Labeled “Amazons” by the national press, women played a central role in the Huk rebellion, one of the most significant peasant-based revolutions in modern Philippine history. As spies, organizers, nurses, couriers, soldiers, and even military commanders, women worked closely with men to resist first Japanese occupation and later, after WWII, to challenge the new Philippine republic. But in the midst of the uncertainty and violence of rebellion, these women also pursued personal lives, falling in love, becoming pregnant, and raising families, often with their male comrades-in-arms.
Drawing on interviews with over one hundred veterans of the movement, Vina A. Lanzona explores the Huk rebellion from the intimate and collective experiences of its female participants, demonstrating how their presence, and the complex questions of gender, family, and sexuality they provoked, ultimately shaped the nature of the revolutionary struggle.
Winner, Kenneth W. Baldridge Prize for the best history book written by a resident of Hawaii, sponsored by Brigham Young University–Hawaii
In 1898 the United States declared sovereignty over the Philippines, an archipelago of seven thousand islands inhabited by seven million people of various ethnicities. While it became a colonial power at the zenith of global imperialism, the United States nevertheless conceived of its rule as exceptional—an exercise in benevolence rather than in tyranny and exploitation. In this volume, Julian Go and Anne L. Foster untangle this peculiar self-fashioning and insist on the importance of studying U.S. colonial rule in the context of other imperialist ventures. A necessary expansion of critical focus, The American Colonial State in the Philippines is the first systematic attempt to examine the creation and administration of the American colonial state from comparative, global perspectives.
Written by social scientists and historians, these essays investigate various aspects of American colonial government through comparison with and contextualization within colonial regimes elsewhere in the world—from British Malaysia and Dutch Indonesia to Japanese Taiwan and America's other major overseas colony, Puerto Rico. Contributors explore the program of political education in the Philippines; constructions of nationalism, race, and religion; the regulation of opium; connections to politics on the U.S. mainland; and anticolonial resistance. Tracking the complex connections, circuits, and contests across, within, and between empires that shaped America's colonial regime, The American Colonial State in the Philippines sheds new light on the complexities of American imperialism and turn-of-the-century colonialism.
Contributors. Patricio N. Abinales, Donna J. Amoroso, Paul Barclay, Vince Boudreau, Anne L. Foster, Julian Go, Paul A. Kramer
When the United States took control of the Philippines and Puerto Rico in the wake of the Spanish-American War, it declared that it would transform its new colonies through lessons in self-government and the ways of American-style democracy. In both territories, U.S. colonial officials built extensive public school systems, and they set up American-style elections and governmental institutions. The officials aimed their lessons in democratic government at the political elite: the relatively small class of the wealthy, educated, and politically powerful within each colony. While they retained ultimate control for themselves, the Americans let the elite vote, hold local office, and formulate legislation in national assemblies.
American Empire and the Politics of Meaning is an examination of how these efforts to provide the elite of Puerto Rico and the Philippines a practical education in self-government played out on the ground in the early years of American colonial rule, from 1898 until 1912. It is the first systematic comparative analysis of these early exercises in American imperial power. The sociologist Julian Go unravels how American authorities used “culture” as both a tool and a target of rule, and how the Puerto Rican and Philippine elite received, creatively engaged, and sometimes silently subverted the Americans’ ostensibly benign intentions. Rather than finding that the attempt to transplant American-style democracy led to incommensurable “culture clashes,” Go assesses complex processes of cultural accommodation and transformation. By combining rich historical detail with broader theories of meaning, culture, and colonialism, he provides an innovative study of the hidden intersections of political power and cultural meaning-making in America’s earliest overseas empire.
In 1904, renowned architect Daniel Burnham, the Progressive Era urban planner who famously “Made No Little Plans,” set off for the Philippines, the new US colonial acquisition. Charged with designing environments for the occupation government, Burnham set out to convey the ambitions and the dominance of the regime, drawing on neo-classical formalism for the Pacific colony. The spaces he created, most notably in the summer capital of Baguio, gave physical form to American rule and its contradictions.
In American Imperial Pastoral, Rebecca Tinio McKenna examines the design, construction, and use of Baguio, making visible the physical shape, labor, and sustaining practices of the US’s new empire—especially the dispossessions that underwrote market expansion. In the process, she demonstrates how colonialists conducted market-making through state-building and vice-versa. Where much has been made of the racial dynamics of US colonialism in the region, McKenna emphasizes capitalist practices and design ideals—giving us a fresh and nuanced understanding of the American occupation of the Philippines.
The American mestizos, a group that emerged in the Philippines after it was colonized by the United States, became a serious social concern for expatriate Americans and Filipino nationalists far disproportionate to their actual size, confounding observers who debated where they fit into the racial schema of the island nation.
Across the Pacific, these same mestizos were racialized in a way that characterized them as a asset to the United States, opening up the possibility of their assimilation to American society during a period characterized by immigration restriction and fears of miscegenation. Drawing upon Philippine and American archives, Nicholas Trajano Molnar documents the imposed and self-ascribed racializations of the American mestizos, demonstrating that the boundaries of their racial identity shifted across time and space with no single identity coalescing.
In 1997, when the New York Times described Filipino American serial killer Andrew Cunanan as appearing “to be everywhere and nowhere,” Allan Punzalan Isaac recognized confusion about the Filipino presence in the United States, symptomatic of American imperialism’s invisibility to itself. In American Tropics, Isaac explores American fantasies about the Philippines and other “unincorporated” parts of the U.S. nation that obscure the contradictions of a democratic country possessing colonies.Isaac boldly examines the American empire’s images of the Philippines in turn-of-the-century legal debates over Puerto Rico, Progressive-era popular literature set in Latin American borderlands, and midcentury Hollywood cinema staged in Hawai‘i and the Pacific islands. Isaac scrutinizes media coverage of the Cunanan case, Boy Scout adventure novels, and Hollywood films such as The Real Glory (1939) and Blue Hawaii (1961) to argue that territorial sites of occupation are an important part of American identity. American Tropics further reveals the imperial imagination’s role in shaping national meaning in novels such as Carlos Bulosan’s America Is in the Heart (1946) and Jessica Hagedorn’s Dogeaters (1990), Filipino American novels forced to articulate the empire’s enfolded but disavowed borders.Tracing the American empire from the beginning of the twentieth century to Philippine liberation and the U.S. civil rights movement, American Tropics lays bare Filipino Americans’ unique form of belonging marked indelibly by imperialism and at odds with U.S. racial politics and culture.Allan Punzalan Isaac is assistant professor of English at Wesleyan University.
Winner of the Philippine National Book Award, this pioneering volume reveals how the power of the country’s family-based oligarchy both derives from and contributes to a weak Philippine state. From provincial warlords to modern managers, prominent Filipino leaders have fused family, politics, and business to compromise public institutions and amass private wealth—a historic pattern that persists to the present day.
Edited by Alfred W. McCoy, An Anarchy of Families explores the pervasive influence of the modern dynasties that have led the Philippines during the past century. Exemplified by the Osmeñas and Lopezes, elite Filipino families have formed a powerful oligarchy—controlling capital, dominating national politics, and often owning the media. Beyond Manila, strong men such as Ramon Durano, Ali Dimaporo, and Justiniano Montano have used “guns, goons, and gold” to accumulate wealth and power in far-flung islands and provinces. In a new preface for this revised edition, the editor shows how this pattern of oligarchic control has continued into the twenty-first century, despite dramatic socio-economic change that has supplanted the classic “three g’s” of Philippine politics with the contemporary “four c’s”—continuity, Chinese, criminality, and celebrity.
Ants For Breakfast
James Skibo University of Utah Press, 1999 Library of Congress DS666.K3S53 1999 | Dewey Decimal 392.309599
A view from the remote Philippine highlands where the author’s time in the kalinga homeland was packed with the elements of a thriller novel: mystery, danger, sex, violence, death—and research too!
Ants for Breakfast is about the adventure of modern archaeology. Seeking insight into prehistoric pottery manufacture and use, archaeologist James Skibo traveled to the remote Phillippine highlands to live with the Kalinga people, once headhunters, and one of the few groups in the world who still use ceramics for cooking.
Even as he looked for clues to the past in the practices of the present, the author’s time in the Kalinga homeland was packed with excitment: mystery, danger, sex, violence, and death. It was also an opportunity to taste a world both subtly and vastly different, while adding a new perspective to his own. In the course of his narrative, Skibo seizes every opportunity to link his experiences to the development of modern archaeology, and to such topics as human evolution, the peopling of the world, animal domestication, cultural logic, food taboos, basketball, Indiana Jones, and even Imelda Marcos.
Archipelagic American Studies
Brian Russell Roberts and Michelle Ann Stephens, editors Duke University Press, 2017 Library of Congress F970.A734 2017
Departing from conventional narratives of the United States and the Americas as fundamentally continental spaces, the contributors to Archipelagic American Studies theorize America as constituted by and accountable to an assemblage of interconnected islands, archipelagoes, shorelines, continents, seas, and oceans. They trace these planet-spanning archipelagic connections in essays on topics ranging from Indigenous sovereignty to the work of Édouard Glissant, from Philippine call centers to US militarization in the Caribbean, and from the great Pacific garbage patch to enduring overlaps between US imperialism and a colonial Mexican archipelago. Shaking loose the straitjacket of continental exceptionalism that hinders and permeates Americanist scholarship, Archipelagic American Studies asserts a more relevant and dynamic approach for thinking about the geographic, cultural, and political claims of the United States within broader notions of America.
Contributors Birte Blascheck, J. Michael Dash, Paul Giles, Susan Gillman, Matthew Pratt Guterl, Hsinya Huang, Allan Punzalan Isaac, Joseph Keith, Yolanda Martínez-San Miguel, Brandy Nālani McDougall, Ifeoma Kiddoe Nwankwo, Craig Santos Perez, Brian Russell Roberts, John Carlos Rowe, Cherene Sherrard-Johnson, Ramón E. Soto-Crespo, Michelle Ann Stephens, Elaine Stratford, Etsuko Taketani, Alice Te Punga Somerville, Teresia Teaiwa, Lanny Thompson, Nicole A. Waligora-Davis
Basques in the Philippines
Marciano R. De Borja University of Nevada Press, 2012 Library of Congress DS666.B33D4 2005 | Dewey Decimal 959.90049992
The Basques played a remarkably influential role in the creation and maintenance of Spain’s colonial establishment in the Philippines. Their skills as shipbuilders and businessmen, their evangelical zeal, and their ethnic cohesion and work-oriented culture made them successful as explorers, colonial administrators, missionaries, merchants, and settlers. They continued to play prominent roles in the governance and economy of the archipelago until the end of Spanish sovereignty, and their descendants still contribute in significant ways to the culture and economy of the contemporary Philippines. This book offers important new information about a little-known aspect of Philippine history and the influence of Basque immigration in the Spanish Empire, and it fills an important void in the literature of the Basque diaspora.
