• TABLE OF CONTENTS
HIDE
 Front Cover
 Front Matter
 Frontispiece
 Table of Contents
 Introduction
 List of delegates
 Program of the inter-American educational...
 A summary: Implications of the...
 Educational and cultural aspects...
 Educational and cultural aspects...
 A common reader for the Americ...
 The teaching of inter-American...
 Promotion of teaching and research...
 Educational program of the institute...
 Puerto Rico's contribution to Hispanic...
 The teaching of Spanish American...
 The teaching of inter-American...
 Problems of university education...
 Back Cover














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 Material Information
Title: Proceedings of the Inter-American educational and cultural conference, under the auspices of the Carnegie endowment for international peace, and the Institute of inter-American affairs of the University of Florida, Gainesville, Florida, April 14-17, 1940
Uncontrolled: Carnegie endowment for international peace
Physical Description: cover-title, 87, 1 p. : illus. (incl. ports.) ; 26 cm.
Language: English
Creator: University of Florida -- Institute of Inter-American Affairs
Conference: Inter-American Educational and Cultural Conference, (1940
Publisher: St. Petersburg Print. Co.
Place of Publication: St. Petersburg, Fla.
Publication Date: 1940?
 Subjects
Subjects / Keywords: Intellectual cooperation -- Congresses   ( lcsh )
Relations -- Latin America -- United States   ( lcsh )
Relations -- United States -- Latin America   ( lcsh )
Genre: non-fiction   ( marcgt )
 Notes
Additional Physical Form: Also issued online.
 Record Information
Source Institution: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier: oclc - 01850082
lccn - 41052317
ocm01850082
Classification: lcc - F1418 .I5956 1940
ddc - 960.0631
System ID: AA00002844:00001

Table of Contents
    Front Cover
        Page i
        Page ii
    Front Matter
        Page 1
    Frontispiece
        Page 2
        Page 3
    Table of Contents
        Page 4
    Introduction
        Page 5
    List of delegates
        Page 6
        Page 7
        Page 8
    Program of the inter-American educational and cultural conference
        Page 9
        Page 10
        Page 11
        Page 12
    A summary: Implications of the conference
        Page 13
        Page 14
        Page 15
        Page 16
        Page 17
        Page 18
    Educational and cultural aspects of Argentina
        Page 19
        Page 20
        Page 21
        Page 22
        Page 23
        Page 24
        Page 25
        Page 26
        Page 27
        Page 28
    Educational and cultural aspects of Panama
        Page 29
        Page 30
        Page 31
        Page 32
        Page 33
        Page 34
        Page 35
    A common reader for the Americas
        Page 36
        Page 37
        Page 38
    The teaching of inter-American geography and the social sciences
        Page 39
        Page 40
        Page 41
        Page 42
        Page 43
        Page 44
    Promotion of teaching and research in Latin American economics and sociology
        Page 45
        Page 46
        Page 47
        Page 48
        Page 49
        Page 50
        Page 51
        Page 52
        Page 53
        Page 54
        Page 55
        Page 56
    Educational program of the institute of inter-American affairs
        Page 57
        Page 58
        Page 59
        Page 60
    Puerto Rico's contribution to Hispanic American civilization
        Page 61
        Page 62
        Page 63
        Page 64
        Page 65
        Page 66
        Page 67
        Page 68
        Page 69
        Page 70
    The teaching of Spanish American literature
        Page 71
        Page 72
        Page 73
        Page 74
        Page 75
    The teaching of inter-American languages and literatures
        Page 76
        Page 77
        Page 78
        Page 79
        Page 80
    Problems of university education and the inter-American university
        Page 81
        Page 82
        Page 83
        Page 84
        Page 85
        Page 86
        Page 87
        Page 88
    Back Cover
        Page 89
        Page 90
Full Text




PROCEEDINGS
of the
INTER-AMERICAN
EDUCATIONAL AND CULTURAL
CONFERENCE
Under the auspices of the
CARNEGIE ENDOWMENT
FOR INTERNATIONAL PEACE
and the
INSTITUTE OF INTER-AMERICAN AFFAIRS
of the
UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA


980


I90p


Gainesville, Florida

April 14-17, 1940










UNIVERSITY
OF FLORIDA
LIBRARY











CARNEGIE ENDOWMENT FOR INTERNATIONAL PEACE

New York City


NICHOLAS MURRAY BUTLER, Director

HENRY S. HASKELL, Assistant to the Director


INSTITUTE OF INTER-AMERICAN AFFAIRS OF THE
UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA

Gainesville, Florida

JOHN JAMES TIGERT, President

ROLLIN S. ATWOOD, Director

MANUEL D. RAMIREZ, Secretary


p ADVISORY COUNCIL
WALLACE W. ATWOOD,
SPresident, Clark University; Director,
Clark School of Geography.

JOHN C. COOPER, JR.,
Vice President and Assistant to the
President, Pan American Airways, Inc.

* STEPHEN P. DUGGAN,
Director, Institute of International Edu-
cation.

HAMILTON HOLT,
President, Rollins College.
RUTH BRYAN ROHDE,
Former United States Minister to Den-
mark.'

LEO S. ROVwE,
Director General, Pan American Union.

JAMES G. STAHLMAN,
President, The Nashville Banner, Nash-
ville.

JOHN W. STUDEBAKER,
United States Commissioner of Educa-
tion.

M. L. WILSON,
Director of Extension Work, United
S States Department of Agriculture.


FACULTY COMMITTEE
WALTER J. MATHERLY,
Dean of the College of Business Admin-
istration, Professor of Economics.
ROLLIN S. ATWOOD,
Director of the Institute of Inter-Ameri-
can Affairs, Professor of Geography.
MANNING J. DAUER,
Assistant Professor of History and
Political Science.
OLIVER H. HAUPTMANN,
Assistant Professor of Spanish and
German.
H. HAROLD HUME,
Dean of the College of Agriculture;
Director, Research in Agriculture.
WINSTON W. LITTLE,
Dean of the General College, Professor
of Secondary Education and High
School Visitor.

CLIFFORD P. LYONS,
Chairman, Division of Language and
Literature, Professor of English.
GARLAND POWELL,
Director of the Radio Station WRUF.
JOSEPH WEIL,
-Dean of the College of Engineering,
Professor of Ilectric1l Engineering.


120 661


MUEICA




































<



























Frontispiece-Dormitories at the University
of Florida. The Inter-American Section is
shown in the right foreground.











TABLE OF CONTENTS


V


Page
IN TR O D U CTIO N ................................................................................................................. 5

LIST OF DELEGATES............. .................................... 6

PROGRAM OF THE INTER-AMERICAN EDUCATIONAL AND CULTURAL
CONFERENCE ......... ................. .. .......................................... 9

A SUMMARY: IMPLICATIONS OF THE CONFERENCE, by Sturgis E. Leavitt, Head
of the Division of Spanish and Spanish Studies, University of North Carolina................ 13

EDUCATIONAL AND CULTURAL ASPECTS OF ARGENTINA, by Jorge Obligado,
Argentine poet and journalist.............................. ......... .... ................ ... ..... 19
EDUCATIONAL AND CULTURAL ASPECTS OF PANAMA, by Richard F. Behrendt,
Dean of the Faculty of Social Sciences, University of Panama...-.........-...................... 29

A COMMON READER FOR THE AMERICAS, by Ernesto Montenegro, Chilean Visiting
Carnegie Professor ...................................... ..... ...... ........................................ ........ 36

THE TEACHING OF INTER-AMERICAN GEOGRAPHY AND THE SOCIAL SCIENCES,
by Wallace W. Atwood, President of Clark University; Director, Clark School of
G geography .................................................... ................. ...... ..................... 39
PROMOTION OF TEACHING AND RESEARCH IN LATIN AMERICAN ECONOMICS
AND SOCIOLOGY, by Richard F. Behrendt, Dean of the Faculty of Social Sciences,
University of Panam a....................................................... .. 45
EDUCATIONAL PROGRAM OF THE INSTITUTE OF INTER-AMERICAN AFFAIRS,
by Rollin S. Atwood, Director of the Institute of Inter-American Affairs, University of
Florida ........................................... ................. ..... 57
PUERTO RICO'S CONTRIBUTION TO HISPANIC AMERICAN CIVILIZATION, by
Jos6 Padin, former Commissioner of Education of Puerto Rico............................. 61
THE TEACHING OF SPANISH AMERICAN LITERATURE, by Sturgis E. Leavitt, Head
of the Division of Spanish and Spanish Studies, University of North Carolina.................. 71
THE TEACHING OF INTER-AMERICAN LANGUAGES AND LITERATURES, by
Jos6 Padin, former Commissioner of Education of Puerto Rico; Modern Language
Editor, D. C. Heath and Company.............................. ..................................... 76
PROBLEMS OF UNIVERSITY EDUCATION AND THE INTER-AMERICAN UNIVER-
SITY, by Octavio Mendez Pereira, President of the University of Panama.......................... 81








INTER-AMERICAN EDUCATIONAL AND CULTURAL CONFERENCE

THE INTER-AMERICAN EDUCATIONAL AND
CULTURAL CONFERENCE

INTRODUCTION
In conjunction with its educational program at the University of Florida,
the Institute of Inter-American Affairs held an Inter-American Educational and
Cultural Conference from April 14 to 17, 1940, commemorating the 50th
Anniversary of the founding of the Pan American Union and the 10th Anniversa-
ry of the establishment of the Institute. Through the generous cooperation of
the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, it was possible for the Institute
to obtain a distinguished group of educators and men of letters from a number
of American republics.
The program of the Inter-American Educational and Cultural Conference
was divided into two sections with distinct, although closely related, objectives.
The first section included papers presented by distinguished educators and men
of letters from the Latin American republics on the educational and cultural
aspects of their respective countries. The second section included papers by
outstanding speakers from the United States as well as from the Latin American
republics on the subject of re-vitalizing and expanding Inter-American education
in the elementary schools, high schools, colleges and universities in the Western
Hemisphere. Round table meetings were also held to discuss the many relevant
problems.
Herein are reproduced the papers in complete text as presented during the
period of the Conference. Included is a resume prepared by a Committee on the
Implications of the Conference, and also a paper written by Dr. Octavio M6ndez
Pereira, President of the University of Panama. Dr. M6ndez Pereira was unable
to attend at the last minute because of his appointment by the Republic of Panama
to attend the First Inter-American Indian Congress held in Mexico City. Un-
fortunately, we have not received a manuscript from Dr. R. Ernesto L6pez,
former Minister of Public Instruction of Venezuela, who gave an illustrated
lecture on the rural education of his country.
The Institute of Inter-American Affairs was established by the University
of Florida on. June 2, 1930, to foster better educational and cultural relations
between the countries of the Western Hemisphere. A year later the first Confer-
ence of the Institute was held, primarily for the purpose of determining a
definite educational program which would increase true understanding and
mutual respect among the peoples of the American commonwealth. The second
Conference of the Institute of Inter-American Affairs was held in 1933 in con-
nection with the formal presentation of the Fidac Medal to the University of









UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA


Florida. The presentation was made in acknowledgment of the institution's
distinct contribution to a program for the betterment of world understanding
and peace and in recognition of the fact that the University is one of the out-
standing forces in American education. This coveted honor awarded by the
Federation Inter-Allid des Anciens Combattants is given each year to the
university in the United States of America, regardless of size, that has done the
most work in furthering international good will and friendship.




Delegates to the Inter-American Educational
and Cultural Conference


Name
Mrs. Lelia Alexander, Teacher.
Doris King Arjona, Professor of Ro-
mance Languages.
Wallace W. Atwood, President.
Camille A. Baker, Teacher.
Richard F. Behrendt, Dean of the Facul-
ty of Social Sciences.
Mrs. William C. Bowers, Vice President.
Angela Palomo Campbell, Professor of
Spanish.
Mrs. Cristina S. Carles, President.
Emilio Carles, Consul in Jacksonville,
Fla.
Laurence L. Doggett, President Emeritus.

Mrs. Olive D. Doggett.
Julio Rodriguez Embil, Consul in Jack-
sonville, Fla.
John E. Englekirk, Acting Head, Depart-
ment of Spanish.
Angie Ferrara, Teacher
Lilly Friscia, Teacher.
Atley T. Glisson, Department of Spanish.
S. Robert Graves, Teacher.
Winifred Hansen, Teacher.
Mrs. Edna S. Jamieson, Teacher.
Mrs. Maria Luz Justen, Teacher.
Maxwell A. Kilvert, Secretary.
Charles Maxwell Lancaster, Visiting Pro-
fessor of Romance Languages.
Helen Lastra, Teacher.


Institution Represented
Julia Landon High School, Jacksonville, Fla.

John B. Stetson University, Deland, Fla.
Clark University, Worcester, Mass.
Andrew Jackson High School, Miami, Fla.

University of Panama, Canal Zone.
Spanish Institute of Florida, Winter Park, Fla.

Rollins College, Winter Park, Fla.
Pan American Club of Jacksonville, Fla.

Republic of Panama.
International Y. M: C. A. College, Springfield,
Mass.
Wellesley College.

Republic of Cuba.

Tulane University, New Orleans, La.
Hillsborough High School, Tampa, Fla.
West Tampa Junior High School, Tampa,, Fla.
St. Petersburg Junior College, St. Petersburg, Fla.
Charlotte County High School, Punta Gorda, Fla.
Leon High School, Tallahassee, Fla.
Miami Beach High School, Miami Beach, Fla.
Hillsborough High School, Tampa, Fla.
Spanish Institute of Florida, Winter Park, Fla.

Vanderbilt University, Nashville, Tenn.
Plant High School, Tampa, Fla.
6










INTER-AMERICAN EDUCATIONAL AND CULTURAL CONFERENCE


Marina Lastra, Teacher.

Rosalie Lastra, Teacher.

Sturgis E. Leavitt, Head of the Division
of Spanish and Spanish Studies.
Irving A. Leonard, Assistant Director,
Division of the Humanities.
R. Ernesto L6pez, former Minister of
Public Instruction.
Arturo Morales, Assistant Professor of
Latin American History.
Jorge Obligado
Jose Padin, former Commissioner of
Education.
C. Parker Persons.
Harry T. Piedra, Teacher.

Leon F. Sensabaugh, Professor of His-
tory.
Winifred Turner, Teacher.
Mrs. Mary P. Ware, Teacher.
Mrs. Elizabeth Williams, Teacher.
Mrs. J. S. Young.
William C. Zellars, Professor of Romance
Languages.


George Washington Junior High School, Tampa,
Fla.
Thomas Jefferson Junior-Senior High School,
Tampa, Fla.

University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, N. C.

Rockefeller Foundation, New York City.

Republic of Venezuela.

University of Miami, Miami, Fla.
Republic of Argentina.

Puerto Rico.
United States Department of Commerce.
Thomas Jefferson Junior-Senior High School,
Tampa, Fla.

Birmingham-Southern College, Birmingham, Ala.
Miami-Edison High School, Miami, Fla.
Miami Beach High School, Miami Beach, Fla.
Disston Junior High School, St. Petersburg, Fla.
Pan American League.

Florida Southern College, Lakeland, Fla.


The above list includes official delegates only. A large number of faculty members and
students of the University of Florida attended the various sessions of the conference as well as
guests from Gainesville and many surrounding towns. The attendance was over 150 at all major
sessions of the conference. During the first two days a large number of High School students
were also in attendance in addition to those taking part in the Declamation Contest.























C

o














The Florida Union-Headquarters of the Conference. Offices and reading room of Institute of Inter-American Affairs
are located on the fourth floor of this building









INTER-AMERICAN EDUCATIONAL AND CULTURAL CONFERENCE


JOHN J. TIGERT
President of the University of Florida


INTER-AMERICAN EDUCATIONAL AND CULTURAL
CONFERENCE, APRIL, 1940

Final Program

SUNDAY, APRIL 14
4:00 P. M. Registration and Informal Reception
Florida Union Annex
8:00 P. M. Pan American Dinner (Informal)
Florida Union Annex
Presiding
John J. Tigert, President, University of Florida
Address: Geography and World Understanding
Wallace W. Atwood, President, Clark University, Past President, Pan
American Institute of Geography and History

MONDAY, APRIL 15
8:30 A. M. Preliminaries of High School Spanish Declamation Contest
Florida Union, Rooms 305 and 308










UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA


10:30 A. M. Opening Session of the Conference
Florida Union Auditorium
Topic: Educational and Cultural Aspects and Developments of Latin
American Republics
Presiding
John J. Tigert, President, University of Florida
Addresses
Jorge Obligado, Argentine poet and journalist
Richard F. Behrendt, Dean, Faculty of Social Sciences, University of Panama
(At 12:00 P. M. an address by President Franklin D. Roosevelt to the Govern-
ing Board of the Pan American Union. Arrangements made to listen to this
address by special wire from Washington, D. C.)
1:00 P. M. Luncheon
Florida Union Annex
Address: A Common Reader for the Americas
Ernesto Montenegro, Chilean writer and journalist, Carnegie Visiting
Professor
(Read by his son, Daniel Montenegro, student at the University of
Florida)
2:00 P. M. Finals of the High School Spanish Declamation Contest
Florida Union Auditorium
8:00 P. M. General Session of the Conference
Florida Union Auditorium
Presiding
Townes R. Leigh, Acting Vice President; Dean, College of Arts and Sciences,
University of Florida
Address: Educational and Cultural Aspects of Venezuela
R. Ernesto L6pez, former Minister of Public Instruction of Venezuela
Moving Pictures of Venezuela


TUESDAY, APRIL 16
10:00 A. M. General Session of the Conference
Florida Union Auditorium
Topic: Increasing and Improving the Teaching of Inter-American
Geography and Social Sciences
Presiding
Harley W. Chandler, Dean of the University of Florida
Addresses
Wallace W. Atwood, President, Clark University; Director, Clark School of
Geography
Richard F. Behrendt, Dean, Faculty of Social Sciences, University of Panama
General Discussion
3:00 P. M. General Session of the Conference
Inter-departmental curricula for students concentrating in Inter-
American Affairs and the content and interdependence of courses
dealing with Latin America










INTER-AMERICAN EDUCATIONAL AND CULTURAL CONFERENCE

Presiding
Walter J. Matherly, Chairman, Faculty Committee on Inter-American Affairs;
Dean, College of Business Administration, University of Florida
Address
Rollin S. Atwood, Professor of Geography; Director, Institute of Inter-Ameri
can Affairs, University of Florida
Discussion Leaders
Richard F. Behrendt, Dean, Faculty of Social Sciences, University of Panama
Sturgis E. Leavitt, Head, Division of Spanish and Spanish Studies, University
of North Carolina
General Discussion
7:30 P. M. Dinner Honoring Students from Latin America Attending the Univer-
sity of Florida
Thomas Hotel (Informal)
Presiding
Rollin S. Atwood, Director, Institute of Inter-American Affairs, University of
Florida
Address: Puerto Rico's Contribution to Hispanic American Civilization
Jose Padin, former Commissioner of Education of Puerto Rico

WEDNESDAY, APRIL 17
10:00 A. M. General Session of the Conference
Increasing and Improving the Teaching of Inter-American Languages
and Literatures
Presiding
Clifford P. Lyons, Chairman, Division of Language and Literature, University
of Florida
Addresses
Sturgis E. Leavitt, Head, Division of Spanish and Spanish Studies, University
of North Carolina
Jose Padin, former Commissioner of Education of Puerto Rico; Modern
Language Editor, D. C. Heath and Company
Discussion Leaders
John E. Englekirk, Acting Head, Department of Spanish, Tulane University
Charles M. Lancaster, Visiting Professor of Romance Languages, Vanderbilt
University
O. H. Hauptmann, Head Professor of Spanish, University of Florida
General Discussion
2:00 P. M. General Session of the Conference
Presiding
John J. Tigert, President, University of Florida
Implications of the Conference: A Summary
Sturgis E. Leavitt, Head, Division of Spanish and Spanish Studies, University
of North Carolina











UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA


STURGIS E. LEAVITT
Head, Division of Spanish and Spanish
Studies, University of North Carolina


A SUMMARY: IMPLICATIONS OF THE CONFERENCE
Sturgis E. Leavitt
HE INTER-AMERICAN Educational and Cultural Conference was officially
opened on April 14, the Fiftieth Anhiversary of the founding of the Pan
American Union, by John J. Tigert, President of the University of Florida.
President Tigert paid tribute to Dr. Leo S. Rowe, Director of the Pan American
Union, and spoke briefly of the cultural activities of this important organization.
President Tigert then mentioned with frankness certain unfavorable aspects of
relations in the past between the United States and Latin America, and gave
examples of a new outlook in this hemisphere, the most notable being the proposed
exchange of students and professors between the various countries of America.
President Wallace W. Atwood of Clark University spoke of the unequal
distribution of natural resources among the countries of the world, the inter-
dependence of all nations, and the necessity for a fair and just method of ex-
change of products. Particularly significant is the fact that English-speaking
countries control or own three-fourths of the mineral wealth of the world. Presi-
dent Atwood pointed out the earnest desire of all peoples for peace and made a
moving appeal for an informed understanding in the Americas. Only by educa-
tion can the barriers of ignorance be broken down and to this end the University
of Florida is devoting itself through its Institute of Inter-American Affairs.









