Meet the author
Book signingDR. ANDRÉS TORRES
V Book FairQueens Museum of Art
October 10, 2010 - 10 am to 6pm
Dr. Andrés (Andy) Torres is Visiting Distinguished Lecturerin the Department of Latin American and Puerto Rican Studiesat Lehman College, City University of New York. He waspreviously Research Associate at the Center for Puerto RicanStudies at Hunter College, CUNY.
V BOOK FAIR – MULTILINGUAL EVENT www.newyorkbookfairexpo.com
Dr. Torres has taught in the fields of Puerto Rican/LatinoStudies and Economics. His edited volume,
Latinos in New England
(2006), provides a comprehensive look at Latinopopulation growth and socio-political trends in that region.Other publications include:
The Puerto Rican Movement:Voices from the Diaspora
Workforce Development: Health Care and Human Services (New England Journal of Public Policy, Special Issue
, 1997, co-editor), and
Between Melting Pot and Mosaic: African Americans and Puerto Ricans in the New York Political Economy
(1995). Dr. Torres has written articles, op-ed pieces,and book reviews on urban political economy, labor markets,social movements, and Latino public policy.Dr. Torres was at the University of Massachusetts from 1991to 2005, where he was professor in the College of Public andCommunity Service. From 1998-2005, he was also director of the Mauricio Gastón Institute for Latino CommunityDevelopment and Public Policy, a leading Latino research andpolicy center in New England.In prior years, Dr. Torres served as a Research Associate atCentro (1986-1991) and directed programs in communityorganizations and public agencies, including ASPIRA of NewYork, Inc., The Community Service Society, and the PrivateIndustry Council. He received his doctorate in economics fromthe New School for Social Research, a master's degree ineconomics from New York University, and a Bachelor of Business Administration degree from Manhattan College.Raised in the Washington Heights section of Manhattan, Dr.Torres was born in the South Bronx of deaf parents whoemigrated from Puerto Rico during the 1930s and 1940s. Hiswas among the first deaf families to come to the United Statesfrom the Caribbean. Dr. Torres, whose first language is SignLanguage, grew up in a tri-cultural environment in whichSpanish, English, and Sign were spoken.
Signing in Puerto Rican: A Hearing Son and His Deaf Parents
-- his familymemoir based on these experiences -- was recently publishedby Gallaudet University Press
Signing in Puerto Rican
A Hearing Son and His Deaf Family
The only child of deaf Puerto Rican migrants,Dr. Andrés Torresgrew up in New York City in a large,extended family thatincluded several deaf aunts and uncles.
InSigning in Puerto Rican: A Hearing Sonand His Deaf Family
,he opens a windowinto the little knownculture of Deaf Latinoschasing the Americandream. Like manychildren of deaf adults(codas), Dr. Torresloved his parentsdeeply but also longedto be free from being their interpreter to the hearing world. Dr.Torres’s story is unique in that his family communicated inthree languages. The gatherings of his family reverberated with“deaf talk,” in sign, Spanish, and English. What might havestruck outsiders as a strange chaos of gestures and mixedspoken languages was just normal for his family.Dr. Torres describes his early life as one of conflictinginfluences in his search for identity. His parents’ deepinvolvement in the Puerto Rican Society for the Catholic Deaf led him to study for the priesthood. He later left the seminaryas his own ambitions took hold. Dr. Torres became very activein the Puerto Rico independence movement against thebackdrop of the Civil Rights struggle and protest against theVietnam War. Throughout these defining events, Dr. Torres’s journey never took him too far from his Deaf Puerto Ricanfamily roots and the passion of arms, hands, and fingers fillingthe air with simultaneous translation and understanding.