BEFORE THE WAVE
Puerto Ricans in Philadelphia, 1910–1945
By Víctor Vázquez-Hernández
148 pages; notes, references, index; 6 x 9
ISBN: 978-1-945662-02-7 (paperback)
About this book
This book recounts the genesis of the Puerto Rican community in Philadelphia during the interwar years (1917–1945). It connects the origins of this community to the mass migration of the post-WW II years when Puerto Ricans consolidated their presence in Philadelphia (1945–1985). This study compares the experiences of Puerto Ricans with that of the Italians, the Polish, and African Americans in Philadelphia during the early twentieth century. The scholarship on Puerto Ricans outside of New York has been, by and large, limited to the postwar period and a closer examination of the interwar years provides us a more complete picture of how the postwar migrants were established and developed over a much longer period than previously believed. Until now, there has been no comprehensive examination of this early diaspora in Philadelphia and this book rectifies this scholarly deficiency.More...
Table of Contents
List of Illustrations
Prologue by Carmen T. Whalen\
Chapter 1 From the Periphery to the Core: An Introduction
Chapter 2 Puerto Rican Migration to Philadelphia: An Overview
Chapter 3 Puerto Rican Settlement Patterns: Development of a Barrio
Chapter 4 Race, Class and Ethnicity: Puerto Rican’s Employment Patterns
Chapter 5 The Emergence of a Puerto Rican Community: Social and Organizational Roots
Chapter 6 Legacies for the Great Migration and Beyond: An Epilogue
About the Author
Víctor Vázquez-Hernández is Professor and Chair of the Social Sciences Department at Miami-Dade College, Wolfson Campus. He is coeditor, with Carmen T. Whalen, of Puerto Rican Diaspora: Historical Perspectives (Temple University Press, 2005).
Víctor Vásquez-Hernández has made an important contribution to the history of the Puerto Rican diaspora… This work offers a short but sustained analysis of the shifts in composition and circumstances of diasporic migrants to the City of Brotherly Love. John H. Hinshaw, The Journal of American History More...
With Vázquez-Hernández’s contribution, we can now begin to think more comparatively about what we know about the early Puerto Rican diaspora. Before the Wave highlights the importance of the racial and ethnic composition of the places where Puerto Ricans settled, while providing a more nuanced portrayal of Philadelphia’s racial and ethnic diversity. Carmen Teresa Whalen, Williams College
The subject of the book is a worthy one, focusing mainly on Puerto Rican settlement in Philadelphia in the pre- World War Two era. The study thus fills 2 important historiographical gaps: pre-World War II Puerto Rican settlement in the mainland U.S., and the history of settlement in an area that is not New York City. Much of the discussion is very interesting and eye-opening, e.g. the idea that the mostly pre-Puerto Rican Latino settlement set up a sort of community scaffolding for the early Puerto Rican arrivals, who in turn were part of a multi-ethnic Latino community that helped shape the settlement patterns for the post-World War II Puerto Rican migrants. Ruth Glasser, University of Connecticut.