It scares the poop out of me because, my fellow Americans, we are repeating history. If live anywhere else read it as well as a guide for what not to do.
Scott Assistant Professor Lawren ce M. Un da que mi cancin se hizo oleaje Un da que repos en la blanca arena Le d mi corazn y mi coraje Al pueblo y al sentir de la Isla Nena.
Hay una Isla Nena en lontananza.
Her stories silenced by cancer ar e not written in history books. Yet they survive in the memory of those she touched and nurtured.
To my father and my mother, for keeping the stories alive while weaving new, and for believing in the infi nite possibilities of the real maravilloso even when it might be le ss painful not to believe.
To their combined memories, which I have made mine or that have made me theirs, that I hope to incorporate into my histories. PAGE 5 iii Acknowledgements I owe the completion of this dissertati on to many people who have helped and inspired me throughout my personal and academ ic life, and to the support of different educational institutions.
I was introduced to the world of humanities and Latin American state universities when I entered the History Department of the Un iversity of Puerto Rico. The intellectual stimulus and friendship I received from prof essors like Mara del Carmen Baerga, Mayra Rosario, Astrid Cubano, Carlos Pabn, Manue l Alvarado and Mara Barcel and staff members like Carmen Gloria Ortiz, Mayr a lvarez, Marie Carmen Ramos and Yilda Luciano encouraged and more than justified my deep love for the institution that not only sparked my intellectual concerns but made me, I think, a more c onscientious citizen.
There I also met three of my dearest friends Lenny, thank you for infusing me with your endless energy and your pass ion for history. Juan, th ank you for your intelligent friendship and for always being there when I need you. Without you two I would not have survived graduate school.
And Yarn, th ank you for a strong friendship that inspires me to be a better person. Once in Ann Arbor, amidst the coldness of its winters, I also experienced the warmth and kindness of many people like Lo rna Altstetter and Sheila Coley who welcomed the three Puerto Ricans to the History Department of The University of Michigan, and of Kathleen King who guided me, always with a smile, through the late PAGE 6 iv dissertation process.
The vibr ant intellectual community helped me to pose myself those hard questions I hope to address with my wor k. Professors like Fernando Coronil, Jesse Hoffnung-Garskof and Rebecca Scott, besides o ffering me their friendship, helped to shape my intellectual concerns and to transform them into this dissertation.
I thank them for their encouragement and guidance throughout this se emingly endless and very rewarding project. I also thank Lawrence La Fountain-Stokes for accepting to be part of my project and for sharing his thoughtful comm ents and wonderful poetry with me.
I feel honored for his generosity. Finally, I wish to thank Jesse in particular for his patience and understanding, and for helping me pull through at some of my worst moments.
For this, I am deeply grateful. The History Department and Rackham Graduate School helped make my dissertation project a reality through their generous fina ncial support. While the librarians and staff at the Centro de Investigaciones Histricas and at the Coleccin Puertorriquea of the University of Puerto Rico a nd the staff at the Museum and Archive Fortn Conde de Mirasol helped make the research proces s a more fruitful and enjoyable experience.The status of being a perpetual outsider has both animated and structured his mostly self-directed, mostly hilarious videos.
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