HIST/ASAN 406: Modern Philippines

Prof. Vina Lanzona
TR 1:30 – 2:45 pm
Fall 2018 | CRN: 88748 | Section 001


During the mid-to-late nineteenth century, Philippine society underwent dramatic economic, political and cultural transformations. While the beginning of the Spanish colonial period caused massive conversions of the populace, the later period opened up the Philippines to the world market. The end of the Spanish and Philippine-American wars paved the way for three decades of U.S. colonialism in the country. Philippine hopes for independence were shattered with the brief Japanese occupation. The postwar period was a time for reconstruction, nation-building and revolution.

This course traces the development of Philippine history and society from the end of the nineteenth century to the present. We will explore the beginning, ending and the enduring legacies of Hispanization in the Philippines through the important works of Jose Rizal. By examining primary source documents, we will closely examine race and empire as U.S. colonialism transformed Philippine political and cultural institutions. World War II brought in what was considered the “darkest years” of Philippine history and we will rediscover the horrors of war, the promise of liberation, and the postwar realities of reconstruction and revolution. Finally, we’ll attempt to understand the “Martial Law” period and its enduring legacies. Through themes such as colonialism, religion, nationalism, revolution and resistance, and the state and civil society, we hope to gain a better understanding of the challenges facing contemporary Philippine society.


  • Rizal, Noli Me Tangere