Destabilizing racialized geographies : the temporality of Blackness in Puerto Rico



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In this thesis I analyze the way in which the de-colonial construction of Puerto Rico, and subsequent acquisition by the US as a territory, came to inform and create a whitened identity through the confinement, historicization of African influence, and erasure of Puerto Rico's Black population/heritage component via the narrative of mestizaje and mulataje. I look specifically at Loíza; Loíza is a city celebrated by Puerto Rico as a site of authentic Blackness and exemplifies efforts by the state to commodify and restrict the movements of Black Bodies. It is in these marginalized and racialized spaces that I explore the possibility of self-making and Black identity in Loíza, Puerto Rico.