Human Rights in Action through Literature & Film

Buenos Aires, Argentina

Winter 2017: January 3, 2017 - January 24, 2017*

Program Flyer (pdf) 


Argentina's recent history ranges from dictatorship in the 1970s to different forms of democracy in the last thirty years. Social movements, cultural expressions and all sorts of political institutions are highly active today, reflecting this history and provide a unique opportunity for our students to approach human rights in action. Buenos Aires is an outstanding location to study how human rights were violated systematically, ignored, and finally restored. 

Students from all majors are encouraged to apply. All students, however, must have intermediate proficiency in  Spanish—be able to read, speak and understand Spanish.


 Professor María Julia Rossi obtained her BAs at the Universidad Nacional de Rosario and Escuela Nacional de Teatro y Títeres, in Rosario, Argentina, and her PhD and MA at the University of Pittsburgh. Her doctoral dissertation, “Las dependencias. Figuras del servicio doméstico en la obra de Silvina Ocampo, Elena Garro y Clarice Lispector” explores representations of domestic servants and the emotional economy of relationships in literary works by these Latin American writers. In her work, Maria Julia argues that servant figures, understood as dependents on the surface, hold a surprising “secret power” hidden in their apparent invisibility. From an interdisciplinary approach that includes notions of power, class, gender, race, practices of everyday life, and the distribution of the sensible, she sustains that these authors’ singular literary styles surprisingly converge in their depictions of the weak as potential agents of change.

María Julia is presently working in a new research project, preliminarily titled “The Best of Both Worlds. The Sur Group and the Invention of the ‘Common Reader’ (Argentina, 1930-1955),” in which she studies marginal literary practices embraced by the Sur Group (which included Jorge Luis Borges, Adolfo Bioy Casares, Silvina Ocampo, and José Bianco, among others). Translations and other endeavors, such as prologue writing and anthologies editing, actively pursued the aim of building a sentimental education. Their aim, never fully acknowledged, was also to forge the aesthetic sensibility of the newly educated public in order to create an adequate reception for their own literary works. The outcome of their efforts was essential for the invention of the “common reader,” to borrow Woolf’s notion, in the Spanish-speaking world. These still unstudied editorial and literary endeavors are the object of Maria Julia’s current research.


Info sessions will be held from 1:40 pm to 2:55 pm.

  1. Monday, September 19, 2016 (1.77 NB)
  2. Thursday, October 13, 2016 (1.76 NB)
  3. Thursday, October 20, 2016 (1.76 NB)


Undergraduate Course:

Themes of Justice in Latin American Literature & Film (3 credits)

Course Description:

Themes of Justice in Latin American Literature & Film (3 credits): How do post-authoritarian and post-dictatorial regimes deal with legacies of violence and human rights abuses? How do they address the demands for justice that arise after systematic mass atrocities? Should we remember or forget past atrocities? This course seeks to answer these questions as they apply to Latin American societies by exploring these themes in literature, film, various other texts, and elements of popular culture such as the construction of memorials and public spaces.

Click here (pdf) for course syllabus

  1. 2.5 GPA
  2. Sophomore standing
  3. ENG 201 & SPA 202 or SPA 212, or permission from professor
  4. All students must have intermediate proficiency in  Spanish—be able to read, speak and understand Spanish                                                                                                                                                                                                    
  • Housing: Students will stay in homestay accommodations; two students per household with individual rooms.
  • Fluctuating exchange rates and other fees may lead to program cost changes.
  • Program cost is based on a minimum number of participants for the program.
  • Students should discuss applicability of financial aid with the Financial Aid office.
  • All CUNY students must meet with their study abroad advisor to be sure the proper e-Permit registration process is followed.
  • All non-CUNY students are encouraged to apply early, to be sure there is ample time to apply and register for classes at John Jay College. Please contact OISP for more information regarding the application process. Please note: Tuition rate per credit is different for non-CUNY students. More tuition information can be found here:
  • Refund Policy: Payment of the program deposit indicates the student understands and agrees to the Office of International Studies & Program’s payment and refund policies.  Students who withdraw from a John Jay College program after confirming participation, but before the program begins, will lose the non-refundable deposit and any unrecoverable costs: students will be refunded 50 percent of program fees 30 days prior to the program start date, and 25 percent of program fees 14 days prior to the program start date. After the start of the program, no refunds will be provided, and the student is responsible for all program fees. If the program fee is not paid in full, there will be a hold placed on her/his CUNYfirst account.
  • For faculty-led programs, tuition refunds will be granted following the College’s policies.  For more information, please visit:
  • College-based funders retain the right to recoup funds from the student account if the student does not follow rules of the CUNY Travel Waiver & Release Form, uses the funds for other purposes, or withdraws from the program. Students must understand that they are responsible for full payment of the amount owed to the department.
  • The Office of International Studies and Programs (OISP) has the right to modify or cancel the program, including  changes to the program dates, costs, scheduled visits, program itinerary, etc., as dictated by economic and/or political situations, etc.
  • Students are responsible for purchasing their own airfare, and for their itinerary. Due to possible changes in program dates/itinerary information, students are not to purchase airfare until prompted by OISP.
  • Students are encouraged to apply early, due to limited space.
  • Information is tentative, and subject to change*, **program cost(s), syllabi, *dates, etc.


