Date of Submission

Spring 2020

Academic Program


Project Advisor 1

Laura Ford

Abstract/Artist's Statement

Foreign in their own nation? The neglected United States territory? The 51st state that never was? Regardless of which of these questions one chooses to look through the prism of, they are all applicable when it comes to discussing Puerto Rico and its staggering relationship with the United States. These questions are all significant in some way because they are indicative of patterns of interaction and an overall story that has developed over the years between the two respective sides. These questions give a window into the contentious history that the island has had with the United States since being seized under its control in the late 19th century as a result of the Spanish-American war.

Puerto Ricans have long been the source of marginalization because of the ambiguity surrounding their identity within their own nation, but in this paper the Puerto Rican experience is really brought to light in a cohesive and thoughtful manner. This is an exploration of how Puerto Ricans have been/currently are perceived and received by Americans in the U.S. This is an exploration of the question of how Puerto Ricans assimilate, but at the same time attempt to not lose their cultural identity in which they were brought up on. This is an exploration of what it means to be regarded as “foreign” in one’s own country and what the implications of that perceived foreignness are. This is an exploration of the Puerto Rican experience--analyzed through both the lens of society and themselves.

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Open Access

Creative Commons License

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