An Anarchist and Autonomous Community-Based Resource Center in Muntinlupa City (Manila south), Philippines

You know labor unions, but do you know Isabelo de los Reyes?


BAGUIO CITY, Philippines – He might as well be the Father of Anthropology and Indigenous Studies in the country. He introduced Marxism to the Philippines. He was jailed among the anarchists in Europe. He fought the Catholic church by helping establish another. He is the reason why we’re having May Day.

Now why are there no movies about him? Or, evidently, why haven’t you heard of him?

The only faults his contemporaries (Jose Rizal included) could ascribe to Isabelo de los Reyes was that he wrote too fast and just about anything. And also because he came from Ilocos, which, even a hundred years ago, was not considered part of the Filipino Olympus where heroes were manufactured.

It is only now that De los Reyes is given his due. In Benedict Anderson’s In Three Flags and its updated version, The Age of Globalization, De los Reyes is placed in the same pedestal as Rizal.

Resil Mojares also wrote two books on Delos Reyes: Brains of the Nation: Pedro Paterno, T.H. Pardo de Tavera, Isabelo de los Reyes and the Production of Modern Knowledge lump De los Reyes with the two other forgotten scholars and analyzed their lives and works to deconstruct the nascent concept of Filipino nationalism and identity. Isabelo’s Archive was written like Isabelo’s own folklore with miscellaneous essays on Filipino culture and history, mostly during the Spanish times. His essays here on Isabelo were among the first to be written about this unknown hero.


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This entry was posted on June 16, 2017 by .
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