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Buenos Aires residents’ infatuated cultural self esteem

Tuesday, May 26th 2009 - 12:06 UTC
Full article 4 comments
Porteños consider themselves more enlightened than the rest of the continent Porteños consider themselves more enlightened than the rest of the continent

A majority of Buenos Aires City residents consider themselves more enlightened and educated than the rest of Argentines and of Latinamericans with the movies as their main leisure distraction, according to a public opinion poll published in the Sunday edition of the newspaper Perfil.

The poll shows that 63% of Buenos Aires residents or “porteños” (port people) as they are identified in Latinamerica, consider themselves better educated than the rest and 70% define themselves as having a “high cultural level”.

The poll was done by consultants Estudios Observatorio Porteño, and included 500 interviews.

However in spite of the cultural dressing of “porteños”, and their elevated feeling of having a better education, “only 22% of those polled, regularly visit the cultural centres, programs and events offered by the government of the City of Buenos Aires”, which is impressive

Furthermore, “40% never visited or enjoyed a cultural event, while 38% never set foot in a museum and 73% ignore what municipal cultural workshops display or can offer”.

The poll does show that 43% admitted having visited sometime a museum, paintings or sculpture exhibition, but the main reason for not becoming regular visitors is simply the lack of time.

Nevertheless 58% have time to visit the movies and far behind, 20%, music concerts and 13.6% to the theatre.

Literature Nobel Laureate Gabriel García Márquez was once asked in a television program on the air to define a Buenos Aires resident or “porteño”. A few seconds later the master of Spanish literature looks at the anchor man and tells him: “it’s that little ego we all have in our hearts”.

Categories: Politics, Argentina.

Top Comments

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  • Gabriel

    Who wrote this garbage? What was the purpose? Just to prick at the porteños? Lets see, the poll does not clarify who the REST is, does it mean the REST of the province?, the REST of the country?, the REST of what??? There are no comparisons made at all... next time you want to call an entire people names do so and don’t invent some bogus poll!

    May 26th, 2009 - 09:12 pm 0
  • Bubba

    Having been a gringo living in BsAs for five years, and having an Argentine wife, I can vouch for the porteños, they are a breed apart in Latin America. Being in BsAs is like being in Paris, without all the bothersome French..

    May 27th, 2009 - 04:49 pm 0
  • Jason

    After many years here I can say that the Porteño has a very elevated opinion of himself/herself that is not always justified. “Culture” is pretty superficial here - people are well groomed and like to dress up. They put a high value on status: not only the name brand clothes you wear but where you live, if you have a second home, the car you own, the vacations you take, the private schools your kids attend. When it comes to genuine interest in books, theatre (other than musicals), classical music, art etc. participation is limited and knowledge does not go very deep. The Teatro Colon has been closed down for the last couple of years, Macri has laid off over a third of the employees, there are no signs of when it will reopen yet there is no public outcry that the nation's leading cultural institution is at risk. I find that conversations with most professional and upper class people focus on politics, sports, their kids, economy, travel and problems with their maids. I have had very little luck finding people who take a real interest in the arts or history. There are some but few and far between. It's all image here without much substance.

    May 30th, 2009 - 11:31 pm 0
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