INTER-AMERICAN EDUCATIONAL AND CULTURAL CONFERENCE

The program for Monday brought out clearly a fact of the utmost im-
portance in the understanding of Latin America: namely, that the countries to
the south are not all alike.
The first speaker, Sefior Jorge Obligado, thrilled his audience by rythmic
Spanish that had all the charm of poetry. He gave a thorough-going account of
the history and nature of Argentina, its intellectual ties with France, and its
educational contacts with both France and the United States. The work of
Sarmiento in this respect was of peculiar interest. Senior Obligado spoke of the
vast pampa, its great resources, the absence of natural obstacles to the develop-
ment of these resources, and the flood of immigration which populated the
country and helped make it what it is today. The speaker dwelt at length on the
school system of Argentina and gave other reasons for the strong position oc-
cupied by Argentina in the American world.
Seiior Obligado was followed by Dr. Richard F. Behrendt, Dean of the
Faculty of Social Sciences of the University of Panama, who spoke of a younger
country. He explained the reasons for the late development of Panama: its
small and varied population, and the fact that it was cut off from intellectual
contacts during much of its history. In spite of these obstacles, Panama has
made remarkable achievements since 1903. Of particular interest was his ac-
count of the University of Panama, founded in 1935, whose policy has departed
from that of other Latin American universities in that full-time teachers have
been employed and an attempt has been made to engage in extensive research
work in social studies. The progress of Panama in its educational experiments
will be followed with interest by all who have the welfare of Latin America at
heart.
In the evening Dr. R. Ernesto L6pez spoke of Venezuela and startled his
audience by saying that Venezuela has solved the tax problem by not having
taxes. Those who heard him silently wished for enough oil in their own back
yards to eliminate at least one annoying feature of modern civilization. Dr.
L6pez spoke of the great educator, Sim6n Rodriguez and his influence on Sim6n
Bolivar, and of Andr6s Bello whose extraordinary work so profoundly influenced
the intellectual life of Chile. Dr. L6pez pointed out that Venezuela was slow in
extending its educational system due to the repressive measures of certain
dictators.
Following these remarks, Dr. L6pez showed motion pictures of the remark-
able efforts to extend rural education in his native country, particularly by
teachers operating from trailers. These men give instruction in sanitation and
hygiene, render medical assistance as well as impart rudimentary education.
Color pictures presented another side of Venezuela and awakened in all those
present a strong desire to visit the country so courageously presented by Dr. L6pez.









UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA


In the morning the audience heard President Roosevelt speaking from the
Pan American Union. The theme of his address was peace. Peace was the desire
of Bolivar in the famous conference of 1826, and peace has been in the minds of
many leaders in the United States ever since. Today peace in the West has taken
on a new meaning. It is a cooperative endeavor, which means liberation from
fear, respect for the integrity of other nations, and recognition of equal rights
for all. The Western World, President Roosevelt said, so cherishes this new idea
that it is prepared to meet force with force, if peace is threatened by dreams of
conquest from beyond the seas.
At noon a practical suggestion for better understanding was made by Sefior
Ernesto Montenegro, in a paper read by his son, advocating a common reader
in English, Spanish, Portuguese and French for the elementary schools of the
Americas. This suggestion and the explanation that accompanied it quickened
the imagination of all who heard it.
In the audience were many high school pupils, some of whom later in the
day participated in a declamation contest. The splendid performance of the four
who reached the finals showed clearly that Florida has a wealth of material in
her high school population and able teachers who are developing it. Every en-
couragement should be given to their manifold activities.
On Tuesday morning President Atwood of Clark University, with his usual
charm, illustrated by numerous examples the importance of geography to other
fields of'study- He represented the earth as a stage-orrwhieth actorsyeome and go,
and where the geographer can give expert knowledge of the setting in which
these actors play their parts. This setting, or environment, persists through the
ages and profoundly influences the actors. There is more to geography, he said,
than an aid in the analysis of economic problems. Geography is valuable to the
young as a cultural subject, and it will help both young and old to be in-
telligent observers of the physical world that lies about them.
Dr. Behrendt of the University of Panama, then presented with engaging
frankness the need for a solution of certain economic problems which stand in
the way of the extensive program of Pan Americanism now in operation. The
principal issues involved are 1) lack of purchasing power in Latin America and
2) growing nationalistic and socialistic tendencies in the countries to the south.
There is need for a common economic basis of cooperation along commercial
lines. The task of finding this common basis calls for extensive and thorough-
going research, a delving into the economic, social and administrative problems
now existing. Dr. Behrendt pointed out the lack of interest in Latin America on
the part of foundations and argued for the establishment of an Institute for Inter-
American Social and Economic Studies. He outlined in considerable detail
possible activities of such a center of research. Dr. Behrendt's paper is available








INTER-AMERICAN EDUCATIONAL AND CULTURAL CONFERENCE

in mimeographed form and deserves serious study by all concerned with the
great field it embraces.
In the afternoon Dr. Rollin S. Atwood, Director of the Institute of Inter-
American Affairs, explained the organization of the Institute and the program
offered to students of both continents. He explained the arrangement whereby
foreign students live in the same dormitory with Florida students, and gave a
glowing account of the excellent results derived therefrom. In conclusion he
asked a number of questions. The audience, however, was interested in question-
ing Dr. Atwood about the Latin American program at Florida and was reluctant
to fix its attention upon anything else. However, after some discussion it returned
to the questions asked by Dr. Atwood and expressed itself in favor of breaking
down inter-departmental lines and bringing together courses touching upon
Latin America into one flexible program, or inter-departmental major. It was
suggested that the University of Florida might act as a clearing house for infor-
mation about inter-departmental majors in other universities.
In the evening Dr. Rollin S. Atwood introduced the students from Latin
America in attendance at the University of Florida. Daniel Montenegro spoke
for the group, saying that he and his associates felt themselves a part of the
university, that they had had no difficulty in getting acquainted with North
American students, and readily made friends among them. Furthermore, they
also appreciated an opportunity to meet men from other parts of Latin America.
Mr. Montenegro's remarks were ample proof of the success of the Florida plan.
In the evening Dr. Jos6 Padin spoke eloquently of Puerto Rico as one of the
major supports of the bridge of islands connecting North and South America.
Puerto Rico was important to Spain for military reasons, and still is important
to the two Americas for the same cause. It has been, and still is, an experiment
station, a racial and cultural frontier. There the United States has a unique
opportunity to develop the two most important languages of America. Dr.
Padin's hope that this opportunity will not be neglected was shared by all present.
At the close of his speech Dr. Padin gave, for the benefit of the Latin Ameri-
can students, an account of his own experiences as a student in the United States,
and offered friendly advice to those who found themselves among foreign friends
whose loyalty was assured.
On Wednesday morning Dr. Sturgis E. Leavitt of the University of North
Carolina spoke of the necessity for a knowledge of geography and history for a
proper understanding of Spanish American literature. He mentioned the dif-
ficulties attending the teaching of this subject: lack of suitable histories of litera-
ture, the absence of critical studies (now being remedied in part .by the work of
Torres Rioseco and others), and the dialect and Indian words found in many
Spanish American novels. The teaching of Spanish American literature, he









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said, calls for a realistic presentation tempered with sympathy and understand-
ing. Spanish American literature at present is greater in promise than in
achievement.
Dr. Jos6 Padin advocated the broadening of the present linguistic policy
to meet the present situation. He argued for opening up the principal channels
of communication, Spanish and English, for the greatest number at the earliest
possible moment in the educational system. He would have a longer period of
exposure to the language, preferably beginning with two years in the Junior High
School and continuing through High School and College.
After prolonged discussion of these and other topics the following resolu-
tions were adopted:
1. "That wherever feasible consideration of Latin America should be
included in general courses in American history, geography and the social
sciences."
2. "That wherever possible department barriers be broken down so as to
include an inter-departmental major. That in this major a minimum require-
ment should be a reading knowledge and a knowledge of spoken Spanish. Th2t
wherever possible a survey of Spanish literature should precede the study of
Spanish American literature."
3. "That courses in Spanish American literature should use available
Spanish translations of Brazilian literature until such time as Portuguese and
Brazilian literature in the original can be introduced."
4. "That the idea of an exchange of students on the undergraduate level
be commended."
5. "That the idea of introducing a common reader, or series of readers,
dealing with both North and South America into the elementary schools of the
two continents be commended."
6. "That the activities of the Institute of Inter-American Affairs at the
University of Florida be endorsed."
Hope was expressed that the work begun at this conference might be con-
tinued by another conference at the end of two years.
It was further resolved:
1. "That the delegates to the Inter-American Educational and Cultural Con-
ference heartily congratulate the University of Florida on the success of the
Institute of Inter-American Affairs and express the hope that it will continue to
flourish and set an example to their institutions."
2. "That Dr. R. S. Atwood and his associates be congratulated on the ef-
ficient way in which the conference was organized, and that President John J.
Tigert and the University of Florida be sincerely thanked for their gracious









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hospitality and for the opportunity given the delegates to learn at first hand about
the work of the Institute of Inter-American Affairs."
Senior Obligado urged the University of Florida and other universities to
advertise their offerings to Latin American students. He assured his audience
that such advertising would meet with a favorable response.
In the afternoon Dr. Behrendt was asked about the existence of institutions
that are doing any part of the work outlined in his proposal of the day before.
He mentioned several whose work was of a regional character. President Atwood
called attention to other organizations whose activities were more inclusive. He
said that the foundations in the United States are already prepared to undertake
projects presented to them and expressed his belief that the work proposed by
Dr. Behrendt might be carried on by organizations already established.
Dr. Leavitt gave a survey of the papers presented at the conference. He then
commented upon what seemed an unusual opportunity to connect the work of the
high schools of Florida and that of the Institute of Inter-American Affairs into
an integrated program and make the University of Florida an outstanding center
for Spanish studies in the United States.
President Atwood and others voiced the thought that the conference was
a source of inspiration and profit to those who attended. It was therefore
resolved: "To express the sincere appreciation of the delegates to the Carnegie
Endowment for International Peace for making possible a conference of vital
importance not only to the University of Florida but to the colleges and uni-
versities of the Southeast. Due to the presence of distinguished Latin Americans
and a large group of Latin American students it is believed that the influence of
the conference will extend throughout the two Americas."
Professor Atwood of the University of Florida thanked the delegates for
their help in the work undertaken by Florida and expressed the hope that the
work thus undertaken could continue. The meeting adjourned.

Richard F. Behrendt
John E. Englekirk
Sturgis E. Leavitt, Chairman,
Committee on Implications of the
Conference.








UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA


JORGE OBLIGADO
Argentine Poet and Journalist


EDUCATIONAL AND CULTURAL ASPECTS OF ARGENTINA
Jorge Obligado

N ORDER TO understand the Republic of Argentina, it is necessary to remember
the ethnic and geographic characteristics that assign to it a very special place
within the great Latin American family. Its large territory extends from the
sub-tropical region down to the frozen "Tierra del Fuego," including thus all
climates and being favorable to a great diversity of cultivations. The central
region, the richest and most populated, is an immense treeless plain, limited on
the north by the mountains of Bolivia and the forests of the Chaco; on the south
by the high mountains of Patagonia and on the west by the Andes Cordillera.
Separated in this way by natural barriers from the rest of the continent, it forms
a colossal amphitheater, symbolically open to the sea, that is to say, to European
civilization, as an invitation to crystallize in its ample lands, the "pampas,"
transcendental and heroic things.
In fact, the last act of the drama of the conquest of America was represented
there. It was there that the last Indians were exterminated, and it was also there,
that the Spaniard, forgetting his fantastic golden dreams, returned to milk the
cows and to plow the land. It is impossible to imagine a country that could be
more adaptable to colonization. The climate was mild; there were neither
dangerous fevers nor dangerous animals; it was not necessary to dig deep to find
water; the few horses and cows brought on the ships reproduced surprisingly









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quickly, so much as to form immense hordes, wandering idly at the disposal of
whoever cared to catch them. The "pampa," like certain souls, had no other
defense than its immensity. It had no aridity to offer as natural defense against
invasion; nor did hunger act as a repellant, because in its pastures were plenty
of rabbits and quail; ducks were abundant in the shoals, and the lagoons were
rich in fish.
The ease with which communications are established in the plains, the
powerful incentive that a limitless landscape exercises upon vagabond spirits,
influenced our national psychology ever since the very beginning. They checked
that differentiation and stagnation so characteristic of those towns which grow
almost isolated in the valleys. The slow carts dragged by oxen patiently con-
quered the distances, and under their heavy wheels, all excessive regionalism was
flattened. From Buenos Aires, the customs freshly arrived from Europe spread
over the most isolated corners. Modern Argentina still keeps that physiognomy
of an open country, and therein lies our greatness, and perhaps our weakness
also.
The plain facilitated the conquest, because the lack of thicket and
strategic defiles kept the Indians from practicing a war of ambush, and in an
open field the fire arms imposed their superiority. The tribes that lived in the
present Argentine territory had a very rudimentary civilization, and that is why
their dialects and customs did not last long; nor did they influence the Spaniards
perceptibly. These customs, absorbed by them, gave the white race more resis-
tance and adaptation, and allowed them to get close to the soil. Some scattered
drops of Indian blood were almost always found in the "gaucho," that strange
figure that still exists in poetry and in the popular imagination, but that has
disappeared in reality.
The problem of educating that scarce and scattered people was not seriously
faced in the colonial period. This period saw established in the seventeenth
century the University of C6rdoba, the second in South America and of a char-
acter exclusively theological and metaphysical, and which educated only lawyers
and clergymen; there were also founded some primary schools adjacent to
the convents, as well as a high school in Buenos Aires.
After the revolution, the Argentine government founded in 1812 the Uni-
versity of Buenos Aires, but soon the state of anarchy into which ambitious
leaders had fallen impeded the development of learning. It was not until after
1852, date of the fall of Rosas, the tyrant who served his country by getting
rid of all others, that popular instruction resumed activities, due to the zeal of
one of our most distinguished statesmen, Domingo Faustino Sarmiento. In 1840
Sarmiento embarked on a study trip to Europe and the United States, and upon
his return he published in Chile his book "Educaci6n Popular," in which he








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advanced ideas of surprising amplitude and penetration, many of which are
bases of teaching at the present time, but which at that period were not practiced
even in the most cultured countries. Years later Sarmiento returned to the
United States as Minister Plenipotentiary of Argentina, and he continued study-
ing teaching problems, allying himself with Horace Mann, the great American
educator. When a little later he became President of the Republic, he devoted
his major efforts to creating and encouraging public instruction in every possible
way, using teachers, books, and plans which he brought from the United States
for that purpose. Succeeding governments continued this policy, as is clearly
seen when one realizes that a ninth of the total national revenue is devoted to
instruction, and that there are two teachers to each soldier.
As a consequence of the influence of Sarmiento, the primary schools fol-
lowed the North American plan, while the secondary and superior schools have
adopted French methods. In practice, this mixture excellently responds to the
psychology of the pupils, because the Argentine child, strong and noisy, full
of life, passionately fond of mechanics and football, is very much like his fellow
Americans, but on growing, his inclinations generally bring him closer to Euro-
pean culture, which he assimilates with remarkable facility.
At the present time there are in Argentina about twelve thousand primary
schools with sixty-two thousand teachers who are educated in normal schools.
All of these institutions follow the same plan: attendance is obligatory and
free. Attention is given to the health of the child as much as to his education;
there are numerous parks for physical exercises, vacation camps and dining-
rooms specially built for the pupils. Schools are usually located in modern
buildings and according to the principal rules of hygiene, and in the large cities
the school buildings tend to acquire monumental proportions. Nevertheless, the
most interesting ones are the rural schools, lost in the immensity of the "pampas,"
in the midst of endless wheat, corn and flax plantations, or rising alone in the
vast regions devoted to cattle-raising. Under the peaceful white and blue flag,
children of all races are sheltered, those of Italian origin predominating in the
agricultural colonies. All, in white uniforms, write with difficulty the words
dictated by the teacher, and the black hair and olive-colored face of some Indian
descendent and the golden head of some girl whose clear eyes show distinctly her
Germanic origin together eagerly lean over a paper.
Under the shade of the "ombf," the classic tree of the "pampas," enduring
domestic horses wait patiently, the majority of them with a piece of lamb-skin
instead of.a saddle, and fight away flies with their long and restless tails. When
school is out, the crowd rushes to the horses in disorder and infantile joy. They
help each other up, or after climbing fences, they drop on the backs of the horses;
still others get up,by using the back legs and tail of the horse as a stairway. -They









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leave in the midst of a cloud of dust, challenging one another to race, at a rough
gallop of the fat little horse or the one-eyed mare. At times, three little brothers
ride the old horse that pulled the plow for many years; now the animal is use-
less for rough work but it contributes to the spiritual sowing, which is still more
important.
Secondary and higher education follow, as I have already said, the European
plan. The "Colegio Nacional" or "Liceo" is the equivalent of the High School
or Junior College. The studies of specialization begin in the University, for
which the "colegio" has given general and solid foundation leading to the degree
of "Bachiller," which is required to enter college. Another group is comprised
of special and professional schools: Commerce, Industry, Agriculture, Cattle-
raising, and those that specialize in the study of wines and forests. Very inter-
esting also are the night-schools for adults, where laborers and employees can
complete their education.
There are five universities, and twenty-five faculties connected with them.
Just as do the "colegios nacionales," these have modern and excellent locations,
comparable in many cases with the best of Europe and North America.
The "colegios" and universities of the State are devoted exclusively to study.
They do not monopolize the social and sporting activities of the students, who live
in their own homes and some times scarcely attend university courses, preferring
to study privately or in public libraries. This does not keep them from passing
their courses in the final examinations. This freedom, added to the gratuitous
character of all higher learning, enables many young people without funds, but
possessors of a firm will-power, to hold a job and at the same time obtain a
degree. Such a system promotes the development of personality and the ac-
quisition at an early age of the experiences of the world, which later will be of
inestimable aid in the struggle for life. Our universities, situated in the large
cities, take part in the activities of their communities; the student who attends
them shares, during his school years, in the environment where he will work in
the near future. Thus are mitigated unsuitable features of specialization, in-
dispensible in the age in which we live, and the dominant interest of each student
is fused with the interests of the environment. In several branches of human
knowledge, the Argentine specialists have proved to be inferior to none, but the
illustrious physician or the audacious architect delights in the privacy of his
home, in the reading of poems or philosophical books that the preparatory
school and the elasticity of the college atmosphere have taught him to appreciate.
On the other hand, our official institutions of learning do not have the
charm and tradition of Cambridge and Oxford. Two essential things are lacking
in them: social life and nature. That is why the years of study do not linger in
our memories as an oasis of peace, as a symbol of youth and joy, but rather as a








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difficult period oppressed with pecuniary difficulties, which when compared with
our maturity generally appears less agreeable.
When the South American intellectual visits the colleges and universities
of which the United States are justly proud, he would love with all his soul to
return to his youth in order to attend them. How wonderful it would be to isolate
oneself in the decisive years of adolescence from the hostile world, and grow in
the favorable atmosphere of the hospitable garden like another plant, nourished
by science and art, living together with like spirits, always ready to comment on
the same lecture, the noble emulation that sports produce; the theater, in which
one can be, upon one's own predilection; the author, the player or the public;
the immediate or neighboring presence of a woman, who rewards all our efforts
with her idyllic smile, are without doubt, the principal causes that have given
American youth that optimism and that capacity for work with which they
astonish the world.
When there broke out in Buenos Aires the revolution of 1810, which was
to end the Spanish domination of the provinces of La Plata, the culture of the
upper classes was inflexible and classical, because it was formed in that theologi-
cal university I have mentioned. Literature and Art, which are nourished by
liberty, languished, although not as much, perhaps, as under the North American
Puritans. Since the regime of the Colony had been essentially conservative and
intolerant, the rebellion that demolished it was, consequently, of liberal tendency,
well executed by men educated under the ancient system. For that reason there
appeared many contradictions which complicated the life of the new Republic.
The first years of our national existence were too turbulent to foment cul-
ture advantageously. Nevertheless, the "Colegio Nacional de Buenos Aires"
was created and many essays of recognized merit were published, but the pen was
always dictated to by politics, and it was more an arm of combat rather than the
chisel of an artist. Once the Spaniards were expelled, the ambitious leaders
engineered the civil war, which was long and painful. The country was nearly
split apart into little states, something that did not actually happen due to the
physical configuration of the country and race unity; the leaders were forced to
submit to the desire of the people for union, although this unity was made possible
by a tyrant who defeated the others. These dark years of tyranny appeared to be
unfortunate for culture, but this was not actually the case, for they produced a
reaction which was highly beneficial. The great men of Argentina were exiled
in Montevideo, Brazil, Bolivia and Chile. From there, through books and news-
papers, they worked hard to overthrow Rosas. Poverty and banishment inflamed
their minds, fertilized with the contact of other men and other ideas, and when
the tyrant fell, this generation todk over the reins of the Government, bringing