A forgotten account, written in the immediate aftermath of World War II, which vividly portrays the valor, sacrifice, suffering, and liberation of the defenders of Bataan and Corregidor through the eyes of one survivor.
The personal memoir of Colonel David L. Hardee, first drafted at sea from April-May 1945 following his liberation from Japanese captivity, is a thorough treatment of his time in the Philippines. A career infantry officer, Hardee fought during the Battle of Bataan as executive officer of the Provisional Air Corps Regiment. Captured in April 1942 after the American surrender on Bataan, Hardee survived the Bataan Death March and proceeded to endure a series of squalid prison camps. A debilitating hernia left Hardee too ill to travel to Japan in 1944, making him one of the few lieutenant colonels to remain in the Philippines and subsequently survive the war. As a primary account written almost immediately after his liberation, Hardee’s memoir is fresh, vivid, and devoid of decades of faded memories or contemporary influences associated with memoirs written years after an experience. This once-forgotten memoir has been carefully edited, illustrated and annotated to unlock the true depths of Hardee’s experience as a soldier, prisoner, and liberated survivor of the Pacific War.
In Beyond a Western Bioethics, physicians Angeles Tan Alora and Josephine M. Lumitao join eight other contributors to provide a comprehensive exploration of bioethical issues outside of the dominant American and western European model. Using the Philippines as a case study, they address how a developing country's economy, religion, and culture affect the bioethical landscape for doctors, patients, families, and the society as a whole.
American principles of medical ethics assume the primacy of individual autonomy, the importance of truth-telling, and secular standards of justice and morality. In the Philippines, these standards are often at odds with a culture in which family relationships take precedence over individualism, and ideas of community, friendship, and religion can deeply influence personal behavior. Pervasive poverty further complicates the equation. Contributors move from a general discussion of the moral vision informing health care decisions in the Philippines to an exploration of a wide range of specific cases: family planning, care of the elderly, organ transplants, death and dying, medical research, AIDS care, doctor-patient relationships, informed consent, and the allocation of scarce health-care resources.
Written for both students and professionals, the book provides a much-needed perspective on how medical ethics are practiced in a developing nation, and it successfully challenges the wisdom of global bioethical standards that do not account for local cultural and economic differences.
Body Parts of Empire is a study of abjection in American visual culture and popular literature from the Philippine-American War (1899–1902). During this period, the American national territory expanded beyond its continental borders to islands in the Pacific and the Caribbean. Simultaneously, new technologies of vision emerged for imagining the human body, including the moving camera, stereoscopes, and more efficient print technologies for mass media.
Rather than focusing on canonical American authors who wrote at the time of U.S. imperialism, this book examines abject texts—images of naked savages, corpses, clothed native elites, and uniformed American soldiers—as well as bodies of writing that document the goodwill and violence of American expansion in the Philippine colony. Contributing to the fields of American studies, Asian American studies, and gender studies, the book analyzes the actual archive of the Philippine-American War and how the racialization and sexualization of the Filipino colonial native have always been part of the cultures of America and U.S. imperialism. By focusing on the Filipino native as an abject body of the American imperial imaginary, this study offers a historical materialist optic for reading the cultures of Filipino America.
Conventional narratives describe the United States as a continental country bordered by Canada and Mexico. Yet, since the late twentieth century the United States has claimed more water space than land space, and more water space than perhaps any other country in the world. This watery version of the United States borders some twenty-one countries, particularly in the archipelagoes of the Pacific and the Caribbean. In Borderwaters Brian Russell Roberts dispels continental national mythologies to advance an alternative image of the United States as an archipelagic nation. Drawing on literature, visual art, and other expressive forms that range from novels by Mark Twain and Zora Neale Hurston to Indigenous testimonies against nuclear testing and Miguel Covarrubias's visual representations of Indonesia and the Caribbean, Roberts remaps both the fundamentals of US geography and the foundations of how we discuss US culture.
English is often a primary literary language for Filipino writers--not only for those in the Philippines but for those resident in the US; both groups are included in this anthology of 31 stories and 108 poems documenting a tradition that began at the turn-of-the-century. Manila-born poet and writer Francia, an editor at the Village Voice, gathers and validates creative work that has had limited distribution not only here but in Asia. ``In the Philippine context, what is foreign and what is indigenous has always been a tricky and ultimately impossible subject,'' Francia writes in his introduction. ``Filipinos have unconsciously perfected the art of mixing the two up....'' Readers who expect Filipino English to have the unexpected inflections and inventiveness of Indian or Caribbean English will be disappointed: the Filipino writer uses standard American English as a native language, but spices it naturally with words form indigenous and adopted tongues: Tagalog, Spanish, Ilokano, etc. Stories look at unrequited passion (in which the sensual tropical ambiance is at odds with society's rules); village life; the different cultures that have settled in the archipelago--Chinese, Japanese, Spanish, Hindu Indian; and the consequences of military, colonial, and economic occupation. Both poems and stories consider the experience of Filipinos--some intellectual, some humble--in the US. Among the more familiar contributors: Carlos Bulosan, Jos‚ Garc¡a Villa, Jessica Hagedorn, and Ninotchka Rosca. While the prose selected here is more consistent in quality than the poetry, the poems seem more wide-ranging; like the fiction writers, the poets consider love, politics, and metaphysics but move as well into experimentation and the modernist realm. A satisfying and worthwhile project.
The dramatic growth of the Internet in recent years has provided opportunities for a host of relationships and communities—forged across great distances and even time—that would have seemed unimaginable only a short while ago.
In Building Diaspora, Emily Noelle Ignacio explores how Filipinos have used these subtle, cyber, but very real social connections to construct and reinforce a sense of national, ethnic, and racial identity with distant others. Through an extensive analysis of newsgroup debates, listserves, and website postings, she illustrates the significant ways that computer-mediated communication has contributed to solidifying what can credibly be called a Filipino diaspora. Lively cyber-discussions on topics including Eurocentrism, Orientalism, patriarchy, gender issues, language, and "mail-order-brides" have helped Filipinos better understand and articulate their postcolonial situation as well as their relationship with other national and ethnic communities around the world. Significant attention is given to the complicated history of Philippine-American relations, including the ways Filipinos are racialized as a result of their political and economic subjugation to U.S. interests.
As Filipinos and many other ethnic groups continue to migrate globally, Building Diaspora makes an important contribution to our changing understanding of "homeland." The author makes the powerful argument that while home is being further removed from geographic place, it is being increasingly territorialized in space.
The creation of a new school system in the Philippines in 1898 and educational reforms in occupied Japan, both with stated goals of democratization, speaks to a singular vision of America as savior, following its politics of violence with benevolent recuperation. The pedagogy of recovery—in which schooling was central and natives were forced to accept empire through education—might have shown how Americans could be good occupiers, but it also created projects of Orientalist racial management: Filipinos had to be educated and civilized, while the Japanese had to be reeducated and “de-civilized.”
In Campaigns of Knowledge, Malini Schueller contrapuntally reads state-sanctioned proclamations, educational agendas, and school textbooks alongside political cartoons, novels, short stories, and films to demonstrate how the U.S. tutelary project was rerouted, appropriated, reinterpreted, and resisted. In doing so, she highlights how schooling was conceived as a process of subjectification, creating particular modes of thought, behaviors, aspirations, and desires that would render the natives docile subjects amenable to American-style colonialism in the Philippines and occupation in Japan.
Ethel Thomas Herold (1896–1988) was an ordinary person caught up in extraordinary circumstances—a woman whose sense of patriotic duty took her from small-town Wisconsin to the Philippines in 1922. There, with but a couple of brief interruptions, she would spend the next thirty-seven years, including three in a Japanese internment camp during World War II. In Citizen of Empire, Theresa Kaminski uses Ethel’s experiences of war and imperialism to explore a unique example of how those enormous forces helped shape Americans’ notions of citizenship and patriotism in the first half of the twentieth century.
As Kaminski’s absorbing narrative reveals, Ethel’s views of active patriotism began to form early on when her oldest brother became a schoolteacher in the Philippines in 1901 at the end of the Spanish-American War. After college and marriage, Ethel and her husband Elmer Herold went to the islands to teach in the public schools—a way, in her view, of spreading American ideals abroad. She quit teaching in 1927 to start a family but continued to support U.S. imperialism through her colonial household and club work. Her comfortable expatriate life fell apart, however, when the Japanese attacked the Philippines in 1941: the colonial elite were now powerless prisoners. After the war, wishing to help the people who had supported them during the occupation, Ethel and Elmer Herold stayed in the islands, but after Philippine independence came in 1946, they increasingly found themselves strangers in a place they had long called home. In 1959 the couple returned to Wisconsin, where Ethel remained politically active and saw the solution to America’s Cold War problems in the conservative wing of the Republican Party.
Ethel Thomas Herold was a woman of forceful personality. Marked most notably by her strongly held views on patriotism and citizenship, her transpacific life offers a remarkable instance of how the personal and political came together during the “American century.”
Theresa Kaminski is professor of history at the University of Wisconsin–Stevens Point and the author of Prisoners in Paradise: American Women in the Wartime South Pacific.
In City of Screens Jasmine Nadua Trice examines the politics of cinema circulation in early-2000s Manila. She traces Manila's cinema landscape by focusing on the primary locations of film exhibition and distribution: the pirated DVD district, mall multiplexes, art-house cinemas, the university film institute, and state-sponsored cinematheques. In the wake of digital media piracy and the decline of the local commercial film industry, the rising independent cinema movement has been a site of contestation between filmmakers and the state, each constructing different notions of a prospective, national public film audience. Discourses around audiences become more salient given that films by independent Philippine filmmakers are seldom screened to domestic audiences, despite their international success. City of Screens provides a deeper understanding of the debates about the competing roles of the film industry, the public, and the state in national culture in the Philippines and beyond.
In the midst of the Philippine-American War, twenty-two-year-old Robert Dexter Carter served in Manila as a civilian quartermaster clerk. Through his letters to his family, he provided a vivid picture of army life in Manila—the sights, the smells, and his responses to the native culture. In addition to his letters, his diary and several related articles present a firsthand account of the historic voyage of the United States Army Transport Grant through the Suez Canal to Manila in early 1899. Carter’s writings not only tell of his sometimes harrowing experiences, but also reveal the aspirations and fears of a young man not quite sure of his next steps on life’s journey.
Carter’s father, Robert Goldthwaite Carter, was a war hero and a longtime friend of Maj. Gen. Henry W. Lawton. Carter obtained his position through Lawton’s influence, and his respect for Lawton is clear throughout his writings. A frequent guest in the Lawton home, the young clerk was introduced to many notable figures both military and civilian. Carter’s letters, particularly to his father, are full of news and gossip related to his commander. In other letters, he reveals the kindness and generosity of Mrs. Lawton, who took time to look out for Carter while he was in the hospital and often loaned him books.
