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Philippine History and Culture Series

Edited by Hector Santos
© 1996-99 by PHGLA
All rights reserved

Members of the Philippine History Group of Los Angeles (PHGLA) write articles on all topics of Philippine history and culture.

PHGLA has no political stand on historical matters. We believe that a good historian must not be an advocate for an ideology and that an advocate for a cause, no matter how noble, cannot be a good historian. Nevertheless, each member of PHGLA has his own personal point of view that other members respect. Our member articles are under the heading, "Member Articles."

PHGLA seeks outstanding articles from nonmembers and publishes them here under "Guest Articles."

PHGLA welcomes opinions that most participating members may not agree with and provides a forum for them to be heard. Their opinions are published in these pages under "Opposing Views."

  • Member Articles
    • "The Ati-Atihan Festival" by Reuben Domingo. This quasi-religious spectacle has elements of both the sacred and the profane. It is similar to the Mardi Gras in New Orleans and the Carnaval in Rio de Janeiro but is not celebrated during the Holy Week and comes from a completely different origin. The author traces one possible historical origin of this boisterous and raucous celebration. Warning: This page contains several large graphics files which may slow down your download. Turn your graphics off if this becomes a problem.
    • "Macario Sakay: Tulisán or Patriot?" by Paul Flores. After the last remnants of Aguinaldo's army surrendered, other Filipinos organized and used armed resistance to continue their fight for independence. One of the more colorful and relatively successful characters was the long-haired Sakay who continued his fight in the hills of the Tagalog region.
    • "Miguel Malvar, the Last Holdout" by Paul Dimayuga. After Aguinaldo was captured, his generals continued their war for independence against the Americans. One by one, they fell to American power. So did Malvar, the last to inherit the command in the official chain of succession.
    • "The Balangiga Massacre: Getting Even" by Victor Nebrida. In one of the cruelest episodes of the Philippine-American War, thousands of Samar civilians including innocent women and children were killed by American forces on orders by their general to turn Samar into "a howling wilderness." This was in retaliation for an earlier raid by Filipino independence fighters on the American garrison in Balangiga.
    • "Revolutionary War in the Ilocos" by Alfonso S. Quilala, Jr. Little is known by the public about the war in the Ilocos region waged by Filipinos against Spanish and American forces. The contribution of the Ilocanos in the fight for Philippine independence came under the leadership of many colorful characters.
    • "War for Independence: The View From a Small Town" by Ramon Sison. The fight for independence intimately affected the lives of the people in one small Ilocos Sur town. The scenes described here probably happened in countless other small towns in the Philippines as well.
    • "Messianic Leaders of the Revolution" by Paul Dimayuga. Many of the battles against foreign domination were led by eccentric folk heroes who often proclaimed themselves as messiahs, prophets, popes, or even gods. Here are some of them and their organizations.
    • "Book Review: Inventing a Hero" by Hector Santos. This new book by Glenn Anthony May (Battle for Batangas) is sure to be controversial because it claims that the manuscripts on which we base what we know about Andres Bonifacio are forgeries.
  • Guest Articles
    • "Keeping the Spirit of 1896 Alive" by Onofre D. Corpuz. "A full 100 years" after it happened, our scholars still do not tell the complete story of the Revolution. Instead, they "indulge in a Filipino pastime: depicting our heroes in conflict" such as the "supposed bitter rivalry between Bonifacio and ... Aguinaldo, as if their differences and not the sacred cause of our people's war were the essence of the history of the Revolution." This is the best and most complete short account of the Philippine wars for independence available anywhere.
    • "The Independence Day That Wasn't" by Alan Berlow. The terms of the July 4, 1946 "independence" were so onerous that even the United States Department of State protested, saying it was "clearly inconsistent with the basic foreign economic policy of this country" and a betrayal of "our promise to grant the Philippines genuine independence."
    • "Forget Your Darling Far Away" by P.N. Abinales. Did Gen. John Pershing really father some children in Zamboanga?
    • "Gen. Jose Ignacio Paua: A Chinese General in the Philippine Revolution" by Teresita Ang See. An unsung and almost unknown hero was a pure-blooded Chinese who served as a general in the Philippine Revolutionary Army.
    • "By the President of the Philippines, Proclamation No. 28 Declaring June 12 as Philippine Independence Day" by Diosdado Macapagal. The text of the document that moved the independence day celebration from July 4 to June 12.
    • "June 12 as Independence Day" by Diosdado Macapagal. The former president explains why he set the date to June 12.
    • "Ugly Balikbayans and Heroic OCWs" by Vicente L. Rafael. Why are balikbayans considered walang hiya and OCWs the "new heroes?" Excerpted from "Your Grief Is Our Gossip: Overseas Filipinos and Other Spectral Presences," the full version of which can also be downloaded from this page.
  • Opposing Views
Check this site often as we will add new articles as they become available.

PHGLA Logo The Philippine History Group of Los Angeles invites you to send your comments to the editor of this Philippine Centennial Series, Hector Santos.