Works-in-Progress in 2019

  1. Not much updates here for a long time because my day job and other activities involve lot of writing that takes away time that could have otherwise been spent on blog posts. Some of the major changes that took place since my last life update in 2018 includes me starting this academic year as untenured faculty at the University of the Philippines Diliman Department of Filipino and Philippine Literatures where I am also completing my masters of Araling Pilipino (Philippine Studies).
  2. I’m still in the middle of writing my thesis, which is basically a critical discourse analysis of Ang Bayan, the communist party central organ, during the anti-Marcos dictatorship struggle in the early 1980s. I hope to finish writing the whole thing by the end of the year.
  3. In this connection, I am preparing two paper presentations that can help force me write the thesis chapters. The first is on the discursive construction of the welgang bayan (people’s strike) in the paper for the relaunching of the Monico Atienza Lecture Series this May. The second is on the political economy of Ang Bayan in the age of social media, cyber warfare and trolling, which takes off from my thesis’ investigation of the practices of production, distribution, and re-mediation of the paper as situated in wider social conditions of class and politico-ideological struggles.
  4. Other research projects I’m working on include interrogations of the early activist-influenced writings of Cebuano scholar Resil Mojares, the revolutionary poetics and militant investigations of Roger Felix Salditos (better known by his nom de guerre Maya Daniel) who was martyred last year, and reviews of Philippine media.
  5. A paper I presented on Mojares last year was later accepted for publication by the Philippine Studies journal after several revisions. The article “Militant Struggles and Anti-Imperialism in Resil Mojares’ The Freeman Columns during the Early 1970s” will be forthcoming in the journal’s special issue devoted to the intellectual legacy of Mojares.
  6. My colleagues and I are working on the publication of Maya Daniel’s works of poetry, visual art, essays and militant investigations on the plight of the Tumandok indigenous peoples, peasants, and workers of Panay Island. I am currently editing a book manuscript set to come out later this year of his 50 poems selected, organized, and translated into Filipino by activist-poet Kerima Lorena Tariman. This is only a small fraction of his vast oeuvre (we have on hand almost 500 poems and dozens of articles and paintings) so we are working on translating more of his poetic and prose works for future publication.
  7. Media reviews I’ve done for academic purposes have been on the topics of Peace Talks and the Media in the Philippines, Mainstream Press Coverage of the Philippine Government’s Peace Talks with Filipino Communists, and a forthcoming one on “Mobile Gaming Apps on Duterte’s War on Drugs”. I am also trying to revise one reviewing the engagement of alternative media groups with President Rodrigo Duterte as circumscribed by the discourse of Duterte’s “unfolding” during his first year of power.
  8. I am now helping out with the Congress of Teachers and Educators for National Democracy-UP Diliman (CONTEND-UPD), a militant anti-imperialist organization of educators in the university, and the Commission 11 of the International League of People’s Struggles (ILPS).
  9. I’m part of two reading groups, one on Karl Marx’s Capital for Media Studies with graduate students and faculty from the College of Mass Communication and another focused on Marxist historical materialist applications for Philippine Studies. We have just finished reading volume 1 of Capital in the first reading collective while we’re going over Ramon Guillermo’s Pook at Paninindigan, a Marxist critique of the nativist Philippine Studies current of Pantayong Pananaw.
  10. Most of my readings and rereadings in recent months have been centered on militant anti-imperialist intellectuals from Asia, Africa, and Latin America like Amilcar Cabral, Eduardo Galeano, Frantz Fanon, Jose Maria Sison, Samir Amin, Walter Rodney, among others as well as more practical textbooks on critical discourse analysis and Marxist ideology critique from Louis Althusser, Stuart Hall, Ernesto Laclau, Theo Van Leeuwen, Norman Fairclough, etc.

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