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Cover for the book A History of Argentina in the Twentieth Century

A History of Argentina in the Twentieth Century

Luis Alberto Romero, and Translated by James P. Brennan
  • Copyright: 2002
  • Dimensions: 6 x 9
  • Page Count: 384 pages
  • Hardcover ISBN: 978-0-271-02191-1
  • Paperback ISBN: 978-0-271-02192-8
“Luis Alberto Romero has written a book that is comprehensive, balanced, and full of insights into the development—and turmoil—of modern Argentine history. This book can serve as a starter for anyone interested in the topic. Specialists too will rely on it for its analysis and detail. James Brennan’s translation is outstanding.”
“The purpose of this book is to provide a straightforward synthesis of twentieth-century Argentine history in all its complexity and paradox. . . . Romero focuses on Argentina’s place in the larger world, the role of the state, and the influence of culture and intellectuals on the nation’s development.”
“An excellent history, with a fine balance between the economic, the political and the social. Romero is particularly good on the social history of the earlier twentieth century, charting the effects of the rapid cultural modernization that would be created by Peronism’s promise of welfare and cultural autarky.”
“Argentina’s current economic and political crisis is symptomatic of its failure to forge a viable, modern economy and to consolidate democracy during the 20th century. So argues leading Argentine historian Romero in his timely and insightful synthesis. With a profound grasp of scholarly literature, Romero writes lucidly and incisively about the national and international forces that have undermined economic development, democracy, and social justice in modern Argentina.”
“A fascinating and well-translated account of Argentina’s misadventures over the last century by one of that country’s brightest historians.”
“The workings of democracy dominate the current writing on Argentina. By making democracy its centerpiece, the impressive synthesis of the twentieth-century history of Argentina by Luis Alberto Romero exemplifies the genre.”
“Luis Alberto Romero, a highly respected Argentine historian and professor at the University of Buenos Aires, here provides a balanced and nuanced analysis of the complex history of the country. Romero’s straightforward writing and James Brennan’s superb translation of the 1994 Spanish original make this an excellent starter for anyone interested in Argentina, and it should work very well as an undergraduate textbook.”

A History of Argentina in the Twentieth Century, originally published in Buenos Aires in 1994, attained instantaneous status as a classic. Written as an introductory text for university students and the general public, it is a profound reflection on the "Argentine dilemma" and the challenges that the country faces as it tries to rebuild democracy. In the book, Romero painstakingly and brilliantly reconstructs and analyzes Argentina’s tortuous, often tragic modern history, from the "alluvial society" born of mass immigration, to the dramatic years of Juan and Eva Perón, to the recent period of military dictatorship and democracy. For this first English-language edition, Romero has written a new chapter covering the decade of the 1990s. A rare book combining great erudition with an engaging narrative, it is destined to be the standard English-language history of Argentina for many years to come.

The son of Argentina’s greatest twentieth-century historian, José Luis Romero, Luis Alberto Romero has emerged as one of the leading historians of his generation in Argentina. Romero’s generation is one that has witnessed the most dramatic decades of the country’s modern history, the decline of Argentina and its descent into violence, dictatorship, and despair, but also the hopeful if often difficult process of rebuilding democracy since the mid-1980s. Combining the rigor of the professional historian with a passionate commitment to his country’s future, Romero’s work is a major contribution to our understanding of one of Latin America’s most important nations. This translation by James Brennan, himself a leading English-speaking historian of Argentina, makes this valuable book available to a wide readership in the United States and elsewhere in the world.

Luis Alberto Romero directs the Center for the Study of Political History at the School of Politics and Government of the Universidad Nacional de San Martín. Among his other books is (with Leandro H. Gutiérrez) Sectores populares, cultura y política: Buenos Aires en la entreguerra (1995).

James P. Brennan is Associate Professor of History at the University of California, Riverside. He is the author of The Labor Wars in Córdoba, 19551976: Ideology, Work, and Labor Politics in an Argentine Industrial City (1995).

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