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Old 08-15-2011, 08:29 AM
 
3 posts, read 37,950 times
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Hey, I have lived in South America for the last 7 years and I have also lived in Spain for a while. I am thinking about taking up a job offer in Puerto Rico. I have visited briefly and seemed very nice and interesting but I never got a chance to explore and talk to people. I would like to know if the culture is more Americanized or more latino. Specifically I would like to know about family values. Do all the kids live at home during college and move out only when they get married? Is the catholic church very influential? Would you say that it is similar to Spain/Argentina in terms of the whole hispanic catholic culture setting? What I really want to know is will I feel like I'm in the states, I felt like that in the USVI. By the way I speak fluent Spanish and English. Also do many people speak English and are there many continental Americans on the island?

Last edited by jamaicancarioca; 08-15-2011 at 08:39 AM..
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Old 08-15-2011, 10:06 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jamaicancarioca View Post
Hey, I have lived in South America for the last 7 years and I have also lived in Spain for a while. I am thinking about taking up a job offer in Puerto Rico. I have visited briefly and seemed very nice and interesting but I never got a chance to explore and talk to people. I would like to know if the culture is more Americanized or more latino. Specifically I would like to know about family values. Do all the kids live at home during college and move out only when they get married? Is the catholic church very influential? Would you say that it is similar to Spain/Argentina in terms of the whole hispanic catholic culture setting? What I really want to know is will I feel like I'm in the states, I felt like that in the USVI. By the way I speak fluent Spanish and English. Also do many people speak English and are there many continental Americans on the island?
You may possibly receive a variety of answers to your questions.

For the sake of transparency let me state that I was raised there, but have not lived there in 30 years. However, I visit yearly and keep close ties with family and friends.

In my opinion, Puerto Rico - while still having its very own distinct cultural flavor - is melding with the mainstream culture of the USA.

The family values issue is a mish-mash. One often "hears" a lot about the importance of family values. It is highly promoted by the growing number of so-called "Christian" churches. Unfortunately, society reflects otherwise. Not to say that everyone there is evil. But, the society I see does not exactly reflect the "family values" one often hears about.

Although I've never been affected by either when visiting, drug use and drug violence are on the rise. Alcohol is consumed with abandon. Yet still, it's all what one choses to get involved with. I do know an ample amount of people there who live descent lives and would live nowhere else.

Now, if you want to be around a hyper festively happy people, you will not find a better place. Several years ago, a survey found that Puerto Rico's residents were the world's happiest people. And that cannot be denied. Here's the article:

http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/htm...0_happy29.html

Despite society's flaws, Puerto Ricans know how to make the best of a sad or happy moment. And those whom are originally from there (not transplants from other cultures) are welcoming people; the kind that will feed you and keep you well lubricated no matter how lavish or humble be their homes. Once you step inside. . ."mi casa es su casa" goes into high gear.

Good luck. Do your homework.

Last edited by chacho_keva; 08-15-2011 at 11:34 AM..
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Old 08-19-2011, 11:51 AM
 
Location: Palm Beach County
615 posts, read 1,576,790 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jamaicancarioca View Post
Hey, I have lived in South America for the last 7 years and I have also lived in Spain for a while. I am thinking about taking up a job offer in Puerto Rico. I have visited briefly and seemed very nice and interesting but I never got a chance to explore and talk to people. I would like to know if the culture is more Americanized or more latino. Specifically I would like to know about family values. Do all the kids live at home during college and move out only when they get married? Is the catholic church very influential? Would you say that it is similar to Spain/Argentina in terms of the whole hispanic catholic culture setting? What I really want to know is will I feel like I'm in the states, I felt like that in the USVI. By the way I speak fluent Spanish and English. Also do many people speak English and are there many continental Americans on the island?
I was born in Puerto Rico, but raised in the States. However, we spent just about every Summer there during school breaks, as most of our familia still resides in PR. Mami wanted us to embrace/continue learning about our culture/language/traditions.

What I've noticed/experienced is that while there is SOME influence of the USA, PRicans are very much in tune with their culture and sense of family unity. The people are very humble, friendly and they LOVE their Island.

Religion and politics are also a part of their lives. We (my familia) aren't Catholics, but most PRicans are. The adult children do live with their family until they marry.

Many speak varying degrees of English as it is part of their curriculum during their formal education. Although there have been some American influences on the Island, you definitely FEEL the pride/love the people have for their Island. So (IMO) you don't feel like you're in the USA.

Good luck with your job/stay, and I hope you have a positive experience.
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Old 08-21-2011, 05:59 AM
 
Location: Tampa Bay`·.¸¸ ><((((º>.·´¯`·><((((º>
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PRicans are very much in tune with their culture and sense of family unity, like Summer says.
It is part of the US, but with a very own culture which is influenced by many other cultures, the main one being Spanish culture. You will see this in the food eaten there, different customs, the buildings throughout the island.
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Old 08-21-2011, 10:08 AM
 
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It depends on the way in which you view things. In what ways did you find the USVI to feel Americanized? Did you live in the VI? I do and PR feels more Americanized in the sense that it has far more American amenities. There are shopping malls with plenty that is familiar to Americans/statesiders (Macys, Ann Taylor, 579, JCPenny, Forever 21) and of course Walmart and Kmart. People from other islands go to PR to get plenty things that are not readily available.



The USVI is a mix of people from the Caribbean islands but if you don't live here, it's not necessarily as obvious. PR seems less of a mix in that way and may have more of a unified culture. So it could feel more Latino to you because there arent as many competiting cultures, for lack of better words. In the VI, you can eat at a Trini roti shop, go to a local VI bakery, eat Dominican (DR) food…or eat at McDonalds. You hear Haitian, Dominican (Dominica) or Lucian kreyol daily as well as Spanish. Not sure if PR is that way due to never living there but havent gotten that feel from it overall.

Last edited by ReineDeCoeur; 08-21-2011 at 10:32 AM..
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Old 09-10-2011, 07:01 PM
 
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I was raised there and live in the USA. Puerto Rico is definitely more Americanized than most other places in Latin America, but I wouldn't use the word "melding" like chacho_keva does. There's a lot of American influence from the fact that a good chunk of the local TV is dubbed American shows and movies, from the American chain businesses in the island, and from the fact that there is a ton of Puerto Rican returnees from the USA.

But at the same time, PR is an island that's actually not that close to the USA, where 95% of the people are Puerto Rican and 98.8% are Latin American. Most Puerto Ricans interact with few if any Americans on a day-to-day basis, and those interactions tend to be pretty superficial.

So be prepared to find that a lot of the "American" element in PR culture may actually be alien to you, because it's the Puerto Rican version of "American," forged in the absence of many actual Americans. As a quick example, the Puerto Rican anglicism "dame un break" doesn't mean exactly the same thing as the English source "give me a break"; the English one means "stop bothering me," the Puerto Rican one means "give me a chance" or "let me have my turn" (in English, if your friend is playing a videogame and you want to have a turn, you don't ask him "give me a break!"). And so on.
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Old 09-10-2011, 07:35 PM
 
26 posts, read 109,187 times
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Hope this helps: Puerto Rico Is The Place: Top Five Things You Need To Know When Moving To Puerto Rico
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