Rivarola, Rodolfo (1857–1942)

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Rivarola, Rodolfo (1857–1942)

Rodolfo Rivarola (b. 18 December 1857; d. 10 November 1942), Argentine jurist and intellectual. Founder in 1910 of the influential Revista Argentina de Ciencias Políticas, Rivarola was a strong advocate of political reform in pre—World War I Argentina. After studying law at the University of Buenos Aires, he specialized in criminal law; he was one of the precursors of the Italian school of positivist criminology in Argentina. In 1888, with José Nicolás Matienzo and José María Ramos Mejía, among others, Rivarola founded the Sociedad de Antropología Jurídica, following the teachings of the Italian psychiatrist Cesare Lombroso.

Rivarola wrote extensively on Argentine judicial institutions: Orígenes y evolución del derecho penal argentino (1900) and Proyecto de Código penal para la República Argentina (1891), a project for a code drafted in collaboration with Norberto Piñero and Matienzo, deal with criminal law. Instituciones del derecho civil argentino (1901) deals with civil law.

In politics, Rivarola became an advocate of centralization against the federalist system, as can be seen in his Partidos políticos unitario y federal (1905) and especially in Del régimen federativo al unitario (1908). But he was mostly concerned, as exemplified in his writings for the Revista, with the reform of the political practices of the liberal-conservative regime that governed the country between 1880 and 1916.

See alsoJudicial Systems: Spanish America .


Natalio Botana, El orden conservador: La política argentina entre 1880 y 1916 (1979).

Enrique Marí, "El marco jurídico," in El movimiento positivista argentino, compiled by Hugo E. Biagini (1985).

Additional Bibliography

Ancarola, Gerardo. Las ideas políticas de Rodolfo Rivarola. Buenos Aires: Ediciones Marymar, 1975.

                                Eduardo A. Zimmermann