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Ricardo Gabriel

Doctoral Student, Sociology

The Graduate Center, CUNY

Fall 2014


(Politics and Protest Workshop- DRAFT)

ESTAMOS DESPERTANDO:” REFLECTIONS ON THE 45TH ANNIVERSARY OF THE PUERTO RICAN STUDENT MOVEMENT



AT THE CITY UNIVERSITY OF NEW YORK

The militant and organized student movement at the City University of New York (CUNY) culminating in 1969 that led to the establishment of an open admissions policy and the creation of Black and Puerto Rican studies departments and programs throughout the CUNY system has served as a source of motivation and lore for subsequent generations of student-activists in New York City. Recently, this important social movement has gained more scholarly attention as well (Rose 2010, Duitch 2010, Biondi 2012). However, while there has been notable increase in the literature that addresses the early student movement at CUNY, the perspectives and participation of Puerto Ricans in this struggle remain under-represented and under-researched.

In this paper, I attempt recover some of the perspectives and actions of the Puerto Rican students and organizations that took part in this historic movement as the 45th anniversary approaches. I pay special attention to the movement’s epistemological foundation and critically analyze its arguments for the creation of Puerto Rican studies. Puerto Rican studies can be defined as an interdisciplinary academic discipline dedicated to the study of the Puerto Rican experience on the Caribbean island-nation of Puerto Rico and in its diaspora, which is mostly located in the United States. Finally, I will discuss the relevance of this movement and it epistemological framework to the continued educational crisis of Puerto Rican youth in New York City. I draw from the theoretical work of Frances Fox Piven to argue that the movement’s victory in achieving increased access and ethnic studies at CUNY represents a prime example of the use of “disruptive power” (Piven 2006) by marginalized people to win concessions from those in power. Furthermore, I argue that renewed and continued mobilization and community support, i.e. the potential use of disruptive power, is needed to ensure the survival and relevancy of Puerto Rican studies in particular and ethnic studies in general. 

Continued study of this student movement and, in particular, of the role of Puerto Rican students is important for several reasons. Not only will it provide a useful case study for social movement theory, but it will also add much needed historical context and insight into the current crisis of Puerto Rican youth in New York City. Puerto Ricans are the second largest Latino group in the country and there are now more Puerto Ricans living in the United States than there are in Puerto Rico (Brown and Patten 2013). Despite these significant demographic developments, however, the specific educational needs of Puerto Ricans in the United States continue to be overlooked. According to a 2010 study conducted by the Community Service Society, “Puerto Ricans ages 16 to 24 have the lowest rates of school enrollment and employment, and the highest rates of poverty among Latino New Yorkers” (Treschan 2010). While the Puerto Rican population has spread across the United States, New York still claims the largest Puerto Rican population of any state in the country.

The dismal state of Puerto Rican youth in New York should therefore be a major source of concern. However, as Carmen Mercado (2012) and others have noted, there is an increasing invisibility of New York Puerto Ricans in the research and policy concerning Latinos and education. Gaining insight into the experiences of Puerto Rican students during the highpoint of access and community engagement from 1969 through the mid-seventies, and comparing them to the recent literature on academically successful Puerto Ricans, could lead to an articulation of best practices and strategies for increasing the educational attainment of current and future generations of Puerto Rican students in the U.S.

I focus on the period between 1969-1976 because this is when social movement activity and Puerto Rican studies programming and enrollment were at their peak. By 1973, just four years after Puerto Rican studies was founded, there were 155 courses being offered at 17 CUNY colleges, with a total of 6,241 students enrolled (Rodriguez 1990). These Puerto Rican studies departments and programs flourished despite being underfunded and “politically tolerated, but disparaged within their respective institutions”, a situation that is characteristic of Latino/a studies in general in U.S. higher education according to Pedro A. Cabán (2003). Giving credence to Cabán’s claim is the declaration during New York City’s fiscal crisis of 1975 by CUNY’s Chancellor that Black and Puerto Rican studies were “prime candidates for elimination” (Rodriguez 1990). As a result, the number of faculty hires, courses, and departments all decreased significantly by 1976.

