This independent study examines the different American perceptions of Dominican race during three important periods of history for the Dominican Republic, which are as follows: the attempts of American annexation of the Dominican Republic in the early 1870s, the American occupation of the Dominican Republic from 1916-1924, and the Haitian Massacre of 1937. Complete with many nuances and complexities, Dominican racial identity has long been an issue within the country. A racially mixed nation created between Spanish settlers and African slaves, the Dominican Republic has for the last two centuries have attempted to claim itself as a white nation by proudly announcing its Spanish heritage, and diminishing the country’s African roots. However, unlike the United States, race within the Dominican Republic is not either black or white. Instead, Dominican race travels through a racial spectrum creating unique racial complexities. This study utilizes a set of primary sources from American political figures, newspapers, and magazines in efforts to document and analyze the varying perceptions of the Dominican Republic’s racial identity.


Holt, Katie



Publication Date


Degree Granted

Bachelor of Arts

Document Type

Senior Independent Study Thesis



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