Picric Acid & colonialism

About a forgotten mass grave of 176 Puerto Ricans in Arkansas.

Image for post
Image for post
Credits to Evin Demirel for the story & Shep Miers for this picture.

Almost a decade ago — 2012, to be exact —

I was consuming social media on that day of an early, hot, and humid Puerto Rican Spring. One comment to this picture caught my attention: someone — a white American male — posted the following link:

This highly explosive organic compound — used for brewing, dye preparation, and as an antiseptic , among many other uses— had an important role to play in early XXth century warfare:


[1] “banana stain”; the nature and character of the Puerto Rican.
[2] The discovery of picric acid (melinite, lyddite) as a powerful explosive. (1903). Public domain book.

SP & EN | poetry | society | teaching | science | tech https://about.me/oniricvonnegut

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store