Chapter 13, Section 3 The Southern Grassland Countries 7.2.8.A Explain the characteristics of places and regions. Anchor: CC8.5.6-8.D: Determine the meaning of words as they are used in text. OBJECTIVE: Students will categorize the physical characteristics of the southern grassland countries. AGENDA: 4.8.15 1. Finish Section 2 2. Assessment 3. Start Section 3 4. TDD Introduction • Uruguay, Paraguay and Argentina make up southern South America. • Face economic hardships, but are among the most prosperous South American nations. • Large percentage of people of European heritage as well as a mestizo population. Physical Characteristics • Southern South America consists of several physical regions with varying characteristics. – Great Rivers – Andean Region – Tropical Lowlands – Grasslands – Patagonia Great Rivers Great Rivers Continued… • Rio de la Plata (River of Silver) is an estuary. – A broad river mouth formed where a flooded river valley meets the sea. • Four rivers in the Plata estuary system form national boundaries: – The Uruguay – The Pilcomayo – The Paraguay – The Parana Great Rivers Continued… • The capitals of Argentina and Uruguay are both located on the Rio de la Plata. • Argentina – Buenos Aires • Uruguay – Montevideo • River system provides cheap and efficient way for people in this functional region to ship goods. Andean Region • The highest peaks of the Andes are in western Argentina. • They include the four highest mountains in the Western Hemisphere (High as 22,834 ft. above sea level). • Andes gradually give way to a gently rolling piedmont region. – Foothills Tropical Lowlands • Gran Chaco (“hunting land”) is an interior lowland region of savanna and dense shrub in parts of Paraguay, Argentina and Bolivia. – Temps. are mild rarely change. – Rainfall is seasonal. – Summer rains turn the area into mud. – Winter = soil is dry and windblown. Grasslands • Pampas of Argentina and Uruguay are one of South America’s best-known features. • Temperate grasslands, stretch for hundreds of miles, were formerly home to hundreds of guachos. – Cowboys who herded cattle there. Grassland Continued… • Today, the pampas are Argentina’s breadbasket, producing about 80% of the nation’s grain and about 70% of its meat. • Pampas have warm summers, cold winters. • Occasional violent winter thunderstorm known as “pamperos.” Patagonia • South of the pampas lies the windswept plateau of Patagonia. • Desolate, dry, cold and sometimes foggy plain is well suited for raising sheep. • Natural resources include rich deposits of oil and bauxite. Paraguay • Landlocked but the Plata River system provides an outlet to the sea. • Almost all Paraguayans live in the highlands of eastern Paraguay rather than the swampy Chaco. • ½ of the people live in urban areas, especially the capital city of Asuncion, on the Paraguay River. Paraguay Continued… • Most Paraguayans are mestizos, who speak Guarani, the local Indian language, also Spanish. • Economy based on agriculture, mostly cotton, grains and livestock. • For 35 years, General Alfredo Stroessner ruled by military force (1954-1989). – Political freedoms were restricted – Critics of govt. were prosecuted Paraguay Today • 1989, discontented military leaders replaced him. • New leader, General Andres Rodriguez, made the government more responsive to people’s needs. • Since 1993, Paraguay has held free democratic elections. Uruguay • Uruguay takes its name from an Indian word meaning “river of the painted bird.” • Mostly grasslands. • Main economic activities are raising livestock, processing meat, and making products such as wool and leather. • 75% of land is devoted to livestock grazing and another 10% to raising feed grains. • Must import fuel and consumer goods (expensive). Uruguay Continued… • Most Uruguayans are of European descent, mainly Italian and Spanish. • Large middle class, with few slums. • Politically, Uruguay has an unstable history. • In 1973, the military took power, ruling for 12 yrs. – Repression – Imprisonment **** Free Elections today, if you don’t vote you’re fined 0.0 OBJECTIVE REVIEW • Students will explain the recent changes in political conditions in Paraguay and Uruguay. Argentina • Like Uruguay, most of Argentina’s nearly 37 million people have European ancestors (Italian and Spanish). • 88% live in cities. • 13 million in Buenos Aires alone. • Wealthiest country in Latin America. Urbanization • Buenos Aires is a vibrant capital city that looks to Europe for its fashions, art, food and style. • Factories produce goods for export, harbor filled with freighters from all over the world. – Causes heavy air pollution. • Buenos Aires is a magnet. Political History • From the mid 1940s until 1983 Argentina was ruled by a series of military dictators. – Best known was Juan Domingo Peron – 1946 to 1955 – Wanted to develop Argentina’s industry and to distribute wealth more evenly. – His wife, Eva, became a hero to Argentina’s poor. Political History Continued… • Other dictators used government power to help the wealthy, ignoring problems of the poor. • However, all of them censored newspapers, closed down universities, and imprisoned political opponents. • They tried to give the appearance of progress by borrowing money from foreign banks to build dams, roads, and factories. Political History • Conditions under military rule in the 1970s were particularly bad. • People were kidnapped by the military and never seen again, period known as “dirty wars.” • 1982, Argentina lost a war against GB over control of the Falkland Islands. Shamed, military held open elections. • Deals with period of soaring inflation and enormous debt.