This well-researched and expertly edited work casts light on the role of support troops in war, a subject too often minimized or ignored. Shay begins each chapter with an introduction that establishes the setting, the context of events, and the disposition of Carter and his compatriots and provides notes and commentary to place the letters in context. By choosing not to edit the offensive expletives of a sometimes arrogant and racist young man, Shay presents a fully nuanced portrait of a young American exploring the larger world in a time of turmoil.
Enhanced by photographs from collections at the Library of Congress and the Military History Institute, as well as many of Carter’s own whimsical drawings, the book will appeal to armchair historians and scholars alike.
Colonial Pathologies is a groundbreaking history of the role of science and medicine in the American colonization of the Philippines from 1898 through the 1930s. Warwick Anderson describes how American colonizers sought to maintain their own health and stamina in a foreign environment while exerting control over and “civilizing” a population of seven million people spread out over seven thousand islands. In the process, he traces a significant transformation in the thinking of colonial doctors and scientists about what was most threatening to the health of white colonists. During the late nineteenth century, they understood the tropical environment as the greatest danger, and they sought to help their fellow colonizers to acclimate. Later, as their attention shifted to the role of microbial pathogens, colonial scientists came to view the Filipino people as a contaminated race, and they launched public health initiatives to reform Filipinos’ personal hygiene practices and social conduct.
A vivid sense of a colonial culture characterized by an anxious and assertive white masculinity emerges from Anderson’s description of American efforts to treat and discipline allegedly errant Filipinos. His narrative encompasses a colonial obsession with native excrement, a leper colony intended to transform those considered most unclean and least socialized, and the hookworm and malaria programs implemented by the Rockefeller Foundation in the 1920s and 1930s. Throughout, Anderson is attentive to the circulation of intertwined ideas about race, science, and medicine. He points to colonial public health in the Philippines as a key influence on the subsequent development of military medicine and industrial hygiene, U.S. urban health services, and racialized development regimes in other parts of the world.
In an innovative mix of history, anthropology, and post-colonial theory, Vicente L. Rafael examines the role of language in the religious conversion of the Tagalogs to Catholicism and their subsequent colonization during the early period (1580–1705) of Spanish rule in the Philippines. By tracing this history of communication between Spaniards and Tagalogs, Rafael maps the conditions that made possible both the emergence of a colonial regime and resistance to it. Originally published in 1988, this new paperback edition contains an updated preface that places the book in theoretical relation to other recent works in cultural studies and comparative colonialism.
On December 8, 1941, as the Pacific War reached the Philippines, Yay Panlilio, a Filipina-Irish American, faced a question with no easy answer: How could she contribute to the war?
In this 1950 memoir, The Crucible: An Autobiography by Colonel Yay, Filipina American Guerrilla, Panlilio narrates her experience as a journalist, triple agent, leader in the Philippine resistance against the Japanese, and lover of the guerrilla general Marcos V. Augustin. From the war-torn streets of Japanese-occupied Manila, to battlegrounds in the countryside, and the rural farmlands of central California, Panlilio blends wry commentary, rigorous journalistic detail, and popular romance.
Weaving together appearances by Douglas MacArthur and Carlos Romulo with dangerous espionage networks, this work provides an insightful perspective on the war. The Crucible invites readers to see new intersections in Filipina/o, Asian American, and American literature studies, and Denise Cruz's introduction imparts key biographical, historical, and cultural contexts to that purpose.
Pilipino Cultural Nights at American campuses have been a rite of passage for youth culture and a source of local community pride since the 1980s. Through performances—and parodies of them—these celebrations of national identity through music, dance, and theatrical narratives reemphasize what it means to be Filipino American. In The Day the Dancers Stayed, scholar and performer Theodore Gonzalves uses interviews and participant observer techniques to consider the relationship between the invention of performance repertoire and the development of diasporic identification.
Gonzalves traces a genealogy of performance repertoire from the 1930s to the present. Culture nights serve several functions: as exercises in nostalgia, celebrations of rigid community entertainment, and occasionally forums for political intervention. Taking up more recent parodies of Pilipino Cultural Nights, Gonzalves discusses how the rebellious spirit that enlivened the original seditious performances has been stifled.
Dean Worcester’s Fantasy Islands brings to life one of the most significant (but under examined) figures in the history of U.S. colonialism in the Philippines. Upon the outbreak of the Spanish-American War, Worcester, a scientist who had traveled twice to the Philippines on zoological expeditions, established himself as one of America’s leading experts on the Philippines. Over a fourteen-year career as a member of the U.S. colonial regime, Worcester devoted much of his time and energy to traveling among and photographing non-Christian minority groups in the Philippines. He amassed an archive of several thousand photographs taken by him or by government photographers. Worcester deployed those photographs in books, magazine articles, and lectures to promote his belief that the United States should maintain control of the Philippines for decades to come. While many historians have examined American colonial photography in the Philippines, this book is the first lengthy treatment of Worcester’s role in shaping American perceptions of the Philippines in the early twentieth century.
The only quantitative deforestation study to focus on one country, this case analysis of the Philippines since 1946 yields more concrete data than previous cross-national studies. David Kummer's close examination of the interactions among political, economic, and cultural factors and their environmental consequences sheds light on similar situations in other countries.
Philippine cinema, the dream factory of the former U.S. colony, teems with American figures and plots. Local movies feature GIs seeking Filipina brides, cold war spies hunting down native warlords, and American-born Filipinos wandering in the parental homeland. The American landscape furnishes the settings for the triumphs and tragedies of Filipino nurses, GI babies, and migrant workers.
By tracking American fantasies in Philippine movies from the postindependence period to the present, José B. Capino offers an innovative account of cinema's cultural work in decolonization and globalization. Capino examines how a third world nation's daydreams both articulate empire and mobilize against it, provide imaginary maps and fables of identity for its migrant workers and diasporan subjects, pose challenges to the alibis of patriarchy and nationalism, and open up paths for participating in the cultures of globality.
Through close readings of more than twenty Philippine movies, Capino demonstrates the postcolonial imagination's vital role in generating pragmatic and utopian visions of living with empire. Illuminating an important but understudied cinema, he creates a model for understanding the U.S. image in the third world.
The role of clientism, political machines, and money in grassroots electioneering in the Philippines has been much analyzed by those who study the subject, but never as extensively as Allen Hicken, Edward Aspinall, and Meredith Weiss do in Electoral Dynamics in the Philippines. Combining in-depth ethnographic fieldwork in localities across the Philippines during the 2016 elections with polling data and national comparative data, this study sheds light on the organization of elections and electioneering across the Philippines. How do candidates choose to appeal to voters, and how do they get out the vote? How do voters respond to different kinds of appeals? How important are patronage and clientism? What are the networks within which patronage is delivered? What do the political machines look like in elections influenced by social media? The book identifies commonalities and differences across the Philippines while speaking to current debates in political science about elections in developing democracies, the structure and organization of clientelism, and the role of money in elections.
In western countries, including the United States, foreign-trained nurses constitute a crucial labor supply. Far and away the largest number of these nurses come from the Philippines. Why is it that a developing nation with a comparatively greater need for trained medical professionals sends so many of its nurses to work in wealthier countries? Catherine Ceniza Choy engages this question through an examination of the unique relationship between the professionalization of nursing and the twentieth-century migration of Filipinos to the United States. The first book-length study of the history of Filipino nurses in the United States, Empire of Care brings to the fore the complicated connections among nursing, American colonialism, and the racialization of Filipinos.
Choy conducted extensive interviews with Filipino nurses in New York City and spoke with leading Filipino nurses across the United States. She combines their perspectives with various others—including those of Philippine and American government and health officials—to demonstrate how the desire of Filipino nurses to migrate abroad cannot be reduced to economic logic, but must instead be understood as a fundamentally transnational process. She argues that the origins of Filipino nurse migrations do not lie in the Philippines' independence in 1946 or the relaxation of U.S. immigration rules in 1965, but rather in the creation of an Americanized hospital training system during the period of early-twentieth-century colonial rule. Choy challenges celebratory narratives regarding professional migrants’ mobility by analyzing the scapegoating of Filipino nurses during difficult political times, the absence of professional solidarity between Filipino and American nurses, and the exploitation of foreign-trained nurses through temporary work visas. She shows how the culture of American imperialism persists today, continuing to shape the reception of Filipino nurses in the United States.
In Empire's Mistress Vernadette Vicuña Gonzalez follows the life of Filipina vaudeville and film actress Isabel Rosario Cooper, who was the mistress of General Douglas MacArthur. If mentioned at all, their relationship exists only as a salacious footnote in MacArthur's biography—a failed love affair between a venerated war hero and a young woman of Filipino and American heritage. Following Cooper from the Philippines to Washington, D.C. to Hollywood, where she died penniless, Gonzalez frames her not as a tragic heroine, but as someone caught within the violent histories of U.S. imperialism. In this way, Gonzalez uses Cooper's life as a means to explore the contours of empire as experienced on the scale of personal relationships. Along the way, Gonzalez fills in the archival gaps of Cooper's life with speculative fictional interludes that both unsettle the authority of “official” archives and dislodge the established one-dimensional characterizations of her. By presenting Cooper as a complex historical subject who lived at the crossroads of American colonialism in the Philippines, Gonzalez demonstrates how intimacy and love are woven into the infrastructure of empire.
With the rise of Nazism in the 1930s more than a thousand European Jews sought refuge in the Philippines, joining the small Jewish population of Manila. When the Japanese invaded the islands in 1941, the peaceful existence of the barely settled Jews filled with the kinds of uncertainties and oppression they thought they had left behind.
In this book Frank Ephraim, who fled to Manila with his parents, gathers the testimonies of thirty-six refugees, who describe the difficult journey to Manila, the lives they built there upon their arrival, and the events surrounding the Japanese invasion. Combining these accounts with historical and archival records, Manila newspapers, and U.S. government documents, Ephraim constructs a detailed account of this little-known chapter of world history.
In 1898, in an era of racial terror at home and imperial conquest abroad, the United States sent its troops to suppress the Filipino struggle for independence, including three regiments of the famed African American "Buffalo Soldiers." Among them was David Fagen, a twenty-year-old private in the Twenty-Fourth Infantry, who deserted to join the Filipino guerrillas. He led daring assaults and ambushes against his former comrades and commanders—who relentlessly pursued him without success—and his name became famous in the Philippines and in the African American community.
The outlines of Fagen's legend have been known for more than a century, but the details of his military achievements, his personal history, and his ultimate fate have remained a mystery—until now. Michael Morey tracks Fagen's life from his youth in Tampa as a laborer in a phosphate camp through his troubled sixteen months in the army, and, most importantly, over his long-obscured career as a guerrilla officer. Morey places this history in its larger military, political, and social context to tell the story of the young renegade whose courage and defiance challenged the supremacist assumptions of the time.
In a developing nation like the Philippines, many mothers provide for their families by traveling to a foreign country to care for someone else’s. Families Apart focuses on Filipino overseas workers in Canada to reveal what such arrangements mean for families on both sides of the global divide.
