Molly Rockhold (Urban Design & Architecture Studies ’17) was awarded the Albert S. Borgman Prize for Best Honors Thesis in Humanities

5 Jun


Molly’s thesis, written for both the Urban Design program and the Department of Spanish and Portuguese, is titled “The ‘Proceso’s‘ Public: How Argentina’s Last Military Dictatorship Shaped the Urban and Social Landscapes of Buenos Aires through Public Space.” Professor Jon Ritter co-supervised the thesis for the Program for Urban Design & Architecture Studies.

Molly describes herself and her project:

Molly graduated this spring with a double major in Architecture and Urban Design Studies and Spanish. With a cross of cultures commonly said to be as curious as this combination of majors, she boasts both an Idahoan background as well as a strong, maternal platense (to differentiate from the commonly confused “porteño,” from Buenos Aires), Argentine influence from the city of La Plata. She made a swift escape to New York in 2013 and Buenos Aires in 2014 to study, eat and in search of replacing the great Rocky Mountains with skyscrapers, rickety infrastructure and, most importantly, empanadas, fernet and ramen.

This project began as an attempt to discover the relatively unexplored urban impacts of Argentina’s last and most gruesome dictatorship, searching to better understand daily life throughout these years and how the dictators attempted to create and manipulate their ideal society and political image. Inspired by both close friends and family who lived through the “Dirty War,” the 30,000 individuals who were disappeared and many others who were imprisoned and persecuted, it is the author’s hope that this study better introduces these topics to the English-speaking world and beyond.
Molly is honored to accept both the Borgman Thesis Prize for the Humanities and the Department of Spanish and Portuguese’s Award for Distinction in Honors Thesis. “The Proceso’s Public” would not have come to fruition without those that surrounded her during her upbringing and drew the inspiration to begin to dig deeper into history, human rights and the built environment. Furthermore, this project could not have been properly completed without the instrumental support and assistance from a number of inspiring advisors, namely Jon Ritter and Gabriel Giorgi, professors, a close network of family and friends and the many witnesses, experts, researchers, architects and friends who stepped forward to answer a vast array of questions, tell their stories and share their experiences.”

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