Crisis by Design: Emergency Powers and Colonial Legality in Puerto Rico (Paperback)

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Devastating hurricanes, deteriorating infrastructure, massive public debt, and a global pandemic make up the continuous crises that plague Puerto Rico. In the last several years, this disastrous escalation has placed the archipelago more centrally on the radar of residents and politicians in the United States, as the US Congress established an oversight board with emergency powers to ensure Puerto Rico's economic survival--and its ability to repay its debt. These events should not be understood as a random string of compounding misfortune. Rather, as demonstrated by Jose Atiles in Crisis by Design, they result from the social, legal, and political structure of colonialism. Moreover, Atiles shows how administrations, through emergency powers and laws paired with the dynamics of wealth extraction, have served to sustain and exacerbate crises. He explores the role of the local government, corporations, and grassroots mobilizations. More broadly, the Puerto Rican case provides insight into the role of law and emergency powers in other global south, Caribbean, and racialized and colonized countries. In these settings, Atiles contends, colonialism is the ongoing catastrophe.

About the Author

Jose Atiles is Assistant Professor at the Department of Sociology and affiliate of the College of Law at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
Product Details
ISBN: 9781503641174
ISBN-10: 1503641171
Publisher: Stanford University Press
Publication Date: November 26th, 2024
Pages: 312
Language: English