The outcome of Geraldine Pratt’s collaboration with the Philippine Women Centre of British Columbia, this study documents the difficulties of family separation and the problems that children have when they reunite with their mothers in Vancouver. Aimed at those who have lived this experience, those who directly benefit from it, and those who simply stand by and watch, Families Apart shows how Filipino migrant domestic workers—often mothers themselves—are caught between competing neoliberal policies of sending and receiving countries and how, rather than paying rich returns, their ambitions as migrants often result in social and economic exclusion for themselves and for their children. This argument takes shape as an open-ended series of encounters, moving between a singular academic voice and the “we” of various research collaborations, between Vancouver and the Philippines, and between genres of “evidence-based” social scientific research, personal testimony, theatrical performance, and nonfictional narrative writing.
Through these experiments with different modes of storytelling, Pratt seeks to transform frameworks of perception, to create and collect sympathetic witnesses—in short, to promote a wide-ranging public discussion and debate about a massive worldwide shift in family (and nonfamily) relations of intimacy and care.
Getting food, water, and services to the millions who live in the world’s few dozen megacities is one of the twenty-first century’s most formidable challenges. This innovative history traces nearly a century in the life of the megacity of Manila to show how it grew and what sustained it. Focusing on the city’s key commodities—rice, produce, fish, fowl, meat, milk, flour, coffee—Daniel F. Doeppers explores their complex interconnections, the changing ecology of the surrounding region, and the social fabric that weaves together farmers, merchants, transporters, storekeepers, and door-to-door vendors.
During February 1986, a grassroots revolution overthrew the fourteen-year dictatorship of former president Ferdinand Marcos in the Philippines. In this book, Jose V. Fuentecilla describes how Filipino exiles and immigrants in the United States played a crucial role in this victory, acting as the overseas arm of the opposition to help return their country to democracy.
A member of one of the major U.S.-based anti-Marcos movements, Fuentecilla tells the story of how small groups of Filipino exiles--short on resources and shunned by some of their compatriots--arrived and survived in the United States during the 1970s, overcame fear, apathy, and personal differences to form opposition organizations after Marcos's imposition of martial law, and learned to lobby the U.S. government during the Cold War. In the process, he draws from multiple hours of interviews with the principal activists, personal files of resistance leaders, and U.S. government records revealing the surveillance of the resistance by pro-Marcos White House administrations. The first full-length book to detail the history of U.S.-based opposition to the Marcos regime, Fighting from a Distance provides valuable lessons on how to persevere against a well-entrenched opponent.
Filipino seamen currently compose approximately twenty percent of the 1.2 million international maritime transportation workers. Ninety percent of the world’s goods and commodities are transported by ship. Taken together, these statistics attest to the critical role Filipino seamen play in worldwide maritime trade. In Filipino Crosscurrents, an interdisciplinary ethnography, Kale Bantigue Fajardo examines the cultural politics of seafaring, Filipino maritime masculinities, and globalization in the Philippines and the Filipino diaspora.
Drawing on fieldwork conducted on ships and in the ports of Manila and Oakland, as well as on an industrial container ship that traveled across the Pacific, Fajardo argues that Filipino seamen have become key figures through which the Philippine state and economic elites promote Filipino masculinity and neoliberal globalization. From government officials to working-class seamen and seafarers’ advocates, Fajardo’s wide-ranging analysis exposes the gaps in dominant narratives of Filipino seamen in national, regional, and global contexts.
Writing in a hybrid style that weaves together ethnographic description, cultural critique, travelogue, and autobiography, Fajardo invites readers to reconsider the meanings of masculinity and manhood.
Written just five years after the end of World War II, this is Margaret Sams’s moving testimony of life in a Japanese internment camp—the can of Spam hoarded for Christmas dinner, the clandestine radio hidden in her sewing kit, the beheading of other prisoners for transgressions. With her husband held elsewhere as a prisoner of war and with a small son to protect, Margaret broke the rules both of society and of her captors to fall in love and bear a child with a kind and daring fellow internee, Jerry Sams.
Examining the Marcos and Aquino administrations in the Philippines, and a number of cases in Latin Amarica, Casper discusses the legacies of authoritarianism and shows how difficult it is for popularly elected leaders to ensure that democracy will flourish. Authoritarian regimes leave an imprint on society long after their leaders have been overthrown because they transform or destroy the social institutions on which a successful democracy depends. Casper concludes that redemocratization is problematic, even in countries with strong democratic traditions.
Many Filipino Americans feel obligated to give charitably to their families, their communities, or social development projects and organizations back home. Their contributions provide relief to poor or vulnerable Filipinos, and address the forces that maintain poverty, vulnerability, and exploitative relationships in the Philippines. This philanthropy is a result of both economic globalization and the migration of Filipino professionals to the United States. But it is also central to the moral economies of Filipino migration, immigration, and diasporic return. Giving-related practices and concerns—and the bonds maintained through giving—infuse what it means to be Filipino in America.
Giving Back shows how integral this system is for understanding Filipino diaspora formation. Joyce Mariano “follows the money” to investigate the cultural, social, economic, and political conditions of diaspora giving. She takes an interdisciplinary approach to reveal how power operates through this charity and the ways the global economic and cultural dimensions of this practice reinforce racial subordination and neocolonialism. Giving Back explores how this charity can stabilize overlapping systems of inequality as well as the contradictions of corporate social responsibility programs in diaspora.
Migrant women are the primary source of paid domestic labor around the world. Since the 1980s, the newly prosperous countries of East Asia have recruited foreign household workers at a rapidly increasing rate. Many come from the Philippines and Indonesia. Pei-Chia Lan interviewed and spent time with dozens of Filipina and Indonesian domestics working in and around Taipei as well as many of their Taiwanese employers. On the basis of the vivid ethnographic detail she collected, Lan provides a nuanced look at how boundaries between worker and employer are maintained and negotiated in private households. She also sheds light on the fate of the workers, “global Cinderellas” who seek an escape from poverty at home only to find themselves treated as disposable labor abroad.
Lan demonstrates how economic disparities, immigration policies, race, ethnicity, and gender intersect in the relationship between the migrant workers and their Taiwanese employers. The employers are eager to flex their recently acquired financial muscle; many are first-generation career women as well as first-generation employers. The domestics are recruited from abroad as contract and “guest” workers; restrictive immigration policies prohibit them from seeking permanent residence or transferring from one employer to another. They care for Taiwanese families’ children, often having left their own behind. Throughout Global Cinderellas, Lan pays particular attention to how the women she studied identify themselves in relation to “others”—whether they be of different classes, nationalities, ethnicities, or education levels. In so doing, she offers a framework for thinking about how migrant workers and their employers understand themselves in the midst of dynamic transnational labor flows.
Kuo contrasts the economic evolutions of Taiwan and the Philippines as the product of government and industry relations. The two nations shared many economic similarities-yet Taiwan moved from clientelism to state corporatism, while in the Philippines clientelism remains deeply entrenched.
Kuo's case studies in the textile, plywood, and electronics industries support these general arguments. He finds that clientelism invariably leads to economic problems, while a laissez-faire approach is unpredictable. The best formula for industrial success in a developing nation is close cooperation between business and government.
A vivid ethnography of the global and transnational dimensions of gay identity as lived by Filipino immigrants in New York City, Global Divas challenges beliefs about the progressive development of a gay world and the eventual assimilation of all queer folks into gay modernity. Insisting that gay identity is not teleological but fraught with fissures, Martin Manalansan IV describes how Filipino gay immigrants, like many queers of color, are creating alternative paths to queer modernity and citizenship. He makes a compelling argument for the significance of diaspora and immigration as sites for investigating the complexities of gender, race, and sexuality.
Manalansan locates diasporic, transnational, and global dimensions of gay and other queer identities within a framework of quotidian struggles ranging from everyday domesticity to public engagements with racialized and gendered images to life-threatening situations involving AIDS. He reveals the gritty, mundane, and often contradictory deeds and utterances of Filipino gay men as key elements of queer globalization and transnationalism. Through careful and sensitive analysis of these men’s lives and rituals, he demonstrates that transnational gay identity is not merely a consumable product or lifestyle, but rather a pivotal element in the multiple, shifting relationships that queer immigrants of color mobilize as they confront the tribulations of a changing world.
After conquest of the Philippine archipelago in the late sixteenth century, Spanish colonizers launched a sweeping social program designed to bring about dramatic religious, political, and economic changes. But the limitations of Spanish colonial resources, together with the reactions of Filipinos themselves, combined to shape the outcome of that effort in unique and unexpected ways, argues John Leddy Phelan. With no wealth in the islands to attract conquistadores, conquest was accomplished largely by missionaries scattered among isolated native villages. Native chieftains served as intermediaries, thus enabling the Filipinos to react selectively to Spanish innovations. The result was a form of hispanization in which the resilient and adaptable Filipinos played a creative part.
In the Philippines and Okinawa, the third volume of Colonel William S. Triplet's memoirs, tells of Triplet's experiences during the American occupations in the early years after World War II. Continuing the story from the preceding books of his memoirs, A Youth in the Meuse-Argonne and A Colonel in the Armored Divisions, Triplet takes us to the Philippines, where his duties included rounding up isolated groups of Japanese holdouts, men who refused to believe or admit that their nation had lost the war, and holding them until the time came to transport them back to Japan.
Triplet also had to reorganize his battalions and companies to raise morale, which had plummeted with the end of the war and the seemingly dull tasks of occupation. When he took over his assignment of commanding a regiment in a division, he was dismayed to discover the unmilitary habits of almost everyone, regardless of rank. A strict disciplinarian himself, Colonel Triplet, who had served in both world wars, at one time commanding a four-thousand-man combat group, brought his regiment of garrison troops back into shape in a short time.
Okinawa presented the new challenge of bringing order to an island that had seen the deaths of one hundred thousand civilians. Virtually every building on the island had been leveled, and tens of thousands of Japanese defenders had been killed. Triplet was also obliged to oversee the temporary burial of thirteen thousand U.S. servicemen, both soldiers and sailors.
In the Philippines and Okinawa portrays the ever-changing, very human, and frequently dangerous occupation of two East Asian regions that are still important to American foreign policy. Any reader interested in military history or American history will find this memoir engaging.
Once viewed as a “brain drain,” migrants are increasingly viewed as a resource for promoting economic development back in their home countries. In Investing in the Homeland, Benjamin Graham finds that diasporans—migrants and their descendants—play a critical role in linking foreign firms to social networks in developing countries, allowing firms to flourish even in challenging political environments most foreign investors shun.
Graham’s analysis draws on new data from face-to-face interviews with the managers of over 450 foreign firms operating in two developing countries: Georgia and the Philippines. Diaspora-owned and diaspora-managed firms are better connected than other foreign firms and they use social ties to resolve disputes and influence government policy. At the same time, Graham shows that diaspora-affiliated firms are no more socially responsible than their purely foreign peers—at root, they are profit-seeking enterprises, not development NGOs. Graham identifies implications for policymakers seeking to capture the development potential of diaspora investment and for managers of multinational firms who want to harness diasporans as a source of sustained competitive advantage.
