Puerto Rico Inside and Out: Changes and Continuities

The essays in this book deal with continuity and change in Puerto Rico and together constitute a delightful San Juan reader from a thoughtful historian’s point of view. The themes range from Puerto Rican events as seen from Paris, to politics encompassing the harassment of Puerto Rican dissenters in the early 1970s and the proliferation of referenda on the island, to lyrical descriptions of the disappearance of rural landscapes and cultural traditions. The author describes bus-riding etiquette and documents how neighborhoods are changing. He talks to older Puerto Ricans and records their descriptions and anecdotes, discovers old picture books and reflects on turning points in Puerto Rican history, ponders street names, and documents famous and forgotten prisoners and prisons. The book is a unique window onto San Juan’s glorious cultural mosaic.

Fernando Picó (University of Puerto Rico) began his career as a columnist, from the early 1970s to the 1980s, for the leading English-language newspaper in Puerto Rico, The San Juan Star. He is Puerto Rico’s leading historian and the author of over twenty books in Spanish, several of which have been translated into English, including Puerto Rico 1898: The War After the WarHistory of Puerto Rico: A Panorama of its People and One Frenchman, Four Revolutions: General Ferrand and the Peoples of the Caribbean (all available from Markus Wiener).