I will begin by briefly reviewing some of the history of Black student-Black studies movement that exploded across the country in the mid to late 1960s in order to provide context for my discussion of Puerto Rican student activism in New York. In addition to the use of secondary sources, the research for this preliminary study was conducted at the archives of the Center for Puerto Rican Studies-Hunter College where I examined primary documents of the Puerto Rican Student Union (PRSU), known in Spanish as La Unión Estudiantil Boricua, which was officially formed in September 1969. I will then move to a theoretical analysis of the rise of the Black and Puerto Rican student movement at CUNY. Finally, I will conclude with a discussion of theoretically grounded implications for the current state and near future of Puerto Rican studies and Puerto Rican students in the Diaspora.

BRIEF HISTORICAL CONTEXT

The student movement at the City University of New York that took place during the late 1960s and early 1970s and led to an open admissions policy, effectively integrating the country’s largest urban university, as well as the creation of Black and Puerto Rican Studies departments and programs must be understood in context of the larger student movement taking place throughout the country at the time. Martha Biondi’s The Black Revolution on Campus is arguably the most comprehensive work on the Black student movement to date. In it she places the movement in historical context by characterizing it as an extension of, but drastically different from, the Civil Rights Movement.

According to Biondi, the Black student movement of the late 1960s developed alongside the emergent rhetoric and ideology of Black Power. Unlike the student activism earlier in the decade which was characterized by peaceful sit-ins and “courteous young men and women in dresses and suits and ties” (2012:13), students in the late 1960s turned confidently toward disruptive, confrontational tactics; Afrocentric, countercultural clothing, and radical demands. Instead of peaceful and orderly sit-ins, the new student movement was characterized by building and campus takeovers that more drastically disrupted the normal day-to-day operations of colleges and universities.

Through the use of historical records and interviews with former student-activists, Biondi argues that this rise in militancy was due in large part to the unfulfilled expectations of civil rights legislation. Many students who bought into the emerging racial liberalism of mainstream discourse and who thought that the defeat of Jim Crow segregation would result in more acceptance on college campuses experienced a very rude awakening:

Southern students hoped that traveling North to college would provide a respite from insult and indignity. The idea that the North and West were more racially liberal and tolerant than the South was deeply engrained in the national self-image and in many individual expectations. (Biondi 2012:15)

New waves of Black students in the late 1960s continued to experience overt racism as well as the expectation to assimilate into White culture on White terms. Similarly, resisting the pressure to assimilate into the dominant White-American racist culture is a common theme in the Puerto Rican studies literature as well. An Aspira newsletter from 1971 stressed “(T)he need for more and better education and the need to establish a Puerto Rican identity for themselves-despite the pressures to assimilate” (quoted in Torres 2011-2012:12).

This quickly began to turn students away from the traditional framework of integration championed by the older civil rights leadership. The assassination of Martin Luther King Jr., the most iconic figure in the nonviolent movement for integration and civil rights, further impressed upon students that the traditional organizing frameworks and ideological posture of the older, established Black leadership were not working and that more aggressive tactics and deeper fundamental changes were needed. The assassination of Dr. King galvanized students on both coasts sparking “a new determination, even a sense of obligation to accelerate the pace of change” (Biondi 2012:123).

In addition to the shock, disappointment, and anger caused by the overtly racist behavior and atmosphere that Black students faced on college campuses post-Brown v. Board of Education and other major civil rights legislation, the fact that many of these students were already experienced organizers also contributed to the rise of this social movement. According to Biondi, many students had taken part in the broader Civil Rights Movement and had been active in local struggles, resulting in very strong ties to the community (2012:43). Biondi quotes political scientist Charles Hamilton who after visiting sixty-six colleges around the country commented that students viewed “the university as a place where not just a few black students come and graduate and move up and out (to the suburbs), but where new ideas and techniques are developed for the political and economic benefit of the total black community”(quoted in Biondi 2012:22).

This perspective led to student-community coalitions and alliances that were vital for organizing and sustaining strikes and campus shut downs over extended periods of time. This was especially true at San Francisco State College (SFSC) where students maintained a five-month long student strike during the 1968-1969 academic year that led to just under eight hundred arrests and ultimately resulted in increased admission of students of color and a school of ethnic studies. Likewise, at the City University of New York City student strikes and direct action were supported by the wider Black and Puerto Rican community and were rooted in community struggles.

In the same spirit of the community-control-of-public-schools movement taking place in New York City at the time, the Black and Puerto Rican student movement at CUNY set out to drastically redefine the relationship between universities and communities of color (Biondi 2012). According to Andres Torres, a CUNY professor who took part in the student movement of 1969, “The initial mission of PRS [Puerto Rican Studies], along with that of allied movements, was nothing less than a transformation in the nature of higher education itself” (Torres 2011-2012:14). Torres describes the principles that guided the emergence of Puerto Rican studies departments and programs as “autonomy, innovative methodology, alternative theoretical frameworks, and community interaction” (202011-2012:14).