For generations, migration moved in one direction at a time: migrants to host countries, and money to families left behind. The Labor of Care argues that globalization has changed all that. Valerie Francisco-Menchavez spent five years alongside a group of working migrant mothers. Drawing on interviews and up-close collaboration with these women, Francisco-Menchavez looks at the sacrifices, emotional and material consequences, and recasting of roles that emerge from family separation. She pays particular attention to how technologies like Facebook, Skype, and recorded video open up transformative ways of bridging distances while still supporting traditional family dynamics. As she shows, migrants also build communities of care in their host countries. These chosen families provide an essential form of mutual support. What emerges is a fascinating portrait of today's transnational family—sundered, yet inexorably linked over the distances by timeless emotions and new forms of intimacy.
In this ethnographic study of the Agta, hunter-gatherers in the tropical rain forest of northeastern Luzon in the Philippines, Navin K. Rai documents a traditional society struggling to survive as their forest home is destroyed by outside forces. Foreword by Karl L. Hutterer.
During World War II more than one thousand Filipinas were kidnapped by the Imperial Japanese Army. Lolas’ House tells the stories of sixteen surviving Filipino “comfort women.”
M. Evelina Galang enters into the lives of the women at Lolas’ House, a community center in metro Manila. She accompanies them to the sites of their abduction and protests with them at the gates of the Japanese embassy. Each woman gives her testimony, and even though the women relive their horror at each telling, they offer their stories so that no woman anywhere should suffer wartime rape and torture.
Lolas’ House is a book of testimony, but it is also a book of witness, of survival, and of the female body. Intensely personal and globally political, it is the legacy of Lolas’ House to the world.
In Metroimperial Intimacies Victor Román Mendoza combines historical, literary, and archival analysis with queer-of-color critique to show how U.S. imperial incursions into the Philippines enabled the growth of unprecedented social and sexual intimacies between native Philippine and U.S. subjects. The real and imagined intimacies—whether expressed through friendship, love, or eroticism—threatened U.S. gender and sexuality norms. To codify U.S. heteronormative behavior, the colonial government prohibited anything loosely defined as perverse, which along with popular representations of Filipinos, regulated colonial subjects and depicted them as sexually available, diseased, and degenerate. Mendoza analyzes laws, military records, the writing of Philippine students in the United States, and popular representations of Philippine colonial subjects to show how their lives, bodies, and desires became the very battleground for the consolidation of repressive legal, economic, and political institutions and practices of the U.S. colonial state. By highlighting the importance of racial and gendered violence in maintaining control at home and abroad, Mendoza demonstrates that studies of U.S. sexuality must take into account the reach and impact of U.S. imperialism.
In Migrant Returns Eric J. Pido examines the complicated relationship among the Philippine economy, Manila’s urban development, and balikbayans—Filipino migrants visiting or returning to their homeland—to reconceptualize migration as a process of connectivity. Focusing on the experiences of balikbayans returning to Manila from California, Pido shows how Philippine economic and labor policies have created an economy reliant upon property speculation, financial remittances, and the affective labor of Filipinos living abroad. As the initial generation of post-1965 Filipino migrants begin to age, they are encouraged to retire in their homeland through various state-sponsored incentives. Yet, once they arrive, balikbayans often find themselves in the paradoxical position of being neither foreign nor local. They must reconcile their memories of their Filipino upbringing with American conceptions of security, sociality, modernity, and class as their homecoming comes into collision with the Philippines’ deep economic and social inequality. Tracing the complexity of balikbayan migration, Pido shows that rather than being a unidirectional event marking the end of a journey, migration is a multidirectional and continuous process that results in ambivalence, anxiety, relief, and difficulty.
Migrant workers from the Philippines are ubiquitous to global capitalism, with nearly 10 percent of the population employed in almost two hundred countries. In a visit to the United States in 2003, Philippine president Gloria Macapagal Arroyo even referred to herself as not only the head of state but also “the CEO of a global Philippine enterprise of eight million Filipinos who live and work abroad.”
Robyn Magalit Rodriguez investigates how and why the Philippine government transformed itself into what she calls a labor brokerage state, which actively prepares, mobilizes, and regulates its citizens for migrant work abroad. Filipino men and women fill a range of jobs around the globe, including domestic work, construction, and engineering, and they have even worked in the Middle East to support U.S. military operations. At the same time, the state redefines nationalism to normalize its citizens to migration while fostering their ties to the Philippines. Those who leave the country to work and send their wages to their families at home are treated as new national heroes.
Drawing on ethnographic research of the Philippine government’s migration bureaucracy, interviews, and archival work, Rodriguez presents a new analysis of neoliberal globalization and its consequences for nation-state formation.
Moral Politics in the Philippines offers an in-depth examination of the political participation and discourse of the urban poor in Manila. After the ousting of Ferdinando Marcos in 1986, society in the Philippines fractured along socioeconomic lines. The educated middle class began to recognize themselves as moral citizens and political participants while condemning the poor as immoral “masses” who earn money illegally and support corrupt leaders. Conversely, the poor believe themselves to be morally upright and criticize the rich as arrogant oppressors. Wataru Kusaka looks at the dangers of this moralization of politics during the last several decades, and he analyzes the damaging effects it has had on democracy by excluding much of society and marginalizing the interests of those most in need of resources.
There is no female religious figure so widely known and revered as the Virgin Mary. Mary has inspired in cultures around the world a deep devotion, a desire to emulate her virtue, and a strong belief in her power. Perhaps no population has been so deeply affected by this maternal figure as Filipino Catholics, whose apparitions of Mary have increased in response to recent events, drawing from a broad repertoire of the Catholic supernatural and pulling attention to new articulations of Christianity in the Global South.
In Mother Figured, historical anthropologist Deirdre de la Cruz offers a detailed examination of several appearances and miracles of the Virgin Mary in the Philippines from materials and sites ranging from the mid-nineteenth century to the present. By analyzing the effects of the mass media on the perception and proliferation of apparition phenomena, de la Cruz charts the intriguing emergence of new voices in the Philippines that are broadcasting Marian discourse globally. Based on two years of ethnographic fieldwork and hitherto unexplored archives in the Philippines, the United States, and Spain, Mother Figured documents the conditions of Marian devotion’s modern development and tracks how it has transformed Filipinos’ social and political role within the greater Catholic world.
In Motherless Tongues, Vicente L. Rafael examines the vexed relationship between language and history gleaned from the workings of translation in the Philippines, the United States, and beyond. Moving across a range of colonial and postcolonial settings, he demonstrates translation's agency in the making and understanding of events. These include nationalist efforts to vernacularize politics, U.S. projects to weaponize languages in wartime, and autobiographical attempts by area studies scholars to translate the otherness of their lives amid the Cold War. In all cases, translation is at war with itself, generating divergent effects. It deploys as well as distorts American English in counterinsurgency and colonial education, for example, just as it re-articulates European notions of sovereignty among Filipino revolutionaries in the nineteenth century and spurs the circulation of text messages in a civilian-driven coup in the twenty-first. Along the way, Rafael delineates the untranslatable that inheres in every act of translation, asking about the politics and ethics of uneven linguistic and semiotic exchanges. Mapping those moments where translation and historical imagination give rise to one another, Motherless Tongues shows how translation, in unleashing the insurgency of language, simultaneously sustains and subverts regimes of knowledge and relations of power.
Names Above Houses
Oliver de la Paz Southern Illinois University Press, 2001 Library of Congress PS3554.E114N36 2001 | Dewey Decimal 811.6
In Names above Houses, Oliver de la Pazuses both prose and verse poems to create the magical realm of Fidelito Recto—a boy who wants to fly—and his family of Filipino immigrants. Fidelito’s mother, Maria Elena, tries to keep her son grounded while struggling with her own moorings. Meanwhile, Domingo, Fidelito's fisherman father, is always at sea, even when among them. From the archipelago of the Philippines to San Francisco, horizontal and vertical movements shape moments of displacement and belonging for this marginalized family. Fidelito approaches life with a sense of wonder, finding magic in the mundane and becoming increasingly uncertain whether he is in the sky or whether his feet are planted firmly on the ground.
In 2011 the Philippines surpassed India to become what the New York Times referred to as "the world's capital of call centers." By the end of 2015 the Philippine call center industry employed over one million people and generated twenty-two billion dollars in revenue. In A Nation on the Line Jan M. Padios examines this massive industry in the context of globalization, race, gender, transnationalism, and postcolonialism, outlining how it has become a significant site of efforts to redefine Filipino identity and culture, the Philippine nation-state, and the value of Filipino labor. She also chronicles the many contradictory effects of call center work on Filipino identity, family, consumer culture, and sexual politics. As Padios demonstrates, the critical question of call centers does not merely expose the logic of transnational capitalism and the legacies of colonialism; it also problematizes the process of nation-building and peoplehood in the early twenty-first century.
The writings of a small group of scholars known as the ilustrados are often credited for providing intellectual grounding for the Philippine Revolution of 1896. Megan C. Thomas shows that the ilustrados’ anticolonial project of defining and constructing the “Filipino” involved Orientalist and racialist discourses that are usually ascribed to colonial projects, not anticolonial ones. According to Thomas, the work of the ilustrados uncovers the surprisingly blurry boundary between nationalist and colonialist thought.
By any measure, there was an extraordinary flowering of scholarly writing about the peoples and history of the Philippines in the decade or so preceding the revolution. In reexamining the works of the scholars José Rizal, Pardo de Tavera, Isabelo de los Reyes, Pedro Paterno, Pedro Serrano Laktaw, and Mariano Ponce, Thomas situates their writings in a broader account of intellectual ideas and politics migrating and transmuting across borders. She reveals how the ilustrados both drew from and refashioned the tools and concepts of Orientalist scholarship from Europe.
Interrogating the terms “nationalist” and “nationalism,” whose definitions are usually constructed in the present and then applied to the past, Thomas offers new models for studying nationalist thought in the colonial world.
In the last three decades, the dictatorship of Ferdinand Marcos has commanded the close scrutiny of scholars. These studies have focused on the political repression, human rights abuses, debt-driven growth model, and crony capitalism that defined Marcos’ so-called Democratic Revolution in the Philippines. But the relationship between the media and the regime’s public culture remains underexplored.
In Passionate Revolutions, Talitha Espiritu evaluates the role of political emotions in the rise and fall of the Marcos government. Focusing on the sentimental narratives and melodramatic cultural politics of the press and the cinema from 1965 to 1986, she examines how aesthetics and messaging based on heightened feeling helped secure the dictator’s control while also galvanizing the popular struggles that culminated in “people power” and government overthrow in 1986.
