Title

Quaker Political Interventions, and U.S. Puerto Rico Policy Development, 1900-1917

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

Spring 2015

Abstract

This article explores how Quaker political interventions - between the Foraker Act (1900) and the Jones Act (1917) - shaped insular policy debates over the extension of citizenship, and self-government in Puerto Rico. I do so by examining the debates held at the Lake Mohonk Conference of Friends of the Indian and other Dependent Peoples (LMC) over U.S. Puerto Rico policy development within the context of an emerging U.S. imperialist state. I contend that LMC Quakers in their pursuit of liberal egalitarian outcomes accepted the dominant and divisive Christian racialist assumptions of the times producing some unintended consequences in terms of the development of U.S. policy toward Puerto Rico that still resonate today. These consequences include: dissent among Puerto Rican delegates to the LMC that strained U.S. Puerto Rico affairs more broadly, a decline in Quakers' political influence in insular policy development, and increased the likelihood for an ascriptive inegalitarian form of political membership (statutory collective U.S. citizenship) in Puerto Rico.

Publication Name

Journal of Race and Policy

Volume Number

11

First Page

36

Last Page

55

Issue Number

1