More on Universidad de Buenos Aires (UBA)

By popular demand (= one person), I will write a bit more about the place where I am supposed to spend the majority of my awake time here, namely Universidad de Buenos Aires (UBA).

Entrance hall and coffee room for poor law students in the Faculty of Law.

Entrance hall and coffee room for poor law students in the Faculty of Law.

To be a bit more precise, my campus is the so-called Ciudad Universitaria, which is beautifully located right by the river in one of the (in my opinion) nicest areas of Capital Federal (which is a more accurate name for the city of Buenos Aires). There are also a couple of other campuses belonging to UBA, including the Faculty of Law (Faculdad de Derecho), which is housed by a very impressive building in the Recoleta neighborhood.

Like I mentioned in the previous post, despite its incredible location, Ciudad Universitaria is really a fantastic example of how to destroy something beautiful. The university buildings (knows as Pabellon 1, 2, and 3) are among the ugliest university buildings I have ever seen – this said by a student who started his university career in the not very charming Arrhenius Laboratory at Stockholm University.

Rubik's cube times 2.

Rubik’s cube times 2.

Don't be fooled by the light, this building is best viewed in pitch-black darkness.

Don’t be fooled by the light, this building is best viewed in pitch-black darkness.

Colorful banners, ranging in political views all the way from left to left.

Colorful banners, ranging in political views all the way from left to left.

Nevertheless, the placement of the campus has a pretty interesting history. As told by my Argentinian study mates (Bullshit et al.?), Ciudad Universitaria was originally planned and placed as an isolated part of the city by the military dictatorship, to keep the students under control. Students were considered a threat to the government in power. Indeed, the universities were and still are very politicized, which becomes incredibly obvious from all the banners and flags hanging from the balconies inside the university buildings – usually with left or far left messages.

Graduating master students are tested for potential revolutionary behavior before their release from isolation.

Graduating master students are examined for potential revolutionary behavior before their release from isolation.

Although students are not anymore seen as a threat to the government, the campus is still rather isolated, and relatively difficult to access – especially by foot or bicycle. The highway separating the campus from the rest of the city can only be crossed by foot via one single, narrow bridge. The only other option is to make a 5-10 km detour along the riverside, which sounds nice for the visitor, but is not very convenient for the every day bike commuter. It also happens to be so that some less well-meaning people have recognized this limitation, and use this narrow bridge as a good opportunity to rob commuters and passers-by. Or as my lab mate put it: “I was stopped on my bicycle by a guy with a gun, and we agreed that it would be best if I offered him my wallet”.

The horrible view students have to put up with since the beginning of their isolation from the polluted city. Reminds me of the British sending their most feared criminals to Australia – another of those horrible places on our planet.

The horrible view students have to put up with since the beginning of their isolation from the polluted city. Reminds me of the British sending their most feared criminals to Australia – another of those horrible places on our planet.

Advertisements

2 thoughts on “More on Universidad de Buenos Aires (UBA)

    • Thanks bro! well, thanks to you and our non-blogging friend I now have a Facebook reputation to live up to 😉
      But at least he sent me video proof that he has been keeping himself busy elsewhere!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s