In analyzing news articles, feature films, cultural policy documents, and propaganda films as national allegories imbued with revolutionary power, Espiritu expands the critical discussion of dictatorships in general and Marcos’s in particular by placing Filipino popular media and the regime’s public culture in dialogue. Espiritu’s interdisciplinary approach in this illuminating case study of how melodrama and sentimentality shape political action breaks new ground in media studies, affect studies, and Southeast Asian studies.
In contemporary Manila, slums and squatter settlements are peppered throughout the city, often pushing right up against the walled enclaves of the privileged, creating the complex geopolitical pattern of Marco Z. Garrido’s “patchwork city.” Garrido documents the fragmentation of Manila into a mélange of spaces defined by class, particularly slums and upper- and middle-class enclaves. He then looks beyond urban fragmentation to delineate its effects on class relations and politics, arguing that the proliferation of these slums and enclaves and their subsequent proximity have intensified class relations. For enclave residents, the proximity of slums is a source of insecurity, compelling them to impose spatial boundaries on slum residents. For slum residents, the regular imposition of these boundaries creates a pervasive sense of discrimination. Class boundaries then sharpen along the housing divide, and the urban poor and middle class emerge not as labor and capital but as squatters and “villagers,” Manila’s name for subdivision residents. Garrido further examines the politicization of this divide with the case of the populist president Joseph Estrada, finding the two sides drawn into contention over not just the right to the city, but the nature of democracy itself.
The Patchwork City illuminates how segregation, class relations, and democracy are all intensely connected. It makes clear, ultimately, that class as a social structure is as indispensable to the study of Manila—and of many other cities of the Global South—as race is to the study of American cities.
During World War II, the United States government and many Western democracies limited or closed themselves off entirely to Jewish refugees. By contrast, a Pacific island nation decided to keep its doors open. Between 1938 and 1941, the Philippine Commonwealth provided safe asylum to more than 1,300 German Jews. In highlighting the efforts by Philippine president Manual Quezon and High Commissioner Paul V. McNutt, Bonnie M. Harris offers fuller implications for our understanding of the Roosevelt administration's response to the Holocaust.
This untold history is brought to life by focusing on the incredible journey of synagogue cantor Joseph Cysner. Drawing from oral histories, memoirs, and personal papers, Harris documents Cysner's harrowing escape from the Nazis and his heroic rescue by the American-led Jewish community of the Philippines in 1939. Moving and rich in historical detail, Philippine Sanctuary reveals new insights for an overlooked period in our recent history, and emphasizes the continued importance of humanitarian efforts to aid those being persecuted.
Home to 33,000 Filipino American residents, Daly City, California, located just outside of San Francisco, has been dubbed “the Pinoy Capital of the United States.” In this fascinating ethnographic study of the lives of Daly City residents, Benito Vergara shows how Daly City has become a magnet for the growing Filipino American community.
Vergara challenges rooted notions of colonialism here, addressing the immigrants’ identities, connections and loyalties. Using the lens of transnationalism, he looks at the “double lives” of both recent and established Filipino Americans. Vergara explores how first-generation Pinoys experience homesickness precisely because Daly City is filled with reminders of their homeland’s culture, like newspapers, shops and festivals. Vergara probes into the complicated, ambivalent feelings these immigrants have—toward the Philippines and the United States—and the conflicting obligations they have presented by belonging to a thriving community and yet possessing nostalgia for the homeland and people they left behind.
At the dawn of the twentieth century, the U.S. Army swiftly occupied Manila and then plunged into a decade-long pacification campaign with striking parallels to today’s war in Iraq. Armed with cutting-edge technology from America’s first information revolution, the U.S. colonial regime created the most modern police and intelligence units anywhere under the American flag. In Policing America’s Empire Alfred W. McCoy shows how this imperial panopticon slowly crushed the Filipino revolutionary movement with a lethal mix of firepower, surveillance, and incriminating information. Even after Washington freed its colony and won global power in 1945, it would intervene in the Philippines periodically for the next half-century—using the country as a laboratory for counterinsurgency and rearming local security forces for repression. In trying to create a democracy in the Philippines, the United States unleashed profoundly undemocratic forces that persist to the present day.
But security techniques bred in the tropical hothouse of colonial rule were not contained, McCoy shows, at this remote periphery of American power. Migrating homeward through both personnel and policies, these innovations helped shape a new federal security apparatus during World War I. Once established under the pressures of wartime mobilization, this distinctively American system of public-private surveillance persisted in various forms for the next fifty years, as an omnipresent, sub rosa matrix that honeycombed U.S. society with active informers, secretive civilian organizations, and government counterintelligence agencies. In each succeeding global crisis, this covert nexus expanded its domestic operations, producing new contraventions of civil liberties—from the harassment of labor activists and ethnic communities during World War I, to the mass incarceration of Japanese Americans during World War II, all the way to the secret blacklisting of suspected communists during the Cold War.
“With a breathtaking sweep of archival research, McCoy shows how repressive techniques developed in the colonial Philippines migrated back to the United States for use against people of color, aliens, and really any heterodox challenge to American power. This book proves Mark Twain’s adage that you cannot have an empire abroad and a republic at home.”—Bruce Cumings, University of Chicago
“This book lays the Philippine body politic on the examination table to reveal the disease that lies within—crime, clandestine policing, and political scandal. But McCoy also draws the line from Manila to Baghdad, arguing that the seeds of controversial counterinsurgency tactics used in Iraq were sown in the anti-guerrilla operations in the Philippines. His arguments are forceful.”—Sheila S. Coronel, Columbia University
“Conclusively, McCoy’s Policing America’s Empire is an impressive historical piece of research that appeals not only to Southeast Asianists but also to those interested in examining the historical embedding and institutional ontogenesis of post-colonial states’ police power apparatuses and their apparently inherent propensity to implement illiberal practices of surveillance and repression.”—Salvador Santino F. Regilme, Jr., Journal of Current Southeast Asian Affairs
“McCoy’s remarkable book . . . does justice both to its author’s deep knowledge of Philippine history as well as to his rare expertise in unmasking the seamy undersides of state power.”—POLAR: Political and Legal Anthropology Review
Winner, George McT. Kahin Prize, Southeast Asian Council of the Association for Asian Studies
From the perspectives of ethnic studies, history, literary criticism, and legal studies, the original essays in this volume examine the ways in which the colonial history of the Philippines has shaped Filipino American identity, culture, and community formation. The contributors address the dearth of scholarship in the field as well as show how an understanding of this complex history provides a foundation for new theoretical frameworks for Filipino American studies.
The stories of seven men and one woman from Indiana who survived the horrors of captivity under the Japanese in the Pacific during World War II are captured in vivid detail. These Hoosiers were ordered to surrender following the fall of Bataan and Corregidor in 1942. It was the largest surrender of American armed forces in U.S. history and the beginning of three years of hell starting with the infamous Bataan Death March, facing brutal conditions in POW camps in the Philippines, and horrific journeys to Japan for some onboard what came to be known as “hellships.” Former Indiana governor Edgar D. Whitcomb, one of those featured in the book, notes that the American prisoners had to endure “unimaginable misery and brutality at the hands of sadistic Japanese guards,” as they were routinely beaten and many were executed for the most minor offenses, or for mere sport. In addition to Whitcomb, those profiled include Irvin Alexander, Harry Brown, William Clark, James Duckworth, Eleanor Garen, Melvin McCoy, and Hugh Sims.
In The Promise of the Foreign, Vicente L. Rafael argues that translation was key to the emergence of Filipino nationalism in the nineteenth century. Acts of translation entailed technics from which issued the promise of nationhood. Such a promise consisted of revising the heterogeneous and violent origins of the nation by mediating one’s encounter with things foreign while preserving their strangeness. Rafael examines the workings of the foreign in the Filipinos’ fascination with Castilian, the language of the Spanish colonizers. In Castilian, Filipino nationalists saw the possibility of arriving at a lingua franca with which to overcome linguistic, regional, and class differences. Yet they were also keenly aware of the social limits and political hazards of this linguistic fantasy.
Through close readings of nationalist newspapers and novels, the vernacular theater, and accounts of the 1896 anticolonial revolution, Rafael traces the deep ambivalence with which elite nationalists and lower-class Filipinos alike regarded Castilian. The widespread belief in the potency of Castilian meant that colonial subjects came in contact with a recurring foreignness within their own language and society. Rafael shows how they sought to tap into this uncanny power, seeing in it both the promise of nationhood and a menace to its realization. Tracing the genesis of this promise and the ramifications of its betrayal, Rafael sheds light on the paradox of nationhood arising from the possibilities and risks of translation. By repeatedly opening borders to the arrival of something other and new, translation compels the nation to host foreign presences to which it invariably finds itself held hostage. While this condition is perhaps common to other nations, Rafael shows how its unfolding in the Philippine colony would come to be claimed by Filipinos, as would the names of the dead and their ghostly emanations.
Contemporary popular culture stereotypes Filipina women as sex workers, domestic laborers, mail order brides, and caregivers. These figures embody the gendered and sexual politics of representing the Philippine nation in the Filipina/o diaspora. Gina K. Velasco explores the tensions within Filipina/o American cultural production between feminist and queer critiques of the nation and popular nationalism as a form of resistance to neoimperialism and globalization.
Using a queer diasporic analysis, Velasco examines the politics of nationalism within Filipina/o American cultural production to consider an essential question: can a queer and feminist imagining of the diaspora reconcile with gendered tropes of the Philippine nation? Integrating a transnational feminist analysis of globalized gendered labor with a consideration of queer cultural politics, Velasco envisions forms of feminist and queer diasporic belonging, while simultaneously foregrounding nationalist movements as vital instruments of struggle.
After World War II, thousands of Japanese throughout Asia were put on trial for war crimes. Examination of postwar trials is now a thriving area of research, but Sharon W. Chamberlain is the first to offer an authoritative assessment of the legal proceedings convened in the Philippines. These were trials conducted by Asians, not Western powers, and centered on the abuses suffered by local inhabitants rather than by prisoners of war. Her impressively researched work reveals the challenges faced by the Philippines, as a newly independent nation, in navigating issues of justice amid domestic and international pressures.
Chamberlain highlights the differing views of Filipinos and Japanese about the trials. The Philippine government aimed to show its commitment to impartial proceedings with just outcomes. In Japan, it appeared that defendants were selected arbitrarily, judges and prosecutors were biased, and lower-ranking soldiers were punished for crimes ordered by their superior officers. She analyzes the broader implications of this divergence as bilateral relations between the two nations evolved and contends that these competing narratives were reimagined in a way that, paradoxically, aided a path toward postwar reconciliation.
The son of an army officer, Conrad S. Babcock graduated from West Point in 1898, just in time for the opening of the Spanish-American War. Because of his father’s position, he managed to secure a place in the force that Major General Wesley Merritt led to Manila to secure the city. The Philippine Insurrection, as Americans described it, began shortly after he arrived. What Babcock observed in subsequent months and years, and details in his memoir, was the remarkable transition the U.S. Army was undergoing. From after the Civil War until just before the Spanish War, the army amounted to 28,000 men. It increased to 125,000, tiny compared with those of the great European nations of France and Germany, but the great change in the army came after its arrival in France in the summer of 1918, when the German army compelled the U.S. to change its nineteenth-century tactics.
