Skip to main content


Showing posts from March, 2014

Hey kids, did you know?

About a hundred years ago, Filipino women couldn't vote. Only men could cast votes in Philippine elections. Men were making choices and electing into office other men whose decisions would impact on the lives of men, women and children alike. And women didn't have a say in this -- at least not officially. Today, not only can we vote, we have women in senate and in congress. We have women governing our provinces, cities and barangays. Two female presidents so far. Maybe not all of these women improved the lives of the majority of Filipino women. But each of them represents widening possibilities for women's leadership and participation in politics. They are part of a chain of historical transformations in the Philippines, beginning with the women's right to vote. The great-grandmothers of my generation worked hard to make this happen. They campaigned around the country, rallied the women, convinced husbands, debated and negotiated with gatekeepers and the powers

An Unbosoming.

At a Women's Month celebration the other day, I was seated with the Little Boss on my lap and her Papa, my Outrigger, stood behind us, ready to take her if needed. A woman I hold much respect for, a senior in academic circles, came up to me and commented on how the Little Boss has grown and I introduced her to the Outrigger. She smiled at him and said in a tone that I heard to be partly scolding, partly teasing,  "You're the one who's keeping her from being an anthropologist!" He and I responded in unison, "Noooo." But she had turned and walked away. I suppose she had said what she wanted to say and didn't need or want to hear an answer. The Outrigger shrugged and said, "Some people just feel they have to say something." And with that shrug, I knew that the Outrigger had already brushed aside that brief encounter and was just minutes away from forgetting the whole incident -- a gift I wish I had too. But I was bothered, and he