RESEARCH

Book manuscript:

The Politics of Care:

Puerto Ricans, Citizenship, and Migration, after 1917


under contract with Duke University Press

This book tells a story about care work as a space of politics—a story that maps an intergenerational legacy of Puerto Rican political activism demanding dignity for Puerto Ricans on the archipelago and in the diaspora. The book is organized chronologically and thematically, focusing on the care work and political activism of Puerto Rican social workers and working-class women between 1917 and the 1970s. Each of the chapters considers Puerto Rican histories on the archipelago and the United States, following protagonists on the move, and emphasizing the impact of displacement and migration on Puerto Rican communities.



Current Research Projects


Boricua Welfare Rights: Organizing for Economic Justice in the Puerto Rican Diaspora

This book project investigates Puerto Rican women’s participation in the welfare rights movement in the United States. It examines the history of Puerto Rican activism in struggles for social rights as a part of broader histories of Latino/a/x participation in U.S. civil rights movements.  Puerto Ricans were a part of the formation of the National Welfare Rights Organization (NWRO), a group that advocated for the rights of poor people to have access to economic justice in their communities from 1966 to 1975.  In recent years scholars have documented the vibrant history of this organization and how it developed out of the leadership and political vision of women of color. This project explores the role of Puerto Rican women leaders and rank-and-file members of welfare rights organizations. In doing so, it reveals how Puerto Rican demands for economic rights intersected with social movements in the 20th century.

Bright Futures: Antonia Pantoja, Community Organizing, and the Practice of Ethnic Studies

This book project considers the life and work of Puerto Rican social worker and community organizer Antonia Pantoja. This biographical exploration of Pantoja considers how her experiences as a Puerto Rican, Black Latina, lesbian, feminist, and New Yorker, shaped the practices that she developed as a community organizer and educator. Furthermore, it considers how these practices were foundational to her vision of teaching Puerto Rican and ethnic studies, a community-centered vision that remains pressing in our contemporary moment.  

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