Sotero Figueroa Hernández

Sotero Figueroa Hernández

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Sotero Figueroa
Sotero Figueroa at the Puerto Rican Revolutionary Committee in New York in 1895
BornApril 1851
Died1923 (aged 71–72)
Sotero Figueroa
Sotero Figueroa at the Puerto Rican Revolutionary Committee in New York in 1895
BornApril 1851
Died1923 (aged 71–72)

Sotero Figueroa Hernandez was born in Ponce, Puerto Rico, in April 1851. He studied at the school of Rafael Cordero in San Juan, and was later known for his work as a journalist, dramatist, speaker and author of biographical essays. He was also a loyal defender of Puerto Rican and Cuban independence. Figueroa died and was buried in Cuba in 1923.

Sotero Figueroa (3rd standing, L-to-R) shown with the Puerto Rican Revolutionary Committee in New York in 1895

Contents

Early Years

Figueroa was born in the city of Ponce, Puerto Rico during the month of April in 1851 and is believed to have studied at the Rafael Cordero school in San Juan. In his youth, he was apprenticed to the office of the typographer in the capital printing press of the liberal and Puerto Rican abolitionist, José Julián Acosta, a former student of maestro Rafael Cordero.[1]

Writing

Before moving to New York, Figueroa’s first job as a writer in Puerto Rico was in Ramon Marín’s print shop, Establicimiento Tipográphico; there he wrote pieces for La Crónica and El Pueblo and acted as editor of these in Marín’s absence. Figueroa began a print shop, after moving to New York in 1889; Imprenta America would serve as the publishing house for revolutionary newspapers such as Jose Martí’s La Patria and El Porvernir.[2] After the Cuban War of Independence, Figueroa moved to Cuba and often published articles in Cuban newspapers such as El Fígaro, La Discusíon, and La Gaceta.[3] He died in 1923 and in 1977 his book, La Verdad De La Historia was published in Puerto Rico posthumously.

Ensayo Biográfico (Biographical Essay)

Months before he left Puerto Rico for the United States, Sotero began writing Ensayo Biográfico (Biographical Essay) in which there were biographical sketches of those “…who had most contributed to the progress of Puerto Rico.”[4] This work offers a set of laudatory biographies that acknowledge the heroism of several Puerto Rican Creoles. In the Biographical Essays, there are also passages about race, castes, and slavery in Puerto Rico citing laws that make poor black men inferior. As a black man living in Puerto Rico, he often wrote about how unfairly he and his fellow men were treated. This Essay is the best known work of Figueroa.

Don Mamerto

Figueroa also wrote the zarzuela, “Don Mamerto” in 1886, which was presented at the Teatro La Perla in Ponce, Puerto Rico with music by the Ponce composer, Juan Morel Campos. This work was a scathing satire of those who betray their ideals because of political opportunism, or by being blinded by materialism or social aspirations.[1]Emigration and Politics[edit]

Sotero Figueroa (3rd standing, L-to-R) shown with the Puerto Rican Revolutionary Committee in New York in 1895

Figueroa emigrated to the city of New York in 1889. Arriving in New York City, he joined the Antillean separatist movement and established a close friendship with the exiled Cuban patriot, José Martí. There he met several other Puerto Rican patriots involved in the separatist movement, among them Francisco Gonzalo (Pachín) Marín and Arturo Alfonso Schomburg.[1]

Sotero Figueroa’s writings were also tied to his political beliefs. Figueroa, Ramón Marín, and Francisco Gonzalo (Pachín) Marín together worked to reform politics in Puerto Rico in the late 1800s. Their mission was make equality a reality by expelling the ideals of rank and class and promoting instead a focus on “individual merit”.[5] They believed that castes that existed were put on the public by Spanish colonial control and limited the Puerto Rican population’s growth economically, politically, and physically. At age 22, Figueroa was chosen as an assembly leader under Rafael Primo de Rivera, the new liberal Governor of Puerto Rico.[5]

In 1892, he collaborated in the founding of the Borinquen Club, the first of several Puerto Rican clubs affiliated with the Cuban Revolutionary Party (PRC). The PRC was founded by José Martí that same year to promote the independence of Cuba. Figueroa would later become secretary of the Executive Board of the PRC.[1]

References

  1. Jump up to:a b c d “Sotero Figueroa Hernández”EcuRed:Enciclopedia Cubana.
  2. ^ Woods, Richard D.; Kanellos, Nicolas; Martell, Helvetia (December 2002). “Hispanic Periodicals in the United States, Origins to 1960”. Hispania85 (4): 853. doi:10.2307/4141238ISSN 0018-2133JSTOR 4141238.
  3. ^ noticias.universia.pr. “Sotero Figueroa: el periodista en La Voz del Centro”Noticias Universia Puerto Rico (in Spanish). Retrieved 2018-12-19.
  4. ^ Hoffnung-Garskof, Jesse (August 2011). “To abolish the law of castes: merit, manhood and the problem of colour in the Puerto Rican liberal movement, 1873–92”. Social History36 (3): 312–342. doi:10.1080/03071022.2011.601150ISSN 0307-1022.
  5. Jump up to:a b Hoffnung-Garskov, Jesse (3 August 2011). “To abolish the law of castes: merit, manhood and the problem of color in Puerto Rican liberal movement, 1873-92”. Social History36: 312–342. doi:10.1080/03071022.2011.601150.

Further reading

  • Fay Fowlie de Flores. Ponce, Perla del Sur: Una Bibliografía Anotada. Second Edition. 1997. Ponce, Puerto Rico: Universidad de Puerto Rico en Ponce. p. 115. Item 582. LCCN 92-75480
  • Sotero Figueroa. Ensayo biografico sobre los que mas han contribuido al progreso de Puerto Rico. Ponce, Puerto Rico: Establecimiento tipografico El Vapor. 1888. (Colegio Universitario Tecnológico de Ponce, CUTPO; Universidade de Puerto Rico – Rio Piedras, UPR-RP)

Lo ultimo en política de Puerto Rico/USA

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Para trabajar por la Estadidad: https://estado51prusa.com Seminarios-pnp.com https://twitter.com/EstadoPRUSA https://www.facebook.com/EstadoPRUSA/
Para trabajar por la Estadidad: https://estado51prusa.com Seminarios-pnp.com https://twitter.com/EstadoPRUSA https://www.facebook.com/EstadoPRUSA/