Health Infomation for Travelers to Buenos Aires:
It is important to be aware of the health information provided by the US Center for Disease Control and
Prevention. All vaccines should be up to date, and it is important to check the vaccines and medicines list and
visit your doctor (ideally, 4-6 weeks) before your trip to get vaccines or medicines you may need. Ask your
doctor what vaccines and medicines you need based on where you are going, how long you are staying, what you
will be doing, and if you are traveling from a country other than the US. 
More information can be found on the Center for Disease Control website.


Please note that all travelers:

Should be up to date on routine vaccinations while traveling to any destination. Some vaccines may also be required for travel.

Routine vaccines

Make sure you are up-to-date on routine vaccines before every trip. These vaccines include measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) vaccine, diphtheria-tetanus-pertussis vaccine, varicella (chickenpox) vaccine, polio vaccine, and your yearly flu shot.

get_vaccinated hygiene

Please note that most travelers:

Get travel vaccines and medicines because there is a risk of these diseases in the country you are visiting.

Hepatitis A

CDC recommends this vaccine because you can get hepatitis A through contaminated food or water in Mexico, regardless of where you are eating or staying.

get_vaccinated eat_drink


You can get typhoid through contaminated food or water in Mexico. CDC recommends this vaccine for most travelers, especially if you are staying with friends or relatives, visiting smaller cities or rural areas, or if you are an adventurous eater.


Application and deadline:

Applications are available from the Office of International Studies & Programs (Haaren Hall, Suite 530). Applications can also be found here.

Application Deadline: Friday, October 28, 2016However, students are encouraged to apply early.

Please note: An application fee of $40.00 is due at the time of application. Money orders, personal checks and cash are accepted. Applications will not be accepted if incomplete. More information can be found here.

All non-CUNY students will need to pay an additional $65.00 at time of application due to a non-degree application fee. 


Estimate Program Fee: $2,155.00**

**Subject to change. Includes double occupancy homestay accommodations, most meals, international health insurance, excursions and transportation on-site associated with program. Does not include tuition, airfare, some meals, personal expenses & excursions, etc.

                                                                                                January 2017 Cost

Please note: all non-CUNY students, please contact OISP for more information

John Jay College Tuition and Fees
Undergraduate Tuition and Fees


Students should make an appointment with the Financial Aid Office to discuss the applicability of their financial aid to this program. 


Inquire at the International Studies & Programs Office for information. If you are a John Jay student, you can apply for the John Jay Study Abroad Scholarship (JJSAS) and the Student Travel Fund. For more on scholarship opportunities click here. U.S.-wide scholarship opportunites can be found here.

Contact Michael Scaduto for more information in regards to the JJSAS and general scholarship opportunities for John Jay students at 212-237-8872 or email at


Prof. Maria Julia Rossi, Department of Modern Languages and Literatures  (Academic Inquiries)

Ken Yanes, Dep. Director

Emily Ahmetaj, Coordinator

Office Location:
445 West 59th Street, New York, NY 10019; Haaren Hall, Suite 530

Mailing Address:
524 West 59th Street, New York, NY 10019; Haaren Hall, Suite 530