Amílcar Antonio Barreto, Professor & Chair, Cultures, Societies, and Global Studies, and Professor of Political Science and International Affairs
In 1991, the Puerto Rican government abolished bilingualism, claiming that “Spanish only” was necessary to protect the culture from North American influences. A few years later bilingualism was restored and English was promoted in public schools.
This revised edition of The Politics of Language in Puerto Rico is updated with an emphasis on the dual arenas where the language controversy played out—Puerto Rico and the United States Congress—and includes new data on the connections between language and conflicting notions of American identity. This book shows that officials in both San Juan and Washington, along with English-first groups, used these language laws as weapons in the battle over U.S.-Puerto Rican relations and the volatile debate over statehood.