INTER-AMERICAN EDUCATIONAL AND CULTURAL CONFERENCE

along to its country broad and generous concepts which helped to place the
country on the road to prosperity.
Thus, in the second half of the nineteenth century, Argentina was open "to
all men of good will who wished to live in its land." These words of the constitu-
tion had a prompt response. Three million Europeans arrived a little later,
changing fundamentally the physiognomy of the country, sweeping the last
vestige of colonization, and acclimatizing themselves with surprising facility to
their new home-country. With the help of the natives, they built on the shore of
the great river the second largest Latin city in the world.
The influence of that immigrant wave on our culture was not immediately
noticed, because the majority of that people were illiterate and were devoted to
the cultivation of fields, to domestic service and to commerce on a small scale.
But if it did not play a direct and important part in the production of representa-
tive works, it was largely responsible for the great assimilation of different
foreign ideological doctrines. The children of those immigrants were naturally
interested in the literature and art of their native countries and they demanded
books that commented on them and slowly they made them penetrate into the
national conscience to which they already belonged. At the same time, the de-
scendents of ancient families did not want to be left behind, and they also read
everything that they could get in their hands.
That cosmopolitan tendency of our culture was fomented by a spiritual
estrangement from Spain, which was initiated during the Revolution and persisted
until the end of the last century. And by the way, I should say that in my opinion,
the English-speaking countries are closer related to England than we are to Spain.
Various causes are responsible for this, the principal one being that England
knew how to preserve its prestige while Spain lost it through bad governments
and disastrous wars; another fact was the limited Hispanic contribution to the
material progress which characterized that epoch, a fact which forced one to
search in foreign books for material to broaden knowledge in any scientific field.
Only in the past few years has Spain influenced Argentine thought to any great
extent, and the heroism displayed by both parties in the ideological war which it
endured has made us feel proud of our Mother Country. Nevertheless, until
recently, this suggestive difference could be observed: the American, in his first
trip to Europe, almost always went to London, while the Argentine invariably
went to Paris.
This does not indicate, however, an intellectual dependence on France, but
simply that she, with her accessible language into which are translated all the
important works, and with the clarity and amplitude of judgment which charac-
terizes her, was the vehicle we used to come in close contact with the philosophy and
literature of Europe. It is true that, like all young countries, we did not avoid








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the sin of imitation; all the fashions, all the schools had an echo-fictitious
sometimes in that corner of the world; but from imitative essays, dead before
being born, and from the prolific "pampa" sprang literary works whose original-
ity has not been excelled anywhere. An example in poetry of what I mean is
Martin Fierro, a poem that tells of the life of the "gaucho;" this has been trans-
lated into English by Owen for the benefit of those who are not acquainted with
the Spanish language; and in prose, Facundo, Don Segundo Sombra and others.
Immigration gave our country a particular characteristic because it poured
over the old Spanish element a mixture of different nationalities-European, all
of them. Argentina does not have real race problems; wherever the Indian has
not been absorbed entirely, he is not far from it; the negro has disappeared
completely, thanks to the generous spirit of the Republic, in which one of the
first acts was to abolish slavery, disregard prejudices and discourage aversions.
Since the second generation a great power of assimilation has caused foreigners
to be absorbed into the national life. Just as in the case with the United States,
the children of immigrants feel ashamed of the nationality of their fathers-and..
generally they even forget their native tongue.
Another characteristic of the educated Argentine is his passion for travel-
ing. There is hardly anyone who, on being able to afford it, has not visited the
principal European capitals, returning later with a broader criterion and new
doctrines that he applies in accomplishing his work and in cultivating his lands.
According to their respective specialties, professional men go to foreign univer-
sities in Germany, France, Spain or the United States in order to improve them-
selves. The outstanding personalities are a point of strong interest to our
writers; Sarmiento, before becoming President, wrote a biography of Lincoln.
But the best example of intelligent cosmopolitanism is found in the news-
papers. The Argentine newspapers are inferior to English and American news-
papers only in size, but perhaps they exceed these in general information, due
to the inextinguishable curiosity of our people to know of everything that happens
in the world. The Sunday editions bring all the scientific and literary news and
commentaries, and offer contributions of the principal thinkers -and statesmen
of Europe paid at the price of gold. Subjects that in the United States are pub-
lished exclusively in professional magazines, and seem to reach only a very few
people, are ordinarily found in the Argentine newspapers, a characteristic of
that spirit of anxious research. Thus, we see in one age t he technical details of
television, or the latest improvements of the Diesel motor, and in the other, a
study of Byron and a poem of Acropolis.
That amplitude is not limited to cultural pects only. It is also seen in an
eager desire for progress which, as in the United States,: erippugeS' the farmer,
manufacturer, the cattle-raiser. It is a real pleasure to visit the fields arid see








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how modern methods are applied in the cultivation of-hay and corn in Buenos
Aires, in the sugar-cane in Tucumin, and in the different herbs of .the distant
Chaco. The farmer visits his fields in his latest model automobile; the field
laborer also has his Ford and radio. Farms have electric lights, milk-skimmers,
pumps and mechanical saws. Truck wheels first rode on dusty and muddy roads,
and now a white strip of cement crosses the fields. Near the river loom the huge
grain elevators, and the heavy barge, loaded with fruits, crosses the canal.
Farmers make scientific crossings to obtain the finest qualities of meat through-
out the world; the same thing is done with the seeds until the most appropriate
place is found for planting. And as if nature were willing to help us, the com-
bustible material that we need is found here and there in rich oil wells.
The influence of Saxon customs is very visible in the passion of the people
for sports. The surroundings of Buenos Aires show innumerable tennis courts,
football and polo fields. The river banks are frequented by thousands of
swimmers; over the turbid waters run the white sail-boats, the speed-boats and
the sophisticated yacht. The practice of sports is changing the concentrated and
slightly melancholy character that we inherited from our Spanish ancestors;
women have more liberties each day, and their relations with men are taking that
aspect of cordial fellowship which contributes so much to the delightful and
charming life in the northern countries.
The advantages of that open attitude towards all new ideas and customs
were proved during the last century, and Argentina owes to that the prominent
place which it occupies today. Another thing is happening at the present moment,
when opposed and intransigent ideologies incite to war in Europe, fomenting
suspicion and hatred in the hearts of all men. Those currents could not be stopped
from penetrating into the vast haven of the "pampas," nor prevented from pro-
ducing dangerous spots there. Problems that over there have no reason to exist,
agitate and divide the best amongst us because the intellectuals, always restless,
adopt, almost invariably, one or the other. "Rome or Moscow," we are told in
books or in our class-rooms, but happily, the great majority of our people have
the good sense to answer, "Buenos Aires."
Immigration has become a danger also, since individuals and races of those
exiled in masses from certain countries are difficult to assimilate. The Govern-
ment has limited it with a severity more apparent than real because what is really
desired is necessary selectbn.
Fine culture was for many years a privilege of a select minority in Argen-
tina, who liked to cultivate refined conversation in the traditional salon, in which
they discussed transcendental problems with elegant conciseness. Little by little
the children of immigrants started appearing in the class-rooms and in editorial
rooms and threatened to dislodge the aristocracy. Many people, with more









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talent than education, took advantage of certain newspapers to work for causes
and doctrines that were not always recommendable and patriotic. It is natural,
therefore, that a reactionary movement be needed at this time, a movement that
starting from the upper classes finds support -in the middle classes, tending to
affirm in all directions the ancient traditions against the invaders. Unfortunately
that movement goes against all foreigners as a whole. Like a flag of combat the
reaction stirs a fervent catholicism and an approach to Spain. In many instances,
their ideals are confused with those of Fascism.
Such a reaction is logical and necessary, but, as its cause, it is lamentable
because Argentine culture was acquiring a superior serenity and is now per-
turbed by secondary ideals that are foreign to our national life. Again the pen
is used as instrument of combat, and again hatred and animosity separate those
who should fight together for the greatness of their own country. The explana-
tion is that some of them have too much foreign blood to witness with passive
indifference the struggle in which their own blood is shed.
The best antidote for those tendencies, which I see are also disturbing factors
here, would be a greater consciousness of American destiny. In the sketch that
I have made of my own country appear certain affinities, in my opinion, with
the great country of the North. Some of them are, without doubt, common to
all America, others are exclusive, but I believe that as a whole they are not less
than those that unite us with the European nations from which we come, al-
though racial differences and difficulties of language do not permit their dis-
covery at the beginning.
The greatness of the United States admits no possible comparison, but the
Argentine does not feel as a foreigner in that land, because he finds that each
one of its citizens has the same love for progress, the same eagerness to become
outstanding regardless of the greatest sacrifices, and an analogous amplitude of
views. It is well that we know each other. The United States have brilliantly
resolved problems that for us are still a nightmare, but on the other hand, in the
racial problem for instance, have we not found on the other side of the Equator
a more satisfactory solution? Our two countries have complementary virtues;
that a better understanding would permit to assimilate in certain instances with-
out detriment to our respective and fixed personalities.
Let us avoid the danger of categorical and fixed definitions, always suspect
and still more so when they have to do with countries that, because they are young,
are constantly changing. The United States do not deserve any longer the title
of a materialistic country; the great majority of Latin America has a right to
protest when it is called retarded or undeveloped. Now that the roads to Europe
are closed, let us come to the North, let us go to the South, let-us know each other,
let us understand each other. Let us visit not only the cities, but also the little








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humble towns; let us go inside the farmer's hut, the worker's home, the
employee's office. Let us not feel contented with the dry documentation of books,
nor with the picturesque, but altered vision, of picture shows; let us see per-
sonally with our own eyes. Let us visit universities, let us fall in love with our
feminine classmates. For nobody knows a country until he has loved one of its
daughters. That which is different will bring us astonishment, and more astonish-
ment yet that which is similar. First, curiosity will lead us to search for those
things that are typical, then the hearts will lead us to search for those things
that are common to us all. And when on returning to our respective countries,
we hear persons who have never been out of their own country commenting the
positivism of the Yankee or the laziness and cruelty of the South American
natives, we shall smile surreptitiously because we already know that there shall
be but one America, inhabited by men searching for analogous ideals, fighting
and loving and suffering the same as we do.








UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA


EDUCATIONAL AND CULTURAL ASPECTS OF PANAMA

Richard F. Behrendt

T SEEMS to me appropriate to explain to you why I am here now, because I was
announced for later in the day; second, why I appear on the program of this
Conference several times. I think I ought to make it clear that this repeated ap-
pearance is not due to any prominence or special vanity on my own part, but
rather to the very unfortunate fact that the President, or more exactly, Rector of
the National University of Panama, Dr. Octavio M6ndez Pereira, who had planned
to come to this Conference originally and had been scheduled for this same
address, has seen himself prevented from coming at this particular time. He
regretted it very much, and has asked me especially to convey to you the regards
and greetings of the University of Panama. Dr. M6ndez Pereira would have been
a much better person to address you on the topic of my present address because
he is a Panamanian himself and as Dr. Tigert has said, I am not. Besides, he is
one of the most prominent Panamanians of today, and the best qualified man
to deal with the cultural and educational problems of his country.
I myself, of course, cannot claim any authority in this regard, but only an
experience of five years of teaching in Panama and in contact with people from
practically all pursuits of life in this very interesting country. There are two
other very distinguished and competent speakers scheduled on this program of
the Conference in relation with two similar addresses on two of the most im-
portant countries: Argentina and Venezuela. Since I am not a Panamanian my-
self, and in view of the fact that Panama is a very small country, I feel myself
naturally at a loss. All of this will make it sufficiently clear why I am suffering
from an inferiority complex on this occasion.
Panama is the country with the smallest population of all independent
nations of the Americas. The population is only about 600,000. We are just
having our population census in Panama, and we all hope that this number will
have increased during the last ten years since the last census was taken. In spite
of this smallness, Panama is undoubtedly one of the most interesting and one of the
most important countries in the New World because of its especially important
and unique geographic location. Panama has been considered from the day of
its discovery by the Spaniards as one of the centers of traffic and world com-
munications, and with only a relatively short interruption of one century, it has
remained in this position.
Panama is a very interesting country from several points of view; that is,
educational, sociological, cultural, and, of course, economic. Panama is a coun-
try which has been discovered, so to speak, twice. It was discovered, of course,
by the Spaniards in about 1500, and it was discovered for a second time for








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western civilization by those rather doubtful gentlemen who were engaged in
the California Gold Rush in 1848 and '49. During the century preceding that
second discovery, Panama had relapsed into a state of economic and cultural
coma or decay due to the fact that the regular trips of the Spanish galleon fleet
had abandoned it in 1749. Panama had to be "re-discovered" about the middle
of the nineteenth century; this opened the new era of economic activity of the
Isthmus, and led to the Panama Canal and to the final establishment of the
Panama Canal Zone. The separation of Panama from the Republic of Colombia
occurred in 1903 and was, of course, largely, although not completely, the out-
come of the movement for the construction of the Canal.
There are many people who claim that Panama is an ideal place for Inter-
American relations-not only commercial, but also cultural. This might well
be. It might well be that Panama offers such a possibility; I would not dare to
formulate a definite opinion on this. However, in the past, Panama has never
played a prominent role in cultural life. I think I must say that frankly, and I
think every Panamanian would agree with me in this respect. The Spaniards
who came to Panama were in general not interested in cultural activities, but
rather in military and commercial pursuits. The climate of Panama, and es-
pecially health conditions of those times, did not exactly encourage the settlement
of elements who were not primarily interested in money-making and in military
defenses. It so happened that during the Spanish and Colombian time up to the
beginning of the present century, Panama has remained decidedly backward from
the cultural point of view, in comparison with centers of cultural life in South
America such as BogotA which used to call itself the Athens of America, Lima,
Mexico City, C6rdoba in Argentina, Caracas, Havana, and to some extent, Santo
Domingo.
There have been always during the past centuries only a few private schools
in Panama City, while there was no public instruction at all in the rest of the
country, which remained very sparsely populated. The very few private schools
which did exist served a very limited number of sons or daughters of the most
distinguished families of the capital. They were maintained exclusively by
religious orders. There was a university founded in the eighteenth century as one
of the many religious colleges; it was founded by a very interesting man-one of
the most interesting men in the cultural history of the country. His name was
Castro de Luna Victoria. He was Bishop of Panama-the oldest Episcopal See of
the American Continent, and he was at the same time the first, and I believe,
only colored native in America ever to be appointed to an Episcopal See in the
Spanish Empire. This outstanding man founded the University of Panama about
1750. Unfortunately, this University was very short-lived because of the expul-
sion of the Jesuits from America, which happened shortly after that. So this









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University could not realize much activity, nor did it leave any marks in the
cultural development of the continent.
I am afraid there have hardly been any very distinguished political or
educational figures in Panama during the time of the struggle for independence
from Spain. Only toward the middle of the nineteenth century some very interest-
ing and intellectual figures appear. The most prominent of them are Justo
Arosemena and Pablo Arosemena, who distinguished themselves not only as
lawyers, but also as educators, statesmen, and writers on different subjects. Later,
toward the end of the nineteenth century and during the first two decades of the
present century, the most outstanding man of the Isthmus was undoubtedly
Belisario Porras, distinguished as revolutionary and statesman, and later on
several occasions as President of the Republic, but distinguished also as a very
active University teacher in different countries. His autobiography, Trozos de
mi vida, is a very interesting book and descriptive of the social, economic, and
educational conditions which prevailed on the Isthmus during the latter part of
the nineteenth century. Another book of his is Las campanas del Istmo, a descrip-
tion of the several revolutionary campaigns which he himself organized and led.
A companion of Porras, Eusebio A. Morales, distinguished himself by his re-
markable writings on historical, juridical and economic aspects of Panama. His
writings have been reprinted and edited in two volumes, published in Panama
in 1926.
Among the poets which the Isthmus has produced in the more recent times,
the best known are probably: Ortensia de Icaza, who is very popular on the
Isthmus because of a particular poem called El Cerro de Anc6n, which deals with
Anc6n Hill, well known to all visitors of the Isthmus as a landmark of the
Pacific entrance to the Canal; Ricardo Mir6, another important poet of Panama,
died just a few weeks ago.
When the Republic was founded in 1903 there was practically no public
school system. In Colombian times, during most of the nineteenth century, the
educational system had lapsed into a state of almost complete abandonment due
to the limited interest which the government at Bogota paid and because of the
almost continuous revolutions and civil'wars in most parts of the Republic. So
the founders and statesmen of the Republic had to build up everything from the
very beginning. In taking into account this fact, we have to admit that during
the last thirty-five years of Panamanian independence something really remark-
able has been achieved in spite of all odds and difficulties with which these
activities had to deal.
The first institution to be established was a complex of secondary schools,
called The National Institute, in Panama City. This comprised and still com-
prises three different secondary schools: one so-called Liceo, comparable








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probably more or less to a high school in this country-; the second section is a
normal school for men; the third section is a commercial school on the secondary
high school level. This National Institute has played a decisive role in the
educational development of the young Republic; it was established and developed
largely with the assistance of teachers and educators from the United States and
Germany who came to the Isthmus in 1907 and 1909. Some of them stayed for
about ten years, and at the present time there is only one left.
Besides this Instituto Nacional, there exist several relatively well developed
other secondary schools in form of a Professional School for Women in Panama
City, as well as the Escuela de Artes y Oficios, a kind of secondary technological
institute for men, and several normal schools. The training of teachers is given
on the secondary level and not on the college level, as in this country. The chief
Normal School of Panama has had a long and distinguished service. It functioned
up to a year ago in Panama City, but was moved to a small town in the interior,
Santiago de Veraguas, by the late President Juan Dem6stenes Arosemena, who
built in that little town something which is now recognized as one of the most
remarkable institutions of its kind in any part of Latin America. It has a real
campus comparable to that of similar institutions in this country, and is formed
by about a half-dozen buildings and equipped with very good laboratories and
dormitories. This central Normal School for Women, as I said before, is a
secondary school, too. I should also mention the School of Nurses, which is
attached to the State Hospital of Santo Tomis in Panama City, and which owes
its foundation to the aid of the Rockefeller Foundation. As you know, the
medical finances of the Rockefeller Foundation do very valuable sanitation and
public health work in several parts of Latin America. In Panama is located at
the present time the headquarters for the medical work of the Rockefeller Founda-
tion for the entire Caribbean area. This School of Nurses is generally recognized
as the best and almost the only one of its kind in Central America, including
even Colombia and up to a few years ago, I believe, Venezuela.
Now the University is about the only thing I am qualified to speak about.
The University of Panama is a young institution, founded in 1935 through
the initiative of the then president of the Republic, Dr. Harmodio Arias, and
under the leadership of Dr. Octavio M6ndez Pereira, who has been its President
ever since. The University of Panama was planned at the very beginning as an
essentially modern institution which differs in several respects from the usual
and traditional type of the Latin American university. In the first place, from
the very beginning we have had full time professors. That might not sound very
revolutionary or exciting to you, but in most countries of Latin America it is
really something new because in most of those universities the professors are
supposed to give only a small part of their time to their class work, by teaching








