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January 26, 2010

The Center for Southeast Asian Studies Presents: Richard Chu on Chinese Merchant Families of Manila

The Center for Southeast Asian Studies invites the public for a Friday-at-Noon lecture

Friday, January 29
Chinese Merchant Families of Manila: Negotiating Identities from the Spanish Colonial Period to the Present
Richard Chu, University of Massachusetts, Amherst

noon – 1:30 pm
1636 SSWB/International Institute


Mariano Limjap and family, circa 1920s. Mariano was a Chinese mestizo whose father was one of the known Chinese "tycoons" of Binondo in the late 19th century. As one of the leading participants in the Reform Movement and the revolutions against Spain and the United States, Mariano's "Chinese-ness" is often neglected in nationalist histories.

"Sangley," "Infieles," "Intsik," "Mestizo," "Chekwa," "Tsinoy." For centuries, outside observers, governments, the Catholic Church, and scholars have called the Chinese in the Philippines different names at different times. Chu deconstructs the meanings of these terms by taking a micro-historical approach, demonstrating how Chinese merchant families in late colonial Manila negotiated their identities as they deployed border-crossing practices to elude or connive at efforts by dominant groups to localize them.

Richard T. Chu received his A.B. from Ateneo de Manila University (1986), his M.A. from Stanford University (1994), and his Ph.D. from University of Southern California (2003). His research focuses on the history of the Chinese in the Philippines, centering on issues of ethnicity, gender, and nationalism. He has just published his first major publication entitled The Chinese and Chinese Mestizos of Manila: Family, Identity, and Culture 1860s to 1930s (E.J. Brill). Chu is Five-College Assistant Professor of History at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst.

Posted by zzhu at January 26, 2010 03:19 PM