ocean (items bi 92016115 and bi 92016129), the maritime vocation of the country (items bi 92001611 and bi 94000495), and questions related to the meaning of boundaries in Chile (items bi 92016128 and bi 92016120). Comparatively little has been issued by strictly geographical sources, since even the usually productive Revista Geográfica Norte Grande is represented below by only a few entries.

As in previous years, the geographic production of Uruguay and Paraguay is minimal compared with the published materials on Argentina and Chile.

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