A Caballo Regalao no se le Mira el Colmillo: Colonial Mentality and Puerto Rican Depression

Cristalis Capielo, Amber Schaefer, Jorge Ballesteros, Roberto Rentería, E. J.R. David

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

3 Scopus citations


Dignifying the colonizer and depreciating the colonized is a reflection of internalized colonial oppression (i.e., colonial mentality). The current study examined the effect of colonial mentality on depression symptoms in a sample of mainland Puerto Ricans (N ± 352). A structural equation model was examined, in which colonial mentality was hypothesized to be directly and positively associated with depression symptoms. The proposed model also tested the indirect effect of colonial mentality on depression symptoms via acculturative stress. Results indicated that a full mediation structural equation model (SEM) had a better fit to the data than our hypothesized partial mediation model. Bias-corrected bootstrapping indicated that the effect of colonial mentality on depressive symptoms was mediated by acculturative stress. That is, colonial mentality increased the risk of experiencing depression symptoms in Puerto Ricans when they felt pressured to maintaining a connection with Puerto Rican culture and society and when they experienced rejection by the society they want to emulate (acculturative stress). The current results underscore the need for researchers and clinicians to consider and assess colonial mentality when conceptualizing depression symptoms among mainland Puerto Ricans.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalJournal of counseling psychology
StatePublished - Jan 1 2019



  • Acculturative stress
  • Colonial mentality
  • Depression
  • Mainland Puerto Ricans

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health

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