Furthermore, as was the case in universities in the south and west, the student movement was led by experienced and savvy activists. Many of the Black student activists were members of the Black Panther Party (Biondi 2012) and many of the Puerto Rican activists were members of or affiliated with the Young Lords Party, a militant Puerto Rican-led organization that advocated for racial justice and socialism in the U.S as well as independence and socialism in Puerto Rico (Serrano 1998, PRSU).

THEORETICAL ANALYSIS OF THE PUERTO RICAN STUDENT MOVEMENT

Organizations, such as the Puerto Rican Student Movement (PRSM) and Puerto Ricans for Educational Progress (PREP), sprung up in public and private colleges in New York during the mid-1960s as a result of slight increases in the Puerto Rican student population. Puerto Ricans gained more access due in large part to the pioneering advocacy and community-building work of ASPIRA, which led to limited efforts from CUNY to increase minority enrollment, such as the SEEK (Search for Education, Elevation, and Knowledge) Program at CUNY and the Equal Opportunity Program (EOP) at SUNY, the State University of New York (Torres 2011-2012). However, these organizations adhered to traditional forms of advocacy and eventually died out due to low membership (Serrano 1998).

I would argue that the reason these more conventional organizations failed to attract a sizable membership is the same reason that Martha Biondi attributes to the radicalization of Black students across the country. Biondi’s descriptions of Black students’ responses to the lack of racial progress in the purportedly enlightened and liberal spaces of American higher education are quintessential examples of strain theory. Citing a study on Black student views conducted in 1969 on fifty campuses, Biondi notes that Black students had “idealistic expectations of campus life” (2012:20). According to the study as well as her own research, Black students expected to encounter a more liberal racial climate because the combination of civil rights legislation, increased attention to race relations and racism by scholars, and other factors produced a narrative of education as the main arena in which the promise of assimilation was to be fulfilled. To their dismay however, Black students encountered “a jarring disconnect between image and reality” (Biondi 2012:15).

One can easily see how Agnew’s general strain theory (GST) applies here. One need only read some of the firsthand accounts of Black students during this era to understand the profound “negative affect” experienced as a result of overt racial discrimination and violence, especially given the duration that individuals and the collective Black community had been exposed to such hostility and oppression. In addition to racist behavior and policies on campus, negative affect was developed as a result of ongoing police brutality aimed at Black students. Reports from campuses across the country, including Brooklyn College, indicate that police violence only served to further radicalize students, “As on many college campuses in 1968 and 1969, excessive use of force by police pushed moderate students over to the side of radicals” (Biondi 2012:62, 2012:122).

Unfulfilled promises of the Civil Rights Movement, the perceived ineffectiveness of non-violent resistance, and continued racial oppression by the white power structure set up a situation in which masses of Black youth failed to achieve their desired and valued goals. This strain led to “delinquency” or collective behavior that Agnew would call “instrumental” (Paternoster and Mazerole 1994:237). In other words, students were attempting to obtain what they had been prevented from obtaining; acknowledgement of their humanity and access to a quality education that reflected their experiences.

Likewise, Puerto Rican students moved away from conventional advocacy because of the strain of decades of U.S. colonialism in Puerto Rico along with racial/ethnic discrimination and economic exploitation in the United States. Puerto Rican migrants had been lured to the factories and farms in the American Midwest and Northeast by the promise of economic opportunity and a higher quality of life after “Operation Bootstrap,” Puerto Rico’s U.S.-backed industrialization plan, which caused mass unemployment in the agricultural regions of the island. What Puerto Ricans found however was rampant discrimination, dilapidated housing, and a public school system that was unprepared to deal with the needs of the city’s first mass migration from Latin America (Nieto 2000). Here is another case in which the expectations and rhetoric about U.S. democracy and social mobility did not match the reality.

