By Kelvin Evans CONTENTS PUERTO RICANS CULTURE v

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By: Kelvin Evans

By: Kelvin Evans

CONTENTS: PUERTO RICANS’ CULTURE v Cultural Issues �History �Religion �Education v Cultural Holidays/Festivals §

CONTENTS: PUERTO RICANS’ CULTURE v Cultural Issues �History �Religion �Education v Cultural Holidays/Festivals § Independence Day § Ponce Carnival § Saborea Festival v Traditional Dress v Traditional Music

■ ■ ■ Puerto Ricans are historically an oppressed group of people (Diller &

■ ■ ■ Puerto Ricans are historically an oppressed group of people (Diller & Lum, 2014). Puerto Ricans were granted citizenship of the United States in accordance to the Jones Act in 1917. Puerto Ricans contributed military support to the United States armed forces during the World Wars I and II. The United States Army’s 65 th Infantry Regiment was represented by Puerto Ricans only during the Korean War. Puerto Rican government is a self-governing commonwealth due to their struggle for independence. The island of Puerto Rico is a multicultural colony due to Indians and European settlers; and the immigration of Africans (Flores, 2000).

■ The Brujeria practice (witch-healing) shaped the Puerto Rican colonial culture centuries ago. ■

■ The Brujeria practice (witch-healing) shaped the Puerto Rican colonial culture centuries ago. ■ Puerto Ricans incorporated other forms of religion such as Spanish Catholic, French Spirits, U. S. Protestantism, and Cuba Santeria. ■ These religious practices united as a result of colonialism, slavery, nation building, and migration. ■ The Catholic Church was the official religion of Puerto Rico. ■ This religious belief was imposed on the Puerto Ricans and enslaved Africans. ■ The poor and middle-class Puerto Ricans acknowledged that Brujeria (witch-healing) is the true religion of the Caribbean island, according to Knight, F. W. (2005).

■ Education is a high-priority matter with the Puerto Ricans ■ School is mandated

■ Education is a high-priority matter with the Puerto Ricans ■ School is mandated for all residents of Puerto Rico between the ages of 6 and 17. ■ In public schools, all tuition takes place in Spanish; English is taught from kindergarten to high school. ■ The education system in Puerto Rico is poorer than the United States’ education system. ■ Due to a financial crisis in 2006, Puerto Rican commonwealth government was forced to reject 500, 000 students from going to school and closed all 1, 600 public schools. ■ As a result 40, 000 teachers were jobless along with 100, 000 government employees. ■ Protestors marched to the capital in San Juan to show their anger for the actions of the leaders of their country, according to University of Michigan.

■ ■ ■ ■ Politically, the feelings that the 4 th of July brings

■ ■ ■ ■ Politically, the feelings that the 4 th of July brings up in the island can vary dramatically. In Puerto Rico, some will say that “country” is the last colony on earth and that this needs to change. Some fight to become the 51 st state. Some fight for the territory to gain more rights. Some fight for independence of their home. Some people take the time to commemorate the occasion and reflect on American freedom. Others feel it’s ironic, celebrating independence in an island territory that is not a state and not a sovereign nation.

■ During the week leading up to Ash Wednesday, Ponce celebrates Puerto Rico's version

■ During the week leading up to Ash Wednesday, Ponce celebrates Puerto Rico's version of Mardi Gras. ■ The Ponce Carnival is the most celebrated and colorful festival on the island. ■ The carnival is one of the oldest and dating back to the 1700 s. ■ Locals and tourists alike descend on the island for the occasion. ■ The main draw are the vigilantes, which are costumed characters donning wildly vivid demon masks. ■ It's a fun, raucous event marked by thumping bomba y plena music, massive crowds, and hordes of masked revelers. ■ The festival concludes on the Tuesday before Ash Wednesday with the Entierro de la Sardina, or Burial of the Sardine. ■ This is a nutty, mock funeral procession (complete with a dummy in a coffin) led by drag queens and fake mourners.

■ ■ ■ Takes place in April each year, and celebrated three years in

■ ■ ■ Takes place in April each year, and celebrated three years in 2010. This tremendously fun event brings internationally renowned chefs and TV personalities from around the world to "compete" with local culinary stars. It's a weekend of food tastings from chefs at the top of their game, plenty of rum from Rums of Puerto Rico, and generally a very fun experience for the foodie in all of us. Puerto Rican cuisine has its roots in the cooking traditions and practices of Europe (Spain), Africa and the native Taínos.

