Puerto Rican people

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{language, word, form}
{land, century, early}
{black, white, people}
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{theory, work, human}
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{island, water, area}

Peoples other than Amerindians and Blacks and Asians or whites constituted (mixed and other) 10.9% in the United States 2000 Census.

Modern identity

Until 1950 the U.S. Bureau of the Census attempted to quantify the racial composition of the island's population, while experimenting with various racial taxonomies. In 1960 the census dropped the racial identification question for Puerto Rico but included it again in the year 2000. The only category that remained constant over time was white, even as other racial labels shifted greatly—from "colored" to "Black", "mulatto", and "other". Regardless of the precise terminology, the census reported that the bulk of the Puerto Rican population was black before U.S. occupation.[17]

The Puerto Rico of today has come to form some of its own social customs, cultural matrix, historically-rooted traditions, and its own unique pronunciation, vocabulary, and idiomatic expressions within the Spanish language. Even after the attempted assimilation of Puerto Rico into the United States in the early 20th century, the majority of the people of Puerto Rico feel pride in their nationality as "Puerto Ricans", regardless of the individual's particular racial, ethnic, political, or economic background. Many Puerto Ricans are consciously aware of the rich contribution of all cultures represented on the island. This diversity can be seen in the everyday lifestyle of many Puerto Ricans such as the profound African influences in Puerto Rico regarding food, music, dance, and architecture.

In the 2000 U.S. Census Puerto Ricans were asked to identify which racial category with which they personally identify. The breakdown is as follows: white (mostly Spanish origin) 80.5%, black 8%, Amerindian 0.4%, Asian 0.2%, mixed and other 10.9%.

Stateside Puerto Ricans

U.S. residents have also migrated from the U.S. mainland to different parts of Puerto Rico, especially to the San Juan metro area and the southern portion of the island, mainly for tourism purposes and for business ventures, including in the financial, manufacturing, and pharmaceutical industries.


Spanish is the predominant language among Puerto Ricans residing in the island; however, its vocabulary has expanded with many words and phrases coming from the Taíno and African influences of the island. Since 1901, the English language is taught and spoken throughout the island.

As of 2007, the American Community Survey states that 95.1% of island residents speak Spanish and 81.5% of Puerto Ricans speak English less than "very well". 4.7% of people on the island speak English only.[22]


The great majority of Puerto Ricans are Christians, though there are certain Islamic and Jewish sectors in the island. Roman Catholicism has been the main religion among Puerto Ricans since the arrival of the Spanish in the 15th century, but the increasing presence of Protestant, Latter-day Saint (Mormon), Pentecostal and Jehovah's Witnesses denominations has increased under U.S. sovereignty, making modern Puerto Rico an inter-denominational, multireligious community. The island is also home to small Wiccan and Pagan communities and Jewish and Muslim communities.

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