LaGuardia Community College 2002-03 Common Reading
Esmeralda Santiago, When I Was Puerto Rican

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As you read When I Was Puerto Rican, you may want to research Esmeralda Santiago further. You can research her life and work in three primary ways: works written by Santiago, on-line resources about Santiago and print resources about Santiago. Below, find a list of preliminary resources to begin your research.


Sueno de América: Una Novela (forthcoming)
**Almost a Woman. New York: Vintage, 1999.
**América's Dream. New York: Harper Collins, 1996.
**When I Was Puerto Rican. New York: Vintage, 1994.


**Las Mamis:Favorite Latino Authors Remember Their Mothers. Ed. with Joie Davidow. New York: Knopf, 2000.
**Las Christmas: Favorite Latino Authors Share Their Holiday Memories. Ed. with Joie Davidow. New York: Knopf, 1998.

**These works by Santiago have also been published in Spanish.


"About Esmeralda Santiago" is a student project on the author written in Spanish with wonderful resources for Spanish speakers. The site is located at: Accessed on 14 July 2002.

"Esmeralda Santiago's Home Page" presents information about the author, including upcoming New York City readings. The site is located at: (Accessed on 28 October 2002.)

Galullo, Lisa. "Truth and Identity in Autobiography: Teaching Esmeralda Santiago's novel When I Was Puerto Rican." This on-line article from the Yale-New Haven Teachers Institute offers an interesting overview of teaching Santiago's text in light of recent critical literary theory about memoir and creative non-fiction. This site is located at: Accessed on 14 July 2002.

"Reading Group Guide" for When I Was Puerto Rican from Vintage Book provides some basic information about Santiago and some questions to consider as you read. The site is located at: Accessed on 14 July 2002.

"Voices From the Gap" is a comprehensive overview of Santiago and her work. This site includes a biography, a bibliography of selected literary criticism and links to other women writers of color. This site is located at: Accessed on 14 July 2002.


Bair, Erin and Joyn Coyle. "Interview with Esmeralda Santiago." Accessed on 14 July 2002.

Greene, Donna. "Esmeralda Santiago: Author Speaks for Puerto Rican Women." The New York Times 13 Apr. 1997: 13WC.

Koch, John. "Esmeralda Santiago: The Interview." The Boston Globe 30 Sept. 1998: Magazine 10.


Martinez, Elizabeth Coonrod. "Maid in the USA." Women's Review of Books 14 (1996): 22.

Sapia, Yvonne V. "The Americanization of Esmeralda; When I Was Puerto Rican." Los Angeles Times 26 Dec. 1993: Book Review 9.

Valdes, Alisa. "Santiago's triumphant American 'Dream'." The Boston Globe 31 Jul. 1996: E3.


Copeland, Libby Ingrid. "Cultural Go-Between: Author Esmeralda Santiago's Two Languages and Two Lives." The Washington Post 12 Nov. 1998: C1.

Gatto, Katherine Gyekenyesi. "Mambo, Merengue, Salsa: The Dynamics of Self-Construction in Latina Autobiographical Narrative." West Virginia University Philological Papers 46 (2000): 84-90.

Mayock, Ellen. "Bicultural Construction of Self in Cisneros, Alvarez, and Santiago." Bilingual Review La Revista Bilingue 1998 23.3 (1998): 223-29.

Ortiz-Marquez, Maribel. "From Third World Politics to First World Practices: Contemporary Latina Writers in the United States." Interventions: Feminist Dialogues on Third World Women's Literature and Film. Ed. Bishnupriya Ghosh. New York, NY : Garland, 1997.

Puleo, Gus. "Dance Between Two Cultures: Latino Caribbean Literature Written in the United States." Hispanic Review 67 (1999): 407-411.

Sprouse, Keith Alan. "Between Bilingue and Nilingue: Language and the Translation of Identity in Esmeralda Santiago's Memoirs." American Studies in Scandinavia 32.1 (2000): 106-116.

Szadziuk, Maria. "Culture as Transition: Becoming a Woman in Bi-ethnic Space (An Examination of the Autobiographical Narratives of Esmeralda Santiago, Sandra Cisneros and Cherrie Moraga)." Mosaic--A Journal for the Interdisciplinary Study of Literature 32.3 (1999): 109-129.

Torres-Robles, Carmen L. "Esmeralda Santiago: Hacia una (re)definicion de la puertorriquenidad." Bilingual Review La Revista Bilingue 23.3 (1998): 206-13.

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