Divided Borders Essays On Puerto Rican Identity

Publication Information

Author: Flores, Juan

Title: 'Que assimilated, brother, yo soy asimilao': the structuring of Puerto Rican identity

Published in: Divided borders : essays on Puerto Rican identity

Published By: Divided borders : essays on Puerto Rican identity Houston: Arte Público Press, 1993. 182-195, 245 p.

By line: Juan Flores

HRAF Publication Information: New Haven, Conn.: HRAF, 2002. Computer File

Culture: (NK05)

Subjects: Music (533);Verbal arts (5310);Ethnic stratification (563);

Abstract: This is a comparative look at two Hispanic populations, the Chicanos of Los Angeles and Puerto Ricans of New York. Chicanos and Puerto Ricans share a common Latin American culture and immigrant experience of discrimination and exploitation. However they are notably different in their relationships with African-Americans. Puerto Ricans are close to Blacks, which is not the case for Chicanos, who instead have a closer relationship with American Indians. Alarcón attributes this to the different ethnic mix between the Caribbean and Mesoamerica. Alarcón identifies four definitive moments in the awakening of mainland Puerto Rican cultural consciousness. First is the state of abandonment: The immigrant's realization of the awful conditions of life of poverty and discrimination in an urban ghetto. In the second state of enchantment, immigrants rediscover and appreciate the idyllic nature of their homeland. The third state is a renewed encounter with New York in which the indigenous culture is proudly asserted. The fourth state is the selective interaction with other minority and migrant peoples, jointly celebrating a Caribbean New York

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Divided Borders: Essays on Puerto Rican Identity is a collection of essays on history, literature and culture by the celebrated commentator on Puerto Rican and Caribbean culture in the United States, Juan Flores. He is the recipient of the prestigious Casa de las Americas award for his monograph on Puerto Rican identity. Included are: “Puerto Rican Literature in the United States: Stages and Perspectives,” “The Insular Vision: Pedreira and the Puerto Rican Misere,” “National Culture and Migration: Perspectives of the Puerto Rican Working Class,” “Living Borders / Buscando America: Languages of Latino Self Formation” and many others.

JUAN FLORES is a professor of Social and Cultural Analysis and the director of Latino Studies at NYU. After receiving his PhD from Yale University in 1970, Flores went on to publish works such as Poetry in East Germany(Yale University Press, 1971), From Bomba to Hip-Hop: Puerto Rican Culture and Latino Identity (Columbia University Press, 2000), The Diaspora Strikes Back (Routledge, 2007), and The Afro-Latin@ Reader (Duke University Press Books, 2011). He has also published numerous Spanish titles such as Insularismo e ideologia burguesa(Ediciones Casa de las Américas, 1980), La venganza de Cortijo (Ediciones Huracan, 1997), and Bugalú y otros guisos (Ediciones Callejon, 2010).

Learn more by visiting his faculty page.

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