James C. Davies’ premise in “Toward a Theory of Revolution” is another example of how strain theory can be applied here. The significant yet limited advances gained by the Civil Rights Movement, the overall post-World War II boom in the economy, and the promises of industrialization in Puerto Rico and Puerto Rican mass migration to the U.S. all created a period of real and perceived economic and social development followed by a quick, drastic period of reversal (Davies 1962). Although Blacks had experienced racial oppression in the United States for centuries and Puerto Ricans had endured colonial exploitation, racism, and discrimination for generations, their respective migrations to U.S. urban centers and the highly exalted yet insufficient progressive social change that was occurring produced a “dissatisfied state of mind” that led Black and Latino communities to revolt in the late 1960s. For African American and Puerto Rican students alike, “disappointment was giving rise to a determination to assert greater control over their education” (Biondi 2012:20).

A lot can also be said for political opportunity explanations of the Black and Puerto Rican student uprisings since the Cold War had put the U.S. in a defensive public relations position and domestic opinion was shifting towards greater racial tolerance. The aforementioned claim that the long fought Civil Rights Movement was a springboard for the Black student movement, and by extension the Puerto Rican student movement, lends a certain amount of credibility towards resource mobilization theory as well. This is especially true since the organizational infrastructure of pre-existing large-scale community-based organizations such as the Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee (SNCC), the Black Panther Party, the Young Lords Party, and Aspira provided resources, training, and expertise to students.

Still, all the experience and material resources of these community-based movements and organizations shrink in comparison to the resources, wealth, and the “monopoly of the legitimate use of physical force” (Weber 1918) in the hands of university boards of trustees and the state and federal governments. At the end of the day, the vast majority of Black and Puerto Rican students who brought about huge changes in educational policy and curriculum in New York and across the country were the daughters, sons, and grandchildren of sharecroppers, sugar cane cutters, and factory workers with very limited financial and institutional resources. I argue therefore that a deeper analysis employing the theoretical framework of “disruptive power” (Piven 2006) best explains the case under discussion. What follows are some key examples which illustrate the way Black and Puerto Rican students used their collective disruptive power to upset the normal functioning of the institutions to which they were connected in order to bring about change.

By 1969, Puerto Ricans were developing more radical organizations and forming alliances with Black student organizations to struggle for increased access to higher education and a curriculum that reflected the diversity of the city and university population. A group calling themselves Puerto Ricans in Student Activities (PRISA) at City College and the Puerto Rican Alliance (PRA), or Alianza Puertorriqueña, at Brooklyn College shared the leading role and fought side by side with their African American counterparts; the Onyx Society and the Black League of Afro-American Collegians (BLAC), respectively. Unfortunately, these Puerto Rican organizations receive scant or no attention at all in Professor Biondi’s otherwise extremely well-researched and comprehensive history of the Black student movement.

Since her work is focused on the Black student movement as an aspect of the larger Black Power and Black Freedom Movements, it is understandable that she focuses on African-American students. However, her treatment of Puerto Rican participation as almost a side note is lamentable since it overlooks that fact that many of the Puerto Rican participants also identified as Black, or of African-descent, and considered themselves part of the African diaspora. In fact, point 7 of the Young Lords Party’s 13-point program was a demand for “a true education of our Afro-Indio culture” (Enck-Wanzer 2010, emphasis mine). The Young Lords worked closely with Puerto Rican college students and this racial consciousness was central to Puerto Rican students’ demand for Black and Puerto Rican studies departments.

Members of Puerto Ricans in Student Activities (PRISA) and the Puerto Rican Alliance (PRA), were key players in the struggles at City College and Brooklyn College respectively, the two largest and most militant campus movements. In describing an incident in which Black and Puerto Rican students at Brooklyn College took over the microphone at a faculty meeting in order to force them to listen to and address their list of demands that until then had been ignored, Biondi states, “Militant students disrupting normal campus procedures and making ‘demands’ to a ‘frightened’ faculty became the archetypical sequence of events at American campuses in 1969” (2012:120). Disruptive actions were not exclusive to any one group. White students active in the anti-war and “new left” movements were also known for their disruptive tactics. Black and Puerto Rican students along with their White allies, and with the support of the community, used sit-ins, strikes, and building takeovers to pressure university administrators to bend to their demands.

At Brooklyn College members of BLAC, the Puerto Rican Alliance, and White students destroyed property and lit small fires in order to get the administration to pay attention to their demands when intruding on meetings did not work. Mass arrests of student rebels and police occupation of the campus only served to intensify support for the students and their demands. In the end, Brooklyn College President Peck and faculty went on record in support of open admissions and urged the Board of Higher Education to pay special attention to “Negroes and Puerto Ricans” (Biondi 2012:123).

