Although we started out with the goal of mapping the ideas that shape public discussion in the Philippines, we’re ready to admit that these maps aren’t, and will likely never be, the kinds that convey complete routes.
In the beginning, we drew maps that were frequently smaller in scale and more immediate in scope. Dipping into several simultaneous conversations, we allowed our writers to guide readers through their individual frontiers. I feel like we used to let most of these explorations pursue their separate horizons. But lately, the paths have tended to converge on the question of Filipino identity.
In this issue, Edward Basse injects new life into our past by reflecting on the Philippines’ connections to Mexico, its sister country halfway around the world. Our editor, Lisandro Claudio, points out the difficulties in our national narrative arising from our country’s uniquely absurd position in the post-colonial world. In his film review, Vinny Tagle redirects our gaze to the countryside and uncovers the fetishization projected of rural life. And while the shiny lights of Bonifacio Global City elicit a similar yearning, Julie Nebrija explains why she refuses to give up on old Manila, warts and snatchers and all.