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Jíbaro music, the country music of Puerto Rico, draws its lineage back to the ancient décima from Spain, featured in music and poetry all across Latin America. The Commonwealth of Puerto Rico adopted this genre as reflecting authenticity and values. Yet its policies forced nearly all of the music’s exponents to seek an audience in a diaspora that revered them as the purveyors of the lost homeland. New York City became an important hub of this genre; arguably, it saved it from extinction. The scant scholarly literature on jíbaro music has unreflectively echoed the construction of jíbaro as traditional, Hispanophile,...

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