Meanwhile at City College, escalating protests culminated with a strike and two hundred students taking over buildings in the south campus of the college. Members of the surrounding Harlem communities offered moral support as well as food and other provisions. Puerto Rican students replaced an American flag with the Puerto Rican flag in one central area and together with African American students renamed the school “Harlem University” (Serrano 1998:126). Among the students’ key demands were that the racial composition of all incoming freshmen classes reflect the Black and Puerto Rican population of New York City high schools. The second most contentious demand was for a School of Black and Puerto Rican Studies. Although the open admissions policy ultimately implemented by CUNY was not the quota system students were demanding, increased access and Black and Puerto Rican studies were eventually won.

Campus shutdowns and building takeovers are rather obvious examples of disruptive power. However, I contend that the actual demands made by students were also demonstrations of disruptive power because they threatened to disrupt existing networks of power and topple bureaucratic hierarchies. At Brooklyn College and City College the demand that Black and Puerto Rican students and faculty have control over faculty hires in newly proposed Black and Puerto Rican Studies Departments was the most controversial. It is no coincidence that in New York and elsewhere Biondi describes this demand, even more than open admissions, as the most contentious. Even more than a strike or other form of direct action, the idea of student and community control over governance and hiring practices disrupts normal university procedures and structures of power.

The Puerto Rican Student Union (PRSU) was established as an intercampus federation of students at approximately fifteen different schools in the fall of 1969 and continued the use of disruptive power. At Bronx Community College, for example, the PRSU led demonstrations and eventually a takeover of the college and the Board of Higher Education in order to save a bilingual program and Spanish language courses that catered mostly to Puerto Ricans (Serrano 1998:129). However, the PRSU differed from the student groups at Brooklyn College and City College in that they more directly connected the Puerto Rican student movement in the U.S. with struggles at the University of Puerto Rico and with the Puerto Rican independence movement. Their philosophical and strategic approach was based on revolutionary nationalism but also on a Marxist understanding of class struggle. They sought not only to disrupt the working of the university but also to fundamentally reorder society and transform the university’s connection with oppressed communities.

To this end the PRSU opened storefront offices primarily in the community and only eventually on campuses. In the gendered, patriarchal language prominent even among revolutionary circles of the era, they declared themselves “no different from our brothers who are not in the colleges and universities.” They recruited “community cadre” and strived to use the skills, resources, and training available in the university to combat the social problems afflicting the Puerto Rican community (PRSU “Somos Puertorriqueños,” undated). Ultimately, creating a unified student movement, engaging in community struggles, and participating in the Puerto Rican liberation movement proved to be a very challenging and unsustainable agenda. However, the PRSU helped create a new model and vision for truly democratic higher education. Their strong ties to the community and their ability to use those ties as leverage and apply pressure to university administration when needed also provides important lessons for the present moment.

LEGACY AND LESSONS OF THE MOVEMENT

As the slogan of the Puerto Rican Student Union, “Somos Puertorriqueños y estamos despertando” (We are Puerto Rican and we are waking up), would suggest, Puerto Rican college students were waking up to the contradictions in U.S. society and were determined to fix them. The Puerto Rican Student Union’s use of the verb despertar (to wake up) can be understood as a metaphor for conscientização, the process of achieving political consciousness/awareness described by Brazilian education theorist, Paolo Freire, in his classic, Pedagogy of the Oppressed.

In fact, these student-activists and their faculty allies were coming to some of the same conclusions as Freire even before his book was translated into English in 1970. The demand for Puerto Rican studies was a demand for an education that validated their knowledge and addressed their positionality as colonial migrants and racialized subjects; one that validated their culture and history and addressed the systems of power that effected their lives. Another parallel between Freire, and the Puerto Rican student-studies movement was the idea of praxis. Josephine Nieves, in describing the aforementioned founding principles of Puerto Rican studies, stresses the centrality of a “community base- an insistence on applying new knowledge…and other university resources to struggles and issues in the community, not as intellectual elites but as university-based intellectual workers” (1987:6).

Puerto Rican Studies is as relevant now as it was when ethnic studies departments were first established in the 1960s and 1970s simply because the social problems that they were created to help solve have yet to be solved and the political struggles that provided the impetus for their development have yet to be won. Puerto Rican studies grew out of community and student struggles for justice, respect, and equality. It was meant to provide the intellectual resources to further those struggles.

