Puerto Rican poetry

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Puerto Rican poetry refers to poems written by Puerto Rican authors.

Puerto Ricans are American citizens.[1] Thus, Puerto Rican poetry is considered part of American poetry because the island is a United States territory. Puerto Rican poetry is also considered part of Caribbean poetry and Latin American poetry due to the islands location in the Caribbean, and its cultural and linguistic ties to the region.[2]

Puerto Rican poetry is often written in Spanish. However, Puerto Rican poets also use English and Spanish within the same poem.[3] Sometimes poets mix Spanish and English words into Spanglish expressions.[4]

Themes include: personal identity, cultural heritage, oppression, discrimination, racism, sexism, and Puerto Rican politics.[5] Poems about the island often use images of oceans, rivers, beaches, local foods, and family traditions.[6] However, Puerto Ricans poets who move to the mainland USA write about city streets, crowds, and the pressures of urban life.[7][8]

Poems about Puerto Rico[change | change source]

  • "Río Grande de Loíza" by Julia de Burgos explores the island's history of slavery and American imperialism. The poem expresses the pain and violence suffered by native islanders and African slaves along the river.[9]
  • "Soy boricua" by Giannina Braschi expresses the philosophical dilemma of Puerto Rico's political status a colony of the United States.[10][11]
  • “I, Too, Am Black” is a spoken word poem by Caridad de la Luz “La Bruja” on Puerto Rican identity and race. The poem was inspired by Langston Hughes[12]
  • "Puerto Rico" is a poem written in Spanish and English by Victor Hernández Cruz.[13] It deals with the landscape, the traditions, and the politics of being a United States territory.[14]
  • "Puerto Rican Obituary" by Pedro Pietri expresses the sorrow and suffering of Puerto Rican immigrants who move to big cities such as New York.[15][16]

Puerto Rican poets[change | change source]

Further reading[change | change source]

  • Breaking Ground: Anthology of Puerto Rican Women Writers in New York 1980- 2012 (Abriendo caminos: antología de escritoras puertorriqueñas en Nueva York 1980- 2012), edited by Myrna Nieves.
  • Defending Their Own in the Cold: The Cultural Turns of U.S. by Marc Zimmerman.

References[change | change source]

  1. Dropp, Kyle; Nyhan, Brendan (2017-09-26). "Nearly Half of Americans Don't Know Puerto Ricans Are Fellow Citizens". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2020-11-12. It has been 101 years since the citizens of Puerto Rico were collectively naturalized as U.S. citizens (1917).{{cite news}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  2. "puerto rico is part of Latin America - Google Search". www.google.com. Retrieved 2020-11-12.
  3. Tamargo, Rosa E. Guzzardo; Mazak, Catherine M.; Couto, M. Carmen Parafita (2016-09-07). Spanish-English Codeswitching in the Caribbean and the US. John Benjamins Publishing Company. ISBN 978-90-272-6667-5.
  4. Torres, L. (2007-03-01). "In the Contact Zone: Code-switching Strategies by Latinola Writers". MELUS: Multi-Ethnic Literature of the United States. 32 (1): 75–96. doi:10.1093/melus/32.1.75. ISSN 0163-755X. Writing in Spanish and English Braschi is making a radical statement.
  5. Scopino, Adriana. "Review of Breaking Ground: Anthology of Puerto Rican Women Writers in New York 1980- 2012". Tribes. Retrieved 2020-11-12. Many of the poems not only fight or oppose the forces of racism or the patriarchy but also seek to build bridges within the larger community.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  6. Lugo-Lugo, Carmen R. (2015). "Family Matters: Puerto Rican Women Authors on the Island and the Mainland by Marisel C. Moreno". Revista de Estudios Hispánicos. 49 (2): 396–398. doi:10.1353/rvs.2015.0041. ISSN 2164-9308. S2CID 141635018.
  7. Marting (2010). "New/Nueva York in Giannina Braschi's "Poetic Egg": Fragile Identity, Postmodernism, and Globalization". The Global South. 4 (1): 167. doi:10.2979/gso.2010.4.1.167. ISSN 1932-8648. S2CID 144342078.
  8. Pérez Rosario, Vanessa (2014-07-03). "Latinas Write the New York City Diaspora". Review: Literature and Arts of the Americas. 47 (2): 164–171. doi:10.1080/08905762.2014.956521. ISSN 0890-5762. S2CID 219718112.
  9. "Overlooked No More: Julia de Burgos, a Poet Who Helped Shape Puerto Rico's Identity (Published 2018)". The New York Times. 2018-05-03. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2020-11-12. Her work explored issues like the island's colonial past and the legacy of slavery and American imperialism. In her poem “Río Grande de Loíza,” she addressed the pain and violence suffered by natives of the island and African slaves along the Puerto Rican river.{{cite news}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  10. Poets, Academy of American. "Soy Boricua by Giannina Braschi - Poems | Academy of American Poets". poets.org. Retrieved 2020-11-12.
  11. Cruz-Malavé, Arnaldo Manuel (2014). ""Under the Skirt of Liberty": Giannina Braschi Rewrites Empire". American Quarterly. 66 (3): 801–818. doi:10.1353/aq.2014.0042. ISSN 1080-6490. S2CID 144702640.
  12. "I, too, am black | Centro de Estudios Puertorriqueños". centropr.hunter.cuny.edu. Retrieved 2020-11-12.
  13. Poets, Academy of American. "Puerto Rico by Victor Hernández Cruz - Poems | Academy of American Poets". poets.org. Retrieved 2020-11-12.
  14. "Victor Hernández Cruz". The Poetry Project. Retrieved 2020-11-12.
  15. Gonzalez, David (2004-03-06). "Pedro Pietri, 59, Poet Who Chronicled Nuyorican Life (Published 2004)". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2020-11-12.
  16. Morales, Ed (2020-03-24). "The Young Lords' Revolution". The Nation. ISSN 0027-8378. Retrieved 2020-11-12.