Crockett Doob and Benh Zeitlin


The display of la bandera puertorriqueña was pretty common all year long throughout the five boroughs of New York City, waving from car antennas, painted on wall murals, or draped from windows, fire escapes and card hoods; but from the end of May until the middle of June,prior to and during the National Puerto Rican Day Parade in Manhattan (always the second Sunday in June), it reaches its peak. It is hard to walk anywhere in the City without seeing the image proudly displayed or worn. Any item or apparel imaginable is adorned or decorated with the image: umbrellas, shorts, ties, fingernails, hats, jewelry, sunglasses. This was especially true from the late 1990s through the early 2000s. It appears as if this custom may have peaked a few years ago, and during the last few years the flag seems to be less visible in the time period leading up to the parade. This latest trend may have arisen due  to do with grassroots and official campaigns intended to make sure the flag is used only in a respectful manner,  a decline in the flag fever pitch of those years and recent economic and environmental crises on the island leading many to use a black and white monoestrellada to represent the dual ideas of mourning and resistance.

City Lore


Material Culture