For example, Puerto Ricans continue to struggle against underrepresentation in academia. A policy brief written by sociologist Felipe Pimentel in 2005 shows that the number of Puerto Rican faculty at CUNY steadily decreased between 1981 and 2002, despite the fact that the number of Puerto Ricans earning doctorates had actually increased during that same period of time. Representations of puertorriqueñidad, of Puerto Rican history and culture, continue to be distorted in politics and mainstream culture as well. As Bonilla, Campos, and Flores mention, “Countering this entrenched intellectual stigmatization clearly involves more than mounting an argument for a ‘positive vision’…The real corrective could be found only in political action itself, and in a transformed relation between theoretical construction and social practice” (1986:86).

Puerto Rican Studies produces powerful counter narratives to the disempowering images, messages, and stereotypes of the dominant culture. On the contrary to declarations of color-blindness and of the “declining significance of race,”1 Puerto Ricans and other people of color continue to face racism and stigmatization in society. One recent example that caused an uproar in the New York Puerto Rican community occurred in January of 2012 when an ABC TV show directly labeled Puerto Ricans as “good drug dealers.”2 Puerto Rican studies empowers students to tell their own stories and as Bonilla-Silva notes, it is “Through stories [that] we present and represent ourselves and others” (2010:75). Beyond verbal insults and bad jokes however, Puerto Rican Studies is needed to address the fundamental issues of discrimination and economic exploitation in the U.S., and decolonization and self-determination in Puerto Rico.

Like all ethnic studies fields, Puerto Rican studies is most valuable to its constituent community in its ability to produce critical and anti/post/de-colonial theory that can empower and inform political action and social movements. Puerto Rican studies can provide the ideological tools for ongoing social movements for justice and equality into the twenty-first century. It is a source of personal liberation; a way to help students and community members “appreciate their own value, intelligence, and potential as political actors” (Anyon 2005:179). If Josephine Nieves was correct in her assertion that “The creation of Puerto Rican Studies was part of the social, political, and intellectual development of the Puerto Rican community,” (1987:3) what would it mean if it was allowed to be watered-down or eliminated during a time in which there is still so much work to be done?

In opposition to the traditional deficit-model approach to studying educational inequality that tends to only focus on those Puerto Rican students who are underachieving, a number of scholars have started highlighting the characteristics of academically successful Puerto Rican students and the socio-cultural factors that lead to their success. Two of the themes that emerge from this literature are the importance of a positive ethnic identity (in spite of discrimination, microagressions, and pressure to assimilate) and community and familial support. And Puerto Rican organizers and educators have understood the importance of culturally relevant curriculum and pedagogy for the education of Puerto Rican youth for decades (Aspira, Inc. 1968).

Community support and an organized higher education constituency are not only necessary for staving off current and future attacks on the hard-fought democratic reforms won during the 1960s and 1970s. They are also crucial to forming a social movement aimed at “mending the educational pipeline” (Reyes 2013) and providing a more emancipatory education for Puerto Ricans and all other “colonial racialized minorities” (Grosfoguel 2003).

CONCLUSION

George Pester, former dean of students at City College, reflected indirectly on the efficacy and justification for disruptive power when he said “People who want to change such institutions have to grab them by the scoff of the neck and yell: ‘please listen to me’ if they are ever to be heard. I honestly don’t know any way you can break through the rigidity of the institution other than the way the blacks and Puerto Ricans have done it” (quoted in Biondi 2012:133). Inherent in his remarks is also an important lesson for the present.

The 45th anniversary of the historical advances made by the Black and Puerto Rican student movements provides occasion for reflection on the current state of socioeconomic, ethnic, racial, and ideological diversity at CUNY. Since the base of the movement’s disruptive power was located in the students’ home communities, it behooves advocates of wider access to higher education and ethnic studies to constantly develop and maintain working alliances with the community. Renewing the commitment to develop strong ties between the university and the community is also vital to assuring that higher education remains relevant to the needs of students and their communities.

- End -
Yet to be included:



  • Archival data on City College and Brooklyn College organizations

  • Interview data

  • Further organizational analysis and critique of the PRSU

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1 I am referencing William Julius Wilson’s book, The Declining Significance of Race: Blacks and Changing American Institutions, and conservative ideological perspective that it helped promulgate.

2 The show was subsequently cancelled after pressure from community activists http://nyclatinopolitics.com/2012/01/17/abc-cancelled-the-show-but-protest-will-continue/#more-984






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