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Leid Stories – 07.22.15

Puerto Rico’s Crisis: Debt Peonage and 21st-Century U.S. Colonialism

Dr. Victor M. Rodriguez, professor of Chicano and Latino Studies at California State University of Long Beach, explains Puerto Rico’s current $73-billion debt crisis in the context of the island’s political status as a U.S. colony and the suitability of its continued indebtedness to U.S. and international financial interests, and governance by leaders in collusion with both.

Born in Puerto Rico, Rodriguez’s area of expertise is the racialization of Latino identity and its impact on political behavior. At CSULB he teaches courses emphasizing issues in social inequality: Wealth and Poverty in Latino Communities, Chicano/Latino Politics, and on Identity Assimilation in Chicano and Latino Life, The Ethnic Experience, and Latino Population in the United States. He is the author of Latino Politics: Race, Ethnicity, Gender and Class in the Mexican American and Puerto Rican Experience in the United States (2012).

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