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Robert J. Barros, a 1980 graduate of Antioch College, passed away in August 2020. He was a professor of the University of San Andrés in Argentina.

The Faculty of Law of the University of Chile reports and regrets the recent death of Robert Barros, associate professor of the Department of Social Sciences of the University of San Andrés, Argentina. Last September, Professor Barros was speaking at the Seminar on his article “Ernst Fraenkel crosses the Andes: The Dual State and the study of law and dictatorship in Chile.”

The Dean of the Faculty, Pablo Ruiz-Tagle, regretted the death of Professor Barros, whom he defined as “the most rigorous and independent scholar of Chilean law and judicial function during the military dictatorship that controlled our country between 1973 and 1990. His famous book ‘La Junta Militar Chilena. Pinochet y la Constitución de 1980,’ which was published in English by Cambridge University Press in 2002 and in Spanish by Editorial Sudamericana in 2005 is the most complete work on Law in the Dictatorship “.

The Dean added that the most recent studies by Robert — on the role of the ordinary criminal jurisdiction in the punishment of human rights violations — regrettably did not get published. But Robert presented several times in our Faculty, “being an excellent contribution and an argument of hope about the role of judges and the law in de facto governments,” he said.

Robert Barros held a BA in Economics from Antioch College and a Ph.D. in Political Science from the University of Chicago. He received research grants from the Social Science Research Council and the Fulbright Foundation. He taught courses in political theory and comparative politics, and his main areas of interest were constitutionalism and authoritarianism in Latin America.

“With his death, we have left a great academic and a best friend of the Chilean legal academy,” concluded the Dean.