New York Puerto Ricans have been an integral part of hip hop culture since the very beginning: from 1970s pioneers like Rock Steady Crew's Jo-Jo, to recent rap mega-stars Big Punisher and Angie Martinez. Yet, Puerto Rican participation and contributions to hip hop is frequently downplayed, if not completely ignored. When their presence has been acknowledged, it is usually misinterpreted as a defection from Puerto Rican culture and identity into the African American camp. But, Rivera argues, nothing could be further from the truth. Through hip hop, Puerto Ricans have simply stretched the boundaries of Puerto Ricanness and latinidad.

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