Friday, December 09, 2011

Katutubong Filipino Project: Vanishing Indigenous Cultures



filipino native indigenous tribeI am all for the preservation of culture and am a strong advocate of creating awareness about the indigenous plight—after all, the Philippines was theirs to begin with! They are the true "Filipinos." Talk about major encroachment!  They not only lost their country and are beginning to lose their remaining small unprotected territories; but they are about to lose their way of life as well, if we don't do something about it soon. They definitely deserve much more help and attention. So, when I caught wind of this undertaking to collect stories, capture high quality images, and create further awareness of the relatively little-known Philippine natives in their own environment, I was immediately drawn in.


As I read on, not only was I stunned by the kind and quality of photographs being taken, filipino native indigenous tribebut I was equally surprised to learn that the photographer and man behind this potential project was not a Filipino—but an American. I do not know Jacob Maentz personally, but much praise to him for his concern and attention to the Philippines' indigenous peoples—of which there are many. It is quite a shame that those Filipinos who are able to conduct such in-depth observations of their own country's peoples have not shown as much initiative and fervor.

Jacob Maentz, a photographer and former US Peace Corps member, reminds me of another photographer/former US Peace Corps member who also fell in love with the Philippines—Tommy Schultz, who is an advocate of saving and preserving the Philippines' marine life and environment.

May passionate and constructive individuals such as Jacob and Tommy receive more assistance for their projects and advocacies. And may Filipinos learn and become inspired by their example.

When I am in better financial shape, I know I would love to do the same, and more.

Below is a video for Jacob's project. You can find out more about how to help him on his Kickstarter page.

6 comments:

Ray said...

So the majority of us who are of Malayo-Indonesian origin are just invaders.....LOL. Why do people always find it difficult to define nationality, ethnicity, race, and culture?  I have two reasons for that. First is that they keep mixing them. Second is that all these identifiers keep changing. If we go back 1,000 years ago there were no "Filipinos",  just colonists grouped in small kingdoms all throughout the archipelago. 30,000 years ago there were no Asians, Europeans, or Native Americans, just Central Asians. 10,000 years from now there will be no American, Filipino, or Uzbeks, just Earthlings.......

el toro bumingo said...

Dapat tigilan na natin ang pagka-categorize sa isa't-isa based on color, race, culture, etc. Siguro 'pag may bumisita sa 'ting alien race, saka palang tayo magu-unite under one race: Earthlers or Earthlings :)

el toro bumingo said...

I admire Jacob for coming up with such wonderful project.

Bello Lumintegar said...

Thank you for sharing this! It is sad to think that Indigenous Filipinos have forgotten and disregarded by the government and the society. Self-interest is one of the major factors why indigenous culture is vanishing bit by bit.

Nerd_geek07 said...

Good work by Jacob Maentz! It just shows that Indigenous people still do  exist  in the Philippines at least in the boondocks despite threats of  massive industrialization and exploitation of their territories. But it seems like they are slowly adapting to moderisation as some of their likes can be spotted in Metro Manila walking across the streets selling their wares sometimes even begging for a penny.  Could their homelands been encroached? Could they have tired of their old traditional living? Could they have been banished from their territories by new settlers and landgrabbers? Could their place been transformed into quarry sites, mine sites or subdivisions? Couldn't we do something? A lot of questions needs to be answered...Tsk tsk...

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