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For immediate release: Nov. 21, 2001

Contact: Marilyn Marks, 609-258-3601,

Media advisory:

Jesse Jackson to give keynote address at conference on Puerto Rico

Who: The Rev. Jesse Jackson and other activists, scholars and students

What: Conference on "Puerto Ricans: Second-Class Citizens in 'Our' Democracy?"

When: Friday, Nov. 30 and Saturday, Dec. 1

Where: Bowen and McCosh halls on the Princeton University campus

Civil rights leader Jesse Jackson, founder and president of the Rainbow/PUSH Coalition, will be the keynote speaker at this conference on Puerto Rico. He will speak at 11:45 a.m. Friday, Nov. 30 in 50 McCosh Hall and is expected to discuss his efforts on behalf of the Puerto Rican island of Vieques to stop U.S. military bombing exercises there.

The conference will feature roundtable discussions on four topics: migration and citizenship; education and citizenship; law and citizenship; and Vieques. In addition to Jackson, participants will include the Rev. Wilfredo Estrada, secretary general of the Bible Society of Puerto Rico; Juan Flores, professor of black and Puerto Rican studies at the City University of New York; Efrén Rivera Ramos, dean of the University of Puerto Rico Law School; Marcia Rivera, a distinguished Puerto Rican sociologist; and Sonia Sotomayor, a 1976 Princeton graduate who is a U.S. Court of Appeals judge.

Conference organizers said they want to initiate a dialogue among intellectuals, students, professionals and activists about what it means to be Puerto Rican in this millennium. They hope to explore such issues as how people in the commonwealth culturally identify with Latin America but have U.S. citizenship; how they enjoy the "privileges" of American democracy and welfare benefits but at the cost of discrimination; and how they must sacrifice a portion of their national territory to bombing by the U.S. Navy.

Conference sessions will take place from 11:45 a.m. to 4:15 p.m. and 7:30 to 9:30 p.m. Friday and from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday in Bowen and McCosh halls. A schedule is available at <>.

The events are being organized by undergraduate and graduate students from the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs and the departments of Spanish, Portuguese, sociology and history as well as the Princeton Theological Seminary. The conference is sponsored by the Program in Latin American Studies.

The conference is free and open to the public.