Babcock’s original manuscript has been shortened by Robert H. Ferrell into eight chapters which illustrate the tremendous shift in warfare in the years surrounding the turn of the century. The first part of the book describes small actions against Filipinos and such assignments as taking a cavalry troop into the fire-destroyed city of San Francisco in 1906 or duty in the vicinity of Yuma in Arizona when border troubles were heating up with brigands and regular troops. The remaining chapters, beginning in 1918, set out the battles of Soissons (July 18–22) and Saint-Mihiel (September 12–16) and especially the immense battle of the Meuse-Argonne (September 26–November 11), the largest (1.2 million troops involved) and deadliest (26,000 men killed) battle in all of American history.
By the end of his career, Babcock was an adroit battle commander and an astute observer of military operations. Unlike most other officers around him, he showed an ability and willingness to adapt infantry tactics in the face of recently developed technology and weaponry such as the machine gun. When he retired in 1937 and began to write his memoirs, another world war had begun, giving additional context to his observations about the army and combat over the preceding forty years.
Until now, Babcock’s account has only been available in the archives of the Hoover Institution, but with the help of Ferrell's crisp, expert editing, this record of army culture in the first decades of the twentieth century can now reach a new generation of scholars.
"Responsive Democracy is a pioneering contribution to the political analysis of administrative law in East Asia. Both political scientists and legal academics will greatly benefit from the author's in-depth analysis of the intersection between presidential power and administrative law in the contrasting cases of South Korea, Taiwan, and the Philippines."
---Susan Rose-Ackerman, Yale University Law School
"Baum's book is a very significant contribution because it focuses on a part of the world that has often been neglected in studies of democratization. It focuses attention on the nuts and bolts of what we mean by democratic consolidation and responsiveness. Indeed, if more political science were written with this clarity, we would all enjoy reading the literature much more!"
---Joseph Fewsmith, Boston University
Under what conditions is a newly democratic government likely to increase transparency, accountability, and responsiveness to its citizens? What incentives might there be for bureaucrats, including those appointed by a previously authoritarian government, to carry out the wishes of an emerging democratic regime? Responsive Democracy addresses an important problem in democratic transition and consolidation: the ability of the chief executive to control the state bureaucracy.
Using three well-chosen case studies---the Philippines, South Korea, and Taiwan---Jeeyang Rhee Baum explores the causes and consequences of codifying rules and procedures in a newly democratic government. In the Philippines, a president facing opposition has the option of appointing and dismissing officials at will and, therefore, has no need for administrative procedure acts. However, in South Korea and Taiwan, presidents employ such legislation to rein in recalcitrant government agencies, and, as a consequence, increase transparency, accountability, and responsiveness. Moreover, as Baum demonstrates by drawing upon surveys conducted both before and after implementation, administrative procedural reforms in South Korea and Taiwan improved public confidence in and attitudes toward democratic institutions.
Jeeyang Rhee Baum is a Research Fellow at the Ash Center for Democratic Governance and Innovation, John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University.
Major General Clarence Ransom Edwards is a vital figure in American military history, yet his contribution to the U.S. efforts in World War I has often been ignored or presented in unflattering terms. Most accounts focus on the disagreements he had with General John J. Pershing, who dismissed Edwards from the command of the 26th (“Yankee”) Division just weeks before the war's end. The notoriety of the Pershing incident has caused some to view Edwards as simply a “political general” with a controversial career. But Clarence Edwards, though often a divisive figure, was a greater man than that. A revered and admired officer whose men called him “Daddy,” Edwards attained an impressive forty-year career, one matched by few wartime leaders.
Michael E. Shay presents a complete portrait of this notable American and his many merits in Revered Commander, Maligned General. This long-overdue first full-length biography of General Clarence Edwards opens with his early years in Cleveland, Ohio and his turbulent times at West Point. The book details the crucial roles Edwards filled in staff and field commands for the Army before the outbreak of World War I in 1917: Adjutant-General with General Henry Ware Lawton in the Philippine-American War, first chief of the Bureau of Insular Affairs, and commander of U.S. forces in the Panama Canal Zone. Revered Commander, Maligned General follows Edwards as he forms the famous Yankee Division and leads his men into France. The conflict between Edwards and Pershing is placed in context, illuminating the disputes that led to Edwards being relieved of command.
This well-researched biography quotes a wealth of primary sources in recounting the life of an important American, a man of loyalty and service who is largely misunderstood. Photographs of Edwards, his troops, and his kin—many from Edwards’ own collection—complement the narrative. In addition, several maps aid readers in following General Edwards as his career moves from the U.S. to Central America to Europe and back stateside. Shay’s portrayalof General Edwards finally provides a balanced account of this unique U.S. military leader.
In Securing Paradise, Vernadette Vicuña Gonzalez shows how tourism and militarism have functioned together in Hawai`i and the Philippines, jointly empowering the United States to assert its geostrategic and economic interests in the Pacific. She does so by interpreting fiction, closely examining colonial and military construction projects, and delving into present-day tourist practices, spaces, and narratives. For instance, in both Hawai`i and the Philippines, U.S. military modes of mobility, control, and surveillance enable scenic tourist byways. Past and present U.S. military posts, such as the Clark and Subic Bases and the Pearl Harbor complex, have been reincarnated as destinations for tourists interested in World War II. The history of the U.S. military is foundational to tourist itineraries and imaginations in such sites. At the same time, U.S. military dominance is reinforced by the logics and practices of mobility and consumption underlying modern tourism. Working in tandem, militarism and tourism produce gendered structures of feeling and formations of knowledge. These become routinized into everyday life in Hawai`i and the Philippines, inculcating U.S. imperialism in the Pacific.
Spain, China and Japan in Manila, 1571—1644 offers a new perspective on the connected histories of Spain, China, and Japan as they emerged and developed following Manila’s foundation as the capital of the Spanish Philippines in 1571. Examining a wealth of multilingual primary sources, Birgit Tremml-Werner shows that crosscultural encounters not only shaped Manila’s development as a ŸEurasianŒ port city, but also had profound political, economic, and social ramifications for the three premodern states. Combining a systematic comparison with a focus on specific actors during this period, this book addresses many long-held misconceptions and offers a more balanced and multifaceted view of these nations’ histories.
The Spanish Pacific designates the space Spain colonized or aspired to rule in Asia between 1521--with the arrival of Ferdinand Magellan--and 1815--the end of the Manila-Acapulco galleon trade route. It encompasses what we identify today as the Philippines and the Marianas, but also China, Japan, and other parts of Asia that in the Spanish imagination were extensions of its Latin American colonies. This reader provides a selection of documents relevant to the encounters and entanglements that arose in the Spanish Pacific between European, Spanish Americans, and Asians while highlighting the role of natives, mestizos, and women. A-first-of-its-kind, each of the documents in this collection was selected, translated into English, and edited by a different scholar in the field of early modern Spanish Pacific studies, who also provided commentary and bibliography.
During a ceremony held in 1996 to commemorate the fiftieth anniversary of formal Philippine independence, the U.S. flag was being lowered while the Philippine flag was being raised, and the two became entangled. In The Star-Entangled Banner, Sharon Delmendo demonstrates that this incident is indicative of the longstanding problematic relationship between the two countries. When faced with a national crisis or a compelling need to reestablish its autonomy, each nation paradoxically turns to its history with the other to define its place in the world.
Each chapter of the book deals with a separate issue in this linked history: the influence of Buffalo Bill’s show on the proto-nationalism of José Rizal, who is often described as the “First Filipino”; the portrayal of the Philippines in American children’s books; Back to Bataan, a World War II movie starring John Wayne; the post-independence fiction of F. Sionil José; and the refusal of the U..S military to return the Balangiga Bells, which were taken as war booty during the Philippine-American War. Ultimately, Delmendo demonstrates how the effects of U.S. imperialism in the Philippines continue to resonate in U.S. foreign policy in the post cold war era and the war on terrorism.
From the 1960s to the 1990s, seven members of the Quimpo family dedicated themselves to the anti-Marcos resistance in the Philippines, sometimes at profound personal cost. In this unprecedented memoir, eight siblings (plus one by marriage) tell their remarkable stories in individually authored chapters that comprise a family saga of revolution, persistence, and, ultimately, vindication, even as easy resolution eluded their struggles.
Subversive Lives tells of attempts to smuggle weapons for the New People’s Army (the armed branch of the Communist Party of the Philippines); of heady times organizing uprisings and strikes; of the cruel discovery of one brother’s death and the inexplicable disappearance of another (now believed to be dead); and of imprisonment and torture by the military. These stories show the sacrifices and daily heroism of those in the movement. But they also reveal its messy legacies: sons alienated from their father; daughters abused by the military; friends betrayed; and revolutionary affection soured by intractable ideological differences.
The rich and distinctive contributions span the martial law years of Ferdinand Marcos’s rule. Subversive Lives is a riveting and accessible primer for those unfamiliar with the era, and a resonant history for those with a personal connection to what it meant to be Filipino at that time, or for anyone who has fought political repression.
Suspended Apocalypse is a rich and provocative meditation on the emergence of the Filipino American as a subject of history. Culling from historical, popular, and ethnographic archives, Dylan Rodríguez provides a sophisticated analysis of the Filipino presence in the American imaginary. Radically critiquing current conceptions of Filipino American identity, community, and history, he puts forth a genealogy of Filipino genocide, rooted in the early twentieth-century military, political, and cultural subjugation of the Philippines by the United States.
Suspended Apocalypse critically addresses what Rodríguez calls "Filipino American communion," interrogating redemptive and romantic notions of Filipino migration and settlement in the United States in relation to larger histories of race, colonial conquest, and white supremacy. Contemporary popular and scholarly discussions of the Filipino American are, he asserts, inseparable from their origins in the violent racist regimes of the United States and its historical successor, liberal multiculturalism.
Rodríguez deftly contrasts the colonization of the Philippines with present-day disasters such as Hurricane Katrina and Mount Pinatubo to show how the global subjection of Philippine, black, and indigenous peoples create a linked history of genocide. But in these juxtapositions, Rodríguez finds moments and spaces of radical opportunity. Engaging the violence and disruption of the Filipino condition sets the stage, he argues, for the possibility of a transformation of the political lens through which contemporary empire might be analyzed, understood, and perhaps even overcome.
Winner of the 2021 Gourmand Awards, Asian Section & Culinary History Section
Filipino cuisine is a delicious fusion of foreign influences, adopted and transformed into its own unique flavor. But to the Americans who came to colonize the islands in the 1890s, it was considered inferior and lacking in nutrition. Changing the food of the Philippines was part of a war on culture led by Americans as they attempted to shape the islands into a reflection of their home country.
