Skip to content

“Fought Against the Army”: Indigenous Americans and Argentina’s “Golden Age” (c.1875 - c.1920)

Discussion of teaching Indigenous Americans in Argentina and Latin America in the nineteenth century

Bram Hubbell
Bram Hubbell
12 min read
“Fought Against the Army”: Indigenous Americans and Argentina’s “Golden Age” (c.1875 - c.1920)

In 2015, I traveled to Argentina. Like many visitors, I started in Buenos Aires. The architecture and street layout felt like a European city. I had half-expected this because most world history textbooks mention the influx of European migrants to Argentina in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Buenos Aires was the “Paris of the Americas.” After exploring the capital, I traveled overland to the northwest. I passed through Córdoba and Salta and headed north to Humahuaca. Along the way, I loved the picturesque Andean landscapes. I also noticed that the architecture gradually stopped looking “European.” Indigenous Americans also became more common than folks of European heritage. I realized that I had been under the impression Argentina was essentially a “European” country and that there were no more Indigenous residents. I remember sitting in my hostel in Humahuaca and reading about nineteenth-century Argentine leaders who attempted to wipe out the Indigenous population. It was one of those moments when I realized how much is being left out in world history textbooks, especially regarding Indigenous Americans.

Quebrada de Humahuaca in northwestern Argentina. Photo by Bram Hubbell.
Quebrada de Humahuaca in northwestern Argentina. Photo by Bram Hubbell.

By centering the experiences of Argentina’s Indigenous population in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, we have an opportunity for students to understand Latin America as more than simply another place Europeans sent their surplus population and capital. It was more than another place supplying Europeans with raw materials. We can have students consider the influence of nationalism and Social Darwinism in Latin America on Latin America’s “development.” Even more significantly, we can help students understand how the persecuted Indigenous Americans in Argentina resisted and adapted to Argentina’s state-sponsored violence in the late nineteenth century.

Late Nineteenth Century Argentina and World History


Related Posts

Members Public

“When Any of You Intend to Divorce”: Teaching Continuity and Divorce in the Medieval Islamic Middle East, c.600 - c.1600

A discussion of teaching continutiy using examples of divorce in the Islamic Middle East

“When Any of You Intend to Divorce”: Teaching Continuity and Divorce in the Medieval Islamic Middle East, c.600 - c.1600
Members Public

“A Rich South and a Poor North”: Southernization and Facilitating Student-Centered Discussions

Discussion of how to facilitate student-centered discussions using Southernization

“A Rich South and a Poor North”: Southernization and Facilitating Student-Centered Discussions
Members Public

“A Time for Telling”: Lectures and Narratives in a Decolonized History Course

Discussion of how we can use lectures in world history classes with a focus on the Atlantic Revolutions

“A Time for Telling”: Lectures and Narratives in a Decolonized History Course