This paper was read at The Scholar and Feminist VII Conference, Barnard College, April 1980. A longer version will appear in The Scholar and Feminist VII: Class, Race, and Sex—Exploring Contradictions, Affirming Connections, edited by Amy Swerdlow, to be published by G. K. Hall in 1981.
At the State University of New York/College at Old Westbury, where I am a tenured assistant professor, I am teaching for the first time a course called Machismo and the Changing Role of Women in Hispanic Culture. This course is also the first and only one of its kind, although Old Westbury has had a Women's Studies Program since 1971. This limited experience in women's studies in no way earns me the title of Puerto Rican feminist.
Since my lifestyle, my income, and my professional life separate me from my community and its daily struggle for survival, I do not even speak for the masses of Puerto Ricans. Nevertheless, I wish to share some thoughts on issues of class and race in women's studies.