Profoundly fascinated by and connected to the ancestral culture, Thomas Braga in Portingales (1981) believes he can best express his condition as a so-called hyphenated American if he expresses himself in English rather than in Portuguese. Fully aware that English, as opposed to Portuguese, will connect him with broader audiences so as to convey his ethnic experience, Braga's poems are subtle reminders to mainstream America of the enormous contributions of the peoples of Portuguese descent to the building of the United States of America.

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