The Ilustrado’s Orphan: Generational Misrecognition and the Filipino Self

Isaac Donoso


From being the language of the first Republic of the Philippines, Spanish
practically vanished in the archipelago. Its disappearance was not a natural
process, but a projected program aimed at erasing its role in building the
Philippine nation and the Filipino self, starting from childhood. By constructing
a new historical narrative and pedagogical intervention taught to infants, the
United States of America created a generational break between Filipinos that
ended in the estrangement with the written national heritage. This paper focuses
on the beginnings of the process towards de-Hispanization during the first part
of the American period, and the human and cultural consequences of such for
generations of orphans without forefathers.


ilustrado, liberalism, education, Spanish, English, American imperialism, generations, childhood, diglossia, heritage

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ISSN: 2012-0788