The formation of social class structure through Argentina's history

This seminar is hosted by the School of Sociology and Social Policy in association with the Researching Inequalities Network (IRN) and Leeds Social Science Institute (LSSI). All welcome!

This session entitled, 'The formation of social class structure through Argentina’s history: the myth of upward social mobility, the association with self–perceptions and political orientations' will be delivered by Dr Jésica Lorena Pla (Gino Germani Research Institute. University of Buenos Aires).


This presentation will review Argentina’s history from the perspective of social stratification. It will focus on class formation, social policies and labour markets. These three elements have been associated in different ways within the twentieth century, shaping different social inequalities: by immigration and state consolidation, industrialization, Peronism, military dictatorships, the return of democracy and the consolidation of neoliberalism. Rather than review all of Argentina’s history, I will focus on the process of stratification in each period from the perspective of inequality. Additionally, I will focus on the last two decades, when a new social order appeared, characterized by a new orientation in regard of social policy, a political order with a great concern in employment, and improvement of social indicators, while some inequalities created during neoliberalism still remained. I will examine trends in social mobility, trends of the labour market, and explore perceptions and expectations of different social classes. I will also examine how these perceptions create symbolic distinction mechanisms which are creating a new social fracture on Argentina’s society. To summarize, in this presentation I will try to associate the macro trends of stratification and social mobility with the symbolic representations about social class. Also, I will discuss the myths of stratification and upward social mobility throughout Argentinean history, and how it shapes justification of inequality and distinctive mechanism, and a new social fracture. Altogether, I will present some data to discuss the implications of these processes on political orientations throughout the last thirty years.  

About the speaker:

Dr Jesica Pla is Assistant Professor on “Structure, Classes and Social Mobility” and “Methodology and techniques for social research” at the University of Buenos Aires (UBA). Her main research topics are social mobility and stratification processes, social classes, social inequality, the social issue and the subjective effects of socio-political phenomena in the process of social integration.  She has run research projects funded by the Minister of Science and the University of Buenos Aires. Currently she runs the project “Social fragmentation - political fragmentations: Class Pathways and political orientations on current Argentina”, funded by UBA. Jesica has a Bachelor's degree in Sociology and a PhD in Social Sciences from the University of Buenos Aires. She is currently Researcher at the National Scientific and Technical Research Council (CONICET) at the Instituto de Investigaciones, Gino Germani at UBA.

 This is a free event open to all. There is no need to book.