ALEJANDRO GRIMSON /// The Politics of Borders in South America and Buenos Aires


This conversation with social anthropologist Alejandro Grimson articulates the concept of border both at a philosophical level and at a local level through few South American cases that he studied in the past. What does it mean to have a bridge joining two countries together? How about when it is an avenue that almost invisibly separates two countries? For Alejandro, borders as such are not against what we need to fight, but rather their means of implementation. In the second part of the conversation, we ‘zoom in’ Buenos Aires to observe how the Argentinean capital is also full of borders established both spatially, economically, and administratively. We finish the conversation by evoking the present of the fabricas recuperadas, these factories took over by their workers when they were threaten to be sold at the beginning of the economic crisis (2001).

Alejandro Grimson has born in Buenos Aires in 1968. He is Phd in Anthropology (University of Brasilia). He make research on urban spaces and social borders, including migration, political borders, ethnicity and other ways of otherness. In cultural studies and Latin America his work has a great influence, specially around identities, political culture and nationalism. He has publish around 15 books and around 50 articles. In English it is avaible “Argentina and the Southern Cone. Neoliberalism and national imaginations” (with Gabriel Kessler). In Spanish, his last books are “Los límites de la cultura” (Latin American Studies Association Prize) and “Mitomanías argentinas”




– Alejandro Grimson, “Nations, Nationalism and ‘Borderization’ in the Southern Cone,” in Thomas Wilson and Hastings Donnan (eds), A Companion to Border Studies, Blackwell Publishing, 2012.


– Alejandro Grimson, Mitomanías argentinas: Cómo hablamos de nosotros mismos, Siglo XXI Editores, 2014.
– Alejandro Grimson and Gabriel Kessler, On Argentina and the Souther Cone: Neoliberalism and National Imaginations, Routledge, 2005.
– Alejandro Grimson, La Nacion En Sus Limites, Gedisa Editorial, 2003.