Taste of Control tells what happened when American colonizers began to influence what Filipinos ate, how they cooked, and how they perceived their national cuisine. Food historian René Alexander D. Orquiza, Jr. turns to a variety of rare archival sources to track these changing attitudes, including the letters written by American soldiers, the cosmopolitan menus prepared by Manila restaurants, and the textbooks used in local home economics classes. He also uncovers pockets of resistance to the colonial project, as Filipino cookbooks provided a defense of the nation’s traditional cuisine and culture.
Through the topic of food, Taste of Control explores how, despite lasting less than fifty years, the American colonial occupation of the Philippines left psychological scars that have not yet completely healed, leading many Filipinos to believe that their traditional cooking practices, crops, and tastes were inferior. We are what we eat, and this book reveals how food culture served as a battleground over Filipino identity.
In Things Fall Away, Neferti X. M. Tadiar offers a new paradigm for understanding politics and globalization. Her analysis illuminates both the power of Filipino subaltern experience to shape social and economic realities and the critical role of the nation’s writers and poets in that process. Through close readings of poems, short stories, and novels brought into conversation with scholarship in anthropology, sociology, politics, and economics, Tadiar demonstrates how the devalued experiences of the Philippines’ vast subaltern populations—experiences that “fall away” from the attention of mainstream and progressive accounts of the global capitalist present—help to create the material conditions of social life that feminists, urban activists, and revolutionaries seek to transform. Reading these “fallout” experiences as vital yet overlooked forms of political agency, Tadiar offers a new and provocative analysis of the unrecognized productive forces at work in global trends such as the growth of migrant domestic labor, the emergence of postcolonial “civil society,” and the “democratization” of formerly authoritarian nations.
Tadiar treats the historical experiences articulated in feminist, urban protest, and revolutionary literatures of the 1960s–90s as “cultural software” for the transformation of dominant social relations. She considers feminist literature in relation to the feminization of labor in the 1970s, when between 300,000 and 500,000 prostitutes were working in the areas around U.S. military bases, and in the 1980s and 1990s, when more than five million Filipinas left the country to toil as maids, nannies, nurses, and sex workers. She reads urban protest literature in relation to authoritarian modernization and crony capitalism, and she reevaluates revolutionary literature’s constructions of the heroic revolutionary subject and the messianic masses, probing these social movements’ unexhausted cultural resources for radical change.
Winner of the 2020 Shelley Fisher Fishkin Prize from the American Studies Association
Texts written by Southeast Asian migrants have often been read, taught, and studied under the label of multicultural literature. But what if the ideology of multiculturalism—with its emphasis on authenticity and identifiable cultural difference—is precisely what this literature resists?
Transitive Cultures offers a new perspective on transpacific Anglophone literature, revealing how these chameleonic writers enact a variety of hybrid, transnational identities and intimacies. Examining literature from Malaysia, Singapore, and the Philippines, as well as from Southeast Asian migrants in Canada, Hawaii, and the U.S. mainland, this book considers how these authors use English strategically, as a means for building interethnic alliances and critiquing ruling power structures in both Southeast Asia and North America. Uncovering a wealth of texts from queer migrants, those who resist ethnic stereotypes, and those who feel few ties to their ostensible homelands, Transitive Cultures challenges conventional expectations regarding diaspora and minority writers.
In this groundbreaking study, Denise Cruz investigates the importance of the figure she terms the "transpacific Filipina" to Philippine nationalism, women's suffrage, and constructions of modernity. Her analysis illuminates connections between the rise in the number of Philippine works produced in English and the emergence of new social classes of transpacific women during the early to mid-twentieth century.
Through a careful study of multiple texts produced by Filipina and Filipino writers in the Philippines and the United States—including novels and short stories, newspaper and magazine articles, conduct manuals, and editorial cartoons—Cruz provides a new archive and fresh perspectives for understanding Philippine literature and culture. She demonstrates that the modern Filipina did not emerge as a simple byproduct of American and Spanish colonial regimes, but rather was the result of political, economic, and cultural interactions among the Philippines, Spain, the United States, and Japan. Cruz shows how the complex interplay of feminism, nationalism, empire, and modernity helped to shape, and were shaped by, conceptions of the transpacific Filipina.
In Tropical Renditions Christine Bacareza Balance examines how the performance and reception of post-World War II Filipino and Filipino American popular music provide crucial tools for composing Filipino identities, publics, and politics. To understand this dynamic, Balance advocates for a "disobedient listening" that reveals how Filipino musicians challenge dominant racialized U.S. imperialist tropes of Filipinos as primitive, childlike, derivative, and mimetic. Balance disobediently listens to how the Bay Area turntablist DJ group the Invisibl Skratch Piklz bear the burden of racialized performers in the United States and defy conventions on musical ownership; to karaoke as affective labor, aesthetic expression, and pedagogical instrument; to how writer and performer Jessica Hagedorn's collaborative and improvisational authorial voice signals the importance of migration and place; and how Pinoy indie rock scenes challenge the relationship between race and musical genre by tracing the alternative routes that popular music takes. In each instance Filipino musicians, writers, visual artists, and filmmakers work within and against the legacies of the U.S./Philippine imperial encounter, and in so doing, move beyond preoccupations with authenticity and offer new ways to reimagine tropical places.
Unconventional Sisterhood is an ethnographic exploration of the ways in which Filipina Missionary Benedictine Sisters are renegotiating traditional understandings of gender, religious responsibility, and national identity in the context of a rapidly globalizing nation. Unlike the popular stereotypes of staid sisters cloaked in rigid religious dogmatism, they are doing so by telling jokes, engaging in eclectic religious rituals, maintaining connections with a local nationalist cult, and committing themselves to a radical and feminist politics.
This work represents an important addition to scholarship on Philippine feminism. It is one of few ethnographies that focuses on female monasticism--of particular cultural importance in the Christian Philippines, where nuns enjoy relatively high social status and freedom from many of the traditional constraints delineating Filipina lives. It is noteworthy as well for its focus on metropolitan Manila--a socially complex, dynamic, diverse, and understudied environment.
Heather L. Claussen is an anthropologist currently living in Santa Cruz, California.
This report examines the 14-year experience of U.S. special operations forces in the Philippines from 2001 through 2014 and the activities and effects of special operations capabilities employed to address terrorist threats in Operation Enduring Freedom—Philippines through training and equipping Philippine security forces, providing operational advice and assistance, and conducting civil–military and information operations.
"To read the book is to appreciate the highly contingent, provisional, oblique, open-ended way in which people try to make "sense" of another culture."—Resil B. Mojares, Philippine Graphic
"This book is an interestingly complex ethnography that approaches the self-critical dialectical ethnography called for two decades ago....It is a welcome contribution to postmodernist theory and to the ethnography of the Visayas."—Ronald Provencher, Journal of Asian Studies
In 1899 an American could open a newspaper and find outrageous images, such as an American soldier being injected with leprosy by Filipino insurgents. These kinds of hyperbolic accounts, David Brody argues in this illuminating book, were just one element of the visual and material culture that played an integral role in debates about empire in late nineteenth- and early twentieth-century America.
Visualizing American Empire explores the ways visual imagery and design shaped the political and cultural landscape. Drawing on a myriad of sources—including photographs, tattoos, the decorative arts, the popular press, maps, parades, and material from world’s fairs and urban planners—Brody offers a distinctive perspective on American imperialism. Exploring the period leading up to the Spanish-American War, as well as beyond it, Brody argues that the way Americans visualized the Orient greatly influenced the fantasies of colonial domestication that would play out in the Philippines. Throughout, Brody insightfully examines visual culture’s integral role in the machinery that runs the colonial engine. The result is essential reading for anyone interested in the history of the United States, art, design, or empire.
Gene Jacobsen was a nineteen-year-old Idaho ranch kid when he decided to join the Army Air Corps in September 1940. By December 1941 he was supply sergeant for the Twentieth Pursuit Squadron at Clark Field in the Philippines. Five months later he was a captive of the Imperial Japanese Army, enduring the Bataan death march and subsequent horrors in the Philippines and Japan. Of the 207 officers and men who made up Jacobsen’s squadron at the beginning of the war, sixty-five survived to return to the United States. We Refused to Die recounts Jacobsen’s struggle, against all odds, to remain one of those sixty-five men.
In engaging, direct prose, Jacobsen’s three-and-a-half year experience as a prisoner of war takes the reader on a brutal and harrowing march through hatred and forgiveness, fortitude and freedom. We Refused to Die is an honest memoir that shines light on one of history’s darkest moments.
In this wide-ranging cultural and political history of Filipinos and the Philippines, Vicente L. Rafael examines the period from the onset of U.S. colonialism in 1898 to the emergence of a Filipino diaspora in the 1990s. Self-consciously adopting the essay form as a method with which to disrupt epic conceptions of Filipino history, Rafael treats in a condensed and concise manner clusters of historical detail and reflections that do not easily fit into a larger whole. White Love and Other Events in Filipino History is thus a view of nationalism as an unstable production, as Rafael reveals how, under what circumstances, and with what effects the concept of the nation has been produced and deployed in the Philippines. With a focus on the contradictions and ironies that suffuse Filipino history, Rafael delineates the multiple ways that colonialism has both inhabited and enabled the nationalist discourse of the present. His topics range from the colonial census of 1903-1905, in which a racialized imperial order imposed by the United States came into contact with an emergent revolutionary nationalism, to the pleasures and anxieties of nationalist identification as evinced in the rise of the Marcos regime. Other essays examine aspects of colonial domesticity through the writings of white women during the first decade of U.S. rule; the uses of photography in ethnology, war, and portraiture; the circulation of rumor during the Japanese occupation of Manila; the reproduction of a hierarchy of languages in popular culture; and the spectral presence of diasporic Filipino communities within the nation-state. A critique of both U.S. imperialism and Filipino nationalism, White Love and Other Events in Filipino History creates a sense of epistemological vertigo in the face of former attempts to comprehend and master Filipino identity. This volume should become a valuable work for those interested in Southeast Asian studies, Asian-American studies, postcolonial studies, and cultural studies.
Women make up a majority of the Filipino workforce laboring overseas. Their frequent employment in nurturing, maternal jobs--nanny, maid, caretaker, nurse--has found expression in a significant but understudied body of Filipino and Filipino American literature and cinema. Harrod J. Suarez's innovative readings of this cultural production explores issues of diaspora, gender, and labor. He details the ways literature and cinema play critical roles in encountering, addressing, and problematizing what we think we know about overseas Filipina workers. Though often seen as compliant subjects, the Filipina mother can also destabilize knowledge production that serves the interests of global empire, capitalism, and Philippine nationalism. Suarez examines canonical writers like Nick JoaquÃn, Carlos Bulosan, and Jessica Hagedorn to explore this disruption and understand the maternal specificity of the construction of overseas Filipina workers. The result is readings that develop new ways of thinking through diasporic maternal labor that engages with the sociological imaginary.