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one, or perhaps two, classes of three hours per week, and for the rest of their
time they are expected to attend to their public office or to their work as lawyers,
physicians, newspapermen, etc. Now this state of affairs in general is not very
convenient, because it makes very difficult a really close cooperation and educa-
tional contact between the faculty and the student body. Besides, it does not
encourage research work and the development of the kind of institution which
is really adapted to the special requirements and possibilities of the environment
of which the University is a part. For these reasons, those responsible for the
University of Panama planned to have full time professors, and they have carried
out this plan as far as the limited finances of the country permit.
There are several foreign scholars from Europe and the United States who
joined the faculty of the University upon its establishment and who have con-
tinued their work up to now. We all have tried to do not only the regular and
usual kind of instruction and teaching work, but at the same time to develop a
certain kind of research work, because in most Latin American countries you
hardly can teach something of immediate usefulness to your students without
first digging up, compiling and presenting facts relating to the actual conditions
of the country. Up to now there has been so very little research done, especially
in the fields in which I am primarily interested, that is, the economic and social
life of these countries, that anyone who is called upon to teach in these fields and
subjects is obliged to jump, so to speak, into some kind of research work at once.
So we have tried to make this jump less adventurous and a little more promising
than it would have been otherwise by setting up a very small and modest research
institution called the Institute for Social and Economic Research with the close
cooperation, of course, of our Panama colleges and several of the institutions
and scholars in this country, for which we are very thankful. This enabled us
to put up a collection of publications and other informative materials relating
to economic and social policies, especially of the American countries. The re-
search work has been very modest up to now. We have been able to bring out a
few publications in Spanish and in English as well, and even these would have
been impossible if we had not been able to count on the cooperation of our
students. We established seminars at the very beginning. We have obliged our
students after the first year of instruction to present us papers dealing with some
particular detailed problem of their own country with which they happen to be
particularly familiar from personal experience and work. This was facilitated
by the fact that most of our students are part-time students, which is in general
unfortunate, as they can give only a very limited part of their time to the Univer-
sity. Almost 50% of our students are teachers themselves, either in elementary
or secondary schools; the rest are public employees or employees of private









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business enterprises; a few are employees of the Canal Zone, North Americans
who know Spanish.
I am rather ashamed that I shall have to refer so much to my own school,
the Facultad de Ciencias Sociales y Econ6micas, which can be translated as School
of Public and Business Administration. By establishing this school, which has
been one of the first of its kind in Latin America, we have partially broken the
almost general monopoly of the lawyers in Latin America. There has been such
a monopoly, which means that more practical and less formalistic studies con-
cerning the economic and social conditions and requirements of the countries
have been neglected to a very large extent, not so much in the more developed
countries of the south like Argentina, Chile and Uruguay, but especially in the
countries of Central America and the northern part of South America. By set-
ting up an efficient teaching and research institution we thought it could be of
help to the whole country, given and devoted to the training of a certain number
of. technicians in public administration and in business, because that is exactly
what is lacking in most Latin American countries, and what is more needed than
ever before in order to assure productive and satisfactory further development
of those young and potentially rich nations.
Now, of course, our work has been not at all perfectly satisfactory up to
now. We had to struggle with quite a few difficulties, especially with the lack
of funds, because the government is called upon not only to finance our particular
school, but at the same time the science departments with their laboratories that
already are considered among the best in Latin America, the school of law, and
the school of humanities, which is also in charge of the training of secondary
school teachers.
We granted just now in January in our School of Social and Economic
Sciences the degree of Licenciado de Comercio, comparable to the Bachelor of
Business Administration which is conferred by the business schools of this
country, and the degree of Licenciado de Ciencias Sociales y Econ6micas, that is,
Bachelor of Public Administration. We hope, although we are rather doubtful
about the possibility, to be able to develop some kind of graduate work leading
to the Ph.D. degree, although I myself am not convinced of the necessity of
conferring Ph.D. degrees in a so young and relatively little developed institution.
I should add that the general situation of Panama is extremely interesting
for the sociologist and in some respects has not favored so far a very intensive
educational activity. All of you who have ever lived in the low lands of the tropics
will realize that the tropical climate is not exactly encouraging for intensive
intellectual activity. Besides, there is a great ethnic, national and linguistic
diversity on the Isthmus of Panama, because this relatively small country has
been exposed for the last four centuries to influences from practically all parts









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of the world. We have now not only a relatively large number of North Ameri-
cans living in the Canal Zone and in central parts of the Republic, but also a
considerable number of Negroes-English-speaking Negroes, who came to the
Isthmus of Panama in order to cooperate in the construction of the Panama rail-
road and the Panama Canal. The native tongue of these Negroes is English and
partly French, because they came from the colonies in the Caribbean. They
usually speak rather poor Spanish, but of course it is very difficult to adapt them
to the Panamanian environment and nationality, because they are inclined to stick
to their British or French nationality and materially depend rather on the North
Americans in the Canal Zone than on the Panamanians. These Negroes constitute
a difficult element to deal with from the point of view of the national interests
and tendencies of the Panamanians.
There are other foreign influences like the appreciable number of Chinese
and Japanese living in Panama, who sometimes are rather difficult problematic
elements from the point of view of adaptation and adjustment. Besides, of course,
there are about 20,000 North Americans from the United States living in the
Canal Zone-people who influence by their high standards of living the habits
and outlooks of a relatively large sector of the nation. And I should add quite
frankly that these influences have not always been helpful or advantageous from
the educational point of view. Naturally the average native who does not know
the United States and is not likely to acquire more ample knowledge of the United
States in a short time, sees only the surface and sees only those representatives
with whom he comes into contact, and who are not always typical or best repre-
sentatives of the people. This is a problem of immediate good neighborliness
presented on this very narrow strip of land, which has some bearing on the
educational and cultural aspect of the country itself.








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A COMMON READER FOR THE AMERICAS
Ernesto Montenegro
OR FIFTY YEARS now the word Panamericanism has been dinned in the ears
of the peoples of the United States and Latin America, first as a political
motto pointing to the formation of an "Amphyctionic" group of nations
vaguely resembling those'leagues of Greek republics which at one time or
another sprang up to ward off the invasions from Asia, back in the early morning
of History. When Panamericanism gained consistence owing to physical pro-
pinquity, the Pan American Conferences began to give shape to political co-
operation in the Western Hemisphere, and finally one permanent institution, the
Pan American Union, made the purpose even more articulate by its becoming a
center for the steady interchange of educational and cultural forces which are
already giving good promise of welding effectively the minds of the Americas
in a.not distant future.
It is only fair to say that, as long as Panamericanism remained a political
slogan, it raised a very moderate enthusiasm and less confidence in the lands to
the South; but as soon as we began to perceive a current of thought going from
the United States to survey our social conditions, our intellectual achievements
and the;artistic worth of our peoples down there, a quick response and cordial
appreciation were the immediate reactions in all Latin America. Slowly it began
to adumbrate in our consciousness that there is something more than commercial
advantages and political self-interest in bringing our peoples into closer inter-
course, for there are abroad the vast reaches of the Western World, forces both
of a physical and of a spiritual nature that have been moulding us all into what
will one day become a new Homo Americanus-perhaps a new type of humanity
and certainly a novel pattern of civilization.
We hope and believe that this international brotherhood of peoples will
not club together "against" any other nation or group of nations, less than any-
thing against the Europe that nurtured us all by giving us language, culture and
beliefs. But three or four centuries of intimate contact with the soil of the New
World gave our parent generations a new spirit and a fresh hope, which soon
crystallized in the self-reliant character and ambitious outlook of a homespun,
corn-fed democracy.
Thus the fact stands out that we are not Europeans anymore, but Americanos,
every one of us, for, as Ellsworth Huntington would have put it, our substance
has been formed out of the climate, the soil and the fruits of this land. All that
is now needed is that the process derived from such physical intimacy reach the
dominion of the spirit by means of the creative influences of books and works
of art that express our own life. This is why I bring before this assembly the









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proposition that what is most needed today is a Common Reader for the younger
generations of the whole of America, North and South, in which every child
should find the information together with the inspiration embracing the vast
continent in which we have been born.
Early in the formation of the Latin American nationalities, men of large
vision took care to prepare school primers under the common name of "Ameri-
can Reader," in which they wrote warmly and simply of the natural wonders of
our continent, the healthy and vigorous life of the settler, the dim and grandiose
past of our land, of which so many lofty ruins were still silent witnesses. We read
in these common readers of the heroic sacrifices of the leaders of our political
emancipation, of the noble men and women who bent their every effort to the
formation of civilized communities in which civic virtues should flourish and
give fruit. Those were times when our nationalities were still in a sort of fluid
state, not having yet hardened into patriotic belligerence or short-sighted jealousy,
and the family name of Americanos still called us back to the consideration of
our common origin.
Since then, the passing of the years and the influence of alien elements have
driven us further apart. Therefore today, more than ever before, there is a need
for taking stock of our common inheritance and for making the minds of a tender
age conscious of the magnificent natural world lying about them. In the years
when the freshness of the vision has not been yet impaired, when the virgin
imagination flares up and quivers under the slightest stimulus, the images
brought before us by the magic of the book impress themselves indelibly in our
mind, and are from that moment for the rest of our life the choicest part in the
treasure of our memories.
Our capacity for wonderment, together with the fanciful pranks of our
imagination, are then as vigorous as our curiosity of the world growing hourly
before us. It is fitting, therefore, that the children of the Americas should be
told from the outset about this world that spreads from one Pole down to the
other, of the mountains that measure it with the gigantic milestones of their
volcanic peaks, their rivers swelling into inland seas, their waterfalls that roar
and fume amidst the vast solitudes of forest that spread their leafy waves over
the entire rim of the horizon.
And together with nature's scenery, there is untold wealth in the products
of the soil, of which our continent was the only repository before Columbus's
day. Then there is a magic in words such as sabana, prairie, pampas, sertones,
manigua, of which the children of the Americas should not remain ignorant.
The common inheritance ought to arouse in them a lasting sense of wonder, which
the years will only mellow into a rich spiritual saudade, into tender reverie.
When the Pan American Union, now half a century old, launched its pro-








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gram for the interchange of cultural information and constituted itself into the
most effective clearing house for the placement of students in the colleges and
Universities of the Americas, then Panamericanism took in a new and broader
meaning, a deeper significance. Only then were mobilized those forces that make
for lasting alliances among nations and for sincere friendship among peoples. In
carrying the movement on to the spiritual plane, by thus engaging the free
cooperation of the teacher, the writer, the social worker and the artist in this labor
of love, Panamericanism is at last doing something that will arouse no suspicion,
hurt no pride.
By a happy device of the same nature, the University of Florida through the
Institute of Inter-American Affairs, is engaged in carrying out a far-reaching
experiment in social cooperation and human intercourse. Its plan of bringing
together and keeping under the same roof students of the different races and
languages that inhabit the Americas, constitutes a novel, bold approach to the
problems of creating a lasting understanding among our peoples. By trusting
the fundamental principal that human nature is substantially the same every-
where, and that education can bridge differences and create common interests,
the Institute is succeeding in materializing one of the most audacious dreams of
the liberal educator. May the results go even beyond the fondest hopes of the
founders!
Cooperating with these active agencies of Panamericanism, I see the Common
Reader in English, Spanish, Portuguese or French. If on each school bench in
these twenty-one republics, each child. should learn at the same time what life
in America means, and vision at a glance all that our continent has in reserve
for the future, then prejudices will disappear and spontaneous amity will grow
in its stead. There is also a protective idea involved in this plan. While the
totalitarian powers of the Old World take the child at his or her tenderest age
to the school of imperialistic notions and the worship of might, the republics
of America will do well to teach their children their common faith in democracy
and peaceful pursuits.









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WALLACE W. ATWOOD
President, Clark University, Worcester,
Mass.


THE TEACHING OF INTER-AMERICAN GEOGRAPHY
AND THE SOCIAL SCIENCES

Wallace W. Atwood

F YOU TRAVELED with a Geographer today, you would find him interested
primarily in the great human dramas that are going on in the different
habitats on this earth. He looks at these habitats as natural or geographic
regions, and each region has its own characteristics or peculiarities.
The conspicuous and obvious elements in a landscape provide the physical
setting for the human drama that is in progress in that region. One habitat may
be a lowland plain area, another in a mountainous district. One may be in a
well-watered portion of the earth and another in a semi-desert land. The scenes
in the great human dramas taking place in these different areas will depend in
large measure upon the geographic conditions in each stage setting.
In some places the actors turn to farming. They cut the sod, plow deep
furrows into the virgin soil, plant seeds, cultivate the fields and in time harvest








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the crops. Homes and barns must be erected, kitchen gardens planted, wells dug
or drilled, hen houses built and small creameries equipped. The settlers soon
establish villages, erect churches and schools, a town hall and possibly other
public buildings.
In the grassland areas, with semi-arid climate, shepherds care for their
flocks, and herdsmen guard their cattle. The pastoral people, as they seek the
life-giving grass for their animals, become nomadic in their habits. They have
no permanent homes but live in tents or in the open. Upon the animals, which
they attend, their own lives and fortunes depend. They are an unschooled, un-
churched, and in many cases an unwashed people.
In most mountainous areas the actors turn to forestry or to mining. In such
habitats the human dramas that are being carried out are very different from
those in the farmlands or pastures. First a prospector is seen scrambling over
the mountain slopes. He picks up pieces of loose rock that happen to attract his
attention. They are part of the float or talus material on the mountainside, that
has broken from ledges higher on the slopes. If he discovers a specimen, rich in
valuable minerals, he works his way higher and higher on the mountain searching
for the "Mother Lode" or mineral vein from which his specimen fell. A mineral
vein is located, a hole dug, fresh specimens are obtained, assays are made, a
company is organized and soon mining is begun. Others flock to this region.
More mineral veins are discovered, crushing and concentrating mills are erected,
a mining town is built, and with prosperity, a lively frontier drama is enacted.
In each case, the actors are vitally concerned with the markets available for
their products. The farmer may watch local markets for the sale of vegetables
and fruits, but they must watch the world markets for the sale of surplus wheat
and cotton. The nomadic people of the pasture lands are necessarily concerned
with world markets where surplus supplies of wool, hides, skins, and meats are
offered for sale. These actors using the surface of the earth are working elbow to
elbow with people in other farmlands or in other pasturelands in distant parts
of the earth.
The mining men watch the.movements in the great manufacturing centers.
They are concerned with what is going on in their home countries and in the
other nations of the world. They must gauge their activities so as not to produce
too much or too little to meet the demands in the markets of the world. The call
for the products from the mines and from the oil wells changes with periods of
economic prosperity and economic depression. The demands change with
periods of war and periods of peace. No man lives by himself in this world. Each
one is vitally concerned in what goes on in other parts of the world.
In this desire to understand the great human dramas the geographer is not
alone. The economists are interested in certain phases of the same study. They








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give special attention to methods of making a living. The historians follow the
events in human history. They think of their study of the past as furnishing a
background for an understanding of the present. They often include the social,
political, religious, and economic affairs in their study. They are studying the
succession of great human dramas. The sociologists are particularly interested
in home and community welfare problems. They must not neglect economic
factors. They cannot understand present customs without a knowledge of history.
They cannot interpret the life of a community, as a whole, without a knowledge
of the environment. Each group of specialists is trying to understand and inter-
pret the human dramas. There should be co-operation among them.
Geography furnishes the foundation for this entire group of studies because
each specialist is helpless without a knowledge of the environment. Location
and environment are conditioning factors in each human drama. Is it just as
well to consider the community under study, or the human drama in progress, as
located in a desert as in a tropical jungle? Does it make no difference whether
the actors are on a mountain top or in a canyon, on an iceberg or half way to the
moon?
The geographer first presents a knowledge of the physical setting where the
drama is to be enacted. The land forms are of fundamental importance. A
knowledge of the soils, natural vegetation, rainfall, and the length of the growing
season is significant also. Of very fundamental importance today is a knowledge
of the resources beneath the soils. Has the region a supply of fuels in the
ground? Has it the basic metals such as iron, copper, lead, and zinc used in
industries? Does it contain the necessary alloy minerals called for by modern
industry? The amount and distribution of the fuels found in the ground and
the amount of the metal ores available are of primary importance to a nation
today. A knowledge of such factors is in the field of economic geography.
Geography serves also as a link between social studies and the physical
sciences. It is based upon a knowledge of physics, chemistry, meteorology and
geology. It draws also from the modern science of soils, podology. It draws
from the field of botany in order to understand the distribution of plant life on
the earth and from the field of anthropology. Thus geography gives to a regional
study a scientific foundation.
The human phases of the studies, whether carried on by the geographer,
the economist, the sociologist or the historian, is a superstructure. This super-
structure cannot be well built unless based upon a knowledge of the environment
of stage setting. Without that foundation the superstructure will crumble. No
one will ever understand the problems of Japan without an intimate knowledge
of the geography of the Far East. No one can possibly appreciate the problems
of the Canadian people or of the Swiss people or of the Mexican people without








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first giving careful attention to the natural conditions in those various parts of
the world. Those who attempt to carry out studies of the great human dramas
on this earth without a knowledge of geography are doomed to disappointment.
Geography should serve also as a co-ordinating agent. The geographer is trained
to carry out regional studies and to tie together the findings of various specialists.
During the last few decades more and more people have become inter-
nationally minded. That is not strange, for the days of isolation have passed.
The great barriers to travel and communication have been broken down. There
is no difficulty today in crossing the ocean. The mountains, deserts, the tropical
jungles, the wild beasts of the fields and the wild people no longer serve as
barriers to travel. The factors of distance and time have virtually disappeared.
With the development of trade among the peoples in the different parts of
the earth, the world has become an economic unit. The markets in one country
are delicately adjusted to the supplies and demands for products in each of the
other countries. Farms producing wheat in the Argentine are in direct competi-
tion with those producing wheat in the Dakotas and in the western plains of
Canada. The wool produced in Australia comes into direct competition with
the wool produced in the Argentine and in our western states.
The uneven distribution of mineral wealth presents one of the most difficult
of the international problems of today. Germany must import 60% of the
minerals used in that country. Her most critical needs are in iron, oil, and
copper. Italy has but 20% of the iron needed in her industries. She has but 8%
of the coal and 7% of the oil needed. Japan has but 35% of the iron and
27% of the oil which she needs. The United States is the greatest owner, producer,
user, and seller of minerals in this world. The British Commonwealth of Nations
nearly equals in mineral wealth that of the United States. The two large
English speaking nations now own or control about three fourths of the
mineral resources of the earth. When we remember that mineral wealth is ex-
haustible and cannot be reproduced by man, we must admit the significance of
those figures. Such facts present to the world a problem in the exchange of
natural resources, and this problem must be solved if we are to have a lasting
peace.
It is foolish for any large and progressive nation to think that it can be
self sufficient. We in the United States could.not today make a modern auto-
mobile or a modern battleship if we could not import certain metals. We depend
upon workmen in other lands for our rubber, coffee, silk, tea, cacao, bananas, and
for a large part of our sugar. If it were necessary we could get along without
some of these substances and we might, through scientific skill, produce sub-
stitutes for others, but we could not provide adequately for certain of our modern








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industries and for natural protection without importing some minerals from
other countries.
International problems are not limited to economic conditions. Ideas travel
just as freely as do commodities. All of the various political ideas of the Old
World are represented in this country. Moral, political and educational isola-
tion are impossible. We have among us agents of other governments subsidized
to carry out, in this country, efforts to overthrow our form of government. We
must remember that, in all of our geographic studies, the social and political
environment is just as significant as the physical and economic setting.
Whoever, as a specialist in one phase or another of the social studies, attempts
to find a solution for the social and political problems or of the economic
problems, should recognize their international relationship. I think he should
recognize that geography serves best as the foundation upon which these studies
can build a strong superstructure.
In the last analysis the solution of social and economic problems depends
upon processes of education which, after all, are the most powerful of all
influences. In the preservation of democracy we depend upon education. The
spreading of ideas is an educational process. The preparation of the human spirit
for devotion to certain ideals depends upon education. Without effective in-
struction in the fundamentals of democracy, that form of government will not
last.
If we would have lasting peace in the world, we must break down the barriers
of ignorance and establish friendships and cordial relationships between the
people of the different countries. We must develop in our people an intelligent
as well as sympathetic understanding of the problems in other lands. We must
understand the human dramas in progress on this earth. We hope the people in
other countries will have just as sympathetic and just as intelligent an under-
standing of our problems. "As goes this throng of youth so in the years to come
goes the nation." Our future depends upon education.
Before closing this address on the place of geography in our educational
work, may I refer briefly to certain cultural values. Over and above the
economic importance of a knowledge of geography, over and above the import-
ance of geography in the study of world affairs, there is something which, to
each individual, may be far more valuable. To one who sees in the long period
of human affairs the silent but persistent influence of certain natural conditions
there is a deep meaning. Something has come into his life that cannot be dis-
placed. If, in viewing the heavens he sees symmetry, in the return of the seasons
and reappearance of the planets he recognizes remarkable precision, in the
migration of the birds, the coming of flowers, and the coloring of the autumnal








INTER-AMERICAN EDUCATIONAL AND CULTURAL CONFERENCE

leaves he finds something far superior to the works of man, what thoughts come
to him?
To one who stands on the rim of the Grand Canyon of the Colorado, and
sees before him not only the beauty in form and in coloring but the story of
millions of years recorded in the rocks, of mountain ranges that have come and
gone, of the advances and retreat of the sea, of profound changes in climate and
of evolution in animal life, there should come a respect for forces far beyond our
understanding. There should come a feeling of reverence and inspiration. How
unfortunate is he who while standing there is bored to death! In viewing Crater
Lake in Oregon, one may recognize in the walls of that great Crater the record
of volcanic outpourings alternating with records of glaciers that descended
the slopes of that mountain, and in the crater form, see the evidence of collapse
of the entire mountain top. Understanding these great works of nature stretches
the imagination and enriches life. These are cultural values.
Who can walk through the great cathedral arches, among the Redwoods of
California, knowing that these magnificent trees, 300 feet tall, have stood there
in those same places for more than a thousand years, and not be thrilled? If
one knew, while in the presence of these trees, that the redwood forests have
marched, through the ages, from the arctic regions to their present location, would
he not be profoundly impressed?
I doubt whether an intelligent, practical knowledge of geography has
nearly as much significance to us as an appreciation of the esthetic and inspira-
tional values which come from a study of the landscape.
We have long passed the stage of sailor geography when the bounding of
states and the naming of capitals received the chief attention. We may have
forgotten how to define an isthmus or a strait, a peninsula or an island, but
we have gone far beyond our ancestors in developing a study which is funda-
mental in the interpretation of the great human dramas in progress on this earth,
in the understanding of international problems and in the enrichment of life.








UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA


RICHARD F. BEHRENDT
Dean, Faculty of Social Sciences,
University of Panama


PROMOTION OF TEACHING AND RESEARCH IN LATIN
AMERICAN ECONOMICS AND SOCIOLOGY
Richard F. Behrendt
HERE IS PROBABLY little doubt among us that this 50th anniversary of the
Pan American Union, the celebration of which is one of the purposes of
this Conference, marks at the same time the beginning of a new era in inter-
American relations. At the present we are privileged to witness the formation
of a new unit. Pan America, during most of its first fifty years, had largely
remained a lofty ideal and a diplomatic formula, removed from the broad
masses of the peoples. Now it is rapidly becoming a reality. The present war
in Europe has undoubtedly sped up this process. Four years ago we down in
Latin America lived almost in isolation compared to today's state of things when
all American nations are called upon not merely to send delegates to Pan-
American Conferences, but to co-operate actively in the building up of the frame-
work of an inter-American economic and cultural organization of permanent
character and practical significance.


,j~





Ii









INTER-AMERICAN EDUCATIONAL AND CULTURAL CONFERENCE

The occurrences and achievements of the last few months, such as the con-
ferences of Panama and Guatemala, the formation of the Inter-American Eco-
nomic and Financial Advisory Committee in Washington, the project of an Inter-
American Bank, etc., have brought us further ahead in this respect than fifty
years of almost exclusively diplomatic Pan-Americanism.
But these gains are potential ones so far rather than actual ones. They must
be complemented and made permanent by detailed every-day work done by
average people in all parts of the Americas.
I am sure that we all consider it as the duty of all participants in Confer-
ences such as this to speak frankly, and I shall do this now. Being an economist
I therefore feel compelled to draw attention to the fact that we cannot expect
this development toward a closer inter-American unity to continue after the
present emergency situation of insecurity and disturbance caused by the war,
unless some very urgent and serious economic problems will be solved in the
meantime.
One can hear very often nowadays the objection of sceptics who maintain
that there have been already two periods of extraordinary prosperity in inter-
American relations during the last 25 years, namely, during the first World War,
and in the years preceding the depression. In both cases such boom periods were
followed by breakdowns and repercussions and proved episodes. Those critics
point out, and quite rightly so, I think, that it would be a most dangerous and
maybe fatal blow to all sincere efforts of inter-American co-operation should
the present promise of closer relations be followed by another disappointment.
In facing this problem it seems necessary to stress that it is not enough to
promote merely "cultural" relations in the limited sense of the word. Mutual
assurances of sympathy and understanding and studies of each other's belles
lettres and history are certainly attractive and important pursuits. Yet, we have
to take into account that a New World unity, capable of withstanding the dif-
ficulties and perils caused by the profoundly disturbed state of the outside world
-the present perils as well as the perhaps even more serious future ones-that
such a unity must be based on common material interests between the two great
portions of the New World. It is for this reason that I believe that economic co-
operation constitutes the most important as well as the most serious problem in
the entire field of inter-American relations.
We all know of course the principal issues involved in this problem: On
the one hand, the lack of purchasing power in Latin America which handicaps
the extension of sales of the United States to those countries, even of many of such
commodities which up to the beginning of the present war were imported from
Europe, mostly through barter deals. This difficulty is particularly serious in
those South American countries which depend for their exports primarily on








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commodities which are produced and partly even exported by the United States
as well.
Two main roads can be conceived to lead out of this trouble: one, the
granting of those Latin American nations a larger share in supplying the United
States market than has been the case hitherto, and the other, initiating or develop-
ing the cultivation, production or extraction in Latin America of additional non-
competitive commodities, for export to the United States. The first way would
imply readiness on the part of United States competitive producers, or the
public opinion of this country, to make concessions, the second, readiness on the
part of the United States capitalists to make very considerable new investments
in Latin America.
A third possibility, that of the development of triangular trade with the
participation of European industrialized nations, can hardly be taken as a
practicable way for a calculable future, in view of the present situation and the
general tendencies prevailing on the other side of the Atlantic.
On the other hand, all those favoring closer inter-American co-operation
have to face the problem of growing nationalistic and, partly, socialistic tenden-
cies in Latin America. These tendencies express themselves in a variety of
forms and measures some of which undoubtedly hamper the prospects of further
investments of foreign capital in Latin America in general. Yet, such capital
will be indispensable for a considerable time to come, in order to secure the
material and cultural development of most countries to the South. The same
refers to the supply of labor, particularly in some specialized lines, which at
present is interfered with by the immigration laws of many Latin American
nations.
II.
In the face of this general situation, one of the most pressing needs at the
present time is undoubtedly to provide for a common basis on which a permanent
and comprehensive inter-American co-operation can be traced. The more this
co-operation can be founded on mutual arid permanent material interests the
more solid and promising it will be. The less utopian ideologies of nationalistic,
racial or otherwise purely political and exclusive character be allowed to hamper
the realistic development of the immense resources of the New World under joint
responsibility of Latin and North American elements for the mutual benefit of
all concerned, the better. Only under such conditions will it be possible to secure
the most productive use of credits and investments from the United States-an
aim which must be equally important to both Latin and North Americans.
Nevertheless, little has been done in order to approach this task by means of
higher education, specialized, adequate training, and well-planned, systematic
research. Very much remains to be done in order to acquaint people in all parts









INTER-AMERICAN EDUCATIONAL AND CULTURAL CONFERENCE

of the New World with the living conditions, problems and requirements of the
several parts of this Pan-American entity upon whose equable promotion depends
every one's welfare to an ever increasing extent.
Thus there can be no doubt that ample and up-to-date training in economic,
social and administrative subjects relating to Latin America is of the highest
importance. There is still a most obvious lack of reliable information on many
countries to the South, and this seriously hampers many steps to be decided upon
at the present time. Among the nationals of most of those countries, specialized
knowledge and practical experience in modern methods of business, industry,
banking, agriculture, social work, and public administration is relatively rare.
As a consequence business is mostly in the hands of Europeans, North Americans,
Japanese and Chinese while the more educated natives depend on public posts
and therefore place their main interests in politics. Thus there arises not only
the constant danger of political instability but also a tendency to hasty and in-
competent decisions in matters of great importance, and measures which are too
often based on sentiments or even resentment, without proper foundation in
exact factual knowledge and adequate consideration.
Certain Latin American countries have only too often been the paradise of
amateurs and adventurers, many of them foreigners, posing as experts in finance,
industry or public administration. In other cases Latin Americans have com-
plained of being the object of financial arrangements recommended by foreign
advisers, without being able to realize the whole significance of these arrange-
ments because of lack of experts of their own. Improvisations in the economic
policies of some nations to the South have caused immense losses and still
threaten the development of certain countries and their fruitful participation in
a closer inter-American co-operation.
In a word, there is to be found a most obvious disproportion between the
rapidly increasing importance of inter-American ties and the teaching and re-
search work which is being done in this field in either part of the Americas. In
the last few years, universities in Latin America have continually received in-
quiries from persons in the United States who planned to come down to conduct
practical studies relating to some aspects of economic or social life of Latin
America. In very few cases, however, has it been possible to encourage them,
because of the lack of facilities for this type of studies, especially when made
by foreigners.
The almost complete lack of interest in the promotion of inter-American
intellectual co-operation is reflected in the investment and endowment policy
which has been followed up to the present by United States institutions. Accord-
ing to the latest report of the Department of Commerce1, institutional contri-
I The Balance of International Payments of the United States in 1938.
Washington, D. C., United States Government Printing Office, 1939, p. 41.
48








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butions to foreign countries were distributed as follows (in millions of dollars):
1937 1938
Asia ...................................... .... 21.1 26.4
Europe .-.....-............................... 7.6 9.1
Africa ....................... -...........- ... 2.9 2.3
Latin America .............................. 2.7 1.7
"Approximately 60% of all contributions go to Asiatic countries, 20% to
European countries, 10% to Africa, and the remaining 10% to Latin America
and other areas." It is clear that this policy does not in the least correspond to
the importance and urgency of the task of building up a system of true inter-
American co-operation.
There is still to be noticed a lack of public opinion in both Americas that
would support and control any far-reaching scheme of inter-American co-opera-
tion.
Yet, the feeling seems to be general and well justified that the time has come
in inter-American relations to get beyond the exchange of pleasant generalities
and "gestures" and down to "business," i. e., constructive work which faces all
realities and necessities in order to build up something permanent. Much useful
work is already being done in this respect by the Pan American Union and the
Division of Cultural Relations of the Department of State. Their activities,
however, must be complemented by private initiative and individual institutions
of higher learning and research.
Instruction in most Latin American universities has largely been confined
to a rather formalistic training of lawyers, in numbers often exceeding practical
necessities, besides the teaching of medicine and pharmacy. Only relatively
recently schools and research institutes in economic and social sciences have been
established in a few Latin American universities, such as those of Buenos Aires,
El Litoral, Montevideo, Sao Paulo, Chile, San Marcos de Lima, Panama, and
Mexico. Their activities, useful as they undoubtedly are, have in several cases
been hampered through the lack of funds and the scarcity of specialized full-
time instructors, research workers and research material. In most Latin American
universities no courses dealing with the present-day conditions of the very
countries in which they are located are given.
In the United States practically no attention has been paid so far to teaching
work in Latin-American present-day life, in contrast to the considerable number
of brilliant scholars and teachers who are available in this country in the fields
of Central and South American history, literature, archeology, anthropology, and
geography. There do exist in several universities Institutes or Centers for Inter-
American Relations or Latin-American Studies, such as in the Universities of
Florida, Miami and Texas, in Harvard, George Washington, Tulane Universities,








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etc. However, the work of such institutions is either limited to a particular field
in which stress is laid on the historical aspect, or no systematic program has been
carried out so far.
Incidentally, it is interesting to note that long before most of these Institutes
were established, there already existed in Germany two Ibero-American Institutes,
in Berlin and Hamburg, which have done very considerable work for almost
twenty years. During the last ten years several other institutions of similar type
were founded in Germany, in connection with universities. Besides, the Institute
of World Economy at the University of Kiel used to devote a considerable part
of its work to Latin-American subjects.
There are also in this country some temporary "institutes" of one to six
weeks duration being offered in summer schools, and tours of study to Mexico
and some South American countries are organized during the summer. All these
enterprises are certainly valuable, but far from sufficient. They can arouse inter-
est in Latin-American and inter-American affairs, without being able to satisfy
it, because of the obvious lack of time.
There does not exist any institution dedicated to, and actually engaged in,
the study and promotion of inter-American commerce and the economy, social
welfare, agriculture, and public administration of Latin America. Yet, it can
hardly be questioned that that common basis for the developing of the Pan-Ameri-
can unit, the need of which I mentioned before, can be provided only by the
building up of teaching, research and solid publicity work relating to all aspects
of present-day Latin American life and inter-American relations. We are con-
fronted with the problem of training a sufficient number of Latin Americans as
well as North Americans from this point of view, thus enabling them to study and
conceive the actual necessities and possibilities of the countries of the Western
Hemisphere below the surface of unrealistic sentiments and demagogic propa-
ganda of whatever tendencies.
III.
There are three principal means by which the task which I just mentioned
can be approached, as far as higher learning and research activities are concerned:
1. By introducing regular courses, to be given in Latin American univer-
sities on the undergraduate level, dealing with the economic and social life of the
respective country as well as Latin America in general and inter-American re-
lations. It would be particularly appropriate if a Facultad de Ciencias Sociales
y Economicas, or something similar, could be established in the principal univer-
sity of every South and Central American republic, with the necessary trained
staff and equipment, in order to educate young national elements as efficient
public employees in the different branches of the administration, as well as for
business enterprises. As I said, a beginning has been made in a few countries,
50








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but very much remains still to be done. In this respect it is hardly possible to
over-emphasize the importance of full-time professors who must be specialists
in the subjects they are expected to teach and must be prepared to conduct re-
search work in order to be able to carry out their mission efficiently, in this
little explored field. Only in this case will it be possible for those exchange stu-
dents from the United States who are particularly interested in economic and
social affairs, to obtain in Latin America a satisfactory instruction and guidance
during their stay there.
2. By introducing courses in Latin American economic and social life, on
the undergraduate level, in United States liberal arts colleges and schools of
commerce, business administration, public affairs, etc., in addition to the courses
in Latin American history, literature, anthropology and geography which are
already given in a number of colleges and universities in this country. Credits
in these new courses should be made prerequisite for any student wishing to go
to Latin America as an exchange student. It is obvious that in order to take full
advantage of a one year's stay in Latin America the exchange student must upon
his arrival have a sufficient knowledge of the general social and economic condi-
tions and problems of the people he is going to live with as well as of the entire
group of Latin American peoples.
As long as the first proposal, referring to courses to be given in Latin
American universities, is not fully materialized, such courses to be given in
United States colleges would be of the greatest value to students from Latin
America, too. They would enable them to use a greater part of the knowledge
they have acquired in the United States for the immediate improvement of
conditions at home. This often proves difficult and even impossible under the
present system in which Latin Americans take the usual courses in United States
colleges and universities which, naturally, have been planned for entirely dif-
ferent practical requirements.
There are two chief difficulties which stand in the way of these proposals,
as far as I can see. First, there is of course the well-known scarcity of funds
which seems to make any addition to the courses actually offered and to the
existing teaching staffs very difficult for most colleges and universities.
Secondly, we have to take into account the scarcity and, in some cases, com-
plete lack of sufficiently trained men to give courses of this kind. Conditions in
many Latin American countries have already been mentioned. As for the United
States, the effects of an educational policy which used to pay very little attention
to this country's neighbors to the South now make themselves felt. I doubt
whether there are at present in this country half a dozen men who can be con-
sidered specialists in either Latin American economics or sociology and who
are actually available for teaching and research work. This situation is not only








INTER-AMERICAN EDUCATIONAL AND CULTURAL CONFERENCE

deplorable, it is outright dangerous if we take into account the urgent necessity of
acquainting young people, and the public in general, in both Americas with the
realities of present-day American life and inter-American relations.
It is primarily under this latter aspect that we shall have to make a third
recommendation:
3. The establishment of an Institute for Inter-American Social and Eco-
nomic Studies. The main purposes of such an Institute would be the following:
(a) To conduct research work on specific problems of present-day eco-
nomic and social life of the various Latin American countries and on problems
of inter-American commercial and financial relations. Such research projects
would be chosen in accord with actual requirements of governments and business.
(b) To serve as a center of information on social and economic life in Latin
America, by gathering all available current information, in printed form as well
as otherwise, by coordinating the kindred efforts of the different types of
inter-American activities in all countries, and by editing a journal devoted to the
publication of scholarly studies as well as unbiased current reports on all aspects
of social, economic and political life of Latin America.
(c) To train a limited and carefully selected number of graduates of
United States colleges and Latin American universities by giving them the op-
portunity to serve as research assistants in the development of some specific
research project, in cooperation with, and under the supervision of, a mature
scholar who is permanently connected with the Institute and in charge of the
respective project.
To (a) : There is hardly need to stress again the importance of such re-
search work, in view of the scarcity of satisfactory contributions of this kind and
the deficient state of information which we have on many aspects of Latin
American conditions. While the Committee on Latin American Studies of the
American Council of Learned Societies has started to do very appreciable work
in this general direction, comparatively little attention has been paid so far to
the field we have in mind.
To (b): Nothing like a center as proposed exists at present, and anybody
connected with economic and sociological studies on Latin America knows from
personal experience how extremely difficult and sometimes impossible it is to
secure prompt and reliable information, even of a bibliographical character,
because of the complete lack of an organization such as we have in mind. Nor
has there ever existed a satisfactory current publication devoted to studies of
the present-day realities of Latin America in general.
To (c) : From what has been said about the scarcity of sufficiently trained
teaching personnel the significance of this task is obvious. It seems that the
establishment of this Institute will have to precede even the introduction of








UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA


special courses in many colleges and universities, in the United States as well as
Latin America, in order to gain time for the preparation of a number of qualified
teachers. It seems that this could be done best by bringing to the Institute young
men and women who have already proved themselves as promising and have ob-
tained a solid education in general scientific methods as well as one of the social
sciences, and by affording them the opportunity to specialize in a research pro-
ject relating to one of the Latin American countries or regions. Particularly
valuable would be the co-operation in such work between elements from Latin
and North America, among the research assistants as well as the directors. In
other words, the Institute should be organized, as much as feasible, upon a basis
of mutual participation.
Part of the research and training would have to be carried out in form of
field work in the region under study. In such cases the research workers would be
in a position not only to obtain first-hand knowledge but also to make themselves
useful to local institutions, government agencies and other elements, by giving
informal advice in the field of their specialization.
Lectures, round-table conferences and discussions, conducted by members
of the staff as well as specialists from outside would, of course, round up the train-
ing program of the Institute.
The Institute should be connected with a university, although as a separate
and autonomous unit. This would afford the advantage of an already existing
library and other research and administrative facilities. Besides, those members
of the faculty of the university who are specialists in some fields of Latin Ameri-
can studies could very well serve as research directors in the Institute. For other
fields, full-time research workers would probably have to be obtained by the
Institute. Those of the research assistants who are interested in doing higher
work for a higher degree could arrange for having their research work accepted
by the faculty of the graduate school of the university in partial fulfillment of
the requirements for the degree. Such an arrangement would mean a vast im-
provement over the present state of things in which a not inconsiderable part
of the relatively few theses on Latin American subjects written in United States
graduate schools suffer from the fact that the professors who have to direct them
lack sufficient first-hand knowledge of the region with which such theses deal.
A large measure of specialization would, of course, be necessary in order
to secure the desirable efficiency and high standard of work in the Institute.
Thus there should be research chairs or sections in Latin American sociology,
ethnology, general economics, economic geography, geology and mining, botany
and agriculture, biology and animal husbandry, statistics, public administration,
public finance, monetary and banking policy, international trade, transportation
and communications, marketing and co-operatives, public health and social wel-









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fare, labor legislation and social policy, and cultural relations. It would be
essential that each of those chairs or sections be entrusted to a perfectly qualified
person who must have a broad practical experience in addition to solid theoreti-
cal training.
In most of the work of the Institute, research and training would be com-
bined. Such combination seems to be necessary in view of the fact that the study
of many subjects relating to Latin America and inter-American relations is still
in the beginning. Teaching and research have therefore to go hand in hand and
to complement each other. By means of a co-operation between mature scholars
and somewhat advanced students from all parts of the Americas, with inter-
American institutions, government agencies and private enterprises, as suggested
in this proposal, extremely useful results for all concerned could be achieved.
The value of such an Institute would be incalculable not only from the view-
point of the actual results in form of research, publications and training, but
also as an independent and truly authoritative agency which would be in a
condition to promote a more exact and comprehensive information about, and a
more adequate understanding of, the manifold and serious problems involved
in the development of Latin America and of inter-American relations. It would
aid in the formation of a sound public opinion in this field, something which has
been lacking up to now and which is indispensable to assure stability in the
future course of inter-American relations.
A most ideal solution of the problem I have been discussing would of course
be the incorporation of the proposed Institute in an Inter-American University.
On the other hand, commendable as the idea of such a university is, there is no
certainty so far as to the possibility or the probable time of its realization. It
therefore would not be advisable to wait with the materialization of plans for
the promotion of teaching and research in inter-American economics and social
sciences until the establishment of such a university. Under the circumstances
it seems most appropriate to establish such an Institute in connection with an
already existing university in this country which must offer all guarantees as to
the high standard of scholarship and efficiency of organization in order to make
the plan a success. There is no doubt that no university could finance such a pro-
ject itself. It would depend on the help from private sources and the governments,
to be given in form of endowments,, scholarships, and other contributions.
It would be essential, however, to secure for this Institute complete liberty
from governmental control so that it can function in a perfectly unbiased way,
independent from political considerations of any sort as well as from private
business interests, while on the other hand ready to serve the legitimate demands
and interests of all American governments as well as of business enterprises, in
form of expert advice based on the gathering and analysis of informations and
54








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specialized research. Only in this way could the Institute perform its task to the
satisfaction of all concerned and, first of all, for the benefit of the peoples
of the Western Hemisphere.
These few and necessarily superficial remarks indicate but a minimum pro-
gram. It was impossible to pay attention, for instance, to the also very important
task of increasing the teaching of inter-American and Latin American subjects
and of Spanish and Portuguese in the high schools. However, in the interest of
economy it seems advisable to concentrate for the time being all possible efforts
on the three principal lines mentioned in this proposal. I believe that this
Conference would accomplish at least one really important task if we should
succeed here and now in agreeing on a concrete working program and in initiat-
ing practical measures for carrying it out.










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The two views on this page were taken in the Inter-American Section of the
University dormitories where each student from a Latin American country rooms with
a Florida student. The scene above is one of the regular informal discussions held in
the Inter-American Lounge. The person in the center of the picture is Senor Ernesto
Montenegro who was a Visiting Professor at the University of Florida during November
and December, 1939, under the auspices of the Carnegie Endowment for International
Peace. Numerous programs, both formal and informal, have been arranged by this
group of students dealing with a wide variety of topics related to Latin American
countries and peoples.






To the left: A
close-up of Inter-
American under-
standing. Othon
Moacyr Garcia of Rio
de Janeiro, Brazil,
listens attentively to
his room-mate "in-
structor," John W.
Hamilton of Jackson-
ville, Florida.








UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA


ROLLIN S. ATWOOD
Professor of Geography, Director, Insti-
tute of Inter-American Affairs, University
of Florida


EDUCATIONAL PROGRAM OF THE INSTITUTE OF
INTER-AMERICAN AFFAIRS

Rollin S. Atwood
HE UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA established the Institute of Inter-American Af-
fairs on June 2, 1930, to foster better educational and cultural relations
between the countries of the Western Hemisphere. For several years pre-
vious to that date various professors, especially in the fields of geography,
modern languages, and agriculture, had been engaged in work of an Inter-Ameri-
can nature. The Institute was established to give conscious direction to this work
and to develop a tangible educational procedure which would give a new orienta-
tion to our educational program.
The governing body of the Institute is a Faculty Committee which controls
its policies and program with the guidance and recommendations of an advisory
council made up of individuals pre-eminent in their separate fields and especially









INTER-AMERICAN EDUCATIONAL AND CULTURAL CONFERENCE

interested in Inter-American Affairs. The executive officer is the Director, ap-
pointed by the President of the University and directly responsible to him and
to the Faculty Committee for the performance of his duties. The Program
operates through the various colleges, schools and divisions of the University,
and has a flexible procedure to facilitate making the necessary adjustments in
the various activities included in the program of the Institute.
A brief summary of the last ten years and the details of the present program
of the Institute were published in bulletin form last summer and copies of this
edition are available to any desiring them.
I can only outline our program briefly, cite some of the problems which
we have encountered, and tell you of our plans for 1940-1941.
INTER-AMERICAN EDUCATIONAL PROGRAM OF THE
UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA
The procedure which we have developed during the last ten years has three
distinct, although closely related, parts. The first, which I might call academic,
includes courses, curricula, and a program of guidance for Anglo-American
students as well as a comparable plan for Latin-American students.
The problems of curricula and guidance in the study of Inter-American Af-
fairs falls into two distinct groups: the first relating to the courses and program
of guidance which will fit the Anglo-American student for further study of Latin
America, preferably in Latin American universities; the second relating to the
courses and program of guidance which will enable Latin American students to
adjust themselves to the plan of studies, customs, procedures, requirements, etc.,
of Anglo-American universities.
The Institute of Inter-American Affairs supervises the plan of studies for
all Anglo- and Latin-American students desiring to specialize in Inter-American
Affairs in the various curricula of the colleges, schools and divisions.
College of Arts and Sciences
The Director of the Institute acts as supervisor of the group major in Inter-
American Affairs and with the approval of the Faculty Committee arranges the
student's plan of studies subject to the approval of the Curriculum Committee
and the Dean of the College.
For students not taking a group major in Inter-American Affairs but wish-
ing to take special work, the Director, with the approval of the Faculty Com-
mittee, arranges courses and curriculum changes to facilitate such specialization,
subject to the approval of the Curriculum Committee and the Dean of the College.
College of Education
The Director of the Institute acts as supervisor for students whose field of
concentration is Inter-American Affairs and with the approval of the Faculty








UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA


Committee arranges the student's plan of studies, subject to the approval of the
Curriculum Committee and the Dean of the College of Education.
For students whose field of concentration is not Inter-American Affairs
but who wish to take special work dealing with Inter-American Affairs, the
Director, with the approval of the Faculty Committee, arranges courses and cur-
riculum changes to facilitate such specialization, subject to the approval of the
Curriculum Committee and the Dean of the College.
College of Business Administration, College of Agriculture, College of Engineering,
School of Architecture and Allied Arts, School of Pharmacy, School of Forestry
For students who are not majoring or concentrating in Inter-American Af-
fairs but who wish to take special work dealing with Inter-American Affairs, the
Director, with the approval of the Faculty Committee, arranges courses and
curriculum changes to facilitate such specialization, subject to the approval of the
Curriculum Committee and the Dean or Director.
The solution of the problem of training our own students has resolved itself
into, first, the development of new "group" or interdepartmental majors, and
second, the purposeful re-vitalization of certain courses especially in languages,
geography and social sciences. Solving the academic problems of Latin-Ameri-
can students has been done in a similar manner although, naturally, the specific
courses involved are different. We do not recommend specialized curricula for our
students interested in Latin America, nor do we look with favor on specialized
curricula for Latin-American students. Regular academic work, including ade-
quate training in the languages and civilization of the countries involved, has
definitely proved to be the most satisfactory plan. After careful study of the
educational programs in Latin America and with the co-operation of the United
States Office of Education, we are admitting students from Latin America who
have completed all requirements for admission to their home universities on the
same basis as students from accredited high schools in this country. Graduate
students are admitted on the same basis as graduates from universities and colleges
in the United States. I am very happy to announce that this plan has proved
entirely satisfactory over a period of several years.
The second part might be called the non-academic or extra-curricular pro-
gram to adjust students to the educational and social environment. It applies to
Latin-American students primarily but, as you will note, it is of peculiar value
to our own students. This part of our program centers around the Inter-American
Section in the University dormitories and the Student Union. Opening this fall
for the first time in definite form, the Inter-American Section is proving to be
one of the most significant steps in our entire program. For this year we are
using one of the smaller units in the dormitories where twelve selected students
are rooming together. A Florida boy rooms with each of the selected students









INTER-AMERICAN EDUCATIONAL AND CULTURAL CONFERENCE

from Latin America. It is interesting to note that there has been keen competi-
tion among our own students to get into this section. An elaborate program has
been developed by the boys in the section. This includes a special non-credit
class in Portuguese which is well attended and numerous informal meetings
where aspects of life in the other Americas have been freely discussed by attend-
ing students. Over one hundred individual visits to the section by other students
have been made so far this year.
The third part of the program is aimed at increasing throughout the State
of Florida and the Southeast the understanding and appreciation of the education-
al and cultural development in the other Americas. Lectures on Inter-American
topics have been scheduled throughout the state, extensive lecture tours in the
southeastern states have been most successful, and the speakers from Latin
America have been presented at more than a dozen colleges and universities.
Special Inter-American radio programs have been a feature of our University
Radio Station WRUF. Inter-American exhibits, displays, concerts, contests and
competitions have been arranged periodically on the campus as well as at ap-
propriate locations throughout the state. Special service is extended to all
schools in cooperation with the Pan American Union to assist them in their
Inter-American activities. Finally, as an aspect of this part of the program, the
Institute holds periodical meetings, conferences, and round table discussions on
Inter-American Affairs.
I will now mention briefly the special aspects of our 1940-1941 program.
In regard to academic aspects, there are three items'of which I should like to
speak. First, we have initiated a course in Latin American civilization administer-
ed by the Spanish department which enlists the services of visiting lecturers in
various fields from time to time. Among our visiting professors was Sr. Ernesto
Montenegro, outstanding Chilean journalist. We also inaugurated a special ser-
vice this year wherein the Spanish and English departments cooperate with the
speech clinic to aid students from Latin America in improving their English
pronunciation, and give assistance to students of Spanish in the pronunciation
of certain of the more difficult Spanish sounds. I have described the Inter-Ameri-
can Section and will only add here that plans are under way to provide the
section with books on contemporary American civilization for the informal use
of Latin American students.








UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA


JOSE PADIN
Former Commissioner of Education of
Puerto Rico, Modern Language Editor,
D. C. Heath and Company


PUERTO RICO'S CONTRIBUTION TO HISPANIC
AMERICAN CIVILIZATION

Jos6 Padin
HE WEST INDIA islands stretch in an irregular arc from the tip of Florida
to the mouth of the Orinoco River. Viewed from the air, the entire string
of islands and keys looks like a gigantic pontoon bridge, thrown up hurriedly
for a desperate assault. Going from north to south, Cuba is the first section of that
bridge, a long and narrow span; then come Santo Domingo and Jamaica, as if
the bridge needed strong supports in the center; then comes Puerto Rico, short
and compact, a veritable bridgehead, the farthest east of the four Greater
Antilles. The arc then bends south and its sections become smaller and smaller
until the coast of Venezuela is reached.
A gigantic pontoon bridge! The military implications are unescapable.
The West Indies are primarily a bridge between North and South America.
Bridges are intended for peaceful travel and trade, but they serve equally well
for war and invasion and must, therefore, be fortified so that frequently the
bridge cannot be seen for the bridgehead. The strategic value of these islands
is so great and so permanent that for some three hundred years Spain, England,
Holland and France fought for their possession until England remained the








INTER-AMERICAN EDUCATIONAL AND CULTURAL CONFERENCE

unchallenged mistress of the seas. I believe we can safely state that the fate
of at least two empires has been settled in West Indian waters.
The point I wish to emphasize, however, is that Puerto Rico occupies the
key position in that irregular arc which binds North and South America. It is
the farthest east of the Greater Antilles and, consequently, the nearest to the Old
World. For trade or for war, for sea or air navigation, it is the most valuable
strategically. This privileged position accounts for much of its history. A proper
use of its advantages would be its chief contribution to the improvement of
inter-American relations.
The West Indies are the oldest and safest route for rapid transit between
North and South America. By comparison, the Caribbean Sea and the Isthmus
of Panama are a steeple-chase course, full of hazards and death traps. For thou-
sands of years many species of North American birds which migrate south have
used the West Indies as a sort of primrose path to their winter quarters. There
are other routes, some shorter, but many species preferred the island route as
the safest, the one possessing the greatest survival value. And to this day, thou-
sands of wild ducks and other water fowl from Florida, and many species of land
birds from the eastern States, among them many warblers, go south by way of
the Greater and Lesser Antilles. A short flight from Florida lands them in Cuba.
They rest there. Some remain the entire winter. The more adventurous species
fly on to Santo Domingo, to Puerto Rico, and down the smaller islands until they
reach their winter home. There is plenty to eat all the way, so they take it easy.
In the Spring they return North, reversing the course. More than fifty species
spend the winter in Peurto Rico. They are not only our oldest tourists, but also
the least expensive for we do not have to tax the human population to provide
for the rest and recreation of the feathered transients.
These annual bird migrations must have made a deep impression on the
Indians along the route. The natives could not fly, but they were bold navigators
in their rude dugouts. Why not follow the feathered tourists to their summer
haunts? So out of the Orinoco they came, first the Arawaks, then the Caribs.
They moved from island to island, first over the Lesser Antilles, then over the
larger islands until they reached Florida and points west. They imitated the
birds. They took it easy, making long stops for rest and food. The West Indies
were an earthly paradise. There was plenty of vegetable and sea food, so one
wave of migrants would stop and live on the fat of the-land until it was driven
out by the next wave of immigrants surging from the southern continent. At the
time of the discovery of America the Arawaks had occupied the four larger
islands, Cuba, Santo Domingo, Jamaica, and Puerto Rico. The Caribs, a younger,
more energetic and warlike tribe, were working north from the Orinoco and had
reached the eastern coast of Puerto Rico, where there was open conflict. The








UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA


Caribs killed the male Arawaks, frequently ate them, and stole their women.
Puerto Rico was in 1493 a racial frontier where two races and two cultures were
fighting for dominion and survival.
May I stop to point out the unique physical importance of Puerto Rico in
inter-American relations. It is the most vital span in the land bridge connecting
North and South America. It is an important station and supply depot. The
West Indies are today the principal air route for travel between North and South
America. Everything indicates that it will continue to grow in importance. For
the protection of this route, Puerto Rico is not inferior in strategic value either
to Malta or Gibraltar. I am a citizen of the United States and I speak as such,
but I view. that air route and its defense as something of very deep concern to all
the American nations. As a son of Puerto Rico I feel a certain pride in the
thought that my little island can be of service to the entire American family in
keeping open one of the principal avenues of intercommunication.
Of even greater significance is the fact that Puerto Rico has had so much
experience as a racial and cultural frontier. It is the men along the frontier
who frequently decide whether there shall be war or peace between neighbors.
At any rate, the frontier is always rich in experience useful to inter-racial and
international relations.
I have already pointed out that at the time of the discovery of America
Puerto Rico had become the racial and cultural frontier between the Arawaks,
who occupied the Greater Antilles, and the Caribs who had been moving north and
west over the smaller islands. The Arawaks had settled down. They had the
best lands in the area, far more perhaps than they needed. The Caribs were the
have-nots. They demanded their place in the tropical sun. The Borinquen or
Puerto Rican Indians, being the youngest Arawak immigrants, had the most
vigor of the sedentary tribe, and when Ponce de Leon arrived on the scene they
were holding the Caribs at bay. I can say without exaggeration that Puerto Rico
was the eastern bastion for the defense of Arawak dominion in the Caribbean
area and that it stood the test. The Caribs never went beyond the eastern coast
of Puerto Rico and they were finally driven back to the Orinoco.
I said a little while ago that a frontier is rich in valuable experience useful
for inter-racial and international relations. Ponce de Leon knew the Arawaks
of Santo Domingo, a very tame race. It was in the racial frontier of Puerto Rico
that he met the Caribs. As the Arawaks and.the Caribs were the two Indian tribes
which inhabited the whole Caribbean area, the Spaniards soon learned in Puerto
Rico how to deal with the entire population. Within fifty years Arawaks and
Caribs had ceased to be an obstacle to the expansion of the Spanish empire in
America. The Caribs continued to bother the French and the English until the








INTER-AMERICAN EDUCATIONAL AND CULTURAL CONFERENCE

end of the eighteenth century. It took the Spaniards just fifty years to learn, due
to the superior advantages afforded by the racial frontier.
Because of its origin and present political allegiance, Puerto Rico continues
to be a racial and cultural frontier, pregnant with possibilities for better or worse
inter-American relations. I am afraid that our national leaders here in the
United States do not realize this or fail to give it proper attention. Now, along a
frontier you can build a Maginot Line or an impalpable atmosphere of goodwill, but
you cannot afford to neglect it for it is a dangerous breeding ground for trouble.
In our efforts to improve inter-American relations we must not neglect either
the Mexican border or the Puerto Rican racial and cultural frontier. In Puerto
Rico we should watch our step, avoid unnecessary blunders and eliminate dis-
content. Our mistakes there receive an unfair amount of publicity in Spanish
America, and this does not improve inter-American relations. If we have deserv-
ing Democrats or deserving Republicans to reward, we should send them to
China, or India, or the South Sea Islands, where the climate and the natives are
mild. We should not send them to Puerto Rico, where the population already
exceeds 500 inhabitants to the square mile and where there is standing room
only, even for politicians. On the other hand, we should make more generous
use of the talent and services of our citizens from Puerto Rico, especially in the
field of inter-American relations. The advantages are too obvious to need
explanation.
In more ways than one, Puerto Rico is our show-window on the Spanish
American street. We should keep it competently dressed.
Let me cite a case in point. We are trying to increase the teaching of Spanish
here in the United States and of English south of the border. This is right and
proper. The New World has two principal cultures. English and Spanish are
the languages of those two cultures. We must study Spanish north of the Rio
Grande and they must study English south of it. But the Puerto Ricans on the
cultural frontier have Spanish as the most important part of their cultural
inheritance. We must give them English, but certainly not in exchange for
Spanish, or at the expense of their mother-tongue. Let's all acquire a second
language, but let us beware of repeating the mistake of the dog in the fable who
dropped his meat to get a second piece, thus losing both substance and shadow.
Puerto Rico is an excellent laboratory to test the value of a second language
in inter-racial and international relations. But laboratory experiments, to have
any meaning, require an objective,. dispassionate attitude. Anything done in
Puerto Rico which may be justly interpreted as an effort to weaken or displace
Spanish is bound to have an adverse effect on inter-American relations.
Between 1492 and 1530, the Greater Antilles became the center of opera-
tions for the expansion of the Spanish empire in America. For his second voyage








UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA


Columbus was equipped with twenty-five ships and 1500 men, a really great
armada for that age. The expedition included some of the men who later became
famous in Spanish American history, such as Ponce de Leon and Father Las
Casas. The ships brought men, animals, and plants. Many of the men were
veterans of the Moorish wars, bold, tough, aching for glorious adventure, for
the war against the Moor put a premium on personal initiative and valor. The
plants included sugar-cane and the principal vegetables and fruits known in the
Peninsula. The animals comprised horses, cattle, goats, pigs, and chickens.
The food supply of the New World was meager. There were many edible plants,
mostly fruits, but practically no meat. The Arawaks and the Caribs lived almost
exclusively on cassava bread and shell fish. The Spaniards required more
substantial rations. They needed red meat. There were no work animals. Food
habits are the first we acquire and the hardest to change. The Spaniard was
faced in the West Indies with a food problem far more serious than the settle-
ment of land or the conquest of the native tribes. He tried to solve it by importing
plants and animals and endeavoring to acclimate them. He failed with most of the
plants, except sugar cane, but he succeeded admirably with the animals. I doubt
whether we have given Spain full credit for this contribution to our American
economy. I even suspect that the gold of the Aztecs and the Incas was not an ade-
quate return for what the conquistadores brought across the Atlantic at enormous
personal sacrifice. They frequently suffered thirst to share their water supply
with the plants they brought to America.
Santo Domingo de Guzmin was founded in 1496. Branches were soon
established in Puerto Rico, Cuba, and Jamaica. The four Greater Antilles became
a unique experiment station to acclimate men, animals, and plants. Ponce de
Le6n, Cort6z, Hernando de Soto, and Las Casas, to mention a few of the leaders,
got their training there, as empire builders. Hundreds of others went from these
islands to Castilla del Oro, Venezuela, Mexico, and Peru. Sugar cane, horses,
goats, pigs, and chickens followed the conquerors and made empire building
possible. The Catholic Kings took a special interest in this.
Puerto Rico made a substantial contribution. It soon became one of the
most prosperous of the experiment stations. We sent Ponce de Leon to Florida.
This opened the south to Spanish exploration and was responsible for the later
voyages of Hernando de Soto and other explorers. We provided horses and men
for the conquest of Mexico and Peru. Cattle and pigs multiplied so fast that they
ran wild over the interior of the island and were a source of supply to poachers
for centuries.
It is doubtful whether Spain would have been able to make such a rapid
progress in the establishment of her American empire if she had not had the
advantage of the West Indian training ground which prepared the men and the









INTER-AMERICAN EDUCATIONAL AND CULTURAL CONFERENCE

indispensable supplies. The role of Puerto Rico as a laboratory of colonization
was not inferior to that of the other three islands.
May I pause here to point out that Puerto Rico has not lost its value as a
training ground for the enrichment of American life. We have a School of
Tropical Medicine which is conducting research in the cause and prevention of
tropical diseases, of incalculable value to the tropical and sub-tropical regions
of the New and the Old World. Students come from the four corners of the
earth to work there. A school of tropical Agriculture has been contemplated for
some time, and there is even the more ambitious plan of a Pan-American Univer-
sity. Ashford and his associates, working in the School of Tropical Medicine,
did a great deal to relieve, cure and prevent hookworm, one of the oldest tropical
scourges. Chard6n with his research in plant pathology was instrumental in
saving our sugar-cane industry and increasing its output without augmenting
the acreage. The School of Tropical Medicine continues to study the possibilities
of some of our food plants, thus preserving one of our oldest experiment tradi-
tions.
One of the bases of better inter-American relations is collaboration by all
Americans in projects of a non-political character of undisputed benefit to the
entire hemisphere. Puerto Rico offers an excellent ground for such collaboration
in its excellent School of Tropical Medicine and in its projected school of tropi-
cal agriculture. Puerto Rico has shown the way in two fields in which the New
World is in need of light: Tropical Medicine and tropical agriculture.
The Spanish empire in America was challenged almost from the beginning.
In the latter part of the sixteenth century Drake, Hawkins and other English sea-
rovers made navigation insecure in the Caribbean. Hawkins was killed off Puerto
Rico, and Drake escaped because the Spaniards have never been sharpshooters.
The challenge became serious during the seventeenth and the eighteenth centuries.
First the English, then the Dutch, then the French, then the English again,
and then the French. In addition to these, there were filibusters, a company
of high-jackers who preyed on Spanish trade. They all gave Puerto Rico a
wide berth. The Spaniards soon realized the strategic value of the island and
fortified it heavily until it became with Cartagena the principal Spanish defense
in America. The English, the Dutch and the French tried repeatedly to capture
it and failed. The English had no trouble in conquering Jamaica and Trinidad.
They even occupied Havana for a while, but they could not take and hold Puerto
Rico.
At this moment Puerto Rico is being heavily fortified. Important air and
submarine bases are being established there to convert it into the Gibraltar of
the Caribbean. Let me review once more the reasons for this. Puerto Rico is the
nearest to Europe of the four Greater Antilles. Because of its position and its








UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA


landlocked harbors, it is admirably situated to defend the eastern approaches
to the Panama Canal. San Juan, Culebra, and the Vieques Sound offer safe
anchorage to a very large fleet. The harbor of San Juan has unique advantages
both for an air and a submarine base. With adequate air and submarine defenses
in Puerto Rico, the Panama Canal, the southeastern coast of the United States
and Venezuela and Brazil are well protected against attack from the Atlantic.
The Monroe Doctrine, as originally conceived and proclaimed, was no more
and no less than a re-declaration of American independence embracing the entire
Western Hemisphere. It proposed to defend the American System against re-
actionary aggression, democracy against autocracy. Autocracy is assuming,new
forms, and it is possible that we may have to defend our way of life against
fresh aggression. Friendly inter-American relations may properly include plans
for a common defense against a common enemy. Puerto Rico may well become
a valuable outpost to defend the entire Western Hemisphere against the attacks
of the new buccaneers and high-jackers who are trying to establish "a new order."
It might be argued that the contributions made by Puerto Rico to Spanish-
American civilization have been material and indirect. Only the very wise today
can tell the difference between the material and the spiritual, for matter has been
losing its substance and spirit its flavor. In any event, it would be extremely
hazardous to argue that a civilization or a culture is made up exclusively of
spiritual values. Races don't fight for intangibles. Our training in the early
days of some of the men who built and governed the Spanish empire was in
no sense material. Our contribution of food and supplies was material but it had
spiritual results. By 1530 we had sent to Castilla del Oro, Mexico, and Peru all
our best men, in addition to our cattle and horses, and the danger of depopulation
had become so great that the governor threatened to cut off the feet of any settler
caught trying to run away to Peru without a license.
From the middle of the sixteenth to the end of the eighteenth century, we
were merely a fortress. Our cultural contribution was nil. We produced timber
to build fleets and meat to feed the armies. But when the Spanish empire began
to collapse in America, some of the richer and more conservative criollos fled
to Puerto Rico with as much of their wealth as they could liquidate.
They came to us first from San Domingo, then from Louisiana, and finally
from Venezuela where the war for independence became a bitter and cruel civil war.
The stories found a refuge in Puerto Rico, the ever faithful island, too small to
challenge the mother country.
We should be the most conservative country in America, considering the
thousands of royalists that we took in in the first quarter of the nineteenth
century.
This new blood transformed Puerto Rico. We ceased being exclusively a









INTER-AMERICAN EDUCATIONAL AND CULTURAL CONFERENCE

source of raw materials. We contributed one of the most energetic vice-presidents
to the famous Cortes de Cidiz in 1812, Ram6n Power, a distinguished naval of-
ficer. Our men took an active part in the abolition of slavery in the Spanish
dominions. Betances, a famous abolitionist, was also a devoted worker for Cuban
independence. And finally, Eugenio Maria de Hostos, the most distinguished
son of Puerto Rico, was one of the small group who prepared the Spanish revolu-
tion of 1868. He, too, labored for Cuban independence.
Hostos is our greatest single contribution to Hispanic American civilization.
He was a man of continental caliber, comparable to Sarmiento and Marti. In a
world of generals, orators, and poets, he was a civil servant, teacher, and philoso-
pher, tremendously interested in social welfare and in the future of the American
nations. He traveled over North and South America. He taught, wrote, and
lectured from New York to Buenos Aires. His most important work was done
in Chile and in Santo Domingo. In this last country, a whole generation of
writers and leaders claim him as their spiritual father. Last year the centennial
of his birth was celebrated as he was hailed throughout Spanish America as one
of our major prophets."
Although I am deeply attached to my island of Puerto Rico, I cannot
claim that it has made any significant contribution in the field of letters or
science. We have had a few good poets and prose writers but their importance is
local. Hostos is really the only continental figure, but he is big enough to
satisfy our patriotic aspirations. We have excellent musicians. Jesfs Maria
Sanromi is a pianist recognized by the entire world. The Figueroa brothers-a
remarkably gifted family-are rapidly gaining recognition. And Hernandez,
the author of Lamento Berincano and other popular songs, has gained great
popularity all over Spanish America. We are likely to make substantial contri-
butions in music for our people are especially gifted in this art. Our value lies
not so much in what we have done as in what we are capable of doing for America.
Throughout its recorded history, Puerto Rico has been successively or
concurrently bridge, frontier, outpost, laboratory and refuge. A century and a
quarter ago we became a refuge for royalists from Santo Domingo and Venezuela.
We continue to be a haven for political refugees driven out of those republics
by the fortunes of new revolutions.
Puerto Rico has been advised to become the show-window, the interpreter
and the connecting link between North and South America. Despite all these
calls to become an instrument for something or other, Puerto Rico has developed
a strong and vigorous personality of its own. It would be a very serious error
to lose sight of that fact. Puerto Rico can continue to render valuable instru-
mental services in inter-American relations and conserve at the same time its
individuality, its personality. One of the most abominable features of our








UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA


contemporary civilization is the effort to regiment people, to make us alike so
that we can wear the same shoes, and the same hats, thus simplifying mass pro-
duction and increasing profits. I hope that Puerto Rico will resist regimentation
as it resisted the Caribs and the freebooters of the Spanish Main. I hope that
each of the American nations will insist on going its own way. You can love your
neighbor and keep the peace without trying to imitate him. I say this deliberately
because there is no hope of peace and good fellowship in America until we realize
that we can be different and still be good friends. Let us offer them the best we
have and let us take the best they offer us. The very essence of our American way
of life is respect and protection for the rights of personality.
It is the hope of every loyal son of Puerto Rico that the unique advantages
of our island will be increasingly used to promote better inter-American relations.
By race and origin we belong to one branch of the large American family, and by
political allegiance we belong to the other. It is very natural for us to seek our
justification, to endeavor to save our American soul by earnestly trying to pro-
mote peace and good fellowship among all our American relatives.









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Library of the University of Florida








UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA


THE TEACHING OF SPANISH AMERICAN LITERATURE

Sturgis E. Leavitt

WITH EUROPE cut off from the Western Hemisphere so far as actual
contact is concerned, it is only logical for travel-minded North Ameri-
cans to turn their attention to the countries of the South. Some are deep
sea enthusiasts while others are only fireside voyagers but, young and old, their
thoughts are directed southward. To be sure the people of the United States have
long been interested in Latin America, but never has this interest been so mani-
fest as now. Parties are being planned for visits to Mexico, to the Caribbean and
to South America on a scale never dreamed of before; books about Latin America
are in greater and greater demand; exchanges of students and professors are
being arranged; and courses in Spanish American history and literature are
being introduced into college after college. This is only a small part of a big
picture full of promise for the future.
If all that is now under way can continue, it is inevitable that the inhabitants
of North and South America will become better acquainted. When they do,
they will understand each other better. Along with such acquaintance and in-
formed understanding surely there will come good will, an angel that is fast
becoming a lonely stranger in a world of turmoil and strife. One would like to
see this angel often, nay, have her abide in our midst for all time.
There are, of course, certain dangers that lurk in the present flush of
enthusiasm for all that pertains to Latin America, and these dangers should be
frankly recognized along with the vast possibilities that such enthusiasm fore-
tells. In the extensive program that lies ahead we must be guided by the head
as well as the. heart and do everything possible to avoid at least some of the
pitfalls that lie ahead.
For example, in the case of the numerous parties that are being organized
to make quick tours of Latin America, it does seem of some importance that the
conductors of these groups should be .the right type of men. Certainly it is not
too much to expect that they should have some previous knowledge of the
countries they are to visit, that they should speak Spanish with a reasonable
degree of fluency, and that they should be favorably disposed toward the people
whom they are to meet. All this seems self evident, but it is very much to be
feared that some conductors will not possess these qualifications. If such is the
case, their charges, who can get but a fleeting glimpse at best, may return with
erroneous ideas of what Latin America is like. And it is perhaps safe to predict
that these tourists will not keep their impressions a secret. On the contrary, they
will probably proclaim their newly found opinions from the housetop and from








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the doorstep for any and all to hear. It will be more than futile to tell them they are
wrong.
Similarly, it seems clear that the students and professors selected for ex-
change should be the sort of people who can adapt themselves to a different
environment without being objectionably unhappy. It is to be hoped that these
representatives will not be constantly comparing outward differences between
the institutions they visit and those they leave behind. Differences there are,
indeed; but the visitors, we trust, will make an honest effort to understand the
reasons for the differences and not be too prone to judge wholly from appear-
ances. It is easy to magnify the efficiency of the United States and to find a lack
of it in Latin America; but it is not so easy to see that, after all, perhaps the
efficiency which we commonly spelled in large capital letters may not be so
important as it sometimes appears.
Objections might be raised to the numerous Spanish American courses
that are being introduced on such an extensive scale in the colleges and univer-
sities of this country. Some may say that most of our students will never go to
South America, that they will not even have occasion to become intimately as-
sociated with Latin Americans, or do any reading in Latin American literature
after graduation. If this is so, and it is so to a large extent, why teach them
anything about the literature of our southern neighbors? A mere acquaintance
with some of the literary monuments of Latin America is not sufficient answer
to these critics. Such an acquaintance would be like the partial picture of the
hasty tourist, or like the impressions of an ill-adjusted exchange professor. But,
on the other hand, if the teachers can give students something that they will
carry through life, something that will count in their philosophy, then teachers
can stand firm behind their books, and repell the critics.
Fortunately that "something" is within reach. Teachers can give their
students much that will be valuable for all time. They can give their pupils a
sympathetic attitude toward Latin America, an open mind toward the conditions
and problems prevailing there, and a willingness to see another's point of view.
Herein lies a unique opportunity to lay a sound basis for a true appreciation of
the culture of our southern neighbors.
To carry out such a program, however, the teachers of literature must come
out of their isolation in the curriculum and join forces with teachers from other
departments, especially those in geography and in the social sciences. Spanish
American literature embraces such a vast expanse of territory that it can be
properly understood only by bringing to bear a considerable knowledge from
many other fields.
A few examples will bear this out. The great Argentine epic Martin Fierro
depends upon the pampa for much of its interest; and since the student is not








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likely to go to Argentina in the course of his studies, only geography can give
him an idea of what the pampa really is. Indeed the vast gaucho literature of
Argentina, which finds perhaps its highest expression in Don Segundo Sombra
of Ricardo Giiiraldes, needs an extensive background of geographical informa-
tion. Students must know, too, that Argentina is not all pampa. The location
of its great capital and the complex life of the city should be brought home to him,
if he is to understand the remarkable growth of drama in Argentina, the only
country in Latin America where it does flourish to any considerable extent.
La vordgine of Jos6 Eustasio Rivera and other monuments of jungle fiction
call for a knowledge of quite another region. In fact the action of Don Segundo
Sombra and La vordgine takes place in two totally different worlds, which need
to be explained before the student ventures into the wide stretches of open
space on the one hand or the limitless expanse of unfriendly vegetation on the
other. For a comprehension of Latin American novels, it must always be made
clear that the countries of Latin America are unlike geographically and that
even within the same country there is often a great difference in climate, altitude,
and natural resources. All of these have their effect upon the people and their
literature.
Who can understand the Indian in the literatures of Peru, Ecuador and
Mexico without knowing something about the pecular conditions prevailing in
these countries? As a matter of fact, it is hard for people in the United States
to comprehend that there is a large Indian population anywhere, much less
appreciate its significance to the country where it is found. So it is that, to
undertake a study of Icaza's Huasipungo or L6pez y Fuentes El Indio, at least
a partial background of ethnology must be provided. The indianista movement
in Latin America calls for extensive study in fields far removed from polite
literature.
Other works of Spanish American literature require a considerable know-
ledge of history. Who can appreciate Mirmol's Amalia without some informa-
tion about the dictatorship of Rosas? A study of his regime will carry us far
since the political events of his career not only concern the intellectual life of the
country that produced him, but also that of the countries which sheltered his
opponents. Los de abajo of Mariano Azuela loses much of its meaning unless
one has studied the Mexican revolution and its background. The Tradiciones
of Ricardo Palma have little to offer the person who has no idea of the vice-regal
splendor of Lima in Colonial times.
Looking at the matter from another angle, courses in the geography and
history of Latin America can gain much from the study of its literature. There
one can see examples of the effect of environment on human beings, political
and social institutions in action, and the thoughts and reactions of men and









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women in a given moment of history. More perhaps in Latin America than
anywhere else are geography, history and literature interdependent. Each brings
the other alive.
Incidentally, the teaching of Spanish American literature is a complex
problem for other reasons. There is no satisfactory history of Spanish American
literature as a whole, and few histories of the literature of individual countries
are suitable for North American students. Current magazines and books are
hard to secure, and contacts with Spanish American publishers difficult to
maintain. Not the least of the difficulties is the language, for dialects and local
expressions abound in the literary production of our southern neighbors. In-
deed, many of the modern novels contain glossaries in Spanish for Latin Ameri-
can readers. What is the North American student to do with books like these
when even reasonably difficult Spanish gives him pause?
In the face of the complex problem of presenting Spanish American civiliza-
tion through its varied expressions in literature, it is not enough for teachers
who are interested in the language and literature of Cervantes to take on
Spanish American literature as a side line. They need to have a particular sym-
pathy toward this new subject. They must remember that Latin American litera-
ture is young, that it has not reached its fullest measure of expression, that much
of it has leaned too heavily on European literature, that most of it is regional
in character. In a word, teachers must realize that Spanish American literature
is greater in promise than in achievement.
On the other hand, there is need for teachers to refrain from going to the
other extreme and approaching Latin American literature with an excess of
sentimentality. They will be doing themselves and the cause they represent a
grave injustice if they hypnotize themselves into thinking that because they are
teaching Spanish American literature it is one of the great literatures of the
world. Too much has been done in that direction already and much harm has
come from it. In fact, until recently few teachers in the United States seemed
willing to tell the truth, and the whole truth, about the literature of Spanish
America. Most of the material available in print was impressionistic criticism,
eulogy without restraint-pleasant.to read but hard to substantiate.
Happily, recent studies of the Novel in Spanish America have put the train
of criticism on the track of truth. The author of these studies, Arturo Torres
Rioseco, is in a peculiarly favorable position because he is a South American
writing in the United States. What he says will be heeded by North Americans
and South Americans alike. His thorough-going appraisal of prose fiction in
Spanish America will undoubtedly encourage similar studies in other fields
and give support to objective criticism in general. When more and better








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critical material is available, not only will the teaching of Latin American litera-
ture improve but so will Latin American literature itself.
Teachers of Spanish American literature, if they really wish to make their
subjects vitally interesting should visit Latin America. They earnestly desire
to do so, there is little doubt about that, but unfortunately their desire is apt
to become a vain dream rather than a bright reality when inquiry is made about
steamship rates. In amount the rates seem like round trip fares, but careful
scrutiny shows that they are one way prices. Where is the money coming from
to take trips like that? And how is there going to be any money left to keep
the wolf out of the kitchen the rest of the year? The exchange of students and
professors referred to above will remedy this situation and to some extent may
bring about a reduction of fares for all teachers. If and when it does the
teaching of Spanish American literature in the United States will receive an
impetus such as it has never felt before. All of us look forward with anticipa-
tion to that great day and pray for its speedy arrival.
The interest in Latin America now felt in the United States, is not temporary,
something to be put aside when conditions in Europe change for the better.
When close contacts are made, North Americans will learn that there is much
besides commercial opportunities south of the Rio Grande. They will find
that the people of Latin America have a culture from which we can profit just
as we have a culture that will be of value to them. Difficulties in the way of
mutual understanding will be overcome by travel, reading and study. The pro-
cess may not be as rapid as some may wish, but there are leaders in the United
States who have faith in the movement, and when this faith is coupled with
continued effort, shall we not see a new day in the Western Hemisphere and an
example of peace in a sorely troubled world?








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THE TEACHING OF INTER-AMERICAN LANGUAGES
AND LITERATURES

Jos6 Padin

O INCREASE and to improve the teaching of the inter-American languages,
the first and the most important thing to be done is to broaden our linguistic
policy to cover the requirements of the situation. Inter-American relations
constitute a problem of hemispheric proportions. There is nothing parochial
about it. The welfare of more than two hundred million people is at stake. The
whole New World is concerned, from Hudson Bay to Tierra del Fuego. Whatever
we may attempt to do to improve those relations must embrace the entire Western
Hemisphere as its logical objective. At this particular moment more than a
score of nations seem eager to become better neighbors. They want to work
together for their common good. The situation calls for ample vision and
generous endeavor, for plans of continental size. It is a question of broad
perspective.
We can't afford, therefore, to consider English, Spanish, French, and
Portuguese, the four living languages of America, merely as so many school
subjects, endowed with a certain educational value which justifies their inclu-
sion in the curriculum of our secondary schools and colleges because modern
languages have been accepted for the last hundred years or so as material for
instruction. Educational inertia is never an acceptable reason for teaching any-
thing; it is only a remediable evil which we, as educators, are frequently too
lazy to remedy. The inter-American languages are not obscure school subjects
to be taken or dropped by snap decisions. There are vital reasons of national
policy for teaching them and these reasons should be stated and defended.
Pedagogical considerations apply to the methods for teaching a subject. Its
inclusion in the curriculum should be governed by reasons of national policy.
Broadly speaking, the New World is shared by two principal cultures, one of
Anglo-Saxon and the other of Hispanic origin. English and Spanish are, respec-
tively, the languages of these cultures. Portuguese deserves attention because it
is an important element of Hispanic civilization in addition to being the language
of Brazil. French is the language of a part of Canada and of Haiti.
Better relations imply and require closer acquaintance. Good neighbors
must know one another before they can begin to appreciate their good points and
acquire that mutual respect without which there cannot be any lasting friendship.
They must understand one another. Literally, they must speak the same language.
Therefore, if we want to promote better inter-American relations we should begin
by opening up the principal channel of inter-communication; we must emphasize








