Lamentations of a Fil-Am Writer
How I've been thinking about my writing and art, how I'm pressured to center my Filipino-ness (which is non-whiteness) and I can't just write about the big themes. At a workshop, I told my small group that they get to write about love lost, grief and abuse without having to write as a white man who list lost love or how a white woman deals with grief. I may choose to write about Filipino/Am identity in some way but it is received as a Filipino American work rather than a work about something. I don't even have to write Filipino characters to write my perspective as a Pinay into my writing (colonial history, historical violence, erasure of my narrative into larger Asian American and Western narratives). It's just there.
That's what people need to know about what it's like to write as a person of color.
Pamela K. Santos
The Author's Mark
One writes from a universal perspective that relates to all, regardless of race, gender, color. The integration of your viewpoint in what you write reflects the subjective element of how it relates to you. The Filipino-ness reveals your inner response and drive shouting in you, reaching out for identity.
Fighting from a Distance
As the 31st anniversary of the People Power revolution is remembered this February 26, 2017. our Filipino children or grandchildren may ask us, "Lolo,Itay (grandpa or Dad), I read that a Filipino named Ninoy Aquino was an exile here in the U.S. for three years 1981-83. When he returned home, he was gunned down at the Manila airport." Who was he and what did he do here. Indeed, the question can be posed to us -- "what did you-- we --, U.S.-based Filipinos do here during the martial law years of 1972 to 1986 ?"
The world was in awe at how our EDSA revolution won us back our freedoms. But little is known about the bands of Filipinos in New York City and San Francisco and points in between who mobilized our own EDSAs here. It was not a three-day people power revolution but a 14-year struggle. These have been recorded in scattered magazine articles and newspaper reports. Now the full story is told in the first book-length history. What they accomplished is testimony that --we, you -- did our part.
This book was released by the University of Illinois Press and can be ordered from Amazon.com. For details: