Europeans create Kulturboden in Argentina

Even amongst other European peoples, German Kulturboden stands apart as superior.

“The first colony that we pass is San Carlos. It is unnecessary for our guide to say a thing—it is obvious that Italians live here. […] Arriving in San Geronimo, which belongs to Germans and Swiss: peaceful, clean houses with large flower gardens, with shrubs and fruit trees. The native knows neither—it is all too toilsome for him. ‘We don’t get fruit’, he answers when he’s asked about it, or ‘The locusts eat everything’. But the Germans and the Swiss plant it, and it thrives”.

If it is unnecessary for the guide to use words to name the Italian settlement, it is apparently even less necessary for Ross to describe it. But whatever his reader imagines, it must differ in some significant way from the “peaceful, clean houses” and gardens of the German settlement. Are the Italian houses riotous and dirty? Even if this is the case, both settlements are apparently superior to those of the natives. For, even if they have lived in this landscape for timeless generations, they are still unable to figure out how to make the land fruitful. Argentina must import Europeans in order to improve the quality of the landscape, and, according to Ross’s depictions, would do best to encourage German immigration.

Kristin Kopp








Colin Ross. Deutsche Kolonien in Santa Fé. In: Südamerika, die aufsteigende Welt. 1. Aufl.  Leipzig: F.A. Brockhaus; 1922; 66-72.


Topic: Kulturboden
Case: Geopolitics


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