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language teaching and learning. We must preach here the gospel of Spanish and
to the south of us the gospel of English, Spanish and English for the greatest
number, at the earliest possible date. All other endeavors are secondary.
Language is the master key that opens all the doors. If you have the key you
don't have to crash the gate. Crashing your neighbor's gate to get better ac-
quainted is not a good beginning.
I mention English and Spanish because they are the two most widely dif-
fused languages of America and, from a practical point of view, the most im-
portant. There is no need to try to make the Americans polyglot.
For centuries, and over wide areas, educated peoples have had command of
two languages, their mother-tongue and a second medium learned for cultural,
commercial, or political reasons. Latin, for instance, was the second language
of all the learned Europeans until the end of the seventeenth century. French
has been a second language to a great variety of people, for many years, both
for cultural and political considerations. English is the second language of
India, China, and Japan, for commercial or political reasons. Switzerland is
tri-lingual. Mastering two languages is not more difficult than learning to swim
and to play tennis, or musical notation and stenography. It is not extravagant
to aim at making English the second language of Hispanic America and Spanish
the second language of Anglo-Saxon America for all people with the adequate
linguistic aptitude. This would be our greatest single contribution to the impiove-
ment of inter-American relations. For every time that a Spanish-American
learned English or an Anglo-American learned Spanish, the cause of better
American relations would gain an active participant.
Let us place languages where they belong. Let us advocate the teaching of
English and Spanish, not merely for cultural or commercial reasons; let us
teach them for peace, friendship and good neighborliness in America.
The Tower of Babel ended in a confusion of tongues. Without in any sense
implying that our American Democracy is the second tower of Babel, let us
remember that a confusion of tongues is always the beginning of a tragic end.
Let us endeavor to speak the same languages that we may understand one another
better and co-operate for the common welfare. We have in America great new
facilities for communication, but to get the greatest benefit out of them, English
and Spanish must be more widely taught.
I have said "speak the same languages." Dead languages are needed
exclusively for cultural purposes; it is enough to know how to read them. This
is also true of living languages when there is neither the desire nor the op-
portunities for speaking them. But here in the New World we are all very much
alive and anxious to know one another. The radio and Pan-American highways
are opening up vast possibilities for more intimate contacts. We want to under-









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stand the principal languages of America when we hear them, and we want to
be able to speak them when we travel north or south to get better acquainted. We
want to be our own interpreter when we run out of gasoline or have a blow-out.
After we reach our neighbor's country, we want to read his newspapers and books,
and order a meal at his restaurants.
The present emphasis on reading as the chief objective of modern language
instruction is due solely to the fact that the average student does not remain
exposed to the language for more than 45 minutes a day, 180 days a year, for two
years. The exposure does not seem long enough to insure more than a mastery
of reading, when all the handicaps are considered. The logic of this cannot be
gainsaid. If you cannot increase the period of exposure, you have to reduce your
aims. You cannot learn to speak a language unless you keep at it for a sufficiently
long period, at the proper age. You learn to speak the same way you learn to
play golf or tennis. It is our duty, therefore, to advocate a much longer period
of instruction. Ten years at least: two in the grammar school, four in high school
and four in college. This should provide the desirable exposure. Specialists
would then approach their fields of major concentration with a broad linguistic
background not possible now. In the Southwest they realize the importance of
starting early. At this moment there is considerable agitation there for beginning
Spanish in the seventh grade. It certainly should not be postponed to any later
grade.
A necessary corollary to this is longer and better training for teachers, in-
cluding required residence in a country where his chosen language is spoken. I
have often wondered how much of the low regard in which modern languages are
held in some quarters is due to the incompetence and the futility of those teaching
them.
The languages are not enough. We must teach also the essentials of the two
principal cultures of America. Provision must be made to acquaint the students
with the literature and the history of the American peoples, with their music,
painting, architecture, in fact, with every major aspect of their material and
spiritual civilization. Good neighborliness must be accompanied by a more
intimate knowledge of our neighbors' strong points. This knowledge must not
be the exclusive possession of a few gifted specialists. It must be spread to the
largest possible number to widen the base of friendship.
This enlarged program implies, in the first place, better and more diversi-
fied teaching materials: more and better books, maps, pictures, radio, movies,
and a few more of our modern equipment to convey information. Languages
should be supplied with reference libraries, museums and laboratories like any
other well-taught subject. Facilities should be provided to immerse the students
in the language as frequently and for as long a period as it may be thought








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desirable. It may be merely to listen to the language spoken, or to see pictures
of the foreign country. Language realia should be increased. Language instruc-
tion suffers from chronic malnutrition because of the almost total lack of
suitable teaching materials.
Increasing the realia, however, is not enough, although it would help. The
enriched program must be better integrated. If we are to have ten years of
language instruction, the possibilities for specializing are vastly increased. We
must provide suitable centers for direction and concentration. For many years
the leaders in our profession have dreamed of complete and independent units,
within the University, embracing the language and the civilization of a given
country. Something like a Department of Hispanic Civilization. Students would
enroll in such a department if they wished to specialize on any major aspect of
Hispanic culture. Under its direction they would receive all the necessary in-
struction in language, literature, and the social sciences. It can be done by
proper co-ordination of existing facilities, without unnecessary duplication. The
dream is rapidly coming true. This institute, held under the auspices of the
Institute of Inter-American Affairs of the University of Florida, is a sign of the
times. Michigan held a similar institute last summer and Texas will hold another
next summer. The University of Denver has organized recently an Institute of
Inter-American Affairs. Brown University has created a chair of Hispanic
Civilization. The purpose of all these efforts is to provide larger facilities for
specializing in this field.
The important thing is to get good and well-paid teachers. Buildings and
equipment will follow, at least here in the United States. It would be desirable
to have special houses assigned to students majoring in the language and civiliza-
tion field. The foreign language might become the official language of the
house. Distinguished visiting professors might be installed in such houses, with
considerable advantages to the students.
If we could establish several centers of this type, both here and in Hispanic
America, imagine the incentive they would supply for the exchange of teachers
and students. Our problem of cultural interchange between the Americas would
be enormously simplified. Each of these centers would be a magnet.
While these institutes of Inter-American Affairs are growing-they are the
language schools of tomorrow-we must not neglect our more modest facilities.
The Instituto de las Espafias has done magnificent work with practically no money.
Of course it has spent a great deal of talent, which is far more difficult to find.
Clubs where students can gather to hear and speak the language are excellent
things. They do not cost so much money, but they require a large expenditure of
time. Summer schools of languages, with a pledge to use exclusively the foreign
language, are another excellent means of advancing the cause.









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The most urgent thing of all, however, is to sell the inter-American languages
to the people of America, to make them realize how vitally important they are
to the improvement of American relations. We are making substantial progress,
but we must continue the good work.
The various conferences on inter-American Affairs organized by the Cultur-
al Division of the State Department have attracted some of the best men in the
country. There is a genuine interest in improving American relations. This is
the time to do something about it, for the stars are favorable. It is the fiftieth
anniversary of the Pan-American Union. Golden anniversaries are the most
propitious to preach the gospel of goodwill.








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PROBLEMS OF UNIVERSITY EDUCATION AND
THE INTER-AMERICAN UNIVERSITY

Octavio MWndez Pereira
ACCORDING TO EMERSON, a great moralist, and therefore a great educator,
culture restores equilibrium, puts man in his place among his equals
and his superiors, stimulates in him the exquisite sentiment of sympathy,
and warns him in time against the danger of solitude and of conflicting impulses.
This aim of converting superior principles into altruistic sentiments, this
purpose of transforming mental activities into moral energy, this willingness to
be strengthened by a well-understood culture, should be the basis of revision
and reorganization of educative values in the crisis through which the world is
moving at the present time. It must mean putting the school in harmony with
life, establishing it on a foundation of moral and intellectual health, and giving
it, at the same time, greater scope in the social and human function of culture.
Never before, has it been more certain that culture should parallel the
existing spiritual moment of the world, especially the problems and conditions
of the nation in which it evolves. In order to find the social formula for peace
and human accord to terminate present conflicts in this crumbling civilization,
the university problem must place itself before the suffering and the hope of
contemporary, as well as of future life, as a protagonist and as a guide, as an
antenna and as a renovating force.
One of the imperatives, then, of a modern university is that it perceive and
attempt to remedy the profound tumults which shake humanity, that it open its
doors and windows so it may join the world and inject its science with new life,
that it share its culture with the great problems of life which surround it and
with the lowest depths of collective existence.
At present, universities are unable to enjoy complete engrossment in the
preparation of doctors and researchers while outside the lecture-halls the un-
restricted hurricane of human tragedy blows on. And in this universal tragedy
which has touched our age, two fundamental facts come to the educator's sight:
that youth must enter life as an element of the masses; and that the political,
economic, intellectual, moral and social factors of the universe are interdependent.
Perhaps from the moral profit of these two factors there will some day ap-
pear the social good which men seek feverishly, a more human and more pro-
found equilibrium upon which the new civilization may build itself. And it is
this university, the human university, which is called upon to place in contact and
harmony the factors most likely to produce this transformation, and to concen-
trate its generous action on men and on nations.








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I have here explained briefly the bases of a modern Inter-American univer-
sity, like that which President Roosevelt suggested be located in Panama. A
university which emerges from academic retreats in order to solve life's great
problems with culture and in order to secure better comprehension and know-
ledge of men and of races as well as of their mode of living in this hemisphere.
This means humanizing and vitalizing culture with the social contents of the life
of the nations in order to return it to them in peace, in well-being, in justice, in
democracy, and in illumination of their problems.
American solidarity imposed by geography and history, fortified spiritually
by sympathy and community of ideals and interests, and politically by similarity
of democratic institutions and the extent of legal contracts, can never be a moral
reality, stable or permanent, as Roosevelt believes, unless it dwells on the educa-
tion of youth.
The legal and intellectual bonds creating the codification of international
law, the unification of commercial law, the encouragement of intellectual co-
operation and of cultural relations through the exchange of publications, ex-
positions and assemblies, will always remain beautiful theories if they are not
constructed on spiritual and moral forces cemented from school days into human
material, men and women, who are called to apply and convert these theories into
sincere and effective conquests of the masses.
The new American university must have as a field of experimentation and
investigation the problems of the country and of the continent in which it is
located, without forgetting the rest of the world; and with science it must dis-
interestedly serve the masses.
If today more than ever before science must be instrumental in securing
for all peoples well-being and accord, then it is the university's duty to show
youth that it must not labor apart from the masses of its country, nor at a dis-
tance from other countries because of religious dislikes, racial differences, or
psychological misunderstandings. If knowledge is not mere data or learning,
but the possession of a philosophy of life, a good orientation in the world of
ideas and of reality; if culture means above all the possession of an interior
dynamism of the spirit which directs personal performances and inclinations, then
the mission of a university before the present material civilization should not be
to present a blind force which places science and technology at the service of the
lower passions of this imprisoned barbarian called civilized man, but rather
to present a superior perception and consciousness of life, understood through a
life of striving for high and noble objectives. It would be the duty of the Inter-
American University, thus fused with real life and with spiritual life, to make
the whole continent into a single cordial entity through the inter-mingling of its
youth, a single force of the new values which will constitute the true new world








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united in right, in justice, in culture and in democratic solidarity; united like a
single nervous system, able to vibrate sympathetically at stimulations of peace
and accord, and of humanity and solidarity, both national and international. It
would be its duty to undertake the education of the American conscience, the
socialization of collective duty, the solidification of principles which proclaim
themselves a patrimony of large moral and spiritual conquests. It would be its
duty to elevate the citizen of a large country above frontiers and above racial
and religious obstacles, and to create republican and collective interests; in a
word, to superintend directly, effectively, the march of progress and of civiliza-
tion in America, which should be at the same time the individual and commercial
heritage and conquest of our peoples. Finally, above all, its duty would be to
reintegrate in man his dignity and values as such, as a subject for heart and
thought, as a scientific subject and an emotional subject, capable therefore of
noble inspirations in the field of sensibility as well as in that of intellect. Cul-
ture is not knowledge but fertilization of the spirit, elevation to the mysterious
which surrounds it and to the infinite which calls it to other spheres of eternal
things.
In its investigating function the Inter-American University would apply it-
self to universal problems, especially to problems concerning America, with the
object of finding solutions which contribute to the material and spiritual better-
ment of the Continent, and, above all, to the harmony of its interests, culture
and institutions.
The Inter-American University would endeavor to place students in contact
with men of science and of action in the university itself and in the actual life
of each of the nations, and to awaken in the students a sense of their responsibil-
ity to the collective destiny of the Continent and their duty to intervene in internal
problems as well as in international ones, to solve them, as I have said, with
understanding and in collaboration with science.
Thus our university, the center of unification between the Colombian nations,
would be a source of orientation in scientific investigations, a center for con-
sultation and advice, and for assistance in all problems; it would be a laboratory
for individual and social improvement where would be moulded all ideologies,
aspirations and ideals, in bond of union between the nations; it would be a
crucible of our nationalities, a spring of dynamism and action, of love and
tolerance.
At the second Pan-American Scientific Congress held at Washington in
1915, the Panamanian delegate, Narciso Garay, at present Secretary of Foreign
Relations, supported with a brilliant work the initiative of Mr. William-Jennings
Bryan, Secretary of State of the United States of America, for the foundation of a
Pan-American University in Panama, and at the same time he supported the sugges-









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tion of Dr. E. G. Dexter, Rector of the then National Institute of Panama, that
this country be "a place of academic contact between the Spanish and English
speaking countries of the Western world." This North American educator be-
lieved, at the very time the Panama Canal was to be opened for international
traffic, that with an institute for the study of tropical diseases, with modern
language courses and a law faculty teaching Roman Law and "Common Law,"
Panama would attract students from all of her sister republics.
But it was the author, as President of the Panamanian delegation to the
Third Pan-American Scientific Congress held in Lima from 1924 to 1925, who
succeeded afterwards in presenting and discussing a thesis on a "Bolivarian
University in Panama," which incorporated the Liberator's ideals of continental
solidarity and harmony, and who succeeded in having approved a resolution in
favor of the organization in Panama of a Pan-American University "as a means
of binding all the countries of the Continent." This Congress approved, in con-
nection with said University, the establishment in Panama of a central biblio-
graphical office for scientific information and literature.
The fiscal and economic crisis of 1929 and other factors not to be pointed
out here, impeded the realization of this Pan-American University project, of
which remained as a practical basis, nevertheless, the Gorgas Institute of Tropi-
cal Medicine, founded, in the heat of those tropical ideals, in the building which
was to become the School of Medicine.
Now the project revives at the most opportune moment, immediately after
the Conference of Secretaries of Foreign Relations laid in Panama the bases of
American solidarity and co-operation foreseen by Bolivar. Both President
Franklin Delano Roosevelt and President Augusto S. Boyd have seen with the
clear vision of American statesmen the excellence of such an institution and the
privileged location of Panama for its campus.
Because of its position in the center of the world between two oceans which
brings to its shores all the products of the world and of industry, all the ideas
and all the winds of renovation, all languages and all races, all germs of toler-
ance and novelty, Panama is, in fact, as the Third Scientific Congress agreed,
the ideal place for the Inter-American University.
In her, races intermingle and the two principal languages of the continent
come in contact without growing confused; in her are reflected as in a mirror
the sincerity of Pan-Americanism, a practical example of the peaceful relations
of the most powerful American nation with one of the weakest; in her, all the
commercial lines of the world cross, by land, by sea, and by air; and in her
are shown the power of man and science in dominating the tropics in all its
harmful exuberance and excesses.
For the study of hygiene and sanitation, of tropical diseases, of world








UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA


commerce, of administration and government, of the engineering of canals and
highways, of international law, of agriculture and agronomy, of the most-spoken
languages of the Continent, for democratic education in the living together of
different races, for propaganda and dispersion of ideas, no country offers the
facilities which Panama offers.
What medical school in America has such hospitals as Ancon, Santo Tomis
and Panami, and at the same time an Institute of Tropical Medicine like that of
Gorgas? What law school can show in neighboring practice Anglo-Saxon and
Roman Law? What commercial school has at hand, as in Panama and the Canal
Zone, so many steamship lines, so many problems of protection and free trade,
of warehouses for storage and distribution, of commissaries, of provisions for
ships, of tourist trade, etc.? What other school of languages can prepare two
peoples united, yet separated, speaking Spanish and English, like Panama and
the Canal Zone? What other engineering school is placed beside the world's
greatest canal with an admirable system of locks, enormous mechanical work-
shops, war arsenals, immense airdromes, dry-docks for constructing and repair-
ing ships, and a network of modern highways? What school of education,
finally, like the Panamanian school, shelters classes attended by children of all
races in the most democratic and interesting melting pot of the world? Science,
arts, history, international questions, industrial and artistic expositions, have
their place of greatest resonance in the Isthmus of Panama, the antenna and
rostrum for ideas, the bridge of the world.
As this country does not conserve the old and set traditions of classical
universities, and is, therefore, "free of dead ideals which impede dissemination
of live ideals," in it a new international university may be born without dif-
ficulty. A university with a liberal and broad criterion in which the cultural
aspect predominates over the purely professional, where it may be easy to
develop American ideals of peace and solidarity for clear vision in socio-eco-
nomic, political, religious and intellectual problems of our peoples, without
losing sight, of course, of the necessary collaboration with other universities in
the advancement of the sciences and the arts.
The present National University of Panama, instead of being an obstacle
for such an institution, would constitute a foundation and living nucleus for
its development. This University has been in existence for a lustrum and
is not influenced by the University of San Javier founded by the Jesuits
during colonial days, from 1749 to 1781, nor by the university instruction
of the College of the Isthmus, formerly the Seminary College, nor by the
courses of higher learning which, during the Republic, served as heralde
of that which is now a real university of modern spirit, culture, and progressive-
ness.









INTER-AMERICAN EDUCATIONAL AND CULTURAL CONFERENCE

Besides post-graduate professional studies in sanitation and hygiene, in
tropical medicine, in law, engineering, commerce, agriculture, administration,
languages, and education, the Inter-American University would present cultural
courses and summer courses in Hispanic and English studies, in American history,
in public administration and government, in international law, in diplomatic
and political history, in philosophy, in journalism, in economic and social
problems, in educational problems, in physico-chemical and natural sciences, in
architecture, in plastic arts, in music, etc., etc.
Thus, with cultural courses and summer courses, as well as systematic post-
graduate courses, there would be instituted whatever courses were demanded by
general interest or by world events. For these the University would invite the
outstanding persons in each science or activity, and in preparation would distri-
bute throughout the American countries schedules of the respective courses; it
would receive entrance applications, and it would obtain for students transporta-
tion and housing facilities previously agreed upon by the governments.
In connection with courses of study, there would be organized instructive
excursions to the Canal and to neighboring countries, to regions inhabited by
natives, to ancient monuments, to hospitals and sanitation projects, to the com-
missaries, storehouses, etc.
Having been conceived as a place of complementary studies, as an inter-
national university campus or town for post-graduates who will practice the
living together of races, of colors, of religious and political creeds, the University
will devote itself to these matters.
To attain these high aims, the Inter-American University must be before and
above all autonomous, that is to say, not subject to the political interests of a
country, of a government or of a group, nor of the faculty nor of the administra-
tion. The principle of liberty in research and in teaching will have to be, on the
other hand, the basis of all culture imparted in the University to maintain respect
for ideas and current trends of thought. And the ethical principle which gives
men and nations their dignity anid assures them justice, equality and legal rights,
must inspire the social task of this advanced university education.
The organization of the Inter-American University will depend in great part
upon the manner in which its resources for operation are obtained. These
resources may be provided by private gifts from individuals or groups and by
subscriptions or contributions from the various American governments. The
writer is authorized to say that the Government of Panama from this point on
offers adequate and necessary land for construction of the university campus,
and any other contribution which may be within its means. Action by President
Roosevelt will doubtlessly provide remaining necessary funds.
From the beginning there must be considered the relations between the other








UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA


American universities (in both North and South America) and the Inter-Ameri-
can University in order that the latter may exercise maximum influence in the
co-ordination of all factors constituting its mission of international service.
These relations are practically translated into mutual assistance, and the fortifica-
tion of sentiment and continental solidarity whose point of centralization would
be an office for co-ordination in the Inter-American University. The University
research departments would exchange their works by means of this office and
would present questions and problems which in their opinion demanded unifica-
tion in points of view. Another office would centralize the exchange of publica-
tions and the bibliography of the Continent. A central international editor
would handle Americanist propaganda and the spreading of continental culture,
and he would handle the Castilianization of foreign culture by means of trans-
lating into Spanish important works universally known, as well as the translation
into English of all outstanding Spanish works.
If this plan for the Inter-American University reaches fulfillment, there is
no doubt that within a decade its results will begin to show themselves or to be
felt as powerful forces for international peace, co-operation and solidarity. And
the American world will no longer be the hope but the realization of democracy.

CONCLUSIONS
(1) That a Pan-American University, approved by the Third Scientific
Congress of Lima, be organized as an Inter-American University for post-graduate
study located in the Republic of Panama.
Special statutes will regulate the operation of this University, whose essential
purposes will be the following:
(a) To serve as a unifying force of social well-being, peace, culture
and solidarity in democracy between the various nations of the Contin-
ent;
(b) To contribute to the spiritual approachment of our peoples
through the co-ordination of its university and academic efforts and its
scientific investigations.
(c) To make itself the center for consultation, and for the distri-
bution and diffusion of American culture and ideals.
(2) That the government of the United States of America be commissioned,
by agreement of the other governments of the Pan-American Union, to study the
most adequate means for the installation, organization and upkeep in Panama
of the Inter-American University, already agreed upon by the Third Scientific
Congress.




























































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