The Recent Puerto Rican Diaspora to Florida
This chapter examines recent Puerto Rican migration to Florida, especially the Orlando, Miami, and Tampa metropolitan areas. It focuses on the immigrants’ settlement patterns, socioeconomic characteristics, racial self-classification, political incorporation, and cultural practices. I argue that the growing dispersal of the Puerto Rican diaspora away from its traditional destinations in the U.S. Northeast and Midwest toward the Southeast and Southwest has long-term consequences for the migrants’ cultural identities, as well as their socioeconomic progress. Puerto Rican communities in Orlando, Miami, and Tampa differ substantially from their counterparts in New York City, Chicago, and Philadelphia, not only in their socioeconomic origins and settlement patterns, but also in their modes of economic and political incorporation into the receiving society. The current Puerto Rican experience in Florida is largely unprecedented, especially in comparison with previous migrant waves from the Island to the U.S. mainland.
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