Jibaro dancers from Puerto Rico in their traditional dresses- Image by Jaime Olmo The

Jibaro dancers from Puerto Rico in their traditional dresses- Image by Jaime Olmo The traditional dress of Puerto Rico is a blend of Jibaro and Bomba cultures. Jibaro culture has its origins in the Taino Indian culture. Jibaro is the dominating culture in Puerto Rico. The most prominent feature of the Jibaro dress is the headdresses as the Jibaro men wear the straw hat and the Jibaro women wear the flower bonnet. The men normally wear white shirt and pants with a colored sash around the waist and colored kerchief around neck and shoulders. Similarly the Jibaro women wear the multi colored long skirts and low cut white blouses. The footwear includes sandals and a machete.

Bomba dancers from Puerto Rico wearing traditional costumes – Image by Rona Proudfoot The

Bomba dancers from Puerto Rico wearing traditional costumes – Image by Rona Proudfoot The Bomba culture is African tradition that was introduced in Puerto Rico by the black slaves who worked on the island’s sugar plantations in the 17 th century. The Bomba dancers perform hip-hop dancing on drum beats and the drums are accompanied by the rhythmical beating of sticks and maracas to create a swelling tide of drumbeats. The traditional Bomba costumes of Puerto Rico are similar to the traditional slave attires as the turbans and long flowing white skirts and short blouses are the major articles. The men wear colorful shirts tied at the waist and pants cut at the ankles or the man is dress elegantly in a white suite with a Panama

Puerto Rican dancers in phenomenal traditional costumes performing Plena folklore Plena is a genre

Puerto Rican dancers in phenomenal traditional costumes performing Plena folklore Plena is a genre of music, chant and dance native to Puerto Rico and it was originated in Joja del Castillo Ponce around 1900. While performing Plena folklore, the Puerto Rico women wear flowers in their hair colorful short dress above the knees. The Puerto Rico men wear Panama hats with guayabera shirts mostly in white. The population of Puerto Rico is multi cultured and the lovely people of this small island wear a variety of traditional dresses. The traditional dress of Puerto Rico is an amazing blend of the Jibaro, Bomba and Plena cultures.

https: //youtu. be/Hv 3 gky. Eqp. Mg? list=RDAYyyb. VPw. PSw Please click the link

https: //youtu. be/Hv 3 gky. Eqp. Mg? list=RDAYyyb. VPw. PSw Please click the link or pic to enjoy “Traditional Puerto Rican Music. ” Conclusively, the Puerto Ricans take great pride in their homeland, a multicultural island. The Puerto Rican flag is a sure sign of their independence/commonwealth.

Diller, J. V. & Lum, D. (2015). Social work practice with diverse populations. Mason,

Diller, J. V. & Lum, D. (2015). Social work practice with diverse populations. Mason, OH: Cengage Learning. Education of Puerto Ricans. Retrieved from University of Michigan http: //sitemaker. umich. edu/bur. 356/history_of_puerto_rico_%E 2%80%99 s_education_syste Flores, J. (2000). From bomba to hip-hop: Puerto Rican culture and Latino identity. New York: Columbia University Press. Retrieved from http: //web. a. ebscohost. com. ezproxy. fhu. edu/ehost/ebookviewer/ebook/ Holidays of Puerto Rico. Retrieved from http: //gopuertorico. about. com/od/eventsandholidays/tp/Major-Events-and- Holidays. html Knight, F. W. & Martinez-Vergne, T. (2005). Contemporary Caribbean cultures and societies in a global context. Chapel Hill: The University of North Carolina Press. Retrieved from http: //fhu. worldcat. org/search? q=contemporary+caribbean+culture+and+societies&qt=re Puerto Rico Traditional Dress. Retrieved from http: //www. thelovelyplanet. net/traditional-dress-of-puerto-rico-a-blend-of-jibarobomba/ Puerto Rico Traditional Music. Retrieved from https: //youtu. be/Hv 3 gky. Eqp. Mg? list=RDAYyyb. VPw. PSw