About this project

The Puerto Rico Syllabus is a digital resource for critical thinking and teaching about the Puerto Rican Debt Crisis that organizes readings, videos, and other research materials to contextualize contemporary issues with the ongoing political, social, and economic histories of Puerto Rico.

Activating the PR Syllabus in a variety of approaches, two curricular fellows--Ashley Coleman Taylor and Ricardo Gabriel--have joined the PR Syllabus team to develop courses based on the syllabus, to conduct and to produce projects that link Puerto Rico's racialized geographies and climate crisis to its colonial debt crisis. Daniel Vázquez Sanabria, who joined the team as a research assistant, will work to make the syllabus's website more widely accessible to all communities

You can read more about their individual projects below:


Photo Description: Black woman with medium-brown skin wears a blue and green collared plaid dress and smiles warmly at the camera. She is wearing lipstick and silver hoop earrings. Her hair is in locs and is pulled back under a navy bandana. She is sitting with her hands resting on her lap and arms bent.

Section Description

The section I am developing asks that readers employ an intersectional feminist lens to examine the debt crisis through the historical and present-day boundaries of racialized embodiment and land. We will explore how the relationship between Black women’s bodies and geography in Puerto Rico may help us understand the ways in which race, gender, and agency inform notions of debt, lack, ownership and sovereignty. I ask, how might the historical status of Black women’s bodies as property shift the discourse of debt and colonialism? I will specifically use the idea of racialized property to understand how Black geographies, embodiment, and residential segregation in Puerto Rico reflect various iterations of materiality and race.
--Ashley Coleman Taylor


Photo Description Ricardo Gabriel is standing in front of a tall wooden fence and an open sky. He has light brown skin; wavy, medium-length black hair; and a short black beard with a touch of grey. He is wearing a light brown sweater and black-rimmed glasses.

Project Description

My project focuses on climate justice, the energy system’s relationship to Puerto Rico’s colonial debt crisis, and its role in shaping the country’s future. It will provide an overview of the current energy system as well as multimedia resources on environmental justice and climate justice struggles in the Puerto Rican archipelago. The heart of the project is an exploration of what a just transition away from fossil fuels would mean for Puerto Rico and the Puerto Rican anticolonial struggle. It connects grassroots efforts to address the climate crisis in Puerto Rico to the larger Caribbean and Latin American context, and it invites viewers to consider the role of the diaspora and allied communities in the United States.
--Ricardo Gabriel


Photo Description: Light-skinned young man stares directly at the camera. His hair is short length, and he is wearing a cerulean blue shirt, topped with a cardigan of the same color. He wears glasses and had a septum piercing. He stands in front of a window that holds a sign that says “Burn Down the American Plantation.”

Project Description:

My project consists of exploring the different ways in which the Puerto Rico Syllabus website can be more accessible to all communities alike. Mainly, I am interested in understanding how the website reacts to accessibility tools, how it can better assist visitors, and how to better continue promoting the Puerto Rico Syllabus' belief of collaboration on all ends. While my time is mostly spent doing research on these issues and topics, my work will ultimately translate into a sort of report that can help guide the future of the website as an accessible tool for digital scholarship.